Thursday, February 17, 2011

Life is a picnic ... area

We are at yet another Texas roadside picnic area, at the end of Texas 17 where it intersects with I-10 (map), just south of Saragosa and east of Balmorhea. We found this one quite by accident, even though I wrote yesterday that I thought we would not have this option.

We got a very late start yesterday, owing to being hip-deep in our Red Cross curriculum development project. I still had lots of writing to do, so I also wanted to be off the road fairly early, and, besides, now that it's in the high 80s during the day, having the western sun streaming through the windshield makes driving late in the day uncomfortable. So we ended up driving less than two hours before I decided I was done and we needed to be looking for a place to spend the night.

We already knew there was an Interstate picnic area further west that was too sloped to be comfortable, as well as a large parking lot at the lone business in Kent, but I wanted to stop even sooner than that, so Louise found a small truck stop at this exit in her directory that claimed to be RV-friendly. The truck stop is just south of the highway and even sports a small RV park. As we came down the exit ramp, expecting to turn left back under the Interstate to the truck stop, we spotted this picnic area. In stark contrast to the truck stop, it was very dark and nearly silent here overnight.

This picnic area is not indicated on any of our maps and is also not really visible from the freeway, so we have now marked it on our Texas map. We did end up walking over to the truck stop after dinner, and picked up a pint of ice cream for dessert. The place was nearly empty, which I attribute to their diesel price being sky high. There are a couple of tables in the C-store masquerading as a cafe (it is also the office for the RV park), but the place reeked of cigarette smoke. Next door appeared to be a bar.

Today we expect to get an earlier start, and make up some of the mileage we missed yesterday by pressing all the way to El Paso, a familiar stop for us. If experience is any guide, El Paso will have the cheapest diesel we will see from here to the Pacific, and I expect to top off the tank tomorrow morning.

Photo by archer10 (Dennis), used under a Creative Commons license.

1 comment:

  1. Don't know if you look at the Yahoo group All About RVing, but a fellow put up a link to a Google map with his Bob's Cheap or Free CG's US -- mainly Texas, with some NM and AZ locations. Looks like it could be a valuable resource.


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