6/26/2012

Okie Adventures: Sulphur, OK

Sulphur mural at sunset...


Every year for our anniversary we try to take at least a short, humble getaway. Some years we do it up big, but most trips are in-state. This year we went to Sulphur and spent time in the Chickasaw National Recreation Area. I chose this location to show my husband, as he is always wary of summer heat and one of my earliest camping memories involve begging my parents to let me keep swimming in the freezing cold water through chattering teeth. I was sure he would love the cold springs and the swimming holes with their pretty waterfalls, and I aspired to hike an 8-mile loop around the Rock Creek Multi-use Trails.

For lodgings we found a cozy place called Hideaway Cabin that was halfway between Sulphur and Davis - making it also a hop-skip-and-jump away from Turner Falls, which we did not visit on this trip. The cabin is small and sweet, and what struck me the most about it was the courtesy of the owner. She had equipped the cabin with everything a person could want, and left helpful maps, brochures, and handwritten notes in various locations. She also made herself available to us over the phone for any question, any time during our stay - a courtesy we tried not to use. 

Hideaway Cabin

Cabin's Firepit


We did a short get-acquainted hike Friday night and went for the "big" 8-mile hike Saturday morning. It was a nice trail, not too developed but not so wild that we couldn't tell where we were going (although we did stray once, and it didn't take us long to realize our mistake and backtrack). I had expected most of the trail to be wooded, but it was mostly sun - if there were trees, the trail often skirted around them. This was tough for a hot summer day but at least we got to see a great variety of field flowers and insects this way. Unfortunately we were unable to do the entire 8-mile loop. Due to the heat of the day and the levels of our water rations (I drank 2 liters in no time flat, it seems!) we turned around and only managed to complete about 6 miles of it. I think we could have done it if we had started earlier than we did, but we spent too much time relishing our breakfast. Which was quite good, in our defense. :) Sausage and eggs. I also spent some fun trail time teaching the hubby how to identify trees with the dichotomous key in my best tree book

Butterfly Weed

Hubby inspects Horsemint

Hiking in the Cross Timbers


We had the obligatory swim at Little Niagara (very refreshing after our long hot hike!), along with some tastes from the mineral springs at the Pavillion. It tasted and smelled just exactly like hard boiled eggs... so I spent all weekend thinking about eggs!  I boiled a batch to eat as soon as I got home. Your brief history lesson here is that the city of Sulphur is named after (and here because of) these springs - Sulphur has been famous for the mineral water here for generations. Many people believe it has healing properties. This particular spring had the mineral content in ppm posted on the wall.

Pavillion Springs

We really enjoyed the free Saturday night "Movies On the Plaza" hosted by Sulphur's Chamber of Commerce. (It was the 2010 True Grit, and it was very good!  I especially enjoyed hearing all the Oklahoma place names in the movie.) As we drove back to the cabin after the movie, the moon was enormous, orange, and low on the horizon in spectacular fashion.

Movies on the Plaza


Wildlife spotted:
Bald Eagle (out of season even!)
Numerous scissor-tailed flycatchers
doe with her fawn
Armadillos
Raccoons
Vultures
Swallows
Other birds and fishes

Delicious and interesting things that went in my mouth:
Sulphur's famous mineral water
Roma's "Chicken Damabianka"
Rusty Nail Winery's "Love Potion #15"
S'mores and roasted dogs galore

1 comment:

ConstanceB. said...

Very pretty pictures... oooohhhh.

Happy anniversary.