The Texas Road Runners !!!!!                

Road Trip Adventures, Roadside Attractions, Crazy DIY Projects, Texas Fishing, Rock Hounding and more......

Past Adventures   

South Central Oklahoma 2003

The sites include : Lake Murray, Turner Falls, 10 Acre Rock, Chickasaw National Recreation  Area  and more Roadside Attractions.

What’s New : (As always, click on the picture for for a larger image and click on the links for surprises.)

     I hope everyone had a great 4th of July.  I know I did.  Once again, the city of Waxahachie put on a great show.  Most folks headed out to the Wal-Mart parking lot to park and watch the event since the fireworks are shot off from the high school a block away. 

     As most of you know, I am a real fireworks fanatic.  I added a new dimension to the 4th this year.  Instead of spending a ton of money and putting on a show for the neighborhood, I became the new super hero now known as PYRO MAN!!  Before the Waxahachie fireworks started, I donned on my new super hero suit, lighted up and danced around crazy to some weird rock and roll music for everyone in the Wal-Mart parking lot.  Everyone just loved it and wanted an encore.    Unfortunately, I ran out of sparklers.  So, back to the fireworks store to reload and fight off the evil super villains.

      A new note on my Geocaching adventures.  From the geocaching.com web site, I noticed that there were a few Geocaches in several Waxahachie parks.  Some of these parks are now connected by hike and bike trails.  So I used the GPS unit to find my first cache.  I pulled out a Geocache wooden nickel from Geo Vamp and left some fools gold.  My next geocache was a virtual one which lead me to the old Rogers historical bridge south of downtown Waxahachie.  The geocacher who left this, simply wanted you to email him the date the bridge was built  I explored more of the trails and found out later that there were two more geocaches hidden away.  I’ll catch up to these two later. 

 Star Date : 07/11/03

      I originally wanted to find some good ole' Texas Road Runners  and hit the Texas Hill country again but I also wanted to see something new.  So Kristin made me an offer I could not refuse.  Some years back, she took a Geology coarse in which they took a field trip to the south central mountain areas in Oklahoma to study the strata from ancient volcanic activity.  Could be some cool rocks in them hills.  Her sister, Stephanie, also took the coarse, but missed her field trip this year.  Make up time !! Arson, the physicist and Stephanie's fiancé also came along to keep us all straight.  It is also an area of some historical treasures.

      Why do these things always start out so early?  Oh yea, to beat the traffic through Dallas.  I have flown over Oklahoma numerous times, but have never actually set foot there.  And for a first time visit, at least I knew I was going to see some really cool places.  We picked up Stephanie and her fiance in Cedar Hill.  We took Hwy 67 north to I-35E and drove north to the Zang back roads through the hood to bypass the I-35 Trinity River bridge.  Then from Commerce we hit Stemmons and then the toll way to George Bush.  From George Bush, we headed back west to I-35E and sailed north.  Boy, what we go through to get through morning rush hour.  Or is that rush hours?

     Between Denton and Greenville was the world’s largest porno store know as KT’s, well according to Steph.  She claims she read an article.  Since it is the world’s largest, I deemed it a roadside attraction.   We stopped for breakfast at an I-Hop in Greenville and  then pushed on and came to the Red River.  I never been to this river and the only place to park to take a few pictures was DW’s porno shop.  Though not deem able as a roadside attraction, I got my pictures and we headed back north on I-35E. I actually thought the Red River would be more red. Soon, we hit the Oklahoma tourist  information center on the other side of the Red River.  I wanted to see what kind of Oklahoma travel propaganda we could pick up.  They had nice displays of a bison, a tepee and a dinosaur skull.  After we loaded up on more brochures, we took a group shot and  headed out again to our first destination, Lake Murray State Park. 

     Well, we were following the field trip information packet to find the geological sites.  One of the landmarks was a cookie factory in Marietta.  You guessed it.  We stopped, but their visitor center/gift store was closed downed.  We went into the office to see what was up and we were hastily escorted out.  Apparently it had changed hands, the visitor area closed down and now they make the Famous Amos Cookies.  I will be sure to boycott that brand!

     Lake Murray is a great state park.  We explored the park some and checked out one of the geological conglomerate outcropping by the lake.  Of coarse we found other things to explore while we were checking out a conglomerate outcrop on our list.  Conglomerate is natures concrete.   We finally wound up at the Lake Murray tower.  We found the entrance, climbed all the way to the top and saw some great views of the lake and the marina.  The tower also served as a nature learning center for classes and had a small museum of the artifacts used to build the tower and fossils and mineral which were found in the area.  We continued to explore the areas camp grounds and marina and said good-bye to the tower.

     We hit the road again and made a few stops to check out the roadside geology.  The route was part of a scenic route when you took exit 51.  It was all part of the field trip packet.  We crossed over an old bridge, found outcrops of dolomite and one piece of strata which looked like a bunch of tombstones all lined up.   We then wound back up on state Hwy 77 and continued north.

     We arrived and drove through Ardmore and found Watsonburger, a cheap rip-off from Wataburger.  They even copied the orange color scheme.  Well, almost.

Star Date 01/10/2006 : Update !

          Ok, time to eat my words again.  I received to following e-mail :

From: Rick Hansen [mailto:rickhans@flash.net]
Sent: Thursday, December 29, 2005 12:52 AM
To: ftkiefel@swbell.net
Subject: Problem with a link on your website

 I am the new owner of the Watsonburger of Ardmore which just underwent major renovation and extensive effort to re-open with much higher quality service and food than what was being offered by the prior operator according to others in town.  When searching for our name your web-site popped up with a negative comment about the restaurant being a rip-off of Whataburger including the mention of the orange color.  When I clicked on the Watsonburger name it went to what was said to be the web-site for Watsonburger.  However, there is not a web-site for Watsonburger and the prior operaters have relinquished any and all ownership of web-site names containing Watsonburger.  We have the right to, and am in the process of setting up , a website called Watsonburger-Ardmore.com.

I am asking you to delete this negative info about our store (which by the way does not have any Whataburger orange anywhere) and to remove the Watsonburger logo and description that includes the Watsonburger of Ardmore location.  The logo displayed is not proper and does not carry the registered trademark symbol and the ownership of Watsonburger is not presented properly, not to mention that our store is not to be connected to
Gary and Tanna Morgan's name because we are two separate unrelated companies.

If you have any questions you may contact Charlie Watson, the owner of the Watsonburger name and two of the stores, or myself.

Thankyou

Rick Hansen
W.O. Burgers1, LLC dba Watsonburger of Ardmore
214-349-2799
580-224-9942 (store)

          We never did eat there, so I can not comment of the food at that time.  Ok, the only negative criticism I had was on the marketing name and look of the restaurant.  I used to perform marketing work, so I know what's going on.  No, its not painted orange, but a red that's close to it and Wataburger versus Watsonburger, you make the decision.   I do understand why Rick, the new owner is concern about any negative criticism.  I too went back on the Internet and made some searches myself.  Apparently there was some criticism on the food there.  But let's get real here, we're talking about fast food.  Sometimes it is good and sometimes it is not so good and people are only going to comment on the bad.

          So out of respect for Rick, the new owner, give his restaurant a try and tell him Francis sent you.  Now, back to our story .......

          We finally hit I35 again and continued north.  Warning, much construction. 

          We finally found some signs which led us to the road to Tuner Falls!  Before heading into the park, we drove up the mountain to a gift shop.  I needed another refrigerator magnet to add to my collection.  Behind the gift shop was an observation area in which you could look down into the park.  You could also see this old castle there too.  After entering the park, we drove around taking in all the scenery.  It reminded me much of the Texas hill country but greener and not so far away.  Yes, put your vehicle in low gear and drive slow.

     This area of the Arbuckle mountains provides many stream running down with falls.  Although the 77 foot water fall in the center of the park is the biggest fall in the park.

     We found our first cave to explore. Before we got to the entrance, we made a new friend.   He was about a foot long.  Watch your head!!  This cave had a window and we finally made our way out

     We headed back down to check out the pool and the castle.  Unfortunately the castle was closed off.

     We attempted to explore another cave, unfortunately, the ledge was too short and slippery.  However, I managed to get within 40 feet of its entrance

      We found the 3rd cave to explore, unfortunately it was getting too hot and we were getting very hungry again.  We were going to eat within the park and check out the gift stores, but it was getting just too hot.  We left the park and drove into Davis, the city nearby and found a a good Mexican restaurant to eat at.  It was pretty close to Tex-Mex but also very bland. Next, we were going to hit a rock shop but it had been closed down.

     After lunch we debated upon returning back to Turner Falls or to continue to Chickasaw Nation Recreation Area.  We chose Chickasaw.  We then headed east on Hwy 7 and came to Sulphur, OK.  This city is know for its mineral springs and also so adaptly named due to the strong odor of Sulphur.  Well, the kids were playing in it anyways.

     We finally arrived at the Chickasaw National Recreational Area and it too had many falls like Turner Falls.  They also had their own herd of bison

     We then continued south on Hwy 177 till we hit the Mill Creek area and found the 10 Acre Rock.  I guess at one time it was a quarry.  It is just a big dome of granite, much like Enchanted Rock in the Texas Hill Country. 

     We continued to follow Hwy 177 south till we hit Hwy 70 and headed west back to I-35.  From I-35 we headed home back south.  It was nice to be back in Texas again.

          So, until next time, take care and I'll  See you... on the road, or in the workshop, (which is really just my garage) !!!!

                                                     Francis                        

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