Once again, we gathered in Big Bend for Thanksgiving. I flew to Dallas, as did Mark, and the family packed up the Suburban, our poor beast of burden, and set out on the long road together. It was a dark and exciting morning as we picked up Nathan, Ronna, and Mark, strapped their stuff to the roof, and turned our wheels west.

GPS tracks of our hikes
    Tom made our reservations almost two years in advance so we could have our family Thanksgiving in the stone cottages of Big Bend's Basin. He reserved two of them and we were delighted when we arrived to see that we had been assigned the coveted #103 cottage. Tom's family filled the other cottage and we all raced to claim beds and to unpack the food. And, oh, how much food there was! Mom had really outdone herself planning and preparing almost every meal.

It was a long and confusing drive as we struggled to define subsidiary vs. dependent clauses, and what the differences, if any, there were between bogs, swamps, moors, and sloughs. Al, back home in Redmond manning the internet for us, struggled to explain it all, but he eventually realized that there was no teaching any of us anything when we were all together in the car on the open road.

Tom and his family spotted bears on their drive in to the Basin and they told us where to go look, so we jumped in the car and drove back down Green Gulch Road to see the mother and three cubs. We were so excited to see so many bears!! On Saturday, we were treated to another view of what we think was the same mother and cubs, but this time they were high up in trees! This was my first bear sighting in Big Bend and I was thrilled!

hiding behind Dad for safety

cubs in the tree

suppose there's
honey up there?

grabbing more berries!
I have so many pictures to share that I've split the trip into three pages, one for each day. Enjoy!

Thursday: the Big Day

Friday: Apache Canyon

Saturday: 'Up & Over"
and Ward Springs

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