I'm really behind in our posts but I've been trying to work through a YouTube problem and I haven't been able to get the problem fixed yet. So I just decided to go ahead and post my bike ride through Lake Norman State Park. It has been heavily redacted to cut out any cursing on my park but I have left in some of my frustrated feelings about trail biking/mountain biking. The trail itself is part of the Itsui trail system which is comprised of 8 loops ranging from 1 mile to 9.75 miles in distance and is a total of 30 miles in all. The trails themselves are gorgeous and if I hadn't been so uptight about riding a bike on this teeny, tiny trail and worried that I would face plant into a tree, I would have enjoyed myself better. I am showing the part of the bike ride that we did after we came off the trail. It was on the road and honestly, wasn't all that bad after I got used to shifting gears. Robert was a great coach and very encouraging but I was definitely exhausted (mentally and physically) after finishing our ride. I would love to do more bike trails in the future but I'll opt for more flat trails with a lot of wide open spaces! I hope you enjoy it. The video is about 13 minutes long. I promise to catch up as soon as I can. We are almost at the end of our Going Coastal trip and I have so much more to share. Enjoy!
Lake Norman State Park Bike Trails
My near death experience biking on one of the easiest bike trails at Lake Norman SP. This is why I hike, not bike.
Robert's 3 minute ride
Unfortunately, the GoPro SD card was almost full when Robert started out on his ride on Hawk Loop, so he was only able to record about 2.5 minutes of a 20 minute ride. He made those 2.5 minutes look so easy though. Kudos to you, Robert Norwood. You are a mountain biker!
Pecan Creek Winery
August 19, 2020
Several of our dear friends in photography live in Muskogee, OK or thereabouts so when we realized we could add on a few days in Oklahoma I contacted Tony and asked if they would be in town. In the course of the conversation, he asked if we knew about Harvest Hosts and were we members. Of course we are! We love wine and love Harvest Host. Up until this trip we had only stayed at one in Fredricksburg, Texas. He also shared that they were good friends with the owner Bob and Joan Wickizer and that their winery was associated with Harvest Host. What he didn't tell us was that typically the winery is closed on Wednesdays AND that they were in the middle of harvesting the vignoles grapes. Later we would find out that he told Bob about us coming and we were able to set up right at the winery next to where all the magic was happening.
By the time I arrived from my grocery shopping in town, Robert was set up and ready to go to work for Bob! I mean, literally, he was working, dumping the grapes that had gone through the machine that takes off the stems, and putting them into this huge cylinder with a bladder in it. Once that is all loaded up with grapes, a heavy lid gets screwed down and the bladder begins to inflate. This presses the grapes against each other and then the juice pours out at the bottom and on the sides. I've got a video to show all of this going on. We got to taste the fresh juice before it is fermented and it's delicious. So sweet and fresh tasting.
After the bladder does it thing, the then almost dried grapes have to be dumped out of the container into garbage bags and these are taken to local pig farmers for their slop. Pigs love grapes, I hear! I know I do. The juice then is pumped inside to the huge vats and left to ferment. Bob's job is to test the wine and decide when it is ready to be bottled. I didn't really get much more technical than that because I really enjoy drinking wine more than how to make wine.
However, it was totally a fascinating experience and one I would highly recommend if you ever get the opportunity.
Of course, the best part of the evening is hanging out with old friends, Mandy and Tony Corbell, Joe Gylda and Kim Smith and making new friends with Bob and his wife. I hope you enjoy the pictures from our time at Pecan Creek Winery and enjoy the video too.
Pecan Creek Winery is located in Muskogee, Oklahoma and one of the Harvest Host stops we have made on our trip to the East Coast.
More from the Winery
Robert Norwood participating in the wine making experience at the Pecan Creek Winery in Muskogee, OK. Bob got in a four-hectoliter pneumatic press that uses air instead of the water-powered bladder press that you saw in the first video. This tank hold about 100 liters or about 25 gallons of grapes. It's much more efficient and gets the grapes pressed quickly so that the liquid stays cooler.
Longhorn Caverns State Park
August 11, 2020
The next day we decided to check out the Longhorn Caverns in Burnet, Texas. What a really cool day and it was only about 25 minutes from where we were located. We also had to check out the Bluebonnet Cafe while in Marble Falls, and a couple of breweries. Bruce Wayne wasn’t all that thrilled about the one brewery that we visited but he sat nicely and let us enjoy a beer and a burger.
The Longhorn Caverns is not as expansive as Carlsbad Caverns but it is definitely worth the time to take the tour. The hardest part was having to wear your mask through the caverns for the entire tour. The temperature wasn't bad, stayed about 68 degrees in the caverns but it was muggy and clammy. However, the tour was amazing and we learned so much about the area of Burnet during the Wild West days.
Sunset Point on Lake LBJ, Marble Falls, Texas
Welcome to our blog! Here is the place to keep up on our travels, get ideas of places to stay or NOT to stay, tips and tricks and things to do while you are visiting the area. We are no means experts on RV’ing and will definitely share our trials and tribulations along the way, because believe me, in the past three weeks we have had things come up that had to be fixed and we have made plenty of mistakes. But those mistakes have turned out to be learning experiences that we can share with our friends and any followers.
So let's dive right in!
August 6th we moved from the KOA RV park on Lake Conroe to the on Lake LBJ to Northlake Village RV Park to get us one step closer to getting out of Texas. Lake LBJ is a beautiful lake close to Marble Falls and about an hour from San Antonio. The swimming area was pretty nice and we went for walks just about every day. On Saturday, my sister and her fiance came over for one last visit and to check out the rig and then on Sunday we invited our friends, the Homan’s over for a day of planning in the water. Jacob had the best time walking with us in the swimming area and the boys enjoyed some downtime sharing a beer or two. It was still terribly hot but we managed to have hamburgers, Trey’s killer baked beans and a couple of Corona’s to celebrate the trip! The biggest problem was that it was so hot, no one thought to take more pictures and the four of us are photographers!
Sunset Point is a lovely, small RV park that is about 15 minutes out of Marble Falls. It is close to several wineries, grocery stores and has full hook ups. Our site was very level and except for not having any trees around it, was quite pleasant. We stayed right at a week and found plenty to do while we were there.