After painting at the popular Cypress Bend Park last time, I was out to seek a place where nobody knew about. A place of solitude and quiet. Canyon Lake is about 20 minutes from New Braunfels with pristine water so clear it’s noted as a favorite spot for scuba divers. It’s surrounded by private land and parks (people), but I spotted an area on Google Earth that was off the path from “Overlook Park” called Canyon Lake Gorge. No roads led to it that I could see, so I figured I could walk along the lakeside to get to it and explore the area.
Just the walk along the lakeside was amazing! The shore line is a curvy, undulating 10 to 15 foot limestone cliff along ultra clear water with an emerald green tint. Huge boulders line a little dirt path barely visible. I will definitely be going back here as a place to paint and swim! After following the side for a while, I saw a clearing up top about 20 feet up and scrambled over the boulders to find a huge flat expanse 2 football fields wide and about a half mile deep surrounded by cliffs on both sides. I hit the gold mine! However, lined every 50 feet along the edge was a “No Trespassing” sign that explained it was federal property, but you could view the area with a guided tour. ARRG! What the heck! It looks incredible and I can only window shop the views. “)#(&%#)(&!.”. I wouldn’t have it. In silent rebellion, I put up my easel right at the sign post and found a view. Guided tour? All the park areas around this lake, and this is the one spot for a guided tour? What’s the story here? (I later found out and it’s unbelievable. I’ll take the tour).
This is a view of a cliff along the entrance of the gorge showing layers of limestone and trees catching any water along the sides and top. I had a rough time sketching from the start. Perhaps a mild case of bad attitude. Saying to myself, “Think positive. It is a great cliff and nobody is around.”. Right then I heard a kid and looked up along the rim of the cliff. It lines the overlook!! People were looking out at the area and straight at me. “What’s he doing, mom?”. ARRG! I heard every conversation of every passerby for three hours. The best was a guy boasting pretentiously to a pretty woman about how he’d scuba dived the area like a pro. Her response, “That’s nice (annoyed).”. End of conversation. Ha. I could feel his ego fall right off that cliff. Nice one lady!
When I got home, I looked online to find out what the story was about the gorge. There was a story all right! It was a brand new area, carved out by flood of 2002. About 30″ fell within a few weeks, and the power of all that water carved out this area. It unearthed everything from dinosaur tracks to waterfalls and lagoons formed from the Trinity Aquifer. A Gorge Preservation Society quickly formed to preserve it (and make money). Here’s a link to their site: https://canyongorge.org/. Maybe I can volunteer to maintain it and get permission to paint there?? Hope so.
Never go into a sketch in silent rebellion and a bad attitude. Case closed.