About two miles West of Boerne, Texas up Highway 46 West stands Enchanted Springs Ranch, a recreation of a Western town and active movie set. Located 30 miles from San Antonio and 40 miles from New Braunfels, the ranch was the site of today's Civil War battle reenactment of Culps Hill at Gettysburg. Admission of $14.00 to the ranch included the viewing of the reenactment.
I must say it is a rather impressive Western town set amongst the shady oaks. Pistol Packing Paula, who I met near the gate, told me that while the Western town is only 7 years old, they have shot three Western movies there including the soon to be released THE LEGEND OF HELL'S GATE. Next year Sam Elliott is supposed to be doing a Western there.
Like I said, while it was a 40 mile plus drive for me, at least it was a pleasant one and a straight shot up Highway 46. (I live about 2 blocks off the Highway.) I passed through the rolling Hill Country and stands of oak trees for as far as the eye could see. As the early morning fog had not yet burnt off, I had to have my headlamps on for the entire trip. Arrived in Boerne a little after 9:00 AM and proceeded to the ranch. Along the way and along the side of the highway, there were little yellow signs stuck into the ground that read BATTLE OF BOERNE --->. Arriving at the gate of Enchanted Springs Ranch,, I proceeded to the reenactor camp and snapped a few photos of camp life before heading on to the Western town. After paying my way in, I explored the town and snapped a lot of photos. Ran into Texas Bob Reinhardt, Mike Waters, and Rocky Lawrence who were putting on a performance that day with their group dressed as the Wild Bunch. Hung out with them over an hour, before exploring more of the town and watching Pistol Packing Paula's stunt show. Met some folks from Bandera (Kenny & Marcia) who, as it turned out were friends of Rudy Robbins. Spent about 15 minutes taking with them about Rudy and Bandera. Finally headed for the battlefield beyond the Western town just before 1:00 PM, as the reenactors were forming up. I was told by one of the reenactors that the Saturday battle had had 6 cannon and about 175 reenactors. Today they only had 2 cannon and 140 reenactors. But it was enough to have some fun and make a lot of noise. (The reenactment was the battle of Culp's Hill.)
The reenactor group was the 6th Texas infantry and had Federal, as well as Confederate troops in the field. The crowd of about 200 spectators got their battles-worth, as the engagement raged for about an hour. Afterwards, the reenactors blew taps and bowed their heads in reverence for the fallen and then fired black powder salutes. As I was leaving the battle site, I noticed the reenactors combing the field and picking up paper cartridges.
With the battle over, I headed over to the "Meat Market" and had a loaded baked potato covered in chopped BBQ brisket. Yummm... After consuming that, I headed home happy that I had made the effort to visit Bandera and Enchanted Springs Ranch. I would recommend it.