Thursday, July 7, 2011

Two sides of a mountain

On Texas 87 between Mason and Fredericksburg, look to the east, and you'll see a huge, flat hill in the distance. On our way home yesterday from Mason, James and I decided to veer off and explore a short loop that took us through the very tiny community of Loyal Valley. Because I had a map of Mason County, I knew about House Mountain Road, which cut off from Ranch Road 2242 and headed east to that mysterious hill. After all these many years, now we finally knew the name of it!

However, House Mountain was actually quite a far distance away, especially via a bumpy gravel road. The route took us past very scrubby ranch land, infested with mesquite and plenty of prickly pear and tasajillo. The road also crossed from Mason County into Llano County. So I had to dig for another map.

After nearly an hour, we finally got as close as the road allows to House Mountain. Or rather, Prairie Mountain. That's what folks in Llano County call the same hill. Seems like with stories and pancakes, mountains have two sides as well. Not to mention two names, depending on which side you live.

At any rate, we got out for photos (above, I posed "Patrick style"...years ago, my son stood like this as a little boy atop a mountain in Fort Davis). I really loved the yuccas that seemed to grow in sweet little family clusters.

We crossed a creek and saw lots and lots and lots of granite rocks and boulders. This is Enchanted Rock country, you know (as in the massive dome of granite that's north of Fredericksburg and not too from this area).

James decided that he wanted to take home a few rocks from our outing. So we picked out two rather larges ones sitting along the roadside. Thankfully, the gravel road eventually ended at Ranch Road 2323, which took us south back to Highway 87.

Back at home, we arranged the two rocks in a flower bed in our back yard and added a whimsical metal frog that we bought from a thrift store in Mason. Ah ha! I'm going to make two little signs for either side of our new display.....         

House Mountain Rocks 
Prairie Mountain Rocks


Unknown said...

Now which mountain could i climb?? oh NONE. The photos are fantastic! What a cool day trip to take and enjoy, even in this rough texas heat.

greggo said...


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