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Old 02-10-2009, 12:23 PM   #1
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Wife and I just recently retired, and are ready to hit the road. Thinking about going to Big Bent Nat Park, but wife is worred about all the problems with the Mexican Drug Cartels crossing into the US. Is anyone aware of any problems in the Big Bend area? Thanks, Gerry

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Old 02-11-2009, 02:57 AM   #2
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We have been going for years and never had problems. We stay at Study Butte at western side of park. We go in March so wife can take pictures of cactus blooming. Go you will enjoy.

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Old 02-11-2009, 04:13 AM   #3
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The drug violence has been more of a problem in the highly populated areas along the border (Laredo/Nuevo Laredo, now moving to El Paso/Juarez). Although the mules will come across in the Big Bend area, they try to avoid even being seen by another human being. Don't be surprised if you are stopped at the Border Patrol station between Presidio and Marfa, though, if you happen to travel over there.

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Old 02-11-2009, 04:32 AM   #4
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Big Bend has much to offer. We have camped in Study Butte and inside the park. The hook up area is parking lot style, hard to get into. The dry camping is open and under trees. Nice visitor center. Great hiking. Hot springs to visit. There is a ghost town nearby with great steaks in the restaurant, which is in an old theater. If still open. Visit Terlingua, and Lahitas. More info? PM. Have fun.
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Old 02-11-2009, 04:55 AM   #5
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Gerry, we just left BBNP last week after spending 2 great weeks there. This is our 4th trip and we will be back again. The next trip we will try to schedule a month as there is always more we want to see/do. If you like to hike, there are so many special treasures you will be able to see. If you have a high clearance 4x4 there are even more.

There are border patrol you will see and stop for lots of places in this southern part of the US, but we have never encountered anyone from the drug trade.

Because we like to stay so long, we prefer the Big Bend Motor Inn & RV Park (now Big Bend Resorts, but don't let that put you off) in the Study Butte/Terlingua area. There is what I hear is an even nicer park in Lajitas, but we decided that is too far to drive since we like to be in the park often. If you stay for a week the weekly rate is about $24 a day. Inside the park is cheaper, but no services unless you stay in the asphalt parking lot.

Ditto the Starlight Theater in Terlingua for dinner. Great food & service. There is a small so-so golf course at the Study Butte park. There use to be a wonderful desert golf course in Lajitas, but the flood last fall took it out...literally. They say they will have 9 holes back up this year, but we were by there and they have a LONG way to go.

Last week it was in the 80s on the Rio Grande, so go between November & March. We were there the end of March in 2006 and left early because we were in the Rio Grande campground with no services and it was 95 degrees. Most hiking you will enjoy more if you don't wait until summer.

There is a small natural food store there and another small store, but do your major shopping before you get there if possible as there is no Wal-Mart or HEB around the corner.

It is the least visited park in the system. Probably because it is so far from everything, but it has the largest re-visit population, so most who go will go back again & again. Hope you come to love the park.

PS -- if you like to geocache, there are lots of interesting caches around the park. Inside, lots of virtual ones.
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