Trekking across Texas

On the Road with Don & Norma

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Continuing with our adventures, we learned that the saying “Everything is bigger in Texas” is quite true. Seems like we keep driving and never leave Texas. And lots of miles driven means more fuel stops. The picture above is our little RV at the pumps with the big rigs.

We are not in a hurry, other than trying to get out of the heat. While driving through the west Texas high plains the weather is constantly changing. And the scenery along the roads is beautiful.

Texas High Plains

Texas High Plains

1)        June 12: A + RV Park (private campground) in Alvord, Texas. This is a nice small RV park in an open field. After checking in and reading through 3 pages of rules, we settled in for the night. It was good for a one-night stop, free laundry, and easy to get back on the road.

2)        June 13: Ole Town Cotton Gin RV Park (private campground) in Goodlet, Texas. They gave good advice about stocking up on supplies before getting here, so we stopped and shopped in Wichita Falls. We had some excitement when another camper slipped and fell on the sidewalk. The local sheriff responded and then finally EMS showed up. Hope they were OK. After that it was a quiet night, other than the trains going by.

3)        June 14-15: Oasis RV Park (private campground) in Amarillo, Texas. This was on the west side of Amarillo, a big concrete RV parking lot in the middle of a big flat field. We set up the RV and then went out to get a few more supplies. Later we went out to a Mexican restaurant for some knockout chunky guacamole. On the way we took a side trip to the Cadillac Ranch art display.

Cadillac Ranch

Cadillac Ranch

We got back to the RV park and went for a walk and noticed the storm clouds building. The weather alerts started going off on our phones and the radar showed some red and purple clusters heading our way. As the storm moved in, the little RV was rocking. We only had one water leak, the wind blew water past the seals on the slide out. Luckily, the storm moved through quickly, we heard later on the local weather that 93 MPH winds had been recorded at the RV park. A few other RV’s in the park had minor damage. We learned that you can get mobile RV repair service that comes to you, which is good to know.

The next day the weather had cleared out and it was much cooler. We took a short road trip in the jeep and headed south of Amarillo to Palo Duro Canyon State Park. Very beautiful, claimed to be the second deepest canyon in the continental US. Too bad we had all the storms and rain from yesterday, all the hiking trails were closed.

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

4)        June 16: We had a low mileage day and stopped in Dalhart, Texas. The Corral RV park was a good place to stop before taking off for the long drive to Colorado. It’s an older RV park, but clean. There is the constant smell of cattle stockyards, and sounds of the local trains. With the A/C running and the windows all closed, we were fine. The Wi-Fi here is smoking fast, which allows us to catch up with everything online. I’m learning that having good Wi-Fi nearby is good; it’s easy to burn through a 10-gig data plan on your cell phone.

Dalhart, TX

Dalhart, TX

5)        June 17-21: Wednesday we got an early start to make some miles. We left Dalhart, finally drove out of Texas, went straight through the northeast corner of New Mexico and entered into Colorado.

We stopped in downtown Walsenburg, CO for a quick lunch at a neat sandwich shop. Then to stretch our legs, we walked around a Safeway grocery to get a few items before checking in at Lathrop State Park. We lucked up on a beautiful site with great views.

RV at Lathrop State Park, CO

RV at Lathrop State Park, CO

Seems water supplies are limited here, so we had to fill our fresh water tank before leaving Dalhart. And you need quarters if you want to use the showers in the bathhouse! Limited cell service and no TV, it’s great.

Shortly after arriving and setting up, an afternoon thunderstorm passed by and small hail started falling. We jumped in the jeep and rode around the park roads while the storm passed. Lots of wildlife to be seen: mule deer, rabbits & roadrunners. After the rain/hail stopped we went for a hike along the lake. Tomorrow morning should be cool enough for a long bike ride.

And it was…one of those rides that’s special. We followed a path around the lake, nice cool temps, and shade. Seems like it was mostly downhill.

We took an after lunch trip into Walsenburg for coffee/smoothie and a good Wi-Fi connection. When we returned we had a few campsite companions –

Bunnies in the Fire Pit

Bunnies in the Fire Pit

Every afternoon it seems the sky goes from all blue with scattered clouds to thunderstorms moving in. Today we had quite a show, the storms passed on both sides of the park, and it made for a dramatic sunset.

Stormy Skies Lathrop State Park, CO

Stormy Skies Lathrop State Park, CO

Lathrop State Park, CO

Lathrop State Park, CO

We rented American Sniper last night (I wasn’t prepared for the intensity) and returned it to the Redbox machine today.

It’s Friday already and the park is starting to fill up with the weekend crowd. One of our neighbors has the smallest RV we’ve ever seen.

MyPod Mini RV

MyPod Mini RV

We had reservations at Chatfield State Park for our next stop, but after checking on the conditions, we learned that half of the park is still flooded. So we changed our plans and are now headed to Colorado Springs.

6)        Future Plans:

  1. a) June 21: Leave Lathrop State Park in Walsenburg, CO.
  2. b) June 21-25: Mountaindale RV Park (private campground) in Colorado Springs, CO. (We’ve read on blogs that AT&T cell phone reception is poor to non-existent – Norma’s phone probably will not work, mine should be OK).
  3. c) June 25-July 1: Clear Creek RV Park (a city campground) in Golden, Colorado.
  4. d) July 2-July 15: Pikes Peak RV Park in Manitou, Colorado. (This is right outside Colorado Springs, lots of time to explore the area)
  5. e) July 16-31: Maybe travel around Colorado towards Durango and begin heading towards Oregon (and later to Washington state.)

Happy Father’s Day to all!

Don & Norma

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