The End Is Near

As some of you may know, finals is coming up for students and this means that my Digital and Online Media class is coming to an end. Although this doesn’t mean that I’m finished with posting on my blog, it just means that I wouldn’t have gotten this far without the help of this class. This blogging experience has been filled with adventure, creativity, and most of all friendship. I have gotten more in touch with my fellow bloggers and also my close friends because they experienced these wonderful Texas river spots with me.

When creating this blog, I used many tools to help create and transform my ideas into posts. Sharing my posts on social media was a very helpful tool for me because it helped me to promote my opinions and get others excited about the things that matter most to me. However, putting a time limit on my blog posts and when I should submit them wasn’t helpful in expanding my ideas because it put pressure on me. One thing that I would like to improve on in my blog posts is being able to find the time to travel to more places so that I can have more personal experiences to share with my followers. This blog can be helpful in my future because it is something that I can add to my portfolio when trying to apply for jobs after college.

Texas River Rats had the most views on November 15 when I posted about Pedernales Falls and Lost Maples. That week was my most popular week out of the year because I got 20-30 views on each post and 25 visitors for my blog. Although this may not seem like a lot, it meant so much to me that people took the time out of their day to read about something that I wrote and wanted to share with the world. When I would share my posts to Facebook, I got many likes and comments as well which surprised me because most people knew it was a school assignment, but were still interested in what I had to write about!

This has been a great experience for me and I won’t let this blog down just because the semester is over, so stay tuned and get in touch with your nature side, i’ll see ya’ll after finals! In the mean time, enjoy this picture of me over Thanksgiving in Colorado when I got to see snow for the first time this year, boy did I miss it!

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If anyone is interested in following me on Instagram, here is a link!

 

Canyon Lake in New Braunfels, Texas

Howdy everyone!

Pardon me for not posting in a while, with Thanksgiving in Colorado and finals week coming up, it has been hard for me to find time to post more! But fear not, this weeks topic is about Canyon Lake. Although this body of water isn’t a river, it has many amenities that will fit anyone’s outdoor needs. Canyon Lake is located on the Guadalupe River and is home to many water sports such as boating, water skiing, and kayaking. If anyone is interested, it also offers campgrounds and cabins on the lake so that you can stay over night. Here is a link to help you plan your next camping trip to Canyon Lake!

When I visited Canyon Lake for the first time, my friends and I bought a campsite near the lake. We just stayed one night, but had the time of our lives out there. We went for a midnight dip in the lake, brought our dogs out there to swim and play in the lake. All in all it was a great trip with friends and I was able to really get in touch with my nature side while spending the night right under the open skies.

I mentioned earlier about the water sports that take place on Canyon Lake, and if anyone is interested or does any of these for sport or hobby, check out this video from youtube of people enjoying themselves out on the water!

Although all of my pictures that I took of the lake got deleted, here is a picture of my love and I at our campsite looking cute as ever (well he is at least)!

Enjoy 🙂

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5 Mile Dam in San Marcos, Texas

This slideshow tells the story of a dog who loves adventure just as much as I do. I decided to visit 5 Mile Dam located on Post Road in San Marcos, Texas because it is one of my favorite places to visit in this city, and through these images I hope to persuade some of you to venture out there as well.  I hope you enjoy 🙂

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Pedernales Falls in Johnson City, Texas

For this post I will be introducing the beauty behind Pedernales Falls, located just 30 miles outside of Austin, Texas. Before I dive into the vast amenities that the Falls offers, I want to discuss briefly about the purpose of this blog. I created Texas River Rats to inform and spark an interest in anyone that has a taste for outdoors like I do. For every post that I introduce, my goal is to make it as unique as possible. Basically, my soul purpose is to talk about places that not many people have heard about in Texas. There are so many natural landmarks in Texas, but my point is to discuss the places that not a lot of people have realized exist in Texas. Instead of analyzing locations that people have heard of or have most likely visited already, I want people to be interested in exploring outside of their comfort zones. Travel to places they’ve never heard of and make memories surrounded in the beauty of nature that Texas has to offer. So with that said, although some of you have probably heard of Pedernales Falls, I am discussing the Falls in this post because it is a place where I have made many of my own memories and I want to share them with you.

During the summer me and a group of friends decided to go to Pedernales River for a weekend trip in order to get away from the business of school. We brought all the dogs, which included 6 total, and headed to the river with just our bathing suits and positive energy. The rapids were very heavy at that time due to heavy rainfall the weekend before, but we made the best of it and we were still able to swim down the river. During our visit we went hiking, but unfortunately came across some poison ivy on our exploration. About 3 days after out trip, 4 of us ended up getting poison ivy including me and my boyfriend. All in all it was a wonderful trip and I wouldn’t have traded it for anything. The river there is beautiful and the plant life is more abundant than ever (literally)!

Pedernales Falls is just one part of the Pedernales River than you can visit to. The Pedernales river stretches to about 106 miles and you can tube, swim, and fish in the river. The falls offers amenities such as hiking, mountain biking, and even camping. My sister and I have gone to a couple of places along side the river to relax and swim, and let me tell you, there is no better way to experience the nature in Austin, Texas like visiting Pedernales Falls. Just a little reminder for all my fellow adventurers and followers, don’t go immediately after it rains because a lot of bacteria can build up in rainfall and it can be very unsafe to swim in. If anyone is interested in learning more about the falls here is a link you can check out to see when the park is open and other important information before planning your trip!

Here are some pictures from my last adventures at the Falls. Although its embarrassing, here is a picture of my love and I with poison ivy CAUTION: SEMI-NUDITY

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Lost Maples in Vanderpool, Texas

So the difference between this post and all my other ones is that I have not actually visited this place myself. I have only heard incredible stories and seen beautiful photos from friends of mine about Lost Maples. After doing some research of my own, this is definitely at the top of my bucket list of places to visit to in Texas. Lost Maples is a State Park located in Vanderpool, Texas near Garner State Park. It offers amenities such as hiking, camping, backpacking, and you guessed it, SWIMMING! The reason that there is such hype over this location is because towards the end of November the countless numbers of maple trees that grow inside the park start to bloom radiant colors of yellow, orange, and red. There isn’t a more perfect place to visit if you want to experience what fall looks like in Texas.

Since this blog is about Texas River Rats, Lost Maples also offers a place to swim in the Sabinal River that flows right through the park. This river provides a place for people to float, swim, kayak, and beat the Texas heat. After a day of sightseeing and exploring the maple trails, stop by the Sabinal River to cool off and wind down. You get to experience two of Texas’ natural beauties all in one place! Lost Maples is by far one the most interesting places I have researched in Texas. Just like in my Guadalupe Mountains post, they also offer primitive camping for anyone who is a real adventure seeker and loves to go out into the wilderness with nothing but a backpack and hiking boots!

To all my fellow explorers, Lost Maples is the place to go. It’s now turning fall in the great state of Texas, so I thought now would be a good time to introduce this location to all my followers. If anyone is looking for a place to watch fall bloom into color, then Lost Maples is the place to be. Many of my friends have gone and camped there as well and I have heard nothing but positive feedback from their travels to Vanderpool, Texas. If I have sparked your interest and you want to read more about Lost Maples State Park, here is a link to keep you informed. Also, here is another link to keep everyone in the loop about when the leaves start changing colors. This website posts weekly updates and pictures about the maple trees to keep viewers informed about when the leaves should be changing colors.

Here is a video of Lost Maples from the Texas Parks and Wildlife website, which I posted the link to in the above paragraph.

Since fall is arriving soon, here are some pictures I took of last fall when the leaves started changing colors in San Marcos, Texas.

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Across the Pond

Hello again friends,

In this blog post I will be giving credit to a very special human in my life, as well as providing to you, my followers, some of her previous work in the past that has sparked my interests in blogging. My sister, Megan Colwell, traveled the beautiful country of Scotland and during her travels I was able to keep up with her every move through her blog Across the Pond. In this blog she went through her day-to-day travels and experiences that she encountered throughout cities in Scotland. She posted pictures of the vast scenery of Scotland, and during her stay there it made me want to create my own blog posts to share to the world.

Megan shared a post to her blog almost every day so that she kept her followers in the loop. I enjoyed this aspect of her blog because it assured me that she was dedicated to her blog and followers. I would love to post every day, but the battle between school and work is a never ending struggle of mine. This also allowed for her to document everything she had experienced so that she could look back on her adventures. I also enjoyed the layout of her blog and how she set up everything. Every post had a picture to go along with it, and she made each post unique. She even dedicated a post to our father for Father’s Day since she was all the way across the country and couldn’t be there for him on that day. This traveling blog inspired me to create something similar for viewers that are interested and serious about traveling and adventuring to places they have never been before.

Megan’s blog helped me discover the true meaning behind blogging and why it is so important. As a little sister, it was hard for me to be apart from my older sister for so long, but with the help of her blog posts I was able to keep up with my sister and be a part of her life even though she was miles away from me. Her blog has helped me transform my blog posts in way to better reconnect with my followers so that they are kept in the loop with my life as well as my topics that I want to share with everyone.

I hope that everyone takes a minute to journey into Megan’s adventures throughout Scotland in her traveling blog Across the Pond 

Here are some photos of Megan and I throughout the years, enjoy 🙂

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Guadalupe Mountains, West Texas

My apologies for not posting in such a long time! A couple of girlfriends and I decided to try out primitive camping in the Guadalupe Mountains this weekend, so I’ve been distracted from my studies. If anyone has never heard of primitive camping, the term is defined simply as parking the car, putting on a backpack that holds all of your necessities, and hiking to your campsite. What an amazing experience that it was to be able to visit that part of Texas which I had never seen before. I know this is a little off topic of what my blog is supposed to be about, which is bodies of water to visit in Texas, but the Guadalupe Mountains is something everyone should experience if they haven’t seen part of West Texas. The Guadalupe Mountains stretch from the border of Texas into New Mexico and is known for its extensive hiking and backpacking. Some of the trails reach to an elevation up to 8,000 feet above sea level. The highest peak is known as Guadalupe Peak and it has an elevation of 8,750 feet. They have a vast majority of wild life and the views will take your breath away!

During my trip this weekend, we ran into a couple obstacles on the way to the Guadalupe Mountains. We had to drive into Carlsbad, New Mexico to get our brakes fixed because they had been acting up. Being about an hour out of our way, we weren’t able to get to our final destination, which was the Guadalupe Mountains National Park, to get our passes and start our hike. After we finally made it to the National Park center, we started our 3.9 mile hike up the mountain at around 4 that evening. This extensive hike takes normally about 3-4 hours long, and we were in part of Texas that gets dark around 6:30-7pm. After we were about 2,000 feet high in elevation and had hiked for almost 3 hours long, it started getting dark and we couldn’t find where the campgrounds were located, where we were going to set up camp for night. As the temperature dropped to a severe (remember we are still in Texas) 50 degrees, we all decided it would be best to set up camp on the side of the mountain where we had stopped hiking. Everything worked out well, but we never could find our campgrounds the next morning which kind of made me a little uneasy. It was a wonderful trip all together and I’m glad I experienced it with some amazing people.

Although the hike was very difficult, all up hill, and we had to carry 40 lb. backpacks on our shoulders, I would recommend primitive camping to anyone! This trip was such an eye opener and made me realize a lot of things about myself and what I am capable of. Waking up in the vast mountain ranges that West Texas offers was truly incredible and you won’t find anything as beautiful as the nature that is distilled into this wonderful state. If I sparked any interest in someone, PLEASE consider your options and look into this extraordinary opportunity to get in touch with your nature side. If you’d like to learn more about the Guadalupe Mountains, here’s a link that will give you all the information you need to know about the trails, campgrounds, and other amenities that the park has to offer!

Here are some pictures I took of my weekend in the Guadalupe Mountains

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Bull Creek in Austin, Texas

During a trip to Austin to visit one of my friends, we decided to explore the area that he lived around because he had just moved there. He lives in north Austin right next to the greenbelt. We stumbled upon Bull Creek in our search for adventure and I was not disappointed to say the least. When you think “creek” you think of small bodies of water, but this creek went on for miles. It even got deep enough in parts of the creek to where we could cliff jump into the water! During my time there we found some awesome trails to hike and one of them led to the top of a cliff that overlooked all of north Austin and the beautiful hill country.

Bull Creek is located on Lakewood Drive in Austin, Texas. Bull Creek runs along the Greenbelt, which is considered one of the best hiking trails in Texas. The creek was somewhat hidden and it took us a while to find it, but it was very quiet and secluded which I loved. The places that not many people know about are the best places to venture to in my opinion. I am so happy that I found this place and since then I have been back twice to go cliff jumping and hiking. The water is a perfect temperature, wildlife is abundant, and the scenery is absolutely breathtaking.

I recommend visiting Bull Creek because it made me appreciate the little things. Throughout this blog I am trying to inform my audience of places that not many people have heard of. I want to promote adventure by seeking different places to explore, because thats what adventure is all about. My focus is to get people out of their comfort zones and enjoy every aspect of nature in Texas.This article gives more detail over the gorgeous scenery, hiking trails, and watering holes that Bull Creek offers. Below are some photos that I took during my first trip to Bull Creek. Unfortunately I didn’t take any pictures of the creek itself, but this is the view from the top of one of the hiking trails at the creek.

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Here is a photo from the Austin Parks Website of what the actual creek looks like for anyone that is interested!