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Old 06-04-2016, 08:31 AM   #1
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West Texas mountains

I have a 2000 Jayco 35 foot Class C. I want to travel around the Davis Mountains/Big Bend area in the Fall. I am concerned about being able to climb the mountains. Anyone have experience in an older RV? Also, do I have to tow another vehicle or can I access local towns with the RV? (parking in town, etc.)
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Old 06-04-2016, 09:52 AM   #2
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I drove a 1975 Tioga class C (Dodge 360) all over the mountains in the Pacific NW. I towed a Ford Fiesta or a 18 foot IO boat. Never a problem, just use your gears, and don't be in a hurry. You will do fine.

Enjoy the trip.
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Old 06-05-2016, 10:07 PM   #3
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When you drive from Alpine to Ft. Davis there is a little climb but nothing out of the ordinary. From Balmorhea to Ft. Davis you go through Wild Rose Pass but again you shouldn't have any problem. Most of Big Bend National Park has no steep grades to contend with except for a long climb to elevation going up to the Chisos Mountain Lodge area - at the Chisos Basin Campground they don't recommend trailers >20 feet or RV's >24 feet due to the narrow winding road.
The main concern would be mapping out the distances from the different towns to each other so you don't find yourself in an area where there is no fuel.
Marathon, Alpine, Ft. Davis, Marfa, and Presidio are easily accessible by RV. Leaving the motorhome in one spot and visiting the different areas via the toad would save on the fuel (bill).
I've never taken an RV to anywhere out there other than a travel trailer to Ft. Davis area. Have been throughout this area numerous times on a motorcycle.
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Old 06-06-2016, 07:25 AM   #4
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Thanks so much for your reply.. It is really helpful. I feel better about the inclines. Just have to decide if we need to tow a car or not.
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Old 06-06-2016, 09:17 AM   #5
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Just did most if not all you are going to do this winter in a 31' towing a 4-runner. Those are hills not mountains like in the Rockies and people are doing those with toads every day. I would do a toad as there are many areas you will most likely want to explore that I would not take the MH. There are many good CGs in the area to base out of with a move or two with the RV. Do the Scenic route out of Fort Davis and the Observatory on top of the mountain, yes I'll call this one a mountain, this is a drive one could do with the MH but could be a little tense at times. A Fort Davis it self WOW really restored nicely. HAVE a good trip.

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Old 06-06-2016, 11:24 AM   #6
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I agree, take the toad or you will miss seeing a lot of the attractions. Hwy 170 west from Lajitas to Presidio is one of the most scenic routes in Texas. It is doable in a MH, but much nicer in a car. There are numerous stops with short easy hikes along the river. One of the "must sees" is Closed Canyon in Big Bend Ranch SP. It is right beside the highway with a 1/4 mi hike. it is one of the few slot canyons in Texas.

BTW, Maverick Ranch RV Resort in Lajitas is a great place to base from.
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Old 06-06-2016, 03:18 PM   #7
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Also, gas is uber expensive in the park itself and not much cheaper in the area outside the park. A toad will save you $$. There are no grades of any real consequence or length in the area. I think the tighest road is 118 from Ft. Davis to Kent.
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Old 06-07-2016, 03:53 PM   #8
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West Texas Mountains

Thank you all so much for your help. It is great to have somewhere to go to get REAL RVer's experience. It's so hard to find answers to my specific questions and it seems this is the place.
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Old 06-07-2016, 10:55 PM   #9
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Real "mountains" have a tree-line above which is mainly bare rock, sometimes with snow. Anything with vegetation all the way to the top is a "hill".
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Old 06-08-2016, 08:53 AM   #10
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We are in Maverick Ranch right now - No problem getting here down 170 with our 40 ft coach. using the jeep to get around now. I may go thru the park on the way out. Nothing to steep so far
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Old 06-08-2016, 09:08 AM   #11
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You might consider "Big Bend Resort and Adventures RV Park" in Study Butte/Terlingua.

It's only 3 miles from Big Bend NP entrance and has a decent restaurant, laundromat, and store with a bigger grocery just down the road.

Is it dusty sometimes? It's the freaking desert! Every square inch of Texas west of San Antonio is dusty a lot of the time!

If you want to tour Big Bend, this place is a lot closer than Lajitas. We used it as a base and went into the park on three different days. Maverick is 20 miles from park entrance.
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Old 06-09-2016, 07:24 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmckinley View Post
Is it dusty sometimes? It's the freaking desert! Every square inch of Texas west of San Antonio is dusty a lot of the time
Well, not exactly. Maybe everything west of Ozona, but west of San Antonio is the Texas Hill Country. This year everything is green all the way to Ft Stockton.

If you don't mind dry camping, the campground at Rio Grand Village is very nice. The one with FHU's, not so muc. It's a parking lot.
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Old 06-09-2016, 07:39 AM   #13
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I may have exaggerated a bit. But I was irritated by a couple of reviews that complained of dust at the Study Butte RV campground. I don't know what people expect when they go out west. Wind and dust are unavoidable.
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Old 06-09-2016, 10:11 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by jmckinley View Post
I may have exaggerated a bit. But I was irritated by a couple of reviews that complained of dust at the Study Butte RV campground. I don't know what people expect when they go out west. Wind and dust are unavoidable.
On this we agree. Actually I grew up in west Texas and thought the spring time meant dust storms day after day for 3 months.
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