I was sitting around thinking today about the places that I was fortunate enough to see this year, a sort of 2017 year in review. I was fortunate enough to see some great places this year with the hopes of seeing even more in the coming years.
So let’s look back through some of the images of 2017. The first one is the barn you see, better known as the Aggie Barn. It is out east of where I live sitting just off highway 6. Let me start by saying I am not an Aggie fan. In fact, I root for their arch enemy the University of Texas. But besides that, I love the barn. I love the passion to keep it going year after year; it was even moved once.
One of the coolest places I got to see this summer was former President Lyndon Baines Johnson’s Ranch in central Texas. This is a cool place and one I recommend anyone in the area to tour. You get to see the whole ranch including old guest houses, the Johnson’s grave site, his old hanger with airplane and old cars, plus his old house which they call the Texas White House (seen in the picture).
Touring the house was the best part. You can’t go in every room and you can’t touch anything (it is a museum after all), but it was worth the drive. To see some of the old technology built into the house was really neat, especially all of the different phones around strategically placed. His wife, Lady Bird, outlived him by decades and some of the things she did and where she lived is still in place as well. Our tour guide was wonderful and it is a beautiful ranch.
There were a few spots in Austin that I hit up this year as well. Several times I went to the state capitol and while it was not my first time there, it was my first time to photograph it. I love the capitol. It is a beautiful building with gorgeous grounds that surround it. I tried a few times at sunrise but only wound up with a couple decent photos. You never know what you are going to get, and I know I will be back again to try more.
Also in Austin is the 360 Bridge or the Pennybacker Bridge. There is a trial that leads up to an overlook of the bridge that I went up one day. My photos did not come out as good as I had hoped, so I plan on going back one day in the near future, but it is a gorgeous spot with some great views of the Colorado River and downtown Austin.
Turns out I had a spot on my lens or sensor, and not having really checked my camera since it was a long day it is visible in my photos. That is why I want to go back. Plus it is just a really good view of the city.
The last place I will cover in part I of our 2017 Year in Review is The Grove, Texas. This is the local “museum ghost town”. While the town has fallen on hard times over the years with stores closing and people moving away, it is still a strong small town in Texas with a wonderful church and a near little “ghost town” to visit.
I loved going and stepping back in time for a moment. Seeing the old Saloon and Sheriff’s office was quite interesting. I could almost feel myself walking down the dirt road as horses pass by and people stumble out of the saloon. I, like many, are fascinated with the old west. And to have a chance so close to home to step back in time, even if for just a moment, is a pretty cool thing to be able to do.