Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Picture Perfect Picnic Area

We are at a roadside picnic area a few miles west of McCamey, Texas (map). In addition to a fairly large parking area, which we've had to ourselves, this spot sports a genuine windmill-driven irrigation system featuring a canonical Aeromotor-style windmill, ramadas, tables, and a historical marker sign.

This latter item describes Horsehead Crossing, a dozen miles northwest of here on the Pecos River, an important feature in Texas history. We will cross the river ourselves in just a couple miles, making us the rootinest, tootinest Spaceliner west of the Pecos.

The town of McCamey turns out to have a free overnight RV spot, complete with 20-amp power outlet, at the Santa Fe Park which includes the old railroad depot. One need only check in with City Hall to use it; the phone number is posted at the park. We stopped to look at it, but we did not need the power outlet, and the spot was otherwise unappealing, so we continued here.

We had perfect weather when we arrived, and sat outside on our chairs until dinner time, when I grilled up a steak. After dinner I took out the Celestron and we looked at Jupiter -- we could see three moons -- and the moon, with craters along the terminator in sharp relief. Other than the half moon, which provided enough light for movement outside, it was dark here. I could only see the lights from McCamey by climbing the windmill. It was also quiet, with only a handful of vehicles and a single enormous train rumbling by.

Today we will finish up US-67 and merge onto I-10, which unavoidably is the only route west through that part of Texas. Tonight we should be somewhere in the vicinity of Van Horn.


  1. If you get near Benson Friday and want to stop at the Saguaro Coop, let us know. I'll buy you and beautiful wife a "Big A.. Beer" at Big nose Kates in Tombstone and a sandwich. A great place and good food if you like CW and loud.
    Tomorrow, we go to the gem show in Tucson so Karen can restock her supply of teeny tiny beeds.
    Ed Thomas

    1. Been informed we're going to show Fri not tomorrow. Offer open tomorrow and Saturday

  2. Will be interested to hear where you find to stay in Van Horn as I heard they are discouraging RV'ers staying there. Last year we asked and received permission to park in the lot of the Chuy's restaurant.

    Remember if you are needing a spot to hole up near Maricopa our place here "Dogpound South" always has the welcome sign out.

  3. @Ed -- we won't even be across the AZ state line by Saturday. If we follow I-10 (we are more likely to take US-70), we'd be passing Benson mid-day, stopping no sooner than Tucson. But we'll wave as we drive by...

    @JB -- we essentially boycott Van Horn due to their RV-unfriendly city ordinance. We tend to stay in the desert a few miles out of town and definitely outside the city limits. On this pass we've been seeing billboards for the historic Hotel El Capitan, which claims to be newly renovated and includes a restaurant, so maybe someday it will be worth a visit, but we really hate to spend our money in a town that clearly doesn't want it.

  4. Blow your horn. We might be in Tucson at Sam's Club some time next week. Out of dog food (the three boys like to eat for some reason), hamburger, etc. Tucson in only 45 miles from here, but it seems as if we're there a lot. Even looked at buying a winter home in Tucson and selling the RV Tuesday week. Age beginning to creep up on me, not the RV. Have a safe trip one way or the other. The winter house, should we do it, would be a low maintenance condo in Gilbert rather than down here though. Our son lives in Scottdale. Cya, EdT


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