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Washington and Austin County Riding

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During this time of social distancing we've been getting our outdoor fix by riding in Washington and Austin Counties around Brenham, Texas. We have been pleasantly surprised at the large number of possible routes on rural paved and gravel roads. Most of our riding distances have been between 25 to 45 miles - just getting ourselves back in shape before we try any longer distances :) What follows are a few pics I snapped from our rides during April.

As Heather says - lots of PYF (Pretty Yellow Flowers). This is located in Washington County on Bosse Road.

Heather on William Penn Road in Washington County.
Even the hay bales are practicing social distancing and wearing appropriate PPE. This was seen along Mustang Road just east of Brenham.

Turtle Rescue along Kuykendall Road in Washington County north of Brenham.
Gravel bliss out on Caney Creek Road to the SW of Chappell Hill.
Wide open spaces and smooth gravel on Newman Road in Austin County.
Snake enjoying the quiet morning.
Thought…

A Ride of Detours

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A nice day to do some outdoor social distancing and I'd planned a ride of 31 miles on a new route to Chappell Hill. A nice route that included some new gravel, a road that no longer existed, bridge construction, and a  repaving project. After two major re-routes we had a good ride of 42 miles. Next time I'll double check the county's website to see all the current road construction projects.

Bluebonnets and cows - the signs of spring. The cows kept their social distance from me. This was along a very nice stretch of gravel on Meyersville Road.

Our final route - note the exploration after mile 15 - looking for a re-route through a rural subdivision without any success. We backtracked to FM 1155 to reach Chappell Hill. Our second re-route was lust before mile 25 where a bridge was out for replacement.

Our favorites - gravel roads and spring wildflowers.
Yep, the bridge was out on Chadwick Hogan Road (Washington County Road 87).
Parting shot.

April Fool's Day

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Enjoying good weather and the opportunity to get out of the house. We plotted a new route north to the community of Gay Hill. It is really amazing all of the combination of paved and gravel roads that we have in the Brenham area. I am pretty sure that we can consistently make up new variations of roads to always keep it new and interesting. I am looking forward to exploring some new starting locations too.

Coming over the railroad bridge on Old Gay Hill Road.
The route out to the northwest of Brenham.
Looking north over the railroad on Old Gay Hill Road.
The flowers were spectacular along Old Gay Hill Road.
Parting shot.

Riding Near Independence, Texas

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Spring wildflowers looking very nice outside of Independence, Texas. We did a nice 35 mile loop out to Independence from Brenham - covering some great roads and pretty countryside.
Bluebonnets, Paintbrush, and moo cows - definitely a recurring sight in Washington County!

Heather standing near the sign marking the direction to the original Baylor University in Independence, Texas... maybe there were bears around here once???
Our rest stop in Independence - the Independence Store, been here since 1926 and the front facade was inspired by the Alamo.
Parting shot...

Bike Riding around Brenham

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We've been trying to get a few rides in during the transition to Brenham and plan to get back to riding more often that we are all settled. We are fortunate that we can ride from the house and get to some excellent paved and gravel roads. We live in Washington County (the birthplace of Texas) and are fortunate to have such excellent riding opportunities. and great spring scenery (lots of wildflowers)!
Lots of trees to provide shade along the gravel back roads.
Wildflowers adjacent to a cemetery on Phillipsburg  Church Road.
I just like the name of this road - south of Burton, Texas.
Heather always get excited about the Bluebonnets :)
Lots of these yellow flowers near Chappell Hill.
The bridge was out on Langhorn Road (County Road 90) just south of Chappell Hill. We detoured back on Sempronius Road (County Road 89) and saw even more flowers.
This is an excellent road on the way to Burton from Brenham that I rode today. 
The shoulders were lined with Indian Paintbrush and Bluebonne…

Tucson to Brenham

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It has been awhile since I've  posted about our travels, lifestyle changes have kept us pretty busy during the past two months. Rewind to January 10th - we started discussing ending our life on the road in our RV. We started by exploring possible relocation (buying a home) in Silver City, New Mexico. After exploring the available housing in Silver City - we didn't feel it was the right fit for us - we explored there on January 11th and 12th and returned back to Tucson.

We went online and looked at housing in Brenham.  On Wednesday, January 15th we called Jared and Kaitlyn to let them know our plans and ask if Kaitlyn's dad, Joe (a College Station area realtor), could help us find a realtor in Brenham. Fortunately for us, Joe could represent us in the Brenham area - he called and asked if we found anything we really liked. We had found a townhome in Brenham that seemed the perfect fit for us. Joe thought that Brenham was an ideal sized community (18,000 population) and a v…

Ernie's Falls Hike

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Today we decided to revisit Saguaro National Park East and hike over to Ernie's Falls. We saw the trailhead for this waterfall when we hiked to Bridal Wreath Falls just before Christmas.
Ernie's Falls

Lots of familiar looking scenery in the Rincon Mountains just east of Tucson.
Just a little bit of snow on the higher elevations.
To get to Ernie's Falls, you have to leave a main trail and hike up a canyon/stream about 1/2 mile to the waterfall.
Heather at the falls - we actually thought Ernie's Falls were prettier than Bridal Wreath Falls. We'd recommend visiting both since they are within a few miles of each other.

The Loop - Julian Wash

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A very windy day riding along The Loop in Tucson. We rode out on Julian Wash to the western end and back getting us a nice 40 mile ride.

Heather riding along the Julian Wash from east to west.
Weekdays on the trail are mostly retired folks like us. We did have a nice chat with a young man from England who was here on holiday to ride his bike.

Not Quite Mescal Gravel Adventure

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Unfamiliar territory can often result in some interesting riding adventures. Sometimes satellite view just doesn't show every locked gate when you are planning a route.
Oh no! Another gate that I couldn't see on satellite view... so we turn around and ride on.
So we did a bit of back-tracking and improvisation for a short bit of gravel today.
The last three miles I rode back on the Hohokam Trail and Heather used the adjacent roads. Our favorite road name today was "Justa" Road. We also had a friendly dog that followed us for about five miles. 
Parting shot...

Arizona Trail, Hohokam Trail, and McKenzie Ranch

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The Arizona winter weather is providing us some nice opportunities to hike and bike. The past three outings have included two sections of the Arizona Trail and the Hohokam/McKenzie Ranch trails.
I really love all the vistas south of Tucson on the trail.
If I am mountain biking, Heather hikes the same trail - it works out pretty nice.
We have also hiked together on the Arizona Trail from Davidson Canyon to Aqua Verde Creek and back.

We are trying a new gravel ride tomorrow - hoping the roads aren't too sandy!