In just over 4 hours of driving, we arrived in a completely different landscape than what we had been enjoying in Austin and San Antonio. Seminole Canyon State Park is in Comstock, Texas. It’s population is 419 and is situated about 40 miles away from any major town, which in this case is Del Rio. As we traveled through Del Rio , we were able to take in the beauty of Amistad National Recreational Area. Bright Blue water contrasted by beautiful white canyon makes that area striking! It’s a popular fishing destination with many competitions throughout the year. Del Rio is home of the Whitehead Memorial Museum, where Roy Bean, the infamous hanging judge is buried.
*Someone* was sleeping while I was driving us to Comstock (captured this at a stop light)! He sure has gained confidence in my RV driving abilities! The rest of these pictures are of the Amistad National Recreation Area near Del Rio, the only real town within an hour of us.
Most of our activities this week were hiking and biking, but this is a beautiful and historical state park! Our first hike was 5.6 miles on the Rio Grande River Trail. When we got to the overlooks, we could have spent a whole day just looking at the views of the river from the canyon ridge! There was also an opportunity to see our first glimpse of some of the Pecos Indian art from thousands of years ago. They call it the “Panther Cave” and with our binoculars we could see most of the panther’s body.
The Rio Grande Trail is a must if you are visiting this park! Seeing it from the cliffs of the canyons was so beautiful! We also caught a beautiful sunset several times this week!
All the other art has to be viewed on a guided hike into the canyon. In fact, if you attempt it on your own, there is an alarm that will alert the authorities. We were able to see it with our guide, Betty, who was very knowledgeable and passionate about how the Pecos lived and in sharing some of the different interpretations of the art. She had us think about what we thought it meant, and that was fun too! She shared that to make the paints they had to mix minerals with what is believed to be bone marrow from the animals they hunted. Because the marrow would have been precious nutrients, it points to the art being a necessity rather than a way of passing time. Things like keeping up with the calendar year, the moon, what constellations would have been visible at the time of year would have helped them with their planning.
The last picture of that group was a rock with fossils from when the canyon was a shallow sea thousands of years ago! Seeing all the pictures created thousands of years ago and knowing they have no money to preserve them struck me as sad that generations after us may not see these at all.
The night skies were amazing! Our weather varied a lot, the days ranged between 60-80 degrees, and night was anywhere between 25-55 degrees. The first night we were greeted by high winds and very cold weather. We had our first freeze that night since we have left our home in Charleston. Luckily, our water pipes were fine. Our RV has 3 inch walls and insulated windows, so our heat sources are very effective as far as keeping us cozy. We also have 3 sources of heat we can choose from. A heat pump that runs in our bedroom and the fireplace space heaters in the bedroom and Livingroom all run from electric. We also have a furnace that runs on propane. Most of the time we use the space heater in the Livingroom and sometimes run the heat pump in our room at night. This is because we can use the park’s electrical hookups rather than having to run down our propane which is an extra cost. Our propane tanks also run our water heater and our stove.
We have just arrived over the weekend at Big Bend National Park for the next two weeks! This is a highly anticipated part of our trip and begins a long string of National Parks that we have always wanted to visit. We are excited it’s worked out to be visiting this time of year – for many months this park would be too hot for us to enjoy with weather well over 100 degrees. It’s one of the least visited National Parks due to it’s remote location and weather. We were able to drive 40 miles through the park on our way in and we were astounded by it’s beauty and diversity – there is the Chihuahuan desert, the Chiso Mountain range, and the Rio Grande River. We can’t wait to explore it and report back!