As planned, on April 14th we left our winter home at Sandpipers behind and headed off down the road for the first time in over 5 months. We started off with stops for some shopping in New Braunfels where we picked up some supplies at Camping World. We also stopped at Buc-ee’s, a Texas tourist trap that according to Claudia was a “must stop” for more shopping. I have to admit, it was definitely unique and geared towards travelers (all sorts of junk food) as well as campers, hunters and fishermen. Our next stop took us to our Motor Home dealer for some necessary maintenance. That stop was quite successful with all issues getting resolved quickly and we ended up at our first major stop in Canyon, Texas, near Palo Duro State Park one day early. We enjoyed our stay there although we did miss a few planned activities due to Bank of America. The short story is that our credit card got compromised and the person in charge of getting us our replacement credit cards screwed up. First they were slow in getting the cards out so the delivery date was delayed a day and secondly they made the decision to leave the name of the campground off the delivery address so after waiting all day for a “no show” UPS truck we received an email saying that they couldn’t deliver due to an “incomplete” address. Luckily we were able to contact UPS by phone and make the 30 minute drive into Amarillo to pick up the cards. Fortunately, all was not lost and we were still able to spend a day making a trip to the Panhandle Plains Historical Museum that was quite informative about life on the panhandle. From there we enjoyed a great lunch at Wrong Way Feldman’s Diner, an awesome local restaurant. We also spent a day with a trip into Palo Duro Canyon State Park where we enjoyed some great scenery and a couple of short hikes. Afterwards we took a ride over to the Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo where 10 separate Cadillac’s are buried nose down into the ground. It was the first of several old Route 66 hot spots we’ve stopped at and we had fun walking around. Next, we topped off our visit with a trip to the Big Texan Steak Ranch, another historic Route 66 hot spot for one of their world famous steaks and some bbq, not to mention an awesome margarita for Claudia and some great local brew for me. The next day we made the relatively short trek west into New Mexico where we settled in at the Santa Rosa Campground for a couple of days. There weren’t a lot of places to visit in Santa Rosa although we were right in the heart of old Route 66 with a lot of history which we intended to discover. We started our first day off with a delicious, although pricey breakfast at the Route 66 Restaurant while listening to the music of the 60’s. This place was complete with an old time lunch counter, juke box and loads of memorabilia. We followed breakfast by crossing the Pecos River for a drive to see some of the old buildings in the area and some of the rural New Mexico landscape. While on our drive we visited Puerto de Luna, one of southeast New Mexico’s oldest permanent settlements and an area that Billy the Kid frequently visited. Before calling it a day we stopped by to visit the Route 66 Auto Museum that was loaded with not only many great restored antique cars and trucks but also some awesome muscle cars from the 60’s. And on top of that, the museum was also filled with some really neat memorabilia such as gas pumps, soda machines, highway signs and phone booths. On our last day there we took a drive over to the Santa Rosa Lake State Park where we hoped to do some hiking with Stella. We did get one short hike in but the wind picked up and it started to rain so that shortened our day considerably. So far this trip the new motor home has handled great and we’ve enjoyed lots of new places to see as we continue to head west. It’s been a great start.
Ed and Claudia always dreamed of retiring and travelling the country in their motorhome. They retired in 2013 and this is the continuing story of their adventures on the road.