Category Archives: History

PALO DURO CANYON STATE PARK

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Palo Duro Canyon State Park, TXPhoto copyright Ashley LandisSince I first started 24inTX, I’ve wanted to go to Palo Duro Canyon.  It’s is truly one of our state’s biggest and brightest gems.

The stunning canyon opens up before you as you drive through hundreds of miles of flat land in the Texas panhandle.

It’s been a main attraction for over 12,000 years.  The canyon walls offered resources and shelter to the Apache, Comanche and Kiowa tribes, as well as Spanish explorers before it became a state park in 1934.

I learned all about the history of the canyon while I was there, but first I had to make the 500 mile journey from central Texas to the panhandle.  If you’re keeping track at home, that’s an 8-9 hour drive, and I documented every hour!

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ENNIS

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Whew!  What a crazy spring!!!  From SXSW to Fort Hood to President Obama to NBA Playoffs, I’ve been photographing everything I can put my eyes on for two months.  I’ve enjoyed it immensely, but it’s time I get back to traveling on my own terms.

First stop, Ennis – the bluebonnet capitol of Texas.

Bluebonnets are my all-time favorite flower.  Every spring I get giddy when I see them pop up on the sides of the highway, and I thumb through the pages of the wildflower edition of Texas Highways like a little kid looking at a new comic book.  I can’t help it, I’m a Texas girl.

So when deciding where I should go for my first trip back from a longer-than-expected hiatus, my first Google search was “bluebonnets.”

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HWY 71

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For most of my adventures, I spend at least a couple hours researching where I might go and what I might do when I get there.  There’s always some flexibility in my plan – these are adventures after all – but I usually have a list for each place.

Recently a friend asked me, “how was your trip?”  Because of my busy schedule, I hadn’t planned as much as I normally do, so I answered, “it was good, but I think I need to plan more next time.”  He responded, “or less.”

Huh.  He had a point.

So this time, I set out on the road with no plan.

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SCHULENBURG

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Okay, I’ll admit it.  Up until now, I’ve put a lot of thought in to where I travel for this project, but this time it snuck up on me.  It was Sunday night and I realized I had nothing to post this week and no travel plans.  Plus, the weather forecast predicted sleet and snow.  Where was I supposed to go?

I needed some place that had indoor activities and that wasn’t too far away, just in case driving conditions got bad.  Obviously I couldn’t camp.

Monday morning I woke up and started researching.  I looked up the painted churches of Texas.  Schulenburg?  That’ll work! Read more

GOLIAD

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It’s 2014 and I’m back to adventuring!

Santa brought me a new tent and some camping gear for Christmas, and I couldn’t wait to try them out.  As soon as the temperature rose above 65 degrees, I hit the road to Goliad State Park.

The town of Goliad is important in Texas history.  It was a key location during the Texas fight for independence.

The Mission Nuestra Señora del Espíritu Santo de Zúñiga and the Presidio La Bahia, which protected the mission, were sites of bloody skirmishes, and they still stand today in and near the state park. Read more