Thursday, June 23, 2011

ROAD TRIP - Carlsbad Caverns NP - Amarillo, TX

Our most eastern stop on the trip is Dodge City, KS. A good halfway stop is Amarillo, TX where just east of town on I-40 you can find nice RV parks, well equipped Truck Stop-o-ramas and The Big Texan Steakhouse.

Leaving east out of Carlsbad, NM it is evident that the energy industry and the towns that serve same are doing well. Unlike most locales in The Obamination, towns such as Hobbs, NM are teaming with activity and business. The same extends over into Texas where governor Perry can boast a 4% unemployment rate, the very best in the nation.

Leading into the panhandle of Texas, the roads are very good and the land very flat. North of Lubbock, I was scanning my Lowrance GPS for a nearby lunchtime, Rest Stop when I drove right past what I was looking for. This was a good omen because the next exit led to the small, rural town of Hale Center and  The Hale County Farm and Ranch Museum right next to the Interstate. 


The museum is free of charge yet any person of integrity will leave a donation. The displays cover the equipment, homes and business of the area dating into the early 20th century. Much of the equipment is as it was found with decades of weather to make an artistic patina.  Other displays consist of perfectly restored farm equipment and tools. There is an entire early 20th century, farm home where a couple raised nine children. A few highlights are as follows.

The weathered equipment and vehicles
make for a photographers paradise!
1930's era Beauty Salon display. YIKES!
Perfectly restored tractors.
This was considered to be a "Potable TV" from the late 1940's!
A great, local TV station story about the The Hale County Museum can be found HERE .

ALSO: The staff mentioned that RV's can park overnight, for free at the museum lot.


Everyone has heard of the Cadillac ranch, just west of Amarillo on I-40. We stopped in to leave our mark and with that, we have a few photos to share with you.

You are encouraged to bring a spray can and make your own graffiti on the old wrecks. So many people have done this that the paint is over an inch and half thick on the cars. The sad part is that many sloppy people leave the empty cans behind. Bring your own can, along with a trash bag to cart out the empty cans you find.

A side of one car where the paint layers have been cut away.

This town reminds me of one of the semi-bad areas of Los Angeles. There is much decay, much poverty, many empty buildings and much that people simply do not care about. On a high note, the Amarillo Ranch RV Park and some well equipped Trucks Stops along with the Big Texan Steakhouse are all at the same exit off of I-40 just east of town.

We tanked up at TA, stayed at the Amarillo Ranch RV Park and hit the buffet at the Big Texan for breakfast the next morning. The Big Texan is a good value in both food and entertainment especially for the kids.

You can find more about the Big Texan HERE


I give this park a 8 of 10. The park is spacious, the staff is extremely friendly, the facilities clean and the indoor pool was a very refreshing extra after a hot day on the road. I did not use the free Wi-Fi as my Verizon 3g service was top notch, as usual.

More info for the park can be found as follows:

Amarillo Ranch RV Park
Amarillo Area RV Park Reviews

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