Friday, July 04, 2008

Some other travelin' blogs I have been keeping up with...

Looks like our 2004 original set off several groups of folks wanting to do something similar. Over time I have watched several of these "Travelin' Blogs" to see what kinds of different things I could be doing or what I could do better.

The first one I saw after the Great Western experience was a group of kids from Madera, California, and from Houston, Texas that would meet up in West Texas to ride in wagons, retracing the actual route of Texas gold miner, "William P. Huff", on his trek to California to seek his fortune. The "Huff" expedition had the sponsorship of TPWD, who keep a journal of the students thoughts.

Since 2004, educational adventure touring has become quite an enterprise. So have cattle and wagon trail tours. I am not sure how much your early efforts affected the tourism world or the historical world, nor do I really care. My efforts were for my own pure joy. And to this day, the trip blogs that I enjoy the most are mainly just for the sheer pleasure of documenting it. If you can make more of it great....and if not,....well, I guess that was the way it was meant to be.

There are two more recent adventure tours that I have been keeping up with. One is an effort by Bill Inman and his horse, Blackie, to cross the US. He documented his efforts at Uncovering America by Horseback. He succeeded in his effort by traveling from Oregon to Washington, DC arriving on Memorial Day of this year. This one also has a spin off blog, "I live in my truck", which you can learn more about here.

Another blog I am watching closely is a group of young boys, sailing a ship all the way around England, at Smiling Round Britain. They just finished their journey a couple of weeks ago.

My focus this time will be on how the trail rides were influenced by and influenced other byways and pathways of history. We will be looking at a lot of historical information again, though this time, I am planning a lot more preparatory work. And this time, I will be including some more segments about other trails that may have crossed the Great Western. Stagecoach trails, Military trails, Indian trails, and more will be included. If you are aware of any that I should be covering, please let me know.

Until then, see ya' down the trail.

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4th of July in Texas

Happy Holiday, campers...

Is it hot enough for you? I hope a lot of folks are sitting around sippin' something cold, and talkin' about memories of what has been....

While you are at it, I wish you would do me a favor. Send me a letter or drop me an email and tell me about what the first Great Western Trail ride meant to you. How has it affected you and your life? Do you have a memorable moment you want to share? Is there something that you want to say, that you just haven't told anyone about yet?

You can write to me at "elderbob", 2113 Sandra Lane, Grand Prairie, Texas, 75052 or you can email me at If your note is acceptable, and if it's OK with you, I'll try to work it into the blog in the coming weeks. Thanks. I am looking forward to hearing from you.

In the meantime, have a great weekend...and be safe.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

(Photo by William Addington - WilliaMedia)
...time to return to the trail...
Ok, so it's been almost four years. The blog is still sitting here, though now and then it collects a bit of dust. It has lost a bit of it's shine...some of the interviews and photos are missing, and people find and comment on it less often now. But I leave it here because it meant something to a lot of folks.

Not long ago, David and his wife, Heather Burrell, contacted me to let me know that plans were underway to do the trail drive again, only this time in reverse. I told them right away, that I wanted to be involved in some capacity.

So it was no real surprise to get a call a couple of days back from Heather, to let me know that there would be a Re-union of the 2004 ride, in Bandera over the 4th of July holiday. I can't make the reunion because of previously made plans, but I wanted to pass on the information to anyone who still has their aggregator set to monitor for changes in this blog.

I also wanted folks to know that this time around, I had more advance notice of the ride, and that this time, I would be doing much more pre-ride work so that it would serve more as a guide to the ride itself. I was already planning to resurrect the blog, and to start writing about some of the places that I had visited along the trail since 2004. I also needed to find some of the missing links so that the blog was more intact (for example, most of the recordings were missing...I have found those and am in the process of restoring them).

So here is what you need to know, the Great Western Trail website is full of all the information you need to keep you up-to-date on the status of the ride, and on the Re-union. Please stop by and say hello to everyone.