Dale felt well enough to travel to Big Bend National Park on Monday, February 12, 2018. We left Van Horn heading south on US 90 through Marfa, Alpine and into Terlingua, TX where we stayed at Big Bend Adventures RV Park. We have stayed here before, but they had made a lot of improvements to this park and it was busy. Maverick Ranch RV Park in Lajitis was full and no room for several weeks. There is a big bike race there in mid-February and there were mountain bikers everywhere.
We took a day trip back into Alpine and out to Ft. Davis. We had always wanted to stay out there at the State Park, but could never get in. After driving through the park, we discovered why. We would not fit into these camping spots. Really glad we weren't able to get reservations. Drove through the park and up onto the bluff behind it where we had a 360 degree view of the land below and a great view of the McDonald Observatory. We do want to go back and visit the Observatory when I can walk better.
We drove back into the town of Ft. Davis where we visited the original fort and grounds. With my limited walking ability, we just viewed from the parking lot and visitor center the ruins of the fort which was built along the San Antonio/El Paso trail. One of the highlights of this Fort history was the Buffalo soldiers (black men) who served here. No recognition was given them at the time, but history tells that they were mighty fine soldiers.
We did discover an RV Park back in Alpine that looks like a stopping point for us next visit, called the Lost Alaskan and will be closer for visiting McDonald Observatory.
Another day we took a day trip back up to the Chisos Mountains in Big Bend National Park. The view through what they call "the window" is spectacular and one of our favorite spots in this park. We then drove down to Santa Elena Canyon which is where the Rio Grande, (what there is of it) cuts through the cliffs and dips into Mexico before coming back out south of Lajitis. We picked the perfect day to take this trip as we had beautiful blue sky and warm temperatures before the week turned hot. Roads into and through the park need a lot of work and it looked like they had some damage from flooding.
The nigh skies in this country are hard to beat, bright, beautiful and plentiful.