Fun on the Rio Grande (McAllen, Texas, USA)

I’m wiped out – but in a good way.  It’s been a crazy, hectic day, but we’ve had loads of fun.

 

John and I headed out early this morning to cycle the canal trails with a bunch of local cyclists.  Eric, our host here in McAllen, is trying to establish the canals as official bike trails throughout the valley through Los Caminos del Rio, so we were anxious to finally get out and ride them.  It was a great ride through rural farmland.  The roads along the canals snaked through farms and it felt like we were way out of town – even though we were really only a mile or so away from the city.  I can’t help but think that, if more people knew about the canals, they would be out there walking or biking.

 

From the canals, we raced back to the house to pick up the kids and head out to a park along the Rio Grande for a picnic with even more local cyclists.  We porked out on chips and fajitas before singing “Happy Birthday” to the kids and diving into the cake.

 

With full bellies, we made our way to the river for a bit of kayaking.  The only challenge was getting the boats in the water – but Eric had a plan for that.  We could drive the boats to a point about 25 feet above the water, but then had to lower them down.  Eric and Daryl climbed into one of the kayaks right at the edge of the dropoff, then plunged down through the weeds to the river.  Daryl bounced off the boat as soon as they hit water, and flew into the river – but he came up with a smile.

 

For the next couple hours, everyone played in the river – some paddling kayaks, Davy & Daryl swimming, and Eric’s dog Buster trying to catch fish.

 

Now, we’re back home – exhausted but happy.  It’s been a wonderful day.

 

I’m wiped out – but in a good way.  It’s been a crazy, hectic day, but we’ve had loads of fun.

 

John and I headed out early this morning to cycle the canal trails with a bunch of local cyclists.  Eric, our host here in McAllen, is trying to establish the canals as official bike trails throughout the valley through Los Caminos del Rio, so we were anxious to finally get out and ride them.  It was a great ride through rural farmland.  The roads along the canals snaked through farms and it felt like we were way out of town – even though we were really only a mile or so away from the city.  I can’t help but think that, if more people knew about the canals, they would be out there walking or biking.

 

From the canals, we raced back to the house to pick up the kids and head out to a park along the Rio Grande for a picnic with even more local cyclists.  We porked out on chips and fajitas before singing “Happy Birthday” to the kids and diving into the cake.

 

With full bellies, we made our way to the river for a bit of kayaking.  The only challenge was getting the boats in the water – but Eric had a plan for that.  We could drive the boats to a point about 25 feet above the water, but then had to lower them down.  Eric and Daryl climbed into one of the kayaks right at the edge of the dropoff, then plunged down through the weeds to the river.  Daryl bounced off the boat as soon as they hit water, and flew into the river – but he came up with a smile.

 

For the next couple hours, everyone played in the river – some paddling kayaks, Davy & Daryl swimming, and Eric’s dog Buster trying to catch fish.

 

Now, we’re back home – exhausted but happy.  It’s been a wonderful day.

 

Riding the canals

 

The Mexican side of the Rio Grande

 

D & D blow out birthday candles

 

Daryl & Eric kayaking down the bluff

 

The kids spent a bit of time in the kayaks, but more time in the water

 

By the border wall.  In order to make it not so ugly, they are building it up on the American side so it looks like a normal retaining wall.  On the Mexican side it drops off 20 feet.

 

Davy by the wall.  Since he's now standing on the American side, so all this will be buried.  But this is what it will look like on the Mexican side.

books by Nancy Sathre-Vogel

About Nancy Sathre-Vogel

After 21 years as a classroom teacher, Nancy Sathre-Vogel finally woke up and realized that life was too short to spend it all with other people's kids. She and her husband quit their jobs and, together with their twin sons, climbed aboard bicycles to see the world. They enjoyed four years cycling as a family - three of them riding from Alaska to Argentina and one exploring the USA and Mexico. Now they are back in Idaho, putting down roots, enjoying life at home, and living a different type of adventure. It's a fairly sure bet that you'll find her either writing on her computer or creating fantastical pieces with the beads she's collected all over the world.

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One Response to Fun on the Rio Grande (McAllen, Texas, USA)

  1. Sonia January 12, 2009 at 7:33 am #

    Hey Nancy,
    It was great meeting you and the boys . I had a fun time riding the canal banks with you guys, exhausting but fun. The park activity was also cool. I look forward to keeping up with your journal and seeing how the rest of your journey works out. You made it on to our website as well, check out the pics and comments when you get a chance……See you on the internet : -)

    Good Luck !!!

    [Reply]

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