Scouting Trip to Big Bend

12 /12/09


Joy was planning a little slumber party Friday night and requested I be "gone". She also had plans for Saturday night with Lindsay and Sherrie (daughter-in-law and her Mom). Now what do I do? Hmmm, I could stand to make a pass through Marathon and check out the territory. My memory is short and I have to re-ride these routes ever so often. Memory is a terrible thing to lose but you do what you have to do. The good news is, every day is a new day. My trip turned out to be just as fresh as the first time I had been down there.

I left here after work on Friday and made it to Ballinger, TX in the fog and mist. The next morning the fog hung around until close to Iraan. It will sure force you to ride slow. Leaving Iraan and heading south became much better on the way to Sheffield. I couldn't see the top of the hills but the visibility was good below the clouds. By the time I got south of Sheffield, the clouds had totally burned off and it opened up to some wonderful riding and scenery.

I couldn't help but stop at Sanderson for a few minutes just to imagine how nice it would be to have a whole week to enjoy all of the splendor of the Big Bend. Our trip in March will have to suffice (and it will).

I went over to Marathon to check out the Marathon Motel and any possible back-ups. The Marathon Motel is already full but it has plenty of camping available if anyone wants to do that. There wasn't much else available in town other than the Gage which is still our back-up. They have plenty of rooms as of now but they are also expensive. The other small Inns in town didn't stand out much for me. The Oasis Restaurant is our planned dinner time location but it could change. The Red Burro would be the back-up if we need to. Things change in Marathon so we'll check back on the Oasis location in March. The Gage is pretty expensive for dinner but it will work real nice for breakfast. I'm pretty excited about the upcoming trip in March. I hope the weather is half as nice as it was for this trip.

I had a few extra hours so I shot over to see if Voni and Paul were home but no luck. I went across the street to the neighbor's house to be entertained by Cowboy Chris for a short while before heading back. Voni and Paul have their home just north of Study Butte and Chris said they were in Austin. I'm sure they were at the Lone Star BMW shop's open house.

The temperature was 74 degrees as I was leaving the area going north on 67. That's a pretty ideal temp to ride in. I continued on up 67 all the way to Dublin before cutting across to Hico to spend the night. The fog got very thick again north of Comanche all the way to Hico. I pulled into the Exxon there at Hico and a few ladies pulled in just behind me in an Audi car. Her front hood and headlight was all bashed in. She got out and said she was just hit by a deer. She recommended I shut it down for the night. I took her advice.

The next morning I rode up to Tin Top to have breakfast with the BMWDFW bunch before heading home.

This was my spot tracker for my loop to Big Bend
This is Jersy Lilly's in Hico (for dinner on Wednesday night)
Hico HIlls Inn in Hico
16 Rooms at Hico Hills Inn
Sheltered Parking
All the comforts of home
The Koffee Kup Cafe
There is no 7-Eleven in Richland Springs but this quaint little stop will be our break stop on the way West (in March).
Lunch Stop in Eldorado, TX for our trip in March
The Marathon Motel and Campground
The entrance with the office on the right and the courtyard on the left. Camping is behind the windmill.
The Marathon Motel Office
The courtyard and visiting area
Oasis Cafe (the Red Burro is a second option for Thursday night)
The Gage Hotel is our back-up hotel plus we will be having breakfast here on Friday morning.
I went by to see Voni and Paul at their Terlingua ranch but they were not there. I went by their neighbor to visit for a short while. Cowboy Chris' website
Cowboy Chris was very nice and it made for an interesting visit
Stopped by Mary's in Tin Top for breakfast on the way back. Alberto is reving up and about to smoke his back tire.