Monday, October 27, 2008

Texas (Our Part of the world) #2

My World Tuesday Part#2

Based in Ft. Worth, Texas

Today's Topic:
Big Bend National Park
(Click on the photos for full page views)

Big Bend National Park encompasses more than 800,000 acres in southwest Texas. For more than 1,000 miles, the Rio Grande forms the international boundary between Mexico and the United States; Big Bend National Park administers approximately one-quarter of that boundary. Within the 118 twisting miles that also define the park’s southern boundary, the river’s southeasterly flow changes abruptly to the northeast and forms the “big bend” of the Rio Grande.

Looking toward Big Bend
Shot from nearby Big Bend Ranch State Park

Big Bend Ranch State Park, the largest state park in Texas, covers 300,000 acres of Chihuahuan Desert wilderness in a remarkably rugged, remote and unpopulated setting. The park extends along the Rio Grande from southeast of Presidio to near Lajitas in both Brewster and Presidio Counties. Embracing some of the most remote and rugged terrain in the Southwest, it encompasses two mountain ranges containing ancient extinct volcanoes, precipitous canyons, and waterfalls. The area has been a crossroads of human activities for over 11,000 years, as diverse people and cultures have been drawn by the abundant resources of the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo corridor.

Rare Early Morning Mist
photo 30 min after Sunrise
Click to enlarge Panorama

Camelback hills
Landscape 1

There is a lot of green here
Landscape 2
toward Marathon

Prairie Verbena
Growing out of a rock face

near Panther Junction

One of our Favorite areas in the Summer is the Basin. It is a bowl in the Chisos Mtns. The temperature mid-day will be 85 oF. up in the basin and 115 oF. down on the alkali flats. There is a great lodge and some individual cabins in the Basin as well as lots of campsites. The Restaurant at the Lodge is outstanding.

Here are a couple of photos taken after sundown in the Basin. If you look at the topographical map (scroll down), you will see Casa Grande mountain rising above the basin to the south-southeast. The first photo is a time-exposure taken of Casa Grande. The second time-exposure photo is taken much later after dusk, with only a faint glow in the sky. If you look at the map, you will see a notch (named the Window) in the Basin to the west for the water drainage. The Window is perfectly positioned for the sun to set in this notch. It is a popular pastime to take a short hike to a high point in the Basin and watch the sun set. It is a fantastic view and you can see the flats through the Window. It is possible to drive around and down and then hike to the base of the cliffs at the notch. There is almost always water falling from above into small pools here. If you are lucky you can hear Canyon Wrens calling. Big Bend is a great place to find some rare birds.

Casa Grande
Illuminated by twilight

West Texas Silhouette
The "Star" is Venus

After Sunset
Through the Window.
About 30 min after sunset

Topographic Map of the Basin Area of
Big Bend National Park

The National Park System in Texas is here.

Did You Know?
According to legend, a lost Spanish mine is located in the Chisos Mountains. The Conquistadors used the Presidio de San Vicente as a prison and from there worked a mine in the area. The guards blindfolded the captive Indians and marched them from the Presidio to the mine, supposedly in the Chisos.

We hope you have enjoyed our small start of explaining and showing our small part of the world, and we look forward to your return. We sincerely hope you will bookmark us and return often.

Update: I forgot to ask, what is your favorite photo?
Leave a comment. Thanks.

Photography by
Troy and Martha

Please visit "That's my World" for other great places of the Earth.



Anonymous said...

that looks like a lot of fun to visit. just my cup of tea.

Louise said...

A beautiful, beautiful place. Love your after sunset pictures and would love to go to the "Window!"

Is the Rio Grande muddy there? The terrain is so rough, I think maybe it isn't. I live in Albuquerque, and it's quite muddy, and shallow, here.

Luiz Ramos said...

Beautiful Nature in Your World.

kjpweb said...

Wow - that is one of the best MyWorld contributions I've seen so far!
Excellent in every aspect!
Great work - the both of you!
Cheers, Klaus

Your EG Tour Guide said...

I'd never heard of that lost mine. I wonder if it's true of just a legend.

The area around the Rio Grande is beautiful, even though it looks so dry and uninhabitable.

babooshka said...

You always have such winning posts. Excellent series of images and so much info.

Rose said...

this post is a great example of why I like to make all the visits I can to That's my sure gave us a wonderful series of photos to look at.

Cicero Sings said...

I think those camel back hills are most amazing! Each or our worlds hold much to keep us in awe!

lili11 said...

I'm now in Malaysia. You know, I spent 5 years studying at Cal State U. I regret I never made it to Texas then. And, it's impossible to travel so far to the States today - shoestring budget. So, I just have to be content looking at ur beautiful pictures. They're amazing.

Island Rambles Blog said...

The sunset photo is my favorite but all are superb...the colors are so rich in all your photos. I think it is really kind of you to share these amazing photos of yours as they obviously could be on some calendar or book. I learn little things about photography here, almost as if I was going on a photo shoot with you...;-) I think this new meme My World will be my favorite meme now also along with Sky Watch.

beetles in the bush said...

I've been all over the world collecting beetles, and Big Bend remains among my most favorite of places. I've been there four times and feel like I've only scratched the surface. My most surreal moment was lying on a boulder atop Lost Mine Peak, looking down into the Basin and through the Window to the west, past the South Rim to the Rio Grande to the the south, and down into Pine Canyon to the east, listening to the deafening silence of the wind, and truly feeling - for one fleeting moment - that I was the only human on the planet. Ah, takes me back every time!

Fabulous photos! I've gotta vote for the Window.

regards -- ted

Marvin said...

Big Bend is one of those places I love to visit, but really wouldn't want to live there. A really great series of photos and informative narrative. Casa Grande is my pick for favorite, but all are great.

Arija said...

My favourite phot? All of them!
Beautiful vast park and great descriptions.

Reader Wil said...

Troy and Martha, this is a very informative tour in the Big Bend Park! It's very large and impressive. The climate must be very hot in the daytime and cold at night. Am I right?
Thanks for your visit.

Lawstude said...

Thank you for the wonderful tour. This 2nd week of meme really makes us appreciate the many places that we don't usually see or ever had a chance to visit like the one you showed me in this post. Hope you get to have time to check my world too. Another great job and more to come in the coming weeks.

gen/entry here said...

Oh wow what i can say just speechless. One day i will visit Texas and i can see that myself. (wink) Its pretty my dear...

Rocky Mtn. Girl said...

Whoa.. these are amazing photos and a wonderful tour!! I thoroughly enjoyed this post!!!!

I want to thank you very much for the information regarding the HDR Photography... i'm really intrigued and when I have more time and feel better, I would like to learn more.
Thanks again.
Mountain Retreat- Canada

Michael Palmer said...

West Texas Silhouette - My fav

Nice post

AphotoAday said...

What a place!
Great photos, as usual...

T and S said...

That's a stunning series. I love the tones of your skies...really magical blues


Brandi said...

Troy and Martha,

This is a great post. And again, thank you so much for sharing our great state of Texas with others that might not get to see it in person. You do a wonderful job in your details and pictures.

OH, and my favorite is the "window at sunset".

imac said...

So beautiful your My World.
My 2 favs are 1) after sunset and 2) the flower growing in the wall, the wall is so clear and the markings on the stones is beautiful.

fishing guy said...

Troy: What a neat set of photos. They do every thing big in Texas. This park is a 1/3 the size of my whole state. you photos are beautiful.

Daryl said...

Its just BIG COUNTRY isnt it .. lovely shots all


willow said...

I love the notion of a lost mine. And those are some BLUE skies!!!

mirage2g said...

You surely got great blue skies!!! And its not yet Skywatch Friday! =)

It does look like a fun place to trek and camp!

Enjoy and thanks for sharing...also for your visit and comment.

Kathiesbirds said...

Troy, an excellent post as always. Did you go there just recently, or are these from your file? I like landscape #2 and the trees and venus, but all your photos are excellent, as usual. I so want to see this place for myself! Do you know if New Mexico is the chihuahuan desert also?

Island Rambles Blog said...

Hi there Troy and Martha...I came back with something for you ...check out my site and see...cheers.

Rambling Woods said...

I loved all the photos as being in the east, I don't see anything like that. I liked the flower growing out of the rock...

Genie said...

My favorite shot is Landscape 2. I like the light in it best, I like the way it was edited best, and am most fond of the skyline in it as well. So it's no surprise that Ocotillo is my second favorite shot!

Sandra said...

So many wonderful photos, but I think that Panorama after sunrise is my favorite! Greetings from Croatia.

Anonymous said...

It's hard to pick just one, but I think the last one would be my favorite. It's a lovely spot, I'd love to visit there some day.

The Texican said...

Great post Troy and Martha. I love that area. Had to wear a jacket during a street dance in Alpine one July. Pappy

Lew said...

Beautiful and rough part of this world! All are great shots of interesting aspects of the park, but I will give my nod to the sunrise.