Alive and kicking! Photos added

We are alive and kicking and had no way, until today, to connect with the outside world. No cellular, internet – therefore quiet as a mouse.  Today, surprise, surprise was AT&T that allowed us reception. And this afternoon, got Verizon. Wow!

We left El Paso and headed to Ft. Davis State Park. Had visions of watching birds nesting, etc but our citing was reserved for Javilina (feral pigs).  We did see a few cardinals and sparrows, but they apparently live there year around. We had great campsites, quiet too. No greenery, still in winter mode.  Had planned to stay 2 days, but high winds extended our stay an extra day.  And the McDonald Observatory was not attempted as it was cloudy the whole time we were there.

We left there and headed for Big Bend National Park.  It has been years upon years since I was there and for some reason it felt like I’d never been there before.  We were just a tad early for all the wildflowers to be had, but we did find some amongst miles of desert and mountains.  We made our way to Rio Grande Village, thinking we could see the river from there, but it wasn’t seen (probably too low).  We were packed in like sardines at the RV w/hookups (went for this, as temps were in the 90’s the day before we arrived).  Horrendous RV park! Just not worth $34/night.  Later we discovered the “primitive” site – more in our liking, but all sites were reserved. Darn!  We stayed long enough to explore the park.  There are roads within the park that are not recommended for RV’s over 20′ – since all 3 of us have rigs over 20′, we used Doris’ car to hit these spots in the road.  Plus down to the Rio Grande River near St. Elena Canyon – wow! The Mexico side of the river, has a few horses grazing at the base of one impressive, imposing sheer walls of granite. I have photos, but can’t seem to upload them today.  The river itself was green and gently meandering down the river bed. The level looks quite low.  After this, we meandered down the road a little further and came directly across from St. Elena Canyon opening. Until then, it did not look like it was open from top to bottom, but it is.  This was pretty amazing.  I’m not sure my images show the magnitude of what we had before us, it was really something! The story of those trying to raft this canyon was deadly.  Then we turned onto the Old Maverick Road.  It was paved for about a mile, then warning signs of needing 4 wheel drive vehicle to drive the next 14 miles of dirt.  Yep, you guessed it. We went for it. We went for it with Doris’ Honda Civic.  We were pretty rattled by the end of that 14 miles of dirt, rocks and desert, but this is where we first started seeing the blue ones, reddish rose ones, yellow ones and white flowers. Heck if I can tell you what we saw, but it was a beautiful contrast to all that desert brown. And we came across a mud home from back in the 40’s, that was in exceptionally good shape.  The roof was Octillo cactus and mud. The walls, short in height, but long sides of adobe type blocks. Very interesting!

As for birds… not alot.  We were looking for the Vermillion flycatcher, but it was not found.  The ranger says we are just a little early before the birds start migrating thru and they weren’t sure it was going to be then, as the weather has played havoc with the norm on this, this year.  Did see a few roadrunners, hawks, and grackles?

So the winds picked up and we decided to not stay another day.  Quite windy yesterday, made driving hard, but we covered 240 long miles thru some rugged territory, scary bridges over deep caverns, and miles of nothing but desert. Egads!  But as the sun was setting… we found Seminole Canyon State Park and dry camped in one of the best campsites any of us have seen. Highly recommend this place!!!  We slept under the stars, but the cities in the south kept it too bright to see even the milky ways. But it was sure pretty!  We only stayed one night, but in hindsight we should have stayed another night. But we headed on down the road.  We are still on Highway 90, but will turn onto Highway 83 to head South tomorrow.  Presently, we are parked in a nondescript National Park near Armisted Reservoir, which is super low on water level.  We can’t even see the water from this campground like we were told.  Not impressed with this campground, other than its free with our National Pass.

West Texas

Rare site of green in desert

West Texas

A thorny bush

Near Ft. Davis, TX

A dose of color

Javelina walking along at Ft. Davis

West Texas

Javelina walking behind my rig

Big Bend NP/rainbow over Mexico

Big Bend NP terrain

Big Bend NP terrain

Big Bend NP

Viewing Santa Elena Canyon opening

Same imposing wall, looking to left

Rio Grande river at bottom of this wall

Pat taking pictures of Rio Grande River

Rio Grande River. Mexico across river.

Horses grazing in Mexico

Looking directly across to Santa Elena Canyon 

Poster of Santa Elena Canyon

poster on Santa Elena Canyon
Add caption
A view within Big Bend NP

View of desert on Old Maverick Rd, Big Bend NP

So tomorrow… not sure of actual destination, but we are aiming for the southern coast of Texas. When will we get there and where – is all unknown at the moment.  

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