Thursday, March 10, 2011

Honey Creek State Natural Area

It was a cold and frosty morning as we gathered at the old homestead for the 2 mile interpretive tour of Honey Creek, but the azure blue sky held promise of another beautiful day in the Hill Country.

Honey Creek State Natural Area, originally a ranch owned by German immigrants in the mid-1800's, totals 2293.7 acres, lies approximately 30 miles north of San Antonio, and is accessible by a weekly guided tour only.  Due to the bone-chilling temperatures, I was pleasantly surprised at how many people availed themselves of this opportunity.

Nesting grounds of the endangered Golden-cheeked Warbler, Honey Creek is a truly beautiful location.

Spanish Moss

Ball Moss - feeds off the air!

The lasting effects of a Yellow Sapsucker!

THIS is Honey Creek!

Yellow Indian Grass at the water's edge.

At least 20 feet up high, in the crook of a tree,
 grew this big, beautiful cactus!

Although birds were scarce on this frigid morning,
the dappling effects of the sun couldn't disquise THIS bird,

nestled in among the rocks on the path up a gorge.
I'll always wonder if this was placed intentionally, long ago, by hunters/gatherers or later by settlers, or if it is just 'one of those things'.

Tradition holds that as they explored their new surrouondings, they found that there were hundreds of swarming bees.  Where there are so many bees, there must be honey, and so the creek became known as Honey Creek.

Today's the last day to enter the give-away on this post.
Donated items include Crossley's new bird ID book and
Peterson's Young Birder's Field Guide.


Lois Evensen said...

What a pretty place. Thanks for the tour and lovely images.

texwisgirl said...

Awesome shots!!! LOVE that duck rock! And I've never seen a cactus growing up in a tree. Neat!

john bord said...

Love wandering through places like that. Don't have as many trees but do have the birds and oldness of the land.

thanks for the tour.

Lily Hydrangea said...

Ahhh... sweet tranquility!
This looks like the perfect spot to hear the beautiful sound of silence with maybe some sweet songs from the birdies.

Just Ramblin' said...

Looks like you had a great time. The ball moss is quite fascinating. How sad to see the damage the tree. Don't you wonder how the cactus started growing in the crook of the tree? There certainly was a lot to see and enjoy. So glad you braved the chilly temperatures and shared these wonderful pictures. Nola

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Karen: I would enjoy that place with all your great captures. You have a neat way of capturing your walk.

Kay L. Davies said...

Honey Creek is beautiful, as is the area around it. I love the bird-shaped rock, and I would like to think it was put there by the ancients in their search for honey.
As for the Yellow Sapsucker, my verification word here is "sapper"!
-- K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

Bob Bushell said...

Beautiful places and excellent photos.

chubskulit said...

I love that ball moss shot!

Carver said...

What a wonderful place to explore and enjoy nature. Fantastic shots.

Azhita said...

Beautiful pictures once again Karen! It looks like a wonderful, very tranquil spot. I'd love to see it some day! Thank you for sharing.


Marvin said...

Looks like a wonderful place to tour.

Crafty Green Poet said...

that looks such a beautiful and interesting place to walk!

walk2write said...

What a magical, sweet place! A cactus growing high up in a tree? And a bird turned to stone? I'll bet there's milk flowing somewhere on that land to go along with the honey.

Simone de Klerk said...

I had to enlarge the picture, wondering where the bird was. How very special! I would imagine it is just one of those things.
And what an impressive place to be!
LOVE the butterflies in the previous post too. We are starting to get some signs of spring too here (o:

Kathiesbirds said...

What an interesting looking place. Love the stone bird!

~✿~Icy BC said...

Gorgeous photos of nature, but the third one caught my eye, and very fascinating to see.

Rambling Woods said...

Love the ball moss and that book is awesome..just got it...Michelle

Sondra said...

Terrific spot full of natural beauty! Never seen a cacti up a tree like!!

Carrie P. said...

I never liked spanish moss but I do like that ball moss.
How funny to see that cactus in a tree.

Mike Whittemore said...

I've never seen a sapsucker rip up a tree that bad!! Nice blog, looking forward to reading more of your posts!