Ok, so this is my first blog post ever so I'm going to try and make it a decent one to start.
Earlier this week my buddy Josh and I (I'm trying to use proper grammar as well) decided we were going to take a trip out to Austin to explore a bit and try to make it to Enchanted Rock for the sunset. If you don't know what Enchanted Rock is it's a state park in Texas that's about 11/2 hours west of Austin in the Texas Hill Country. The main attraction to the park is it's namesake, Enchanted Rock itself. E Rock is a large granite dome mountain that's about 420ft about the rest of the landscape and you can see for miles from the summit.
We left around 930-10am to make the drive to Austin first. We stopped off at McKinney Falls state park to check it out since neither of us had been there before. The falls themselves (there's an upper and lower falls) were more of a trickling stream instead of a waterfall, due to it being relatively dry upstream there wasn't much water to feed them. That being said the pools being filled by the falls still had plenty of water in them and locals use them as swimming holes. There were a good number of people partying at the pools and we decided that we would have to come back sometime.
After McKinney Falls we went to get lunch at Uncle Billy's Brew and Que. It's a Texas BBQ place in Austin just south of Downtown that also has a Brewery. One split appetizer and half a BBQ chicken later we left for E Rock around 530-6pm. It's about a 1 1/2 hour drive from where we were and sunset was at 750pm so we were pretty spot on for timing. We ended up passing two women that were broken down on the side of the road about halfway to E Rock and we were going to stop but given our timing we knew if we stopped we would miss the sunset from the summit so we decided to press on since that was the whole reason for our trip in the first place.
We got to E Rock at about 730pm so we were cutting it pretty close since we still had to climb the mountain. It's a pretty steep hike up the dome and had to stop twice, but at the pit stops we ended up talking to other hikers who came out for the sunset and the super moon that was supposed to be that night. Unfortunately the cloud cover all but blocked the moon as it was rising and it only cleared up after we left. We got to the summit just it time to see a decent sunset despite the clouds and stayed up there for a while. There was about two dozen other people up at top, but given the size of it it wasn't really that packed.
While up at the summit we talked to a few groups of people, one family that was camping out at the park for the super moon, a group of women that hiked up the mountain just behind us to also catch the sunset and take some group photos, and a couple from Chicago that came to Texas on vacation. After the sun had set and it was getting dark a light rain also started so we decided to make our way back down the mountain in case the rain picked up and made the rock slippery. About halfway down the mountain we ran into the same two girls that were in that broken down car we passed on the way to the park so yea, small world.
One the way down we met Jim Lingenhag, another photographer who specializes in landscapes, mostly in and around Texas. He's a little more serious than I am at the moment and had much better equipment and more experience I'm sure since I'm just getting serious into photography.
We ended up leaving E Rock around 930pm and made our way back to Houston. We stopped off at the Bucc-ees in Bastrop and continued on the 4 1/2 hour drive back. We got back home at 130am and that was the end our our "day trip" to the Hill Country.