After we spent a glorious 5 days boondocking in Amistad National Recreation Area we were due for some clean laundry and some a/c, even though now as I sit here writing this in Tucson, Arizona I have a heater down by my feet. But that was then and this is now. We headed down US 90 from Amistad a little sad to be leaving that beautiful area, but the drive on 90 did not disappoint with the views either.
We made it down to Presidio after a long drive to a wonderful welcoming campground called Loma Paloma. For $22.00 a night it comes with free wifi, and full hookups. Just an FYI they only take cash. Their address is 17138 FM170 Presidio, Texas, their phone number is 432/229-2992. We were invited to happy hour which started shortly after us checking in. The laundry room has 3 machines of each washer and dryer and it is $1.50 each. Also, this is paid in cash in a honor system. This was a perfect place to get into Big Bend Ranch State Park and for the more ambitious you can drive through it and get to the west side of Big Bend National Park. We were told to take the beautiful ride through the State park and don’t underestimate it. Beautiful sunsets were a daily occurance.
Presidio itself is a quant border town. Doesn’t really have much of anything but it is cute nonetheless.
We were at the Visitor’s Center of the State Park at 8:30 in the morning. Fort Leaton State Historic Site/Visitor Center, where we paid our entry money to get in the park and we went through the Fort and our daily pass gave us access to all the hikes we wanted to do. The reconstructed Fort served as a trading post in the old Chihuahua Trail from 1848 to 1884. It was interesting.
We have a dog, so that limited us to the hikes we could do, but honestly the four we did do was enough. We did not feel like we missed anything. We did the short nature hike at the visitor’s center and then got in the car to drive the scenic road through the park and stop and see what we wanted to see. We did a slot canyon hike and a hoodoo hike, which was a first for all of us. The Hoodos Trail is a 1.1 mile loop trail. Has some elevation but not too terrible. We got down the Rio Grande where the moutains on the other side were in Mexico. Eris got to drink water out of the Rio Grande. The Closed Canyon Trail (slot canyon) is about 1.4 miles long (round-trip). It is a narrow slot canyon that divides Colorado Mesa in two. The Colorado Mesa was created about 28 million years ago. The canyon leads to the Rio Grande but is unpassable without climbing gear. I had a hard enough time trying to climb over the boulders so when a sign said end of trail, I was good, I did not need to see what was beyond the sign. If here be sure to do the Hoodoos trail first as it is exposed and the Closed Canyon is cool due to the canyon walls.
The views on the scenic road were truly amazing. This road is one of the scenic drives in the US and should not be missed if in the area. Of course I was extremely grateful that it was just us and our truck, I would not want to have been towing the camper. We did the short nature trail on the other side at the other Visitor’s Center and decided to head back through because the thought of driving the scenic drive at night was not overly thrilling. We saw a moutain goat and some deer. By the time we returned home it was after 7:00 p.m.
So if you are in the area and can’t get into Big Bend National Park don’t underestimate Big Bend Ranch State Park it is so very much worth it and should not be overlooked.
If you enjoyed this please like it and consider following us as we travel on to our next destination, Carlesbad, New Mexico.
Hope, Mike and Eris, the lowrider camping hound