PBS SHOW - El Camino Real, Map App Man, Kickapoo Cavern, #2817 - Lake Harding Association

PBS SHOW – El Camino Real, Map App Man, Kickapoo Cavern, #2817

PBS SHOW – El Camino Real, Map App Man, Kickapoo Cavern, #2817

By Micah Moen 0 Comment February 10, 2020

– NARRATOR: Coming up on
Texas Parks and Wildlife…
– These old Spanish trails are
the oldest routes of European travel in the
entire country. – With this app, one button and that’s it, everything is displayed. And it’s a visual tool
you can show them. – The bat flights are
pretty spectacular. There are 500,000 bats
here at the cave. [theme music] ♪ ♪– NARRATOR: Texas Parks
and Wildlife,
a television series
for all outdoors.
can definitely allow someone to travel back in time. The borderlands, the frontera,
the frontier on the Rio Grande- there are these worlds,
these places coming together, and that is what the
Camino has always done. The cultural imprints that the
Spanish left in the 1700s are still seen in many of these
towns along the Camino. The Camino Real has always
been about interaction between different cultures. [upbeat music] We see that happening today. That trade and travel still
takes place at these crossings. There are still connections
there that have lasted for hundreds of years over time. [thunder] [thunder] This actually might be it. You can see the rapid
right through here. I’m Steven Gonzales. This could very well be part
of the historic crossing. I’m executive director of
El Camino Real de los Tejas National Historic
Trail Association. We’re here at Los Corralitos
Ranch in South Texas, right on the banks of the Rio
Grande, still a working ranch, dating to the Spanish colonial
period, and we’re scouting around right now trying to see
if we can find swales, remnants of the road
here on the landscape. But it’s so thick through here. It is hard to tell right now. El Camino Real de los Tejas is
the old royal road that came up from Mexico City to establish
Texas in Spanish colonial times. It’s the road that led
to the founding of Texas. [Latino music] There are many caminos reales
that make up the Camino Real. In times past these roads have
different names because of the places that they were going to. The Old San Antonio Road
and the Nacogdoches Road, La Bahia Road and
the Laredo Road. Every Texan of note
that we can think of, all the way from Spaniards
such as Alonzo de Leon to Davy Crockett, Jim Bowie,
Sam Houston, they all traveled along
portions of the Camino Real at one time or another, and
it’s really elemental to the state’s history. We think about things like the
battle of the Alamo and Goliad, and we forget that those troops
were actually traveling along roadways, pathways, and those
were largely the Camino Real and segments of it. [traffic passing] So one of our goals is to make
the public more aware of it. Essentially, Spain was
establishing this new kingdom in what is now the U.S.A. They saw the French as a threat. [military march music] In 1714, the French established
Fort Saint Jean Baptiste in Natchitoches, Louisiana. That is the oldest settlement in
Louisiana, and the easternmost part of the Camino Real. That French settlement alarmed
the Spanish, so the Spanish in turn established the first
capital of Texas at Los Adaes, in what is now
Robeline, Louisiana. No one could imagine that the
first capital of Texas is in present-day Louisiana. It was essentially these two
European powers standing off in what they considered
to be the wilderness. But once that French threat
subsided, there was no longer a need for those missions
and presidios to be out there. And so those fortifications
and settlements, they fell back and back
and back. There is something about the
South Texas landscape that I think more easily
evokes the Camino, and travel by Spaniards
in times past. [Tejano music] – Buenos dias. – San Ygnacio is a very unique
community along the Camino Real. It’s essentially an old Mexican
village that was built in the mid-1830s, which is being
preserved and taken care of by people like the River Pierce
Foundation and others there in the community to help protect it
for future generations to see and explore. – This is more like a Mexican
village than anything because of course it was. It is the last of its
kind in this country. – STEVEN: It’s one of the best
places anywhere along the trail to kind of get that vicarious
experience of the Camino and what it may have been
like in times past. Another great place to go
and experience the Camino in South Texas is Goliad. There’s no better place to go
and see what a Spanish presidio would have looked like. So these presidios stretched all
the way from the Gulf of Mexico to the Gulf of California, and
Goliad was the eastern-most presidio on northern line
of defense in New Spain. Goliad has two mission sites. – Mission Espiritu Santo de
Zuniga, dating back to 1749. And we also have Mission Rosario
on the other side of the river, beginning in 1754. [music] Espiritu Santo was active here
all the way up until 1830. The majority of the restoration
work took place in the 1930s, but when you walk inside
the chapel, you’re getting a really good idea what it
would have looked like during the 18th century. [Gregorian chant music] – The Karankawa didn’t get
along with the Aranama that were already there, so
they created another mission. – STEVEN: Mission Rosario
is not restored. It has got the foundations and
the remnants of the walls there, so it gives you an idea of
the architecture before the restoration would
have taken place. There’s a new visitors center
that is being constructed, and it will highlight the trail
and show how those missions are attached to it. – El Camino Real went directly
through the town of Goliad. They would have needed to
transport goods and people back and forth between
places like San Antonio, as far north as Nacogdoches. – STEVEN: When we think of
things like Goliad or the missions in San Antonio,
we forget that there was a road that connected
those things. If you look at the layout of
San Antonio, with the Camino connecting all the missions, you
have the plaza at the core with the Spanish Governor’s Palace,
the seat of government there, and San Fernando Cathedral
right there on the plaza, it really does have the layout,
it does fit that formula that the Spanish prescribed
way back when, and it’s still there on the landscape today. [traffic passing] Thirty-five really became the
superhighway that it is because of the travel along the Camino
Real here in Central Texas. [traffic] [soft music] Following the foot of the
escarpment, they would have come to these beautiful springs. Unlike us flying down a modern
highway, they were moving at a much slower pace so they had
parajes or campsites every basically 10 to 20 miles. The towns here in Central Texas
essentially pop up along the springs. There are many archives in the
state that have great maps and other historical records
related to the Camino Real, one of them being the
General Land Office in Austin. [beep] [door opens] – ALEX CHIBA: This is the 1833
map of Austin’s Colony. – That is impressive. They have great maps,
property deeds and other things that
document the Camino, like boundaries of the old
Stephen F. Austin Colony. – The Old San Antonio Road
is pretty much the northwestern boundary here. – STEVEN: Yeah, so it almost
looks like where it’s crossing the Colorado… We know where the
trail went through many different kinds of evidence. The Old San Antonio Road is
clearly here along the top. So we look at old maps. This one right here. That would indicate that
it’s somewhere up here in the Austin area, roughly around where
McKinney Falls is nowadays. There’s the historical record,
so we look at the written record from the Spanish… Hard to see what that is. …From the French, from early
Anglo settlers that refers to the trail. Where we have our archeological
project going on is right in here. Another thing that we can do
is discover the trail through archeological efforts. – SERGIO IRUEGAS: It’s like
peeling an onion, very slowly. – STEVEN: Currently we’re
working on our Rancheria Grande archeological project
in Milam County, near the community of Gause. – SERGIO: These stones were
purposely placed here, they follow a semicircular arc. – STEVEN: Working with private
landowners, we’ve actually been able to document
numerous village sites… – MELINDA IRUEGAS: There is
another post. – STEVEN: …As well as an
unbelievable amount of Native American artifacts. – So this would be a defining
wall of the structure. – So we know that in all
probability, what we’re dealing with is one of the
circular style homes. – STEVEN: The Rancheria Grande
was essentially a conglomeration of 22 Native American tribes. – Mission style points were
found up on this area, so right there we know these
domestic structures date to the Spanish colonial period. – STEVEN: The Spanish documented
it really early on. Some of the earliest maps do
depict the Rancheria Grande and label it there in that
general area of what is now Milam County. It’s more extensive back in
here, all these petroglyphs within the rock. It’s just a place like no other
I’ve seen in Texas. – All these points here came off
of this property here. – STEVEN: Landowners have
their own collections. And we’ve found things all the
way from the point of contact to projectile points that
are paleo Indian in nature over 10,000 years old. So it really is this place
where there is this huge human history that has
occurred over centuries. [traffic passing] In East Texas there are some
great places that are publicly owned that you can
see and experience the trail. One of the best is
Mission Tejas State Park. It’s still one of the rare
places where you can go and hike along the actual Camino
and walk in the footsteps of Spanish explorers and
early American settlers from the late 1600s to the 1800s
as people were coming through either way along the trail. [crickets chirp] Mission Tejas State Park also
contains a commemorative structure of the first mission
in Texas, and that’s mission San Francisco de los Tejas,
established in 1690 by the Spanish on their first
expedition to East Texas. So it’s a great place to see
and experience the trail. [birds sing] Right next door to
Mission Tejas State Park is Caddo Mounds State
Historic Site. The Caddo people built
mounds there at the site, ceremonial mounds. [Native American drum music] – TONY SOUTHER: This is the
Caddo grass house. It was built last summer. – STEVEN: They have a new
visitor’s center there that does a great job of interpreting that
early Native American history. Plus it has a great remnant of
the trail there as well, in the form of a swale,
with some great signage, I think it gives you that
impression of distance when you are standing there
at the Caddo Mounds site. – TONY: The Neches is only a
mile and a half from where we’re standing. Travelers coming west to east,
they would want to try and cross the Neches River at the end
of the day, make it up to the plateau here, and then
camp on high ground. El Camino Real was surely
a Native American trail before it was a Spanish royal
road, and the Caddo in this area were actually known to have
taken the Spanish, guided them across these roads, so they
were well-traveled. Some of these Caddo roads were
actually deemed to be as good as the roads leading into Paris. – STEVEN: The word Tejas is a
Caddoan Indian word the Spanish took to mean as friend. So we wouldn’t have the name
Texas without that Caddoan Indian word Tejas. Communities along the Camino
are very proud of the trail and its history. Nacogdoches is one of the
oldest communities in Texas. The first mission in Nacogdoches
was established in 1716. You see on Main Street,
it’s called El Camino Real just off the plaza. [acoustic music] We are the first national
historic trail organization to actually own a piece of
a national historic trail. And that is the
Lobanillo Swales. – We’re here in Sabine County
at the Lobanillo Swales. The East Texas term for
that is wagon tracks. When it was wet, this would
get boggy, so what they’d do, they would just move over a
few feet and start another one. – We’ve got the northern edge
of the property up here which is highway 21, and then
the red line indicates the loop trail. Right now it’s in a raw form. There’s no development, there’s
all kinds of undergrowth. [pounding] – SURVEYOR: Right there,
right there. – STEVEN: We’re working with the
National Park Service, Sabine County and others… – JUDGE MELTON:
Good morning Steven. – STEVEN: …to make the
Lobanillo Swales accessible to the public. – Welcome to Sabine County. – STEVEN: The county judge
thinks it’s one of their best tourist resources
within the county. – Hey, this is a beautiful
set of plans. – STEVEN: We work with all kinds
of partners, because it does take a combined effort to
help develop the trail. – Just can’t wait to
see it open. – Thank you, Judge. – JUDGE MELTON: Appreciate it. – STEVEN: In Sabine County,
not far from our property, the Gaines-Oliphint House is on
the banks of the Sabine River. – Gaines ended up here in 1812,
here at the crossing. In 1815, he bought the ferry. He built this house down here,
we can pretty well prove that it was built in 1818. – STEVEN: And is it true it’s
the oldest Anglo-American structure in Texas? – WELDON: Log structure, yeah,
log structure. – STEVEN: It’s a place that is
really deep in Texas history and which essentially every
Texan coming from the east would have crossed through at
one point or another back in the 1800s. [water lapping] So we’ve traveled from the
Rio Grande, and now we’re here on the Sabine River at
the Texas-Louisiana border. Historically, the trail
would have continued on to the first capital of Texas
at Los Adaes, which is in present-day
Louisiana. But here we stand
on Toledo Bend. This is the end of the road
in modern-day Texas, before heading on to
Natchitoches, Louisiana about 60 miles away. The Camino has always been a
place that has bridged borders. It has brought together people,
cultures, and places, and helped to create the state
of Texas that we know today. And that’s why it’s worthy
of its designation as a National Historic Trail. [upbeat music] – As a game warden
here in Texas, we’re tasked with enforcing
the oyster laws and that includes enforcing
closed and open areas. And the important thing is
knowing where you’re at in relation to those lines. That’s where Paul came in. – My mission was to compile data and create an app that showed
game warden’s location in reference to these different
zones and reefs. [detective music] I took the state health
department data and created an app that could
be used on mobile devices so that game wardens can
see where they are in relation to these areas. – It’s just a good
reference tool. Whether it’s for information or whether it’s for
enforcement actions or whatever it may be. – Paul through his GIS skills,
his attention to detail, his patience and perseverance
has really been able to help us move the
needle in technology. [detective music] – Hey! What’s up guys? I don’t get to go out in the
field and actually see my work in action. So, it’ll be nice to
see how it works. – BARRY: Well, say if we
pull up to a boat and it’s inside this closed area and say we’re in an
enclosed area here, we can run up to that boat and
we can shoot a line on that app, straight to that line or
straight to that pole, and then we get a fairly
true footage of how far he is inside
the closed area. – Yeah, so how did you guys used
to verify this stuff before? – BARRY: Everything was manual. I mean you literally– we would
we would make the boat stop where it’s at, either put
a warden off on that boat so they wouldn’t move. We’d run that line literally
pole to pole with our boats, like marking the line,
so you see how you could literally see how far he was. And now with this app, it’s–
everything is there. It’s one button and that’s it. Everything is displayed and it’s
a visual tool you can show them. Not just me saying it. You can actually physically
show him where he’s at. Any time we can find something
that makes our job easier, I’m all for that. With this app, it’s at
your fingertips now. [soft music] [wind blows]– NARRATOR: There are
few places left
that have not been largely
touched by our culture.
But at Kickapoo
Cavern State Park,
nature is almost untouched,
the way it used to be.
[gentle music] – It’s a great place to
just get away from it all, you can unplug from all the
distractions in the city. We’ve got approximately
6,400 acres and lots to do. We’ve got birding,
hiking, mountain biking. It’s just a great place
to get away from it all and just get back in
touch with nature.– NARRATOR: Much of the
beauty of Texas is hidden.
To see it you have
to work for it,
sometimes catching only
a fleeting glimpse.
Over 230 species of birds
have been seen in this park.
– We get a lot of birders
from all over the country, they’ve read about it. We’ve got a lot
of diversity here and they’re here a lot of
times to fill their life list whether they’re looking
for the black-capped vireo or the golden-cheeked warbler,
we’ve got them both here so it’s a great
place for birding.– NARRATOR: Jessica Klassen
is a graduate student
at Texas A&M Universitystudying the endangered
golden-cheeked warbler.
– Here’s one of our
golden-cheeked warbler nests. They make their nests out of
the strips of ash juniper bark so the little clump up
there of ash juniper that you see at the
canopy of the tree is our golden-cheeked warbler
nest, and directly below it is you’ll see our
camera that we’re using to monitor the nest with. But we like to disturb
them as little as possible so we stay at the nest site for as short a
period as possible.– NARRATOR: By using
an infrared camera
and a remote recording unit,
Jessica is able to monitor
the bird nest without
disturbing it.
– We’ve been seeing
nestling-type behavior so we’ve seen both males
and females carrying food, which we can infer would be to
hungry nestlings in the nest. [birds chirping] [ominous music]– NARRATOR: Enter the darkness
of the subterranean wonder
of Kickapoo Cavern and witness
roughly four million years
of nature’s artistic handiwork.– STEVE: Did y’all see this
formation? Pretty cool.– NARRATOR: This is
what you call
being deep in the
heart of Texas.
– You got twin columns. The one column on your right is the largest column
in the state of Texas. It’s 80-feet high, which is
a little over eight stories. You can see the different
colored drapery off of it, all the jelly fish
looking stuff. I see mother nature at its best. [orchestral music] [bats’ wings flapping]– NARRATOR: The intrigue
of the park
lies as much above
the ground as below.
Stuart Bat Cave teems with
Mexican free-tailed bats.
– The bat flights are
pretty spectacular. They are 500,000 bats
here at the cave. It takes approximately
an hour-and-a-half for all the bats to
get out of the cave.– NARRATOR: In our ever
expanding fast-paced world,
it’s wonderful to knowa place like Kickapoo
Cavern State Park exists.
– It’s a really beautiful place and we’re trying to
keep it that way. We’re trying to keep it
as natural as possible. It’s a great place to
just get away from it all and enjoy a part of Texas a
lot of people have never seen.– NARRATOR: Visiting Texas
State Parks just got easier.
With our new online
reservation features,
you can choose a specific
cabin, campsite or shelter
and reserve it for
your next visit.
The new reservation system
makes it easier
to plan group getaways.[upbeat music]Save the day.[honk, honk]And don’t get turned awaywith our optional
day-use reservation.
– VISITOR: Good morning!– NARRATOR: And be sure
to get in.
– VISITOR: Thank you!– NARRATOR: Plus, you can
buy park passes
and gift cards online.Texas State Parks,
getting better for you.
[flowing water] [flowing water] [flowing water] [flowing water] [flowing water] [flowing water] [flowing water] [distant flowing water] [distant flowing water] [distant flowing water] [flowing water] [distant flowing water] [distant flowing water]

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