but due to weather restraints
with more ice and snow predicted,
we had to give it a shot. . .
as you know, we were unable to stay
in Terlingua, right at the West Entrance to the park
due to no power and no fuel available. . .
The weight of the ice caused the power lines to sag. . .
so when a truck caught a line that was sagging,
that caused a pole to break off. . .
which caused a domino of poles falling over. . .
30 power poles in total came crashing down
between Alpine and Big Bend. . .
causing Terlingua, and the National Park
to be without power for 4 1/2 days. . .
with all that said. . .here’s our day trip to Big Bend. . .
ALPINE TO BIG BEND . . .via MARATHON – 72 miles
25* when we headed out this morning,
heading East on Hwy 90 toward Marathon, the sun is trying valiantly
to break through the clouds hanging over the mountains straight ahead. . .
but yikes. . .looking to our right. . .these mountains are still covered in ice. . .
still not sure if we’ve made the right decision for today. . .but on we go. . .
turning south on US Hwy 385 in Marathon. . .
42 more miles to the Persimmon Gap Visitor Center,
which is the North Entrance of the Park. . .
our first peek into Mexico from the Rio Grande Overlook.. .
the town of Boquillos Mexico is visible. . .we’ll see it better at another stop. . .
no sign of the river though. . .
(you should be able to enlarge the pic by clicking on it)
continuing to the end of the road we find
the full hookup campground
the primitive campground
and the dry camping campground
both primitive and dry come complete with bear proof food storage boxes. . .yaaaa!
no warning signs needed for this cute guy though!
back out and around to another overlook where we think we can see the river. . .
there it is. . .the Rio Grande. . .International Border
flowing through the beautiful Boquillas Canyon
guess the stuff might belong to these guys. . .
we saw Border Patrol all over the park,
so I assume they haf’ta know this type of thing is going on. . .
At the next turn back from this one is an International Crossing. . .
I bet the Border Guards can see this from their Border Station. . .
whoo wee. . .enough of that excitement. . .
back to the main part of the park,
where this geology class has hiked to the crest of this hill. . .
they all seemed to have notebooks,
so I’m sure this was a classroom setting for them. . .
Now on to the ONLY ROAD in the park with Restricted RV Access. . .
NO trailers longer than 20 feet,
and NO Motorhomes longer than 24 feet are allowed on the
Chisos Basin Road . . .
this is the road you will drive to reach the most beautiful vista in the park. . .
we simply did not have time to hike all the way out to “the slot”. . .
but we could do the 4/10 of a mile hike out to the “Window View”
just spectacular. . .
glad I at least got a peak of it on this whirlwind race of a day. . .
where the Rio Grande flows out of the canyon. . .
my pic does not do it justice at all. . .
there is beautiful stunning artwork of this
in all the gift shops. . .just magnificent. . .
and that was it. . .
a day that did not do justice to a magnificent place. . .
We shall return at a better time of year. . .
maybe when the cactus are in bloom. . .
there are many, many dirt roads in Big Bend
that are labeled auto roads. . .considered suitable for regular vehicles. . .
We did not take any of them today, due to time constraints. . .
at the Visitor Center. . .the Ranger told us. ..
after you see St Elena Canyon
just go ahead and take the Old Maverick Road into Terlingua. . .
it’ll save you 30 miles he said. . .
it’ll be fine he said. . .
your all wheel drive Jeep won’t have any problems whatsoever he said. . .
he was right on all those points. . .
what he didn’t tell us was that we would rattle the fillings out of our teeth
AND. . .that we would be crossing a couple of washes. . .big washes. . .
I forgot to get a pic. . .but we made it out alive. . .thank the Lord!
Will we take that road again. . .ummmm. . .NO we will not!
We have now driven 132 miles inside the park. ..
plus 8 bone jarring miles to make it to Terlingua. . .
which was originally going to be our staging ground. . .
we think the park we were scheduled to stay in at Terlingua looks great. . .
so we will plan to return. . .and stay here. . .much, much closer
allowing us to do multiple trips on multiple days,
rather than trying to cram all this into a few hours. . .
We missed so much. . .so many hikes. . .so many explorations. . .
what a jewel of a National Park. . .no wonder it is on so many must see lists. . .
and 82 miles later we see Alpine where our warm and toasty motorhome is waiting. . .
If you’ve made it this far. . .I apologize for the length of this post. . .
Normally, we would have broken each section of the park into a day,
and would have explored it completely. . .with it’s own individual post. . .
but. . .just wanted to pass along the oversaturation. . .thanks for sticking with me!
we are scheduled to stay in Alpine through Friday,
and move to El Paso on Saturday morning. . .
due to the lovely forecast above with the promise of more ice and snow,
we are packing up and moving to Van Horn on Friday. . .and still El Paso on Saturday. . .
see you there,
Janice and Dave
P.S. We had Verizon Cell Service at all the Visitor Centers inside the park,
and have had great service in every town in the Big Bend Area. . .