Shooting the Gap

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August 21st 2014
Published: September 4th 2014
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College Station, Texas to Ft Stanton, New Mexico

Closing down things in HarmonyClosing down things in HarmonyClosing down things in Harmony

I closed down everything in my RV at my sisters place in Harmony and headed to my other sisters house in College Station to say my goodbye's etc. before heading out on the road again.
August 17 – Sunday – I had planned on leaving on my trip up through the Rockies from New Mexico to Canada much earlier this summer. However with delays on getting my finances back into shape after some expensive hospital, doctor, radiology, and lab bills I have been delayed a bit.

Also quite frankly when living a life of comfort and ease and surrounded by those you love and who love you it isn’t that easy to up and take off into the uncertainties and discomforts of traveling. But I guess bottom line is a man needs a little adventure in his life, otherwise he is just waiting to die, something I have no real interest in doing, either now or later.

One of the delays on this trip was on about the 1st of August I was summoned for jury duty on the 12th of August. On the 12th of August I went to the Courthouse and sat around from 9AM till 3:15PM going in and out of the courtroom for the selection process. At 3:15 they told us that the guy had taken a plea bargain and we could go. So that was a relief. I was
Departing on tripDeparting on tripDeparting on trip

I spent a few days in College Station at my sisters house visiting my Mother and brother before heading out on the road again.
so happy not to have to serve as a juror for a week to 10 days.

So having fulfilled my Jury duty obligation, I spent the next day closing down my RV in Harmony and going over to College Station to visit my sister and Mother a few days before heading northwest on my trip now set for August 19 which is a Tuesday.

I try and adhere to the Irish expression of “Monday for health, Tuesday for Wealth, and Wednesday is the best day of all, etc. I usually try to leave on a Monday but it always seems to be a Wednesday.

August 19 – Tuesday - I’ve been up since about 7:30 checking out various things on the Internet as well as drinking my tea and thinking things over. Today I will do some rat killing here and then after sundown load up my truck with everything except my suitcase for tonight.

I had planned on staying in Abilene in a motel the first night of my trip, but after doing various web searches, I found out all the motels want $85 to $189 a night for a room. Before I spend that
Shooting the GapShooting the GapShooting the Gap

It's 600 miles before I get out of Texas.
much money just for a room, I will boondock in a Wal Mart parking lot either in Abilene off of I-20 or go on another 110 miles to Big Spring to the SuperWalmart there.

So I will probably stop in Abilene to visit the 12th Armored Division Memorial Museum, , and the climate controlled Mall of Abilene, , to get my walk in at as well as eat. Walk 1 time around and that equals 3/4 mile.

It will probably still be too hot to be outside much so then I will drive on another 110 miles to Big Spring to overnight in the Big Spring SuperWalmart parking lot. I have checked the weather channel 5 day forecast for Big Spring and the temperature for that night is going to be 72F with 52%!h(MISSING)umidity so that won’t be so bad.

NOTE: The TA truckstop at Big Spring has a Popeye's fried Chicken. To get to the SuperWalmart in Big Springs get off I-20 onto Hwy 84 at the TA truck stop and take 84 South into Big Springs to the SuperWalmart and MacDonald's.The SuperWalmart in Big Spring is across the highway from the MacDonald’s
first thought on campsite for the nightfirst thought on campsite for the nightfirst thought on campsite for the night

I considered just camping out in the open range here like I did before but decided to go stay in the graveled area instead for the night. Why would people with self contained RV's park hub to hub in an RV park when they can park for free on BLM land in the wide open spaces?
and so all I will have to do is go across the highway for my morning senior coffee and internet access. Also there is a Pizza Hut there.

Thursday I will drive from Big Spring via Plainview and Roswell to Ft Stanton in the Lincoln National Forest to boondock there for the night at the equestrian trailhead inthe area between the Sacramento Mountains and the Capitan Mountains of the Lincoln National Forest. The free camping at the equestrian trailhead near Ft Stanton on BLM land should be cool as it is at 6300ft altitude.

So that’s the plan.

August 20 – I had one of my sisters call me at 6AM this morning to make sure I was up. My AC in my truck doesn’t work and I wanted to shoot the gap from Harmony to Abilene before it got hot. So that meant getting as far as I could in the morning or early afternoon.

So I headed out quickly and making short pit stops here and there didn’t stop till I got to Dublin, Texas for a break. I found the Library in Dublin and sent out a few quick emails while enjoying the
Campsite on open BLM landCampsite on open BLM landCampsite on open BLM land

This is where I camped last year

Then I started out again for Abilene hoping to get there before it got too hot. I got to Abilene and visited the 12th Armored Division Museum first, and then went over to the Mall of Abilene for a bit.

I had decided to press on to Big Spring for the night and so after eating a bite at the mall of something so forgettable I forgot what it was, I headed out again to Big Spring. I got there around 8PM and found a good spot in the parking lot of the SuperWalmart there and just relaxed and looked at my maps etc. a bit. Then when I was ready I made sure the doors were locked, put the key in the ignition of my truck, and let the driver’s seat back flat in my truck and went to sleep.

August 21 – Thursday - Big Spring to Ft. Stanton, NM - I overnighted in the Wal Mart parking lot in Big Springs last night. I got up early this morning at 5AM and headed towards Brownfield and then Roswell. It was cool and almost cold this morning at Big Spring, but in Roswell it
The Equestrian Trailhead at Ft StantonThe Equestrian Trailhead at Ft StantonThe Equestrian Trailhead at Ft Stanton

I overnight parked in the graveled area at the Equestrian Trailhead at Ft Stanton. Camping was free as long as I didn't use hookups. There was water and pit toilets to use.
is roasting hot. I lunched at the Golden Corral and then sought out the library there to check out a few things on the internet as well as send an email home.

I then sought out the BOA ATM that was next to Chili’s that I used on my last trip. To my chagrin it was another bank ATM now.

I had just another 68 miles to reach my destination in New Mexico for now. That is how far it is from Roswell to Ft Stanton, New Mexico. Once I reached Ft Stanton the “shooting the gap” portion of this trip would be over and the enjoying part will begin.

So after spending a bit of time in the library at Roswell and seeing that the ATM by Chili's was now another banks ATM,I headed out again in the roasting hot heat towards Lincoln and Ft Stanton. Finally the elevation started increasing as I got to Lincoln and so after looking around in Lincoln a bit I headed on to Ft Stanton to boondock there at the Equestrian Trailhead. From Roswell to Ft. Stanton is 68 miles.

When I first arrived at the Equestrian Trailhead I went in by the park host trailer entry and drove out onto the BLM land and found a nice spot. I had went to the same spot I camped for free at last time I was here. The park host drove out in a bit on a four wheeler and checked me out a bit and said if I wanted I could camp for free in the graveled area as long as I didn't use hookups to the water or electricity. He said I could use the water, just not hookup to it. There were also pit toilets there.

So at length I decided to move into the graveled space for the night. I often wonder why people in self contained RV's park hub to hub in crowded RV Parks at great expense with only the side of the RV next to them for a view, when there is so much BLM and National Forest land they can camp in for free with great views. I guess they just watch too much TV and so are fearful. I'd be fearful too if I watched the tripe I have seen so many women watch. And the news is nothing but a fear monger. I get my information selectively off the internet. Like Thoreau said it is enough to know these things happen....It isn't necessary to learn of every instance of it.

I settled in and after eating a bit and doing a little rat killing I settled in for a quiet night in my free overnight site.

When I arrived a Ft. Stanton I had driven 764.4 miles so far on this trip. Of that 600 miles of it was just getting out of Texas from College Station.


6th September 2014

Road tripping
We love reading your blogs and you are making us want to do another cross country trip. Glad you got jury duty out of the way. Happy travels and so glad you are feeling better.
6th September 2014

On the road again
Thanks for the comment. Writing my blog allows me to re-experience the trip and enjoy it again.

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