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Old 01-30-2011, 07:58 AM   #1
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I10 Through TEXAS from New Orleans to Phoenix

We are Canadians who plan to travel via the I 10 thorugh Texas and wondered if anyone has any advice. Places to stay, places to avoid?

Are we placing ourselves at risk on the I 10 near El Paso and where would we find safe Campgrounds on or near the I 10 along the way?

Is the I 10 in fairly good condition throughout? Would you recommend any other route this time of year?

Any and all advice or experiences will be greatly appreciated.

At the present time we are in New Orleans and have travelled since October 15th in the USA. WE drove and camped down the I81 and then through Georgia into Florida (Mexico Beach) and down the Gulf Coast to The Keys(recommend Jolly Roger Campground at Marathon with PA rate for five days). Back up the interior of Florida through Moore Haven and Old Town and now in Lousiana and New Orleans(recommend Pontchartrain RV Campground with PA rate for one week).

We are driving a full sized Van pulling a 27' Flagstaff Camper with one slide. Two +55 Adults.
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Old 01-30-2011, 08:43 AM   #2
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I-10 is an excellent way to head west as far as freeways go. If you're interested in getting off the beaten path, however, there are a lot of interesting places to visit in Texas. You'll see a real transition in geography from the piney woods and coastal plains of East Texas through the fringes of the Hill Country in central Texas to the deserts and mountains of West Texas. Although we're all Texans, the eastern portion of the state is probably more attuned to the South, while you'll find the western portion of the state transitions to the American West.

As far as road conditions are concerned, probably the worst stretch of I-10 you'll encounter is from the Louisiana state line to Beaumont, although they've been working on it, and even that section of road isn't bad.

I would time my travels to avoid Houston and San Antonio during morning and evening rush hours on Monday through Friday. Otherwise, traffic shouldn't be too much of a problem.

Security along I-10 isn't an issue. The border violence hasn't really spilled over into Texas to any extent. You'll be fine, but personally I wouldn't make any excursions across the Rio Grande to visit Mexican border towns.

You'll find plenty of RV accommodations along your route. Some excellent ones include:

Alamo Fiesta RV Resort in Boerne (I-10 Exit 543)

Buckhorn Lake RV Resort in Kerrville (I-10 Exit 501)

Either of these make an excellent base if you want to spend a few days touring the Texas Hill Country (highly recommended). Alamo Fiesta is close enough to San Antonio to be a good base for sightseeing in the San Antonio area.

There are overnighting-type RV parks (KOAs, typically) in Junction and Fort Stockton. The Circle Bar RV Park in Ozona is OK for an overnight stop - full hookups and adjacent to a truck stop (fuel and a restaurant within walking distance) and motel. Van Horn has RV accommodations as well.

If you want to venture 35 miles south of I-10, I'd highly suggest a side trip to the Davis Mountains in West Texas. We always stay at the Davis Mountains State Park just outside Fort Davis (full hookups available, including cable TV - reservations highly suggested), and nearby (well, in Texas terms) attractions include Alpine, Marfa, Big Bend National Park (with Terlingua, Lajitas, the River Road just outsite BBNP), the McDonald Observatory, the Davis Mountains Scenic Loop, etc. You can exit I-10 going westbound at Balmorhea to go to Fort Davis via TX 17 and rejoin I-10 at either Kent (via TX 118) or Van Horn (via US-90).

Well, enough from me. I'll let others add their suggestions.

Rusty
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Old 01-30-2011, 08:51 AM   #3
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Rusty gave excellent advice although I'll add two things.

I vowed six years ago, after taking I-10 from Texas to New Orleans for the umpteenth time, that I'd never take that road again. It was miles and miles of porpoising up and down near the LA border and into TX. My understanding is that there has been a lot of work trying to flatten that out so maybe it is ok by now. The other thing is don't worry about I-10 through El Paso, there are only rare occasions when random bullets stray through the area. Just try not to be there on those occasions! Besides, if you are going to Phoenix, it would be WAY out of your way to get there without going through El Paso.
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Old 01-30-2011, 09:40 AM   #4
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For I-10 through Houston or San Antonio, time your trip so you come through after 0900 and through by 1500. Before or after that, it is slow going due to rush hour traffic.

Personally, I would not stay any closer to El Paso as possible.

There are lots of nice State Parks not to far from I-10..depending if you are wanting to do some sight seeing ot just headed straight through.

Ken
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Old 01-30-2011, 10:03 AM   #5
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Sounds like you're on quite a trip. You've gotten great advice so far.

We're in the Phoenix area for the winter but have traveled I10 through Texas a few times. I'll only make a couple of points to what's already been said.

* Don't worry about safety along any US interstates. It's just not an issue... at least not because of Mexican gang violence.

* If you want to spend a day or two in San Antonio, there's an RV park downtown right next to public transportation and near the Alamo.

* Near the west Texas boarder, a good place to overnight (there aren't a lot of them there) is the Fort Stockton RV Park. They are nice, easy in and easy out... and they have their own on site cafe which is a welcome sight after driving across Texas all day.

Best of luck to you.

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Old 01-30-2011, 10:10 AM   #6
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I will add to Ken's comments...the State Parks along this route are excellent in Texas. I will offer a few that are particularly interesting and not too far off the route. Stop at the texas state line and get a park guide, or if you have time order on line.

Palmeatto sp -between Houston and San Antonio few miles of 10
Lost Maples sp - West of San Antonio hour off route
Balmorea sp - West of Fort Stockton minutes off route

and the best in the west a must see if you have time Davis Mountain SP 45 minutes off route, at the Balmorea exit west of Ft. Stockton. Davis Mts SP is a great park with lots to do in the area. It is a great example of west Texas mountains with a National Historic Fort, the McDonald Observatroy both minutes away and Big Bend Nat. Park two hours away!

I spend 60 days a year in these areas and have never had a problem.
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Old 01-30-2011, 10:50 AM   #7
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By the way, all rest areas along the Interstates in Texas have wi-fi, if you want to log into the Internet to check e-mail, look in on iRV2, etc.

Rusty
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Old 01-30-2011, 10:57 AM   #8
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Did the I-10 from Baton Rouge to Houston over Christmas and the roads were pretty decent but there is perennial construction between Orange and Beaumont in Texas.
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Old 01-30-2011, 06:16 PM   #9
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Gosh! Wish I could remember all the places along the way. I don't know what your daily travel distance is, but mine is between 250-300. From NO to Houston is about 350 miles. There are a few CG's on the west side of Hoston near the Astrodome. South Main RV park, and Lake View, RV Resort. I have not visited them so i cannot vouch for them. 10 miles South of I-10 on Hwy 288S, just off of Beltway 8 is a new campground. Rather "upscale in price," but for one night it is acceptable. It is named Advanced RV Park. There is an Outdoor world about 1/2 mile from it. If you don't mind 30-40 miles away, then further South towards Galveston there are several, and very reasonably priced. Also, the Galveston State Park is open and has W/E with dump. It's a walk across the dunes to the Ocean.

If you are gong to stay in San Antonio for a few days, and it is recommended, Alamo, and other items of interest, then I personally recommend Braunig Lake RV Resort, but only in the premium section. If you are a Passport America member you can stay for around $25 a night. It is about 10 miles straight into Downtown SA and the Alamo. Braunig Lake has a lot of activities on-site for guests. It's about 200 miles from Houston, to SA.

You will still have about 550 miles to El Paso, so it is another stop somewhere along the way. Fort Stockton, TX is a little over 300 miles from San Antonio. Most people call it the arm pit of Texas. The only place I would stay for an over nighter is the Fort Stockton RV Park (KOA)

Fort Stockton, TX to Las Cruces, NM is about 300 miles. Making that run avoids having to stay in the El Paso area completely. We have stayed at Hacienda RV Resort and enjoyed the CG. There are several other CG's in Las Cruces. Check the RV Park Reviews for information on any CG.

It is almost 400 miles to Phoenix from LC, so you may want to stop in Tuscon.

Happy trails.
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Old 01-30-2011, 07:40 PM   #10
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Thumbs up I 10 at El Paso

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawley View Post
Are we placing ourselves at risk on the I 10 near El Paso and where would we find safe Campgrounds on or near the I 10 along the way?
I 10 is SAFE to drive, but you could (should) pull off I 10 at EXIT 49, go 5 miles north and find the BEST Steakhouse in all of USA.............
the Cattleman's Steakhouse

www.cattlemanssteakhouse.com

I 10 goes right by the Rio Grande, and you see the 'other' side pretty good. But no problem.
Just NO HITCHHIKERS
We used to live in El Paso for 5 years, but thats a while ago.
NONE of our friends goes anymore across to Mexico. Family members (if any) have to come to El Paso.

Enjoy the trip and Dinner
TW

El Paso is one of the SAFEST cities in all of USA. Across the river - Juarez the worst in the world
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Old 01-30-2011, 08:28 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RustyJC View Post
I-10 is an excellent way to head west as far as freeways go. If you're interested in getting off the beaten path, however, there are a lot of interesting places to visit in Texas. You'll see a real transition in geography from the piney woods and coastal plains of East Texas through the fringes of the Hill Country in central Texas to the deserts and mountains of West Texas. Although we're all Texans, the eastern portion of the state is probably more attuned to the South, while you'll find the western portion of the state transitions to the American West.

As far as road conditions are concerned, probably the worst stretch of I-10 you'll encounter is from the Louisiana state line to Beaumont, although they've been working on it, and even that section of road isn't bad.

I would time my travels to avoid Houston and San Antonio during morning and evening rush hours on Monday through Friday. Otherwise, traffic shouldn't be too much of a problem.

Security along I-10 isn't an issue. The border violence hasn't really spilled over into Texas to any extent. You'll be fine, but personally I wouldn't make any excursions across the Rio Grande to visit Mexican border towns.

You'll find plenty of RV accommodations along your route. Some excellent ones include:

Alamo Fiesta RV Resort in Boerne (I-10 Exit 543)

Buckhorn Lake RV Resort in Kerrville (I-10 Exit 501)

Either of these make an excellent base if you want to spend a few days touring the Texas Hill Country (highly recommended). Alamo Fiesta is close enough to San Antonio to be a good base for sightseeing in the San Antonio area.

There are overnighting-type RV parks (KOAs, typically) in Junction and Fort Stockton. The Circle Bar RV Park in Ozona is OK for an overnight stop - full hookups and adjacent to a truck stop (fuel and a restaurant within walking distance) and motel. Van Horn has RV accommodations as well.

If you want to venture 35 miles south of I-10, I'd highly suggest a side trip to the Davis Mountains in West Texas. We always stay at the Davis Mountains State Park just outside Fort Davis (full hookups available, including cable TV - reservations highly suggested), and nearby (well, in Texas terms) attractions include Alpine, Marfa, Big Bend National Park (with Terlingua, Lajitas, the River Road just outsite BBNP), the McDonald Observatory, the Davis Mountains Scenic Loop, etc. You can exit I-10 going westbound at Balmorhea to go to Fort Davis via TX 17 and rejoin I-10 at either Kent (via TX 118) or Van Horn (via US-90).

Well, enough from me. I'll let others add their suggestions.

Rusty
These are really good recommendations. I would add one in San Antonio. Link below.

RV Park Reviews :: Park Map

There is also Admiralty RV Park on the west side of San Antonio near Sea World. It is OK but the sites are pretty tight and some not so level. It was not built with big rigs in mind in the 1980's.

Also, some clarification from Rick's post. The Astrodome in Houston is actually on the south side of town, on IH Loop 610, well south of IH-10, not west of Houston, and I am not sure which "downtown RV park" Rick is referring to in San Antonio but I think it may be the KOA on Gembler Road. If this is the one he is referring to, it is about 5 miles from downtown and I would not recommend it. Incidentally, the Alamo is located directly in the downtown central business district if you care to see it.

Welcome to Texas and to San Antonio.

Don
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Old 01-30-2011, 08:33 PM   #12
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1-10 is good from Baton Rouge to San Antonio, execpt for about 12-14 miles between the Atchafalaya Basin (swamp) bridge west of Baton Rouge over to Breaux Bridge. It will get a little bumpy around Lake Charles. There was some construction going on on I-10 in downtown Houston last October. It's doable, just go slow so that you can make sure you're in the right lane.

We always stay at the Gulf Coast RV Resort ( Gulf Coast RV Resort ) on the west side of Beaumont. PA, free pancakes for breakfast. Westbound get off at exit 847.
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Old 01-30-2011, 08:53 PM   #13
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Also, some clarification from Rick's post. The Astrodome in Houston is actually on the south side of town, on IH Loop 610, well south of IH-10, not west of Houston, and I am not sure which "downtown RV park" Rick is referring to in San Antonio but I think it may be the KOA on Gembler Road. If this is the one he is referring to, it is about 5 miles from downtown and I would not recommend it. Incidentally, the Alamo is located directly in the downtown central business district if you care to see it.

Welcome to Texas and to San Antonio.

Don
Thanks Don but I was actually talking about Traveler's World RV Park Texas RV Parks - RV Campgrounds & Resorts
They advertise that they are the closest RV park to the Alamo and River Walk and it worked out great for us during our stay early last year. We drove downtown once and other times just caught the bus which has a stop right at the park.

Wherever you stay be sure to spend some time to see the River Walk. We enjoyed a couple of very nice dinners along the river.

Rick
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Old 01-30-2011, 09:09 PM   #14
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There are many good state parks in Texas and my favorite is Balmorhea State Park in west Texas. There's not a lot of grass, but the campsites are good pull-thru sites and some even have cable. There is a covered area with a concrete picnic table and a grill at the site. The park's main attraction is a large (77,053 sq. ft.) artesian spring pool that is open daily and fed by San Solomon Springs. The pool differs from most public pools in several respects: the 1 3/4-acre size, the 25-foot depth and the 72 to 76 degree constant temperature. It also has a variety of aquatic life in its clear waters. With a capacity of more than 3 1/2 million gallons, the pool has plenty of room for swimmers, while offering a unique setting for scuba and skin diving.
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