We had never been to Texas before, so we were very excited to travel this gigantic state. We left City of the Rocks in New Mexico shivering in the cold and headed to Las Cruces to have breakfast at Cracker Barrel and stop at Hobby Lobby to check out the yarn and bead section. Beads were 50% off so we stocked up on findings and a few beads to make bracelets we chose as our new projects.
About 40 miles away we pushed through El Paso. The traffic was horrible on the freeway through this first Texas town. We didn’t even stop to go to Costco as Sierra Blanca seemed very far away for our first night’s stay in Texas.
The Kings and Champions belong to Passport America and we joined up that morning so we could stay for $10 with full hookups at the RV park in Sierra Blanca. Sierra Blanca is the town seat for the county but we didn’t even find a grocery store let alone a bank or county buildings. It was just one of those towns if you blink you miss! Our RV Park was sandwiched between the freeway, the frontage road and the train tracks. Ear plugs gave us a better nights sleep than we thought we would get but the trains got through and kept us awake off and on.
Traveling through southwest Texas was like traveling through the desert of Arizona and New Mexico. Nothing but the Chihuahuan Desert.
We had another full day of traveling to get to Big Bend National Park. Once we went through the gate (the entry fee was free with a senior pass) of Big Bend we still had 46 miles to go to get to the campground. The two lane road was narrow but well paved. We pulled into the Rio Grande Village Campground and was able to find a good camp site for all of us. There is an RV park with full hook-ups which is a huge parking lot. There is a store there too.
The campground had mature trees – some had new leaves out and some still in winter’s grip. The trees with leaves on the trees came alive with the sound of bees. Standing under one and you think you are close to a beehive but not so. They are buzzing the limbs and leaves. The Rio Grande was on the southern boundary of the campground and Mexico on the other side of the river. Not a pretty river at this juncture but it cuts some beautiful canyons through the park. Also, there were a pack of about 5 coyotes that hung out at the park. We had to keep a close eye on Annie. The coyotes were out during the day and howling at night.
We drove to Chisos Mountain one day. To get there you have to drive through Panther Junction – which has a very nice visitor’s center. A good place to fill up water jugs too. Then 10 miles up the road and up the mountains you come to a valley surrounded by Casa Grande Mountain, Lost Mine Mountain and many others.
The lodge, visitor’s center, restaurant and RV park are nestled in this basin of pine trees and drooping juniper. The Basin, as it is called, fits on the depression of where a volcano blew millions of years ago. The views are fantastic. There are many trails to hike (this is what Big Bend is about – hikes and 4X4 wheel roads) to see the 800,000 acres set aside as a national park.
We had a great time here and didn’t even touch all there is to see. If it wasn’t so far to get to we would come back at another time.
Janet fixed our last dinner in Big Bend. A great meal together along with a cake. Yum! Weather was pretty hot the last three days we were there and we were kind of glad to be moving on. Here we have Dale, Ralph, Janet, Dick and Mary Ellen. All friends and traveling buddies.
Now time for the photo opp! Enjoy.