Friday, February 5, 2010
Navasota to Coldspring, TX
What a good rest we had at the Super 8 last night. This morning we had the continental breakfast, with the major highlight being the “make-your-own” waffles in a waffle iron shaped like the state of Texas! We went to a grocery store in town before departing and found lots of foods we had not been used to seeing. There were more varieties of pork rinds than potato chips and they sold lots of grits. This store sold prickly pear leaves by the pound and packets of freeze-dried shrimp. In the canned vegetable section there were turnips greens, mustard greens, and collared greens. We have hit the south.
The riding today was very gentle rolling hills and we saw sunshine for the first time since before Austin. All of a sudden today the farm pastures faded and we entered what Texans call the “piney woods.” This is a big timber producing area, which came as a surprise to us. We also rode through the Sam Houston National Forest, the first Forest Service land we have encountered since New Mexico. The dominant tree species here is Loblolly Pine, mixed with oak and many other deciduous trees. We see lots of empty bags of “deer corn” along the road and spy a deer stand every so often. Even less often, we get to see a white-tailed deer. Towards the end of the day we came to our first bayou. We also rode through a town called Pumpkin, where we were going to fill our gas can. Apparently the gas station no longer sells gas, and we were informed that the woman running the place wouldn't sell us a liter of gas anyway.
Tonight we camp at Double Lakes campground near the town of Coldspring. On the way to the campground we saw a tasty looking barbeque place which we thought about returning to. After our first meal I was too tired to go to the barbeque (the Smoking Gun) and Greg was saddened, as he has wanted to go to a real barbeque place for at least a hundred miles. Hopefully we will find one down the road that is open when we are hungry. We played with our slingshot and then went on a little walk around the lake and looked at the beautiful, clear, night sky (remember the song? “The stars at night, are big and bright, deep in the heart of Texas...”.) Greg cleaned his chain tonight with gasoline, an inspiration we got from our friend Nate Keck, and it worked like magic! Afterwords we set the spend gas on fire, how fun. We sat up for awhile in the tent and played a game where you try to make the other person laugh first. I thought of playing this game, but I think by the end Greg had won 11 times and I had won once. Eventually we fell asleep to a loud chorus of frogs.