The Longdogs

The Longdogs
Willy, Harley (back center), and Gretchen

Willow City Loop Bluebonnets

We headed up to the Willow City Loop near Fredricksburg one morning hoping to find an abundance of bluebonnets. Well, it definitely wasn't a show like 2010 but it is always a nice drive anyway.

There weren't crowds of people either since it was a weekday.

These folks were definitely taking advantage of our hosts.....a no-no. This is ranchland with cattle in the fields. You are not supposed to cross fence lines.

Sage got out and got carried away with shot after shot on up the road.

I think I was told these were Texas poppies but, in any case, they were pretty.

I guess we didn't get quite enough rain at exactly the right time but, as I said, it is a very pretty drive anyway and we had a great lunch in Fredricksburg.

The Oldest Bakery in Texas...Naegelin's in New Braunfels

Met up with several friends at Naegelin's Bakery in New Braunfel's for coffee and goodies. Naegelin's has been operating continuously since 1868 which makes it the oldest bakery in Texas. Edouard Naegelin started a bakery in San Antonio with a partner but that didn't work out so he moved to New Braunfels to start a new bakery in 1868 when he was 24 with a dollar in his pocket and a sack of flour. He bought the current property in 1874. He ran the bakery with his family until he died in 1924. His son and daughter ran it until his son and his wife took it over. They ran the  bakery until their son took it over and ran it until 1980 when the business was sold to the Granzin family in the 1980's. .

Just across the parking lot is a fabulous mural depicting life in early New Braunfel.

As I said, it is huge. Sage, Linda, and Mary Jane posed in front of one part of it.

The artist was actually there refreshing the paint while we took photos.

After sampling several goodies like the strudel which Naegelin's is justly famous for making, we walked around town. The court house is impressive just like most of the court houses in Texas.

There are lots of beautiful old buildings in the downtown area.

There is a Train Depot Museum which was closed the day we were there but it looked interesting.

Henne's Hardware is another old family business. Henne Hardware started life in 1846 as a tinsmithing business run by Johann Henne. When Johann died in 1857, his 17 year old son Louis took over the business as Louis Henne Company and diversified it into the business it is today. Louis Henne died in 1912 and his son Adolph took it over until he died in 1943. His three sons ran the business until they sold it in 1973. The business has continued to be run like it was years ago so it is like taking a step back in time when you visit.
There are several other beautiful murals in downtown New Braunfels. Every Saturday, there is a Farmers Market nearby next to Krause's Biergarten and Café. It is definitely worthwhile to visit.

Dave and Steve's Excellent Grom Adventure

Since the Traveling Longdogs and I were not along on this adventure, all I can do is to write about what I have been told. Of course, that is probably not the whole story.....   Packing the Groms into the Tundra for the first leg of the trip to Alpine, TX,  Groms, in case you didn't know, are little motorcycles that ride big.

Some people are better at smiling for photos than others.
I think this was a lunch stop. 

Sights in Alpine where they spent the first night and left the Tundra for the rest of the trip.

The next morning, the Groms and their riders headed south towards Presidio with a stop at Marfa on the way.

They even got stopped by the "popo" in Marfa but only because the sheriff really liked their bikes and wanted one like them himself.

On the road again towards Presidio.

They left the bikes on the U.S. side and walked across the border to Mexico. Unfortunately, they couldn't even find a place to buy a soda so it was a bust.

Back in Texas again.

In Presidio, the bikes were safely tucked into the motel room for the night.
And then the road on around towards Terlingua. 

All the comforts of home.

They checked out the front of the State Park but decided not to make the 30 mile trip in on the gravel road.

Great views.

Texas style rest area provides some nice shade.

Ah, back to Big Bend......a favorite place.

They stayed in a motel in Study Butte between Terlingua and Big Bend. I think this is over by the Starlight Theater in Terlingua.

I know this is the Starlight. It was a theater in a past life but now is a restaurant with entertainment.

In front of the Starlight relaxing, lol.

This is the legal border crossing into Mexico at Boquillas in Big Bend National Park. And, yes, you do have to have a passport!

Once you are across, you have about a mile into Boquillas. You can walk, ride a donkey, or may be able to get a ride in an old pickup.

Touring Big Bend itself.

And, yes, this is just one of the mountains in Texas.
Then it was back to Alpine for the night. Well, after a slight delay. Steve had a bit of a problem with his motorcycle so he rode his Dad's back up to Alpine, loaded it into the Tundra, and then drove back to pick up his Dad. I think it was a long wait for both of them but they still had a great trip. And Steve's motorcycle is back to normal. Seems like the little Grom didn't like some of the performance upgrades Steve put on it so it is back to stock and ready to roll.