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Old 04-19-2020, 08:54 AM   #1
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Alpine to Big Bend?

IF I have a extra day or two in West Tx, how feasible is it to stay in Alpine or Marfa and take a long day trip (or two) to the Big Bend Parks or the River Road?


Sorry, but I know I saw a thread about this sometime back but didn't book mark it and been looking for it all morning, so feel free to point me to that thread if you know where it is. Otherwise first hand info would be appreciated.


Thanks, Chuck
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Old 04-19-2020, 08:58 AM   #2
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I would suggest the Davis Mountain Observatory also. We ha a great time at one of their night shows. Spent a good portion of the day, ate at their cafe and then the night show.
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Old 04-19-2020, 09:11 AM   #3
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As I recall it's a long drive plus Big Bend itself is very large and it takes hour to go end to end in the park. We've been to Davis Observatory and they have (or had) a good tour. W/o the tour I don't know what you'll get to see tho.
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Old 04-19-2020, 10:31 AM   #4
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If I remember correctly it's about 80 miles from Alpine to the entrance of Big Bend NP. There are two ways to get there; 1) through Marathon, then go South or 2) through Study Butte and enter through the west entrance.
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Old 04-19-2020, 10:46 AM   #5
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Stayed in Alpine. Went to Ft Davis and observatory one day. Did Big Bend the next two. Not a bad drive.. Did not hike but drove all thru BB. Wished I had moved to the park west of BB. Cant think of its name.
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Old 04-19-2020, 11:05 AM   #6
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...like most of West Texas....lots of miles between towns and attractions....Alpine is a larger town and would be a more centralized way to see both Big Bend and Davis Mtns….I too would recommend the Rv resort at Lajitas….nice resort and lots of things to do in the area like Terlingua store and restaurant...the road from Alpine to Study Butte is a bit winding and hilly but very manageable....River road from Persidio is winding and has one very steep grade--not recommended for RVs....route thru Marathon is more drivable but takes you quite a ways east....
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Old 04-19-2020, 11:13 AM   #7
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You may want to consider overnighting in Terlingua, Study Butte, Stillwell Store, or Lajitas. RV Parks run the gamut from "meh" to decent.

I've stayed a couple of times at Stillwell. Nothing fancy, plenty of room, good location for accessing the park. OK wifi, but it wasn't busy when we were there. Neat little museum, some history.

Consider: Fort Leaton state historical site in Presidio, an interesting perspective on Pauncho Villa.

Get out of the coach and experience "downtown" Terlingua. Have a "beverage" on the front porch of the store.

A stopover at Judge Roy Bean Wayside in Langtry to view the way cool museum/visitor center. Parking on the shoulder for longer vehicles.

FM 170 from Presidio to Terlingua is arguably the most scenic road in TX. It does have a short 15% grade on it, try to pull off in one of the pull offs near the top for an awesome view of the RG Valley and mountains.

If in a toad, Chisos Mountain in the park. Also in the park there is a hot springs adjacent to the river, short hike(.3 miles), bring your bathing suit. Road in is skinny, no motorhomes,RVs and a duelly would be extremely tight if it actually would fit.

With only a day or two, you will miss a lot. You'll have to prioritize. A lot of different ways to "skin this cat" in that area. Unique and awesome.
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Old 04-19-2020, 11:22 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveJ. View Post
You may want to consider overnighting in Terlingua, Study Butte, Stillwell Store, or Lajitas.

If in a toad...
Yes, my default option is to go to Terlinqua or Lajitis near the park. Just wondering about the feasibility of touring there from Alpine just in case. I also want to take in Ft. Davis area and was thinking if I could tour both from one spot without a moving day.

I will be in the pickup truck to do day touring from either place.
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Old 04-19-2020, 11:39 AM   #9
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Yes, my default option is to go to Terlinqua or Lajitis near the park. Just wondering about the feasibility of touring there from Alpine just in case. I also want to take in Ft. Davis area and was thinking if I could tour both from one spot without a moving day.

I will be in the pickup truck to do day touring from either place.
It comes back to priorities but you will miss most of the good stuff if only spending a day or two.
A good teaser for a future visit, though.

Have fun.
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Old 04-19-2020, 12:13 PM   #10
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….again, its all doable from Alpine--seems like 80-90 miles down to the park entrances from any of the towns north of BB. Alpine has at least one modern RV park and lots of shopping and dining conveniences that you wont find once you starting heading south....
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Old 04-19-2020, 12:33 PM   #11
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Well, we stayed at the Lost Alaskan RV park in Alpine so we could go north to Ft Davis and the observatory and then south the next 2 days to Big Bend and the road to Presidio.
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Old 04-19-2020, 12:52 PM   #12
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My wife and I love Big Bend. We normally stay at the campground behind the Big Bend Adventure Resort. I like it there because there is a store/restaurant/gas station on premise. The west gate to the park is ~3 miles away. The park provides excellent maps and reference material at the gate when you buy your pass. If you only have 2 days, you'll want to visit Santa Elena Canyon. There is a good dirt road that starts at the park entrance that goes down to the canyon. From the canyon, you can travel by paved road to Fort Castolon and then back on Ross Maxwell Scenic Dr.. You should also make time to visit the Chisnos Basin and eat at the lodge restaurant. Save room for dessert and buy the Emory Peak Sundae. Another must do is the Starlight Theater/Cafe in Terlingua. There is a excellent souvenir shop next door to the cafe, and a lot of history in around in old Terlingua. I've stayed at Maverick RV Park in Lajitas. It is marginally better than The Big Bend Adventure Resort, but not enough to justify the 20 extra miles from the park. Here are a couple of trip report:

https://advrider.com/f/threads/2020-...-trip.1426252/

https://www.expeditionportal.com/for...n-ever.189812/
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Old 04-19-2020, 12:54 PM   #13
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To us, it's not a big deal moving to be closer to what we'd want to explore. We've moved up the road a short distance many times. Why waste time driving back and forth when you could be right there? What's the difference of driving the RV or driving the truck - same amount of miles and hours? Since it's a reasonably short distance, leave Alpine early morning and you'll still have many hours at Big Bend that same day. Spend another day or two to finish touring.
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Old 04-19-2020, 12:56 PM   #14
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Another place to visit from Ft Davis is Balmorhea SP. It is just over the hill headed N. Look for the flowers on Wild Rose Pass. I don't know if the Pool is open or not. Nice RV parking as well.

http://www.texasescapes.com/TexasGeo...Pass-Texas.htm


https://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/balmorhea

Just checked the Park is closed. see link FT Davis is closed also.
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