Llano River, Texas.

for my twenty seventh birthday i had plans of heading down to the us/mexico border by my lonesome for a little kayak overnighter. on my way to pick up the rental car for the trip i feel my phone buzz, "come out to llano tonight." after an internal back and forth, and another text reading "del rio will always be there, we won't always be in llano." i decided it would be better to spend my birthday with good friends rather than by myself. 

this new year was started with a lot of laughs under a bright full moon and a sunrise swim in the llano river. i'm extremely thankful i decided against the solo trip, as i couldn't have asked for a better time with a better group of folks.

i've always thought of myself as a person who liked solitude, and after the divorce i had grand visions of solo road trips and camping under the stars alone. i do still long for that feeling, but as i continue to grow i find that sharing my time with old and new friends helps me better experience the places i go and the things i do.

"happiness is only real when shared." christopher mccandless

Developed - Llano - Young Settlers

shot on : fuji superia 800

when we moved to texas two and a half years ago we knew exactly one person, someone who we had only met a few months before while visiting. fresh to austin and newly married we wondered where we would fit in this city. luckily this one friend quickly introduced us to a very welcoming group of people. 

growing up on the east coast and spending six years in philadelphia before moving to the lone star state being introduced to born and raised texans was a shock to us. these people wanted to be our friends right off the bat? they were genuinely interested in us and our stories? we witnessed first hand what everyone refers to as southern hospitality. back east friendship and trust is earned over time, down here it is given automatically. 

once a year these folks make a trek out to some family land on the llano river for a week of camping, fires, swimming, food, guns and booze. i was lucky enough to make it out for a night for the third year in a row. 

we regretfully don't get to see this group of friends as much as i'd like, but that never seems to matter. regardless of how long it's been since we last saw them they are always welcoming; just as gracious as they were when taylor and i wandered up to their front porch two and a half years ago. texas has a hold on us, from day one we felt like we belonged here and these people played a huge role in making us feel like this was our home.  

Field Trip - Hill Country

it's nearing the end of november and the sun is still beating hard on texas, and although we'd love to enjoy some cooler weathered hikes, we couldn't pass up the opportunity this past weekend to enjoy the heat. 

with no real destination in mind we just meandered through hill country taking in the sights and pulling over to explore if something caught our eye. 

around the highland lakes, through the town of llano, and finally ending up on the banks of the colorado river. we had not planned on swimming, but after a day running around under the sun the water was calling our names.