Texas Bucket List
“There's a feeling I get
When I look to the west
And my spirit is crying for leaving
In my thoughts I have seen
Rings of smoke through the trees
And the voices of those who standing looking
Oh...it makes me wonder. ” #terlingua#bigbend#westtexas#bigbendnationalpark
1 116 hours ago
Views from the Lost Mine Trail in Big Bend. Today I took it "easy" since my knee was giving me trouble the last few days. Even though this was a shorter trail, the views were still amazing! Lost Mine Peak was named for the legend of the Lost Mine of the Chisos. As the story goes, Spanish explorers discovered ore here on their quest for silver and gold. They enslaved the native Chizo tribe and forced them to work the mine, blindfolding them to keep the location secret. The Chizo revolted, killing the captors and sealing the entrance to the mine. The Lost Mine of the Chisos remains legend, as no ore-bearing rocks have been reported from these hills. .
Showed up at our campsite (SE1) 6 miles in and 2k feet up in The Chisos mountains to find an older couple from Scotland had accidentally taken it. Ended up offering to share it with them and made new friends to sit and watch the sunset and sunrise with.
Big Bend is a different sort of park than I'm typically drawn to. While it lacks towering pines, snowmelt streams and elk herds, it has some perks. Silence striking enough to notice. Skies dark enough to make it worth waking back up after the moon sets at 3am. December highs in the 70s with no threat of rain. Views from our campsite that stretched 100 miles over texas and Mexico, letting us see sunrise coming from a long ways away.
7 6314 hours ago
We did a collection of small easy kid friendly hikes in Big Bend. The first up is Sam Nail Ranch trail. Sam Nail settled in 1909 to raise sheep, goats, and cattle. There are remnants of his homestead throughout the trail including parts of the wall of his Adobe house and two windmills, one of which is still in operation. Easy peasy little hike perfect for young kids. .
We will be back to our regularly scheduled programming shortly, but first, here are some photos of some the thriving wildlife that I had the pleasure of watching the last couple of days in @bigbendnps. (including a very stoic coyote who graced me with a pose straight out of @isleofdogsmovie)
After stopping at a few turn outs, we stopped for lunch at a designated picnic area. There was another truck from virginia, the first Virginia plate we’ve seen in a while. Eventually someone came up to us and asked where in Virginia we’re from. We said Centreville and he beamed back “Oh! I’m from Fairfax! Closer to Clifton.” What a small world it is to find someone from the same area we’re from in Big Bend, Texas. We packed up and continued on our way. We ended up stopping and resting for a bit. Stephen backed up photos and I took a nap, it was such a wonderful little break. We eventually found our way to the natural hot springs. There was a van parked with their windows rolled down and a dog just hanging out in the van. I will never understand why people take their dogs to places that dogs are not allowed. I mean, I’m happy to see the windows down, but it still gets very hot in the car with the sun beating down on it. It’s possible to adventure and see magical areas even with dogs. Please don’t take your dogs places they can’t join. /rant
There were a lot of people enjoying the hot springs, so we didn’t really hang out. We did end up finding wild horses though! One had made their way across the water from Mexico. They were even talking to each other to find one another! It was the cutest and coolest thing. We watched from a safe distance as the horses found each other - they even greeted each other with a head nuzzle. When we were walking back to the truck, a man stopped us and asked what we were taking pictures of. Which I’m sure he meant nothing by it but it’s just a weird question to ask. Like.. we’re in a national park? So..everything. But I told him “just now? wild horses.” I only ever think of how everything would look cool in a picture, it catches me off guard when I remember that’s not how everyone else views the world.
2 2715 hours ago
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This time last year we were exploring Big Bend National Park in south Texas! We had such an amazing experience there, meeting our first road buddies, @selmfamilytravels, and exploring our first National Park. +
On this day last year we crossed over the Rio Grande in a little rowboat and spent the day in Mexico! We had lunch, met the locals, pet their animals, rode their burrows and witnessed a very different way of life. +
After our day across the border, we soaked in hot springs right in the Rio Grande. It was such a special day and one I’ll never forget. We plan to spend more time in Mexico at some point in our travels 🇲🇽
32 21515 hours ago
They walked up the lost miner's trail, found an agave at the top, said their vows and became forever Mr. & Mrs. Grissom 🖤
Let’s talk about mother natch. She’s resilient, isn’t she? She’s seen battles, natural disasters, mass extinction, plastic pollution. You name it, she’s powered through it. All while remaining a teacher of empathy, strength, healing and grace. She gives us the words, when we can’t speak. Clears our mind, when we can’t think. She creates a path for us to overcome any uphill battle we may be experiencing, without prejudice. As much as she does for us, we need to do more for her in return. ⠀⠀ ⠀ ⠀⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀🌲
This holiday season - give a little, or give a lot - to an organization dedicated to cleaning our communities, preserving our lands, or bringing people together outside. Time, money, resources. Let’s nurture Mother Nature. See the link in my @natalie_rhea bio to learn where I donated ✌🏼❤️🌿 #adventurehealsthesoul
I woke Stephen up around 4:20am. He mentioned that he wanted to see how the sky looked after the moon had set. I’m not sure why I woke up so early, but he grumpily asked why I was waking him up. I murmured “so you could see the stars” and then fell back asleep. He said he did eventually get up, he ended up letting me sleep until almost 8:30am. The closest skatepark was almost 2 hours away and that doesn’t include the almost 45 minutes to get back to the main road from our campsite. There was a look out that had an actual sidewalk so Stephen decided he would just skate there. However wanting to be courteous to others, he stopped skating whenever someone came up to the lookout which caused his skate session to take longer than normal. It’s been warmer down here than anywhere else we’ve been which is a nice change from freezing ever two seconds so I didn’t mind having to hang out for a bit. After Stephen was done skating we started our way down to a natural hot spring. We spotted a tarantula for the first time scurrying across the road. We even got to witness a road runner up-close! They’re such awkward looking birds when they run, I love them so much.
I’m not lost. To be lost, you have to know where you’re supposed to be, and I don’t even know that.
3 5619 hours ago
Just because were rough’n it doesn’t mean we can’t eat good. To be fair, we don’t always eat this good either, let’s be real fair and say that the pre-packaged meals aren’t always that great tasting, make you sick and with a restroom being out of the way, in the cold, in the rain, in the dark, you learn to appreciate the fuck out of these meals—it’s also important to put back in what you put out. (Roll that beautiful bean footage)
Grand Canyon, ( #swipeleft ) Bryce Canyon, Big Bend, and Glacier national parks are but a few of the 419 units within the National Park System. These parks, as well as other protected lands, provide all of us a place to recharge those batteries running out of juice from the constant din of work and the urban world. They are precious slices of environmental and historical significance that not only provide us with a place for family fun, mindfulness, education, and adventure, but habitats for wildlife and vegetation perhaps not found anywhere else in the world, as well as repositories for our nation’s history. So, reading about these places and keeping up to date about what is happening to them on a daily basis should be important to you. The National Parks Traveler provides daily news about these lands that you won’t find in mainstream outlets such as CNN, the New York Times, or the Washington Post.
On this Giving Tuesday, when there are so many charities to which you can donate your hard-earned, tax-deductible cash, give some thought to donating a little bit to the #nationalparkstraveler .
To find out how you can donate (and read the latest news about our national parks and protected lands), tap on the link in the Traveler’s profile.
If you ever get the chance, camping along the South Rim in Big Bend National Park is a must-do. Just 20 yards from my campsite, I sat on the edge of the rim and watched an epic sunset paint the sky and foothills of the Chisos mountains a vivid pink and purple.
Well this is as close as we're going to get to Mexico without a passport🇲🇽 One side of the Rio Grande river is in America and the other side is Mexico!!! Big Bend National Park is huge and such a beautiful drive with unique mountains, huge stone cliffs, and of course the Rio Grande river. The Santa Elena Canyon hike was gorgeous and just the right amount of adventure for the kids👍