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      04-15-2015, 08:06 PM   #2
M3 Adjuster
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Drives: 1M, X1 M Sport, E46 325ic
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Dallas, Tx

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Day two

Destination.. Big bend!

getting closer..

Last stop for fuel before the park is Marathon TX

Marathon, TX of course is home to Big Bend Pizza ...

A Google reviewer says.. " this place makes some fantastic pizza -- don't be put off by the exterior. Made quickly and with some very apparent talent. Yes you should stop here " We arrived early in the morning before 10am, so it was closed naturally..

Another notable landmark in Marathon is the Gage Motel... " This upscale property offers lodging in a pueblo-style adobe brick building, a restored 1927 Mission-style hotel and an 1890 Colonial-style building. It's a 5-minute walk from Gage Gardens. " Unfortunately I have No photo of the hotel sorry... just the sign.. and the beautiful view...

As we headed west from Marathon, suddenly things got really pretty...

It seemed like every time we crested a hill, there was a change to the topography and another amazing view

A short while later we reached the entrance to the park...

the blue bonnets got taller..

and taller...

The landscape continued to change by the minute..

a stop at one of the turn outs ... At this point... part of our group headed to Mexico to shop.... those that did not want to cross the border or were more interested in hiking the trails, headed on the way to Santa Elena Canyon

The roads were twisty on the way and SMOOTH on the way there..

Falling Rock?? !! this is one of the reasons a CB was handy... There actually WAS fallen rock in the roadway. Part of the duties of the lead car is to be a scout and check the roadway ahead and radio back road conditions (animate, and inanimate) back to the other drivers in the group.

that large ridge is Mexico....

The Santa Elena Canyon is created by the Rio Grande River.... and taking the trail leads to looking directly at Mexico

Yep... that's another country... right across that little river..

We hiked back further into the canyon... and the views got better and better. Hikers would consider this an easy trail.. i would say it is a moderate walk.

Lots of neat texas vegetation...

mexico is on the left.... and the United States is on the right..

<<<<Mexico........................................ .................................................. .................. U.S.>>>>>>>

on to chisos basin...

We stopped at the mountain lodge in the chisos basin.. There are campgrounds, lodges, and of course the main lodge restaurant even serves beer.... from Big Bend Brewing company... Natch! I had the Porter with my lunch. It was excellent!
Many people choose to come to the Park and use it as a home base, and then explore outward from the park.

After lunch, the part of the group that went to Mexico arrived at the lodge safely, and we continued on towards Alpine.
As we came down from the chisos basin... my draw dropped to the floor of my car as I saw this view...

on to Terlingua... via the Famous River Road. FM-170 along the Rio Grande.

We stopped in Lajitas for a photo op and a chance to look at the Rio Grande...

climbing atop this rock really helped with the view..

the view to the left...

and the view to the right..... see The River Road ?

here it is....

a few last glimpses of the Rio Grande on our way to Alpine...

the view outside as beautiful as the view inside

We reached Alpine in the early evening... and then went to the Reata Steakhouse for dinner..
My steak was excellent.. although next time I would leave the Port wine sauce on the side..

bread pudding and dulce de leche ice cream for dessert!

Last edited by M3 Adjuster; 04-22-2015 at 02:59 AM..