From No Place Through Nothing to Nowhere

Discussion in 'Adventure On Four Wheels' started by old1959, Oct 29, 2020.

  1. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    I recently wandered out to the Big Bend area, and I'm using the word "area" loosely since I spent a night in New Mexico which isn't officially part of Big Bend, to experience things which I have never done in Big Bend. I have been venturing to the area since 1996 when the Trail Riders of Houston, courtesy of the legendary Burl Hughes (RIP), started hosting AMA National Dual Sport rides in Terlingua. For me traveling by motorcycle is fun, but does limit, at least for me, the ability for some other adventures so for this trip I took my 2020 Outback named SubieDo. Also, joining my on this trip was a lovely lady friend "T".

    At Fort Lancaster I saw the catchy quote which I'm using for the title.
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  2. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    First thing to accomplish was to spend a night at the Gage Hotel in Marathon, I have never visited this place. I have driven by numerous times along with having read about the hotel; If you think this thread is going to be about roughing it in the high winds while sleeping on the ground, I can assure this will not be the case. However, the lodging options are different than most and probably most of you have never experienced. Dinner at the 12 Gage restaurant was outstanding and in the morning we experienced a wonderful "Marathon Muffin" at the V6 Coffee Bar. Highly recommend both.
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    And yours truly getting ready to experience another lap around the sun.:D
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    Please no need to mention that I'm a handsome guy:lol3
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  3. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    IMG_5470.JPG The next day entered the park with the goal of hiking to the "Window" which I have never done. Due to the distances of driving along with the restaurant and lodge in the basin being closed we made a picnic lunch near the lodge before we left on the hike. FYI. This is another reason why we took SubieDo; a Yeti cooler doesn't carry well on the motorcycle.
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  4. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    I have heard about the hike to the "window" as being a good experience and something to see; having never done this I wanted to get it done. FYI, while not grueling, I recommend being in somewhat of decent shape before setting out for this and bring plenty of water.
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    The Window.
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  5. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    Our next two nights were spent in a Catholic Church... Or I should say a "decommissioned" Catholic Church. A guy name Charlie bought the place and has turned the building into an Airbnb which is where I found it. The place is located in Redford which isn't near anything but then nothing is near anything in the Big Bend area. Also, Charlie has left some of the church touches in the place so if one wanted to do some serious praying I guess the connectivity ought to be pretty good.
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    Being a former alter server, I offered to turned my hearing aids off and listen to confessions as we had a couple other folks staying with us; kind of a community service. The church had five rooms I believe which is why we had some other guest; sort of a hostel setting.
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    The inside, which is the community area, from the loft.
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    A little quirky but nice stay. One more item, Charlie has a company across the street called Angell Expeditions which is where we arranged our kayaking adventure on the Rio Grande river. If you were on your motorcycle, I'm sure you could leave your bike at the church and he would give you van ride to/from any adventure he offers.
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  6. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    Another item to accomplish was to hike the Santa Elena trail. Been to the canyon several times but never hiked the trail so had to get it done. We drove to the canyon via the Old Maverick road which was, as usual, full of washboard ripples and extremely dusty due to several other vehicles doing the same. And, once more, we made a picnic lunch before starting the hike. This hike isn't long but does require crossing the Terlingua creek or hiking upstream approximately a quarter of a mile and then crossing which also means doing some serious canyon wall climbing. On the return leg we walked in the creek which was barely over our knees.
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    Once you get up on the canyon wall, you walk to the quarter of mile back to Santa Elena and officially start the trail.
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    After this the hike is fairly easy but really beautiful.
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    This is the view at the end; you can enter the river but due to the sheer wall you'll be walking or swimming in the river.
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    On the return we decided to get our feet wet so we didn't have to scale the canyon wall down plus everything dries out fast in the desert.
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  7. GulfCoast

    GulfCoast formerly SWLAStrom

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    Thanks for sharing. Big Bend is on my destination list...
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  8. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    The next day we did a kayaking trip on the Rio Grande. We met the tour guide around 9am and finished a little after 1pm. A good time and highly recommend.
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  9. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    After finishing the kayak trip, we made our way to http://www.chinatihotsprings.net/ I've always wanted to visit this place but never had time or reservations. Also, you must bring your own food as this place is far from anything; note: you can pick up food in Presidio or maybe even a small store before turning up the dirt road to the springs. The place does offer a community kitchen which was very handy. We stayed one night and truly enjoyed the darkness and quiet. Another highly recommend but be warned the "cold" pool is seriously cold. Oh, and you will get your car dirty:doh
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  10. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    The cabin was comfy and the grounds were very nice. I hope to return.
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  11. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    Originally, we were to return home but while out and about my daughter sent a text showing the best fall colors for Texas were in the Guadalupe Mountains National Park... so we decided to head there and extend our trip a little. Consequently, we headed to Marfa for Marfa Burrito which has, in my opinion, the best breakfast burritos. One reason for this, is this is all that is made at Marfa Burrito so don't go there for dinner or expecting to get a cheeseburger. Afterwards, we also saw some of the typical west Texas highlights.
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  12. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    The drive to the park wasn't too long but I had forgotten about the altitude difference. Can you say cold? When we arrived at the visitor center the temperature was 32 degrees. Yikes.
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  13. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    Originally we wanted to do two hikes but due to the inclement weather we only did one; Devil's Hall which had some colors so we were pleased. Of course, the colors were nothing like the colors of the northeast. Remember this is Texas/New Mexico.
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    Bundled up for the cold weather!
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  14. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    Afterwards, we went to Carlsbad to spend the night and ate way too much food at the local establishments. During the night snow came in and the temps were in the high 20's so we decided to leave and not visit anything else. By the time we got to Pecos the temps were in the upper 30's and we eventually spent the night in Junction before heading home the next day. A good trip.
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  15. old1959

    old1959 Been here awhile

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    Oh, and I almost forgot, we stopped at Ft. Lancaster for a short visit. I highly recommend this historical site as the visitors area told a lot about the Texas frontier along with the purpose/life at the fort. Unfortunately, the weather being rather cold and windy, we didn't walk around much outside.
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    Attached Files:

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  16. Bucho

    Bucho DAMNrider

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    Very cool!

    My brother and I are planning on heading out to BigBend at the end of Feb. Driving and camping out of my van. Doing day rides on small dualsport bikes.
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  17. DyrWolf

    DyrWolf Long timer Supporter

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    Thanks for taking the time to share this with us
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