Warning: Long catch up post and lots of pictures.
Friday (12/6) we headed out of Karchner Caverns State Park headed to Texas, we arrived in Anthony TX just over the border after an uneventful ride, American RV Park behind the local Camping World served our purpose, full hookups and a cheap clean laundry. We took a walk to Camping World, in their showroom they had a few rv’s and we walked through a Redwood by Thor, nice looking giving us more food for thought down the road. In talking with the salesman he recognized our last name, seems there are lots of Maloufs in the area whom have their own businesses, aside from Las Vegas this has never happened. In VT we were the only Maloufs in the phone book and no one really knew how to say the name, kind of cool to have folks know how to say the name without having to tell them. We headed to our for dinner at the Great American Land and Cattle Company which didn’t turn out so well, with a name like that you would think they would know how to cook a steak properly. Dave ordered his medium rare not raw like it came out, then after sending it back it came out rare. Between that and an inattentive waiter it wasn’t the nice meal we planned, good for the manager for taking 50% off of Dave’s meal.
Saturday’s ride turned out very eventful, we left around 9:30 hoping to make Ft Stockton around 2pm, what a ride it was. After getting around El Paso just fine we started getting into higher elevations and the weather decided to change for the worse. After a quick stop for gas (33.5 gallons in a 35 gallon tank, think we cut that one close but the exits in TX with gas stations are far apart) the temps really started getting cold and some clouds settled in over the mountains we were passing through. We slowed down but lots of others went flying by, including some tractor trailers, and as we progressed along we started seeing cars off the road some that had recently passed us, then we started seeing tractor trailers off the road. By this time we were creeping along and soon after the I-20 interchange came to a complete stop, thankfully we were at the top of the hill not heading up the hill. We sat there for over an hour, no one was coming through in the west bound lane either so both lanes were blocked. The east bound lanes finally started moving, one of the tractor trailers that had flown past us had wrecked, in the west bound lanes though things were much worse. As we moved along we saw smoke and a massive tractor trailer accident involving at least 10 trailers, they were every which way in and out of the road some had jackknifed some had rear-ended others, one looked like it had been broadsided and one ended up on fire. We later learned there had been fatalities and the westbound lanes were closed for 24 hours. Within a half hour we were in much better driving conditions, we were off the clouded over mountain and the pavement was drying out. I’ve never been so thankful for the winter driving skills I’ve picked up driving in the VT winters over the last 20 years. We arrived in Fort Stockton at the Hilltop RV Park around 4pm, I’ve never been so glad to be off the road for the day. No pictures of all the troubles we went through we were both too busy trying to stay on the road.
Sunday we headed on down the road, while still cold the sun was trying to shine and no precipitation was predicted. We stopped in Sonora TX to visit the Caverns of Sonora which is a favorite of ours; we first were there in 2011, wanted to see it again and with our new camera in hand. After a wonderful tour lasting almost 2 hours it is still one of our favorite caverns. The preponderance of formations is astounding.
After our tour we headed down the road a little further to South Llano River State Park, what a nice park it was, just wish the weather was more conducive to canoeing and hiking. The sites are nice and large,we saw deer, turkey and armadillos at our site.
We’ve purchased an annual pass for us both which waives entrance fees into any state park for a year, it also gives a half price discount on the second day of your stay for four stays. With three state parks planned between now and when we get to Corpus Christi it will pay for itself, it will also be nice to have while on the Gulf Coast to visit the local state parks. The only complaint we had about this park is our Verizon cell and internet don’t work here, next time we come here we hope to at least have a different internet provider, our satellite dish works and we are already looking into satellite internet for when our contract with Verizon expires.
Monday was spent just hanging around the park, we took a walk, Dave got a bit of fishing in and I spent some time working on our annual Christmas letter.
|South Llano River State Park|
Tuesday we moved to Guadalupe River State Park, another nice park just no Verizon service. Sites have lots of tree cover but we were able to get a Dish signal so while again no internet we could be entertained in the evening since it was still too cold to sit around a fire. If it was warmer we could do some canoeing but the goal at this park is to use as a base to re-visit the San Antonio Riverwalk, we have been before but want to see it decorated for the holidays.
Tuesday evening we headed into downtown San Antonio which was about an hours drive from the park. In 2011 we had been there and we wanted to see it all decorated for the holidays. We ended up at Dirty Dick's for dinner on the riverwalk and then took a walk along the canal, just wish the pictures came out better.
Wednesday we just hung around the campground, we took a hike and did some bike riding, Dave tried fishing to no avail. We found a HEB store in the nearby town, we'd never been in one before and are looking forward to more visits to others, so much better than Wal-mart for grocery shopping.
This morning we moved onto Goliad State Park, another nice Texas state park this one with full hookups in the section we are in and the sites are all pull through unlike the ones in the back of the park that are basically a parking lot. They have a bike trail that takes you in to the town of Goliad which we've already ridden, a river that you could canoe on if the water was higher. We will be here until Monday when we head to Port Aransas for six weeks. Verizon has decent coverage here so we are back on line.
And yes we missed hump day this week, this post is already so long that I'm not going to try and add more. If you've made it this far thanks for bearing with my ramblings, I wanted to get everything documented so down the road I won't forget when and where things happened.
Until next time...