Monday, December 14, 2015

Back in the Texas Hill Country

After spending a few relaxing weeks at our park model home in Medina, Texas, we have moved the 100+ miles north to Inks Lake State Park. We volunteered here two years ago and really love this area. It is close to the towns of Marble Falls, Burnet, and Llano so we have plenty of restaurants to enjoy, and it is close enough to Austin to make visits to family and friends convenient.

Teri and I have joined the local YMCA and are taking advantage of their brand new workout equipment as well as a few of their classes.

We took a short trip to the nearby Inks Lake Fish Hatchery to do some hiking and bird watching. They built a new bird blind since we last visited, and we got to see a few of the common bird species enjoying the offerings.

Black-crested Titmouse
We saw the very dark "Slate-colored" race of the Dark-eyed Junco. The Juncos in Idaho were much lighter colored.

Dark-eyed Junco
Northern Cardinal
As we walked toward the first pond, a couple of plump shorebirds took off and landed at the water's edge of an adjacent pond. So we headed over that way to play peek-a-boo with the Wilson's Snipe. Who remembers to good old Snipe Hunts from when we were kids?
Wilson's Snipe
Can you spot them both?
Wilson's Snipe (x2)
This can be a good place to see winter sparrows, but all we found were Song Sparrows.
Song Sparrow
Out in the water we found this rotted Bald Cypress stump with a new Sycamore tree sprouting out of the rotten center.
New Life
And finally, we saw this pretty pair of Mallards enjoying the sunny day.
Stay tuned for more from Inks Lake.