Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Tatum TX to Fort Worth TX

November 1 Sunday

It was a very quiet night with no sounds at all other than an occasional truck on the road nearby. We finally saw one person outside one of the units camped down the way.

Campsite at Emerald Glen

We got away from the campground in Tatum about 9:00 and enjoyed a ride through the Texas backcountry as Lady GPS guided us through several small towns on our way to Nacogdoches. We arrived at 10:30 and were not entirely surprised to find the only thing in town open was the Wal-Mart! I had hoped the Visitor Center would be open but no – locked up not open until 1 on Sundays. We used our pamphlet to guide us around town as well as the historical signs on many of the buildings. This is the oldest town in TX and the El Camino Real came through here so much of early TX history was influenced by the people in this town.

Ben at El Camino Real Signage

There were numerous gift shops, antique shops and restaurants in the old downtown area. We enjoyed a nice walk around town and took photos of historic buildings. After our downtown walking tour we headed to the Wal-Mart to buy 4 things – one of which was socks for Ben. He can’t imagine where he left his socks but not one pair made it into the sprinter! We then headed out of town on our trip west to the Dallas Fort Worth area. We picked out a US Army Corp of Engineers park which was south of Fort Worth but fairly close in. The park we picked was under water when we called but Holiday Park was open. That storm that crossed through this part of the country two days ago really left a lot of water behind. We stopped at a nice roadside park for lunch and then continued on anxious for the ending of our 9 disc murder mystery we have been listening to since TN!

The land is rolling hills and green pastures with huge cattle herds. There are many large ranches and small towns along the way. We were on TX roads until about 60 miles east of Fort Worth we entered I 20. The quality of the TX roads impressed us. The urban sprawl extends at least 30 miles out from Dallas central. Somewhere southeast of Dallas the terrain changed – it is still rolling hills but the grass changed to a more brown/reddish grass and there are fewer trees. We passed the Dallas city limit sign and could barely see the skyline in the distance. I-20 stayed about 20 miles south of the main city area but was very built up with malls, huge churches, homes etc.

We drove to what we thought was our campground and it was the Holiday Park Day Use area; however the staff directed us down the road about 5 miles to the campground. Lake Benbrook is huge with homes built all around it on the hillsides – right outside the entrance to this Corp Engineers Park is an exclusive gated community with million dollar homes. They have outstanding views. We have a very nice site one row back from the water, and fairly close to the bath house. We walked down to the water edge and could see how far out of its banks the water was and still is. A number of the campsites are not accessible right now.

High Water at Holiday Park

Supper, photo editing, and reading filled the evening along with watching TV – Ben finally had true super success with his homemade from the internet HD antenna! We selected from 36 channels – well about half were in Spanish but it was still quite a selection with perfect reception.
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