Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Trophy Club Park

On our trip to Texas for my nephew's wedding last week, I sneaked out one morning to catch the sunrise over Grapevine Lake at Trophy Club Park just five minutes from our hotel.  Yes, I feel old having a nephew old enough to get married.  But that's beside the point.

The lake had receded considerably from the shoreline shone on the maps I checked.  I ended up following a dry creek bed to the mud flats that make up the lake bottom in wetter seasons.  And judging from all the tracks, plenty of other animals had done the same.

Overcast conditions muted the light and colors quite a bit.  But what the sky lacked in interest some partially submerged dead trees and the occasional great blue heron flying by made up for.

At first glance, I thought some fishing nets had become exposed by the low water level.  But upon closer inspection they turned out to be sections of wire fence.  What exactly they could have been keeping out -- or in -- was a mystery to me.

The sun peeked through the prevalent clouds rarely and briefly.  And when it did, I just snapped whatever was nearby that looked intriguing -- like this driftwood and fencing.

I haven't been able to find any tracks that look like these on any of the online resources I've checked, so I'm going to have to try and find someone with more knowledge of the local fauna to help identify them.

According to urban wildlife biologist Brett Johnson with Texas Parks & Wildlife, they're hog tracks.  Thanks, Brett!

A big difference from Colorado -- you don't see too many seedlings starting to sprout in October here.

Grapevine Lake was created in 1952 when the Corps of Engineers dammed Denton Creek.  I guess that would make these tree trunks 60 years old.

It was interesting to see so many things that are normally underwater, like these smaller stumps.

Like I saw on the Harding Icefield Trail in Alaska, life has a way of persevering in adverse circumstances.

Not everything was showing signs of life, though.

I didn't realize aerial spraying for mosquitoes was actually still done.  I can understand the reasoning, given all the residential land bordering the park. Still, the sign did seem sort of creepy and ominous.

I wandered around for a couple of hours before heading back to the hotel.  I used to do most of my mountain biking on trails around the northeast edge of Grapevine Lake when we lived in Flower Mound back in the mid-'90s.  It was neat to see a different part of the lake all these years later!

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