Mysterious Eagle Lake Prairie
Chickens, A Depot for Sale and
Why they moved the Wildflowers to Gillespie
again we found ourselves in Southern Colorado County. We weren't looking
for tractor parts, although there is a great tractor graveyard there. We also
weren't there to shoot waterfowl or to have a waterfowl taxidermed, but it's a
good place to do either. We weren't there to have a root canal or to renew licenses,
vows or old friendships. So, right off the bat we had a mystery on our hands:
What were we doing in Eagle Lake?|
The biggest mystery of course is the
Lake in the Town's name. It's privately owned, so confirming its existence
is best done from the air. The Eagle? Another mystery. One history has
early settlers killing one here, which seems likely. Another has an Indian legend
complete with two braves competing for a chief's daughter, a tragic accident (or
was it?) while gathering eagle feathers and a lifetime of remorse. It sounds like
your typical Indian legend, with an eagle inserted so that it applies to Eagle
We had planned on luring our Houston readers through here on our
Spring Trip to DeWitt County because this is where Wildseed Farms was.
Please take note of the past tense. They are now and have been for some time in
Wildseed Farms was also where the late Merle
Brammette, founder of the DeWitt County Wildflower Association visited
and came up with the idea of promoting the incredibly varied Wildflowers of DeWitt
Now the County has been officially proclaimed Wildflower Capital
of Texas. We're not sure if we can route our Houston readers to DeWitt County
via Fredericksburg, but Wildseed Farms phone is 830-990-1393.
They are on the North side of Hwy 290, seven miles East of Fredericksburg. They
expect their fields to be in full bloom in May.
Farm founder John Thomas Outstanding in his Field or |
out standing in his
Photo Courtesy TXDoT
Farms is a success story that makes the proverbial "ladder of success" look like
Jack's Beanstalk. It's like that movie director a few years back who sold an organ
or something to make a movie (El Mariachi) which cost $473 to make (it was a small
organ) and ended up making $49,000,000. We were expecting to see other films from
him but never did. Maybe he moved to Fredericksburg. |
Don't forget that
the Attwater Prairie Chicken resides on its refuge six miles from Eagle
Lake, and while we refer to it in the singular, there are supposed to be more
than one (so we're told). The Refuge's signage needs some touching up, but the
Refuge itself is about six miles toward Sealy
on FM 3013 and then two miles off the main road. If you're coming from
Sealy, look for it on the right.
Our observation: Prairie Chickens look
more like regular chickens than Prairie Dogs look like regular dogs.
This comes from pictures we've seen, since our visit didn't turn up a single Prairie
Chicken in the flesh (so to speak).
2000, Modified August
© John Troesser
can be seen in all their glory on Calhoun Road. Tour busses come in from the Houston
Area to drive the loop along this road to see natural beauty displayed each spring.
Eagle Lake Preservation Alliance is currently restoring the Historic
Eagle Lake Calaboose.