I am camped in the Llano City Park. It is really nice, right next to the river. My tent is under a huge live oak tree. There are coyotes howling in the background, and there is an owl out there somewhere. There are hot showers. It cost $1.
This is in the well-named Hill Country. I climbed a bunch of them today. Austin is at the edge of the Hill Country. East of Austin is prairie and thickets. West of Austin is hills, covered in mesquite, prickly pears, and grass. The first seven miles out of Austin are a climb, and then you find yourself on the rim of a canyon with a fabulous view, which I did not photograph because it was hazy/foggy when I was viewing it. In Austin, they build the tract mansions on top of the hills. I went by a ton of them in the town of Bee Cave. New tract mansions, starting in the 700s! Good grief.
That only lasted a few miles, and then it was back to the country highway with nothing around it. I was riding northwest, about 10 miles west of Lake Travis, which is a big reservoir. A couple times I had to cross rivers that flowed into the lake, which meant going down into a big valley. This one is the Pedernales River.
Then it's just miles of mesquite and prickly pears, with big hills all around until Llano.
I found a great BBQ joint named Opie's in the tiny town of Spicewood. I rode up about 10:30, and the cook, who is outside by the cookers, hollers out "How y'all doing!". I ask him if they are open, and he says "Sure, let me show you what's ready!" He takes me over to a cooker and lifts it up to show a bunch of ribs, pit beef, chickens, and sausages. I got a foot of sausage, which he speared and threw on a tray for me. This place is really great. Your lunch comes with all the beans, pickles, and onions you can eat.
Llano is a really small town, but they have a cool old courthouse, and right across the street is a pizza joint/grill where I had a tasty steak for dinner.
Today was a very strenuous day, and it's getting drier and less populated. But I haven't had to break into my provisions because the BBQ stands keep appearing as soon as I get hungry. The weather was terrific, partly cloudy, 70 degrees.
Here is today's route ridden.