can be said that some of Texas was built on Legends, a way of understanding
events that defy explanation – too great or too unnatural to imagine.
The thing about “Legends” is, sometimes they are true.
miles north of Saratoga
off FM787 is the beginning of Bragg
Road which travels north to FM1293. It is the Ghost
Road where the Saratoga
Mystery Light has appeared. Peering down this road is like looking
in an infinite rifle barrel, that is green trees on top - pink dirt
on bottom. This former railroad bed is now a dirt road, 8 miles long
by 2 cars wide. Under daylight conditions it takes 30 minutes to safely
drive to its junction with FM1293.
|Photo 1 - Ghost
Road Scenic Drive, Hardin County Park sign
|The road was
dry and dusty the day we were on it. We drove and photographed what
we saw to familiarize ourselves with the road in daylight and perhaps
understand the source of the Mystery
Light at night. From the south, first we came to a blocked side
road (6) then more than a mile north of our start - a parked road
maintainer (7) then another east bound side road opening, at about
the 6 mile area was a pipeline crossing and deer stand (9) and finally
the junction with FM1293 (10) and the road sign there (11). The last
mile (or so) at the north end has electric power lines paralleling
road and couple of mobile homes.
|Photo 6 - A blocked
|Photo 7 - A parked
|Photo 9 - Pipeline
crossing and deer stand
| Photo 10 - Junction
of Bragg Road and FM 1293
|Photo 11 - Old
Bragg Road sign at the junction with FM 1293
| At night, the
Big Thicket is black darkness and tends to hide what small lights
that may be there. Since 1943 I have photographed everything imaginable.
I came prepared and hoping to make a photo of the Mystery
Light. For shots like this it is best to compose before it is
totally dark. I setup the photo (12) similar to the daylight photo
(4). Darkness came – and then we noticed, a light was visible. I made
several exposures of varying length. The best of which is (12) and
that image is enlarged to maximum benefit as (13). In both (12 & 13)
some light illuminates the road in the foreground. The parked maintainer
- more than a mile away is silhouetted – indicates the Mystery
Light was still further away. Minutes pass and as quickly as it
appeared, the light faded and was gone.
we waited a while to no avail, but were pleased with our hope of good
The results are what they are – but I know nothing more to say.
& Yvonne Rudine
|Photo 2 - Ghost
|Photo 3 - General
Braxton Bragg Historical Marker
|Photo 5 - Hardin
County Ghost Road Ecology
All photos courtesy Ken
Rudine, August 2007
courtesy Jim Adams, Jr. , 2011