More Texas Back Roads

I’m going to have to come up with some different titles for these blog posts because I can see myself exploring the smaller county roads of Texas quite a bit! Today I had a few hours of alone-time and decided to go for a long ride. Actually, I knew I would have this “time off” for a few days now so was just hoping the weather would be nice for a ride. As it turned out, the weather was beautiful! I didn’t really have a plan, except that first I would stop by the library to return some books. After that, who knows?

Leaving the library (I used the drive thru dropoff which is kind of fun on a motorcycle) I found myself traveling north to see a newly developed neighborhood in Cedar Park. Just new houses, but it seems like the traffic-circle is making a comeback around these parts. Just for the record, I enjoy them. Some people seem to freak out on them, but these little circles are nothing compared to the insanity that is the traffic circle just south of Signal Hill in SoCal. I remember having to negotiate that thing when we would go to Zed Records’ location at that time. I actually thought that was pretty fun too.

Continuing on, I traveled north (while keeping an eye on my GPS unit) into the Blockhouse Creek neighborhood. I’ve never been there, but it seemed pretty nice. A couple good-sized swimming pools were being put to good use this afternoon. As I rode by I caught the sweet smell of sunscreen. Eventually, I found myself on 183 and headed farther north. As soon as I could, I made a left onto a county road, hit the insane cruising speed of 35mph, popped the visor open and took in the scenery.

Distance Ahead

It’s interesting to me to see how people live farther out in the country. As someone who has only lived in the suburbs and larger cities it’s kind of fascinating to wonder how life is on a ranch house with a few acres of land. You know, I don’t even know how big an acre is! So cruising past these homesteads is really fun to me.

Distance Behind

I also get a kick out of seeing different animals while out riding these back-roads. On this particular trip I saw some of the widest horns I’ve ever seen on a bull before. Yes, there are lots of longhorns here in Texas! In addition to those, I saw plenty of smaller cows, horses, mules, jack-rabbits, goats, and I even saw Tina. But the highlight of the ride was probably when a blonde-colored snake, about three feet long, slithered across the road in front of me. That thing was moving! It kind of shocked me. I realized that this is maybe only the 2nd snake I have ever seen in the wild. The first was in the backyard of my old house, so that wasn’t really wild, was it? Anyways, I continued riding the backroads enjoying the sights and smells or rural Texas.

Lonely Road

I did ride a little bit of hard-packed dirt, which is always a little sketchy. But it all turned out fine (it was only a hundred yards or so). Another really cool stretch of road went parallel to some train tracks for a mile or so. I stopped on that road to have some water and could hear gunfire in the distance. I guess some folks were enjoying their Sunday afternoons with some target practice. Of course, for the next few minutes, I kept expecting to get hit by a stray bullet. Anyways, on the way back home there was a mini-water crossing which added a little more dicey-ness to the day. Hey, even these slow rides have excitement!

5-22-2011 Ride

GPS Stats:
Moving Time: 2:38
Moving Average: 36.8 mph
Odometer: 97.2 miles

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