Back in Austin and the sunshine

Sher and  I thoroughly enjoyed our time in Seattle with our daughter, son-in-law and grandson for the past 3 weeks. On our way out there, we flew Delta from Austin to Seattle with a layover in Salt Lake City. Scroll though our blog for recent posts about the highlights of our Seattle trip.

Real winter in Seattle 2020

Before we left someone commented that we were nuts going to Seattle in January. Guess they were right as we were snowed in for three days the first week we were there. Seattle does not have the road equipment to handle snow! Oh, and Seattle maintained its reputation of rain, fog, rain, fog and more rain. We witnessed the sun one day, I should say about 3 hours, while we were there.

Returning to Austin we had the de-ice process at Cincy airport on a heavy frost morning

This is the first time in over 10 years since we have traveled by air. (You know, with an RV you don’t need planes!) Next time we fly we’ll have one large suitcase to check and each of us will have a small carry on bag. It was a pain carting those “carry on” size suitcases and stuffed smaller bags around. Coming back we flew Delta from Seattle to Cincinnati for crying out loud. Now I know what they mean when they say “red eye” flight. Left at nearly 11 pm, got into Cincy about 6 am. Got in to Austin about 10:30 am.

Welcome home!

Once in Austin, we got back to the La Hacienda RV Resort. Got the RV out of the storage yard, parked in our new site, hooked up the utilities and got things somewhat back to normal. My were we tired! Got carry out fast food for supper. We’ll hit the store next day. It was good to get back to our RV.

Mansfield Dam and Lake Travis near Austin

We drove up to an overlook site to see the top of the dam. In 1937 construction began on the then Marshall Ford Dam across the Colorado River in Texas. The 278′ tall dam was completed in 1941, was renamed the Mansfield Dam in honor of a local member of Congress. The dam created Lake Travis northwest of Austin.

The Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) controls the dam functions

No drones allowed!

Lake Travis has 30 square miles of surface  water that  winds through the former canyons of the large watershed area of the Colorado River. The lake is as you would expect a center of recreational activities.

 

Corner restaurant offers “Flavors of Texas” in Austin

Our group found the Corner restaurant pretty much by accident. We had just parked our car after our trip from San Antonio, I needed a restroom and I saw the Corner sign a block north of Caesar Chavez Street. The rest of our family in the second car had parked south of the Congress Avenue Bridge and walked across to join us for supper.

The Old Fashioned Burger served with fries

The Corner is one of the newest restaurants in Austin.  It is in the J.W. Marriott hotel and offers both a sit down dining area and quite a lively bar as well. We all enjoyed a delicious and reasonably priced meal. The kid’s menu satisfied both youngsters in our family, no easy feat these days!

Roasted watermelon and tomato vegetarian plate

The staff was most helpful in assisting us with our plans to see the famous bats under the Congress Avenue Bridge. Timing is important when seeing the 1.5 million bats leaving their roost for the night’s bug catching. Location of viewing is of course vital, and the Corner staff helped us with that  too. Here is our bat watching adventure.

We enjoyed a nice day in downtown Austin

With temperatures in the low 60’s and partly sunny skies we had a great day to tour Austin. Fortunately we were able to find acceptable parking for our RV enabling walking jaunts for photo ops. Below are some of the results.

The awesome Texas State Capitol building in the heart of Austin

Darrell K Royal–Texas Memorial Stadium has been home to the University of Texas at Austin Longhorns football team since 1924

The Santa Rita No. 1 oil rig first pumped oil in 1923. The rig was re-erected in 1958 on the University of Texas campus.

Grave of a Confederate veteran of the Civil War in the historic Oakwood Cemetery in downtown Austin. The grave of Sam Houston is here, as are other famous Texans.

We discovered why the Hula Hut restaurant is a local favorite

On our way back from San Antonio to Austin we stopped to see the view of Lake Austin and to get a bite to eat. We decided that we’d try a place called the Hula Hut. Because it was so cold, none of the outside eating areas or two of the three bars were open. The five of us gladly took a table inside!

Part of the main dining area

The ambiance was unique with its island themed decorations, including palm trees scattered throughout. The Christmas lights were still up, adding to the festive feel.

The entrance

Large portions

The wide selection of the menu was intriguing, with American, Mexican and even “island” fare offered. The service was excellent and our food was served quickly. Flour tortillas are made on the spot. All of our orders were served hot and fresh.

In the vernacular of restaurant reviews, I’d call the Hula Hut $$ to $$$ on the price scale. I’ll give it a solid 4.5 on the one to five thing. Bottom line is that we recommend the Hula Hut on Lake Austin.