Category Archives: Uncategorized

Beware Homo Sunvabichicus

Roy Bedichek was an Austin boy better known as a naturalist than for his actual profession. If he were alive today he would most certainly be a highly sought after guest speaker for master naturalist chapter meetings across Texas.  Roy Bedichek, like Stevie Ray Vaughn, is so beloved in Austin that he has been immortalized in bronze near one of the city’s most adored bodies of water—Barton Creek Pool.  More on that later. I was first introduced to Roy Bedichek by my daughter-in-law, in the form of a… Read More →

Back Roads Nature–Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Out here, the north Texas shortgrass prairie seems infinite under a relentless sun and perpetual withering wind. The land spreads flat to the horizon, making it hard to believe the earth really is round. Like a great blonde ocean there is nothing but monotonous repetition in all directions, without end. This is the southern high plains, named El Llano Estacado by the Spanish. Then, suddenly, the earth falls away before you, plunging 800 feet, presenting a gash stretching 120 miles long and 20 miles wide, gaping like some… Read More →

New Page: Outreach and Educational Materials

We have added a page for educational materials that our chapter members have developed. They are all available as free downloads in our Resources section (click this link to go directly to the page). We are hard at work making more materials and we can’t wait to share them with you!

Morning Mists

I could subsist on morning mist—Jarod Kintz We have all been enchanted, at one time or another, by some awesome display of nature. A field of wildflowers, a pastel rainbow, big mountains in mantles of snow, sunlight reflected on the water, the rich white inner light of a full moon. Why do we notice?  By what force is our attention stolen, seemingly beyond our power to resist?  Could it be the rarity—the fear that we may never again witness a sight so grand?  Is it because we don’t… Read More →

The Ghosts of Monahans

  At its most basic level, all experiences can be described as “good,” provided you survive them. While crossing West Texas in pursuit of a cooler June climate in the mountains of New Mexico, we parked our RV for four days at Monahans Sandhills State Park, outside Monahans, Texas. Arriving in the mid-afternoon, the ambient temperature was a withering 103 degrees.  As we navigated our way around the narrow, winding asphalt road to our campsite, I remember an eerie sense that this would be—for reasons I could not… Read More →