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Old 12-27-2014, 11:14 AM   #1
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Austin to Quartzsite: suggestions sought

Hi Ya'll,

I'm in Austin TX, now, so I have to say "ya'll". LOL.

About the 1st of 2015 I'll point my RV, Charlene, toward Quartzsite AZ. I am planning to catch the last few days of the Quartzsite spectacle just to see what it's like, before wintering in the AZ area and heading east as the weather begins to warm in Match. (I'm in month 8 of a trip of indefinite length, hoping to be able to say I've been to all 50 states when I'm done. (I'm doing some blogging about my trip. If you're interested you can check it out at RussOnTheRoad.wordpress.com.)

Right now I've got just one destination I want to see along the way from Austin to Quartzsite, and that's Big Bend National Park. I'd like to have some other potential destinations either to visit for a couple days or just to stay. It's roughly a 1400 mile trip from Austin to Big Bend to Quartzsite which could mean 10 days on the road and if I visit Big Bend for 4 days that leaves 7 for other places along the way. It looks like I'll pass through southwest NM and southern AZ on my way to Quartzsite.

It would be fair to say my main interest is nature although I've been known to take in a museum here and there or to walk the streets of greater or lesser known cities and towns. I'm not a shopper. I'd rather camp in a forest than a city. My rig is a 30' ass-dragging Class C with a motorcycle on back so rough roads are out. I'm thrifty (that's a nice way of saying cheap! Hahah.) I prefer secondary roads to the Interstate. I have Passport America, a Senior Pass, and a Texas State Parks pass. I can camp off the grid for some time.

With the information above in mind, I'd appreciate any suggestions people might have for possible routing, places to visit and things to do along the way.

Thanks... ya'll

Photo from my blog shows the Grand Tetons.
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Old 12-27-2014, 03:14 PM   #2
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West TX. AND The bid bend area could be problematic. Temps.
La Jitas on the west side of big bend has full hook ups. Just watch temps.
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Old 12-27-2014, 04:03 PM   #3
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I would check out Yuma Az, Its a salad bowl, kind of like California, Kind of on a smaller scale though.
When I drove OTR I used to go a few times a year to pick up a load of produce to bring back too the Midwest. B-Very interesting seeing how everything is grown and what different Plants look like.
Have fun in Quartzite, I might get to go next year
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Old 12-27-2014, 09:03 PM   #4
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Gila cliff dwellings near Silver City NM. Biosphere 2 near Oracle Az.

Russell
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Old 12-27-2014, 09:34 PM   #5
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Hi Russ. I've done the Austin to Quartzsite trip a couple times now, headed to Lake Havasu. I'm a native Texan and original from West Texas. In West Texas you are limited but one spectacular place that doesn't get much attention is Sonora Caverns. It's the most intricately decorated cavern I have ever seen. There is supposed to be a decent RV park there but have never stayed there. Another lesser known place is Balmorhea Springs State Park west of Ft Stockton. McDonald's Observatory is about an hour off I-10, near Ft Davis, where Davis Mountain State park is located. Just a few options. I have stayed at Lajits at the Resort Ranch and it is a nice place.
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Old 12-28-2014, 08:42 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scottybdivin View Post
Hi Russ. I've done the Austin to Quartzsite trip a couple times now, headed to Lake Havasu. I'm a native Texan and original from West Texas. In West Texas you are limited but one spectacular place that doesn't get much attention is Sonora Caverns. It's the most intricately decorated cavern I have ever seen. There is supposed to be a decent RV park there but have never stayed there. Another lesser known place is Balmorhea Springs State Park west of Ft Stockton. McDonald's Observatory is about an hour off I-10, near Ft Davis, where Davis Mountain State park is located. Just a few options. I have stayed at Lajits at the Resort Ranch and it is a nice place.
Thanks for those suggestions. I've been looking into them. I was at Blanchard Springs Caverns in Mountain View AR not that long ago and they were pretty cool. I'll have to decide if I want to do another cavern outing such as Sonora so soon after that one. Davis Mtn. State Park is very close to Big Bend so I'd have to find a reason to go there too... not that there isn't one. I haven't looked at the observatory yet. It's all worth looking at. Thanks again.
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Old 12-28-2014, 08:47 PM   #7
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West TX. AND The bid bend area could be problematic. Temps.
La Jitas on the west side of big bend has full hook ups. Just watch temps.
Thanks for the heads-up.

I assume you mean it might be cold this time of year. There's not much I can do about that and maybe no way to escape the weather wherever I go. It's 34º here in Austin right now!
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Old 12-28-2014, 08:52 PM   #8
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Gila cliff dwellings near Silver City NM. Biosphere 2 near Oracle Az.

Russell
Thanks! I'll check those out.
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Old 12-28-2014, 08:57 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by spritz View Post
I would check out Yuma Az, Its a salad bowl, kind of like California, Kind of on a smaller scale though.
When I drove OTR I used to go a few times a year to pick up a load of produce to bring back too the Midwest. B-Very interesting seeing how everything is grown and what different Plants look like.
Have fun in Quartzite, I might get to go next year
Tim
I'll research Yuma, if not as a potential stop on my way to Quartzsite, as a place to visit after.

Thanks.
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Old 12-30-2014, 12:45 AM   #10
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Davis Mtn. State Park, TX is well worth a stop and the night sky tour at the McDonald Observatory is awesome. Check their schedule for tour dates.

Plan some time in the Benson/Sierra Vista, AZ area and visit Chiricuhua Nat'l Monument. Kartchner Caverns state park has a nice campground and again, the tour is great - very professional and it's a living and still growing cave. Unique. All of these are just off I-10.

I feel New Mexico will be too cool for a lot of siteseeing. Arizona will be warmer.

Just before you get to Quartzsite if you still have time, Alamo Lake State Park is a beauty if you want remote....it's a long drive in - paved and straight - but lots of quiet once you get there. Have a great trip!
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Old 12-31-2014, 10:21 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by twogypsies View Post
Davis Mtn. State Park, TX is well worth a stop and the night sky tour at the McDonald Observatory is awesome. Check their schedule for tour dates.

Plan some time in the Benson/Sierra Vista, AZ area and visit Chiricuhua Nat'l Monument. Kartchner Caverns state park has a nice campground and again, the tour is great - very professional and it's a living and still growing cave. Unique. All of these are just off I-10.

I feel New Mexico will be too cool for a lot of siteseeing. Arizona will be warmer.

Just before you get to Quartzsite if you still have time, Alamo Lake State Park is a beauty if you want remote....it's a long drive in - paved and straight - but lots of quiet once you get there. Have a great trip!
Thanks much for the suggestions!
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Old 01-01-2015, 05:41 AM   #12
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Since you prefer the back roads, and since half of your trip to Q is just getting out of Texas, I would suggest Siminole Canyon State Park outside of Del Rio. That could take you thru San Antonio. The state park has a great guided hike to the petroglyphs along the Pecos River. And along that route is Judge Roy Bean Law West of the Pecos at Langtree. Careful about timing of route. There is a winter weather advisory for area just west of Austin right now.

Happy Trails.

ps. Don't forget the Marfa lights.

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Old 01-04-2015, 06:51 PM   #13
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Thanks.

I am at Seminole Canyon State Park right now. This is my second night. I took a long guided tour through the canyon today.

I was going to head to Big Bend National Park tomorrow but there is a power our outage in the area which is disrupting things including the availability of gasoline. So, I may skip Big Bend this time through… I'm trying to make that decision tonight.


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Old 01-08-2015, 03:27 PM   #14
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West TX. AND The bid bend area could be problematic. Temps.
La Jitas on the west side of big bend has full hook ups. Just watch temps.
Just to let you know that I was in Big Bend for two days, stayng just north of Panther Junction. The first day was quite lovely. Day two was cool and windy to the north of the mountains but over at Castalon it was warner with no wind. The third day temps were cold, in the thirties in the morning and it was a little drizzly so I left.
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