Wednesday 09.30.2015

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Sawyer was not too happy about being put in the crate in the back of the car for the ride home from Enchanted Rock, can you tell by this picture?  We had all doors open while I arranged the ice chest and food stuff.  He was standing by one of the back doors about to attempt a jump in when I picked him up and put him in his crate.  Not happy!  He stuck his nose through the wire and gave me the evil doggie eye all the way home!

Enchanted Rock, second attempt

In January 2012 we had attempted to climb Enchanted Rock (click here for the original post ) and made it the edge of the summit before the wind drove us down again. Yesterday we attempted the climb again and this time made it all the way to the summit!

Enchanted  Rock 1825 feet above sea level
Enchanted Rock is 425 feet above the base level of the park and is 1825 feet above sea level.  Climbing to the summit is the equivalent of climbing the stairs of a 30 -40 floor building!

The temperature was just reaching into the 80’s when we started our climb.  It was warm, but not blistering hot.  We were pleased that there was only a cool, easy breeze at the summit. We noticed that the perspective of the rock seemed to make us think that we were near the top, when in truth we were not.  There were numerous small inclines on the way up, each with their own little flat, summit like top.  We would reach one, stop and breath, and then proceed to climb the next one.

100_8777Sawyer is a rock climbing, adventure loving dog!  I was mindful of keeping an easy pace for him, but he never seemed to struggle (like the humans!).  On the way down I dropped his leash several times when there were only a few scattered people around us and no dogs in sight.  He scampered down the rock like a little mountain goat.

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Microhabitats have formed in areas where the granite has worn away faster than the surrounding area.   Yes, prickly pear is every where in Texas!

100_8765The park offers guided climbs to the summit with discussion about geology, flora, an other topics along the way.  I hope to take one of these tours as the geology fascinates me. Enchanted Rock is the largest pink granite monadnock in the United States.  But what is visible is only part of a huge underground area of granite that extends for 62 square miles.

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The views from the summit are unbelievable!  We heard many groups clap and cheer when they reached the top.  Others would sit down to rest and appreciate the scenery.

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Enchanted  Rock State Park is a designated International Dark Sky Park.  It is in a rural area where the night sky offers exceptional stargazing – you can even see the Milky Way here!  The park keeps night lighting to a minimum and has installed a dark sky monitor to measure the relative darkness of the sky above the park.  I’m hoping to visit at night, maybe camp here, and participate in their night stargazing activities.

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Yes, the pre-teen is using his cell phone here!  He wanted to see if he could get a signal, so he called his Mom!