May 18 – Saturday – I overnighted last night at the SuperWalmart in Fredericksburg after eating a very good catfish dinner at the Catfish Haven café in Fredericksburg. The catfish dinner was very good and came with a full salad bar as well for under about $10 plus tip. I got up early this morning and drove NW on Hwy 87 to Mason.
When I came into Mason I checked out the city park which had camping. I will keep it in my pocket for future reference in case I go through there again. I could have dry camped there for $10 last night. Or $20 with full hookups if I had an RV.
I then drove into Mason and up the hill to the site of Ft Mason. It is where Robert E Lee was serving when he made his decision to fight for the Confederacy instead of the Union. Perhaps on the same (reconstructed) porch that I was relaxing on and enjoying the view of the valley and surrounding hills. Albert Sidney Johnson also served at Ft Mason.
After visiting Ft Mason I stopped at the Willow Creek Café in Mason for breakfast of Pancakes and
2 eggs easy over. The pancakes were huge and I am glad I only ordered 2. As it was I couldn’t finish but half of what I had.
After I ate I got on the Internet as they had Wifi in this café and I sent an email home. I was using my little 10 inch computer and once again decided it was too small for anything but quick checks of things. After I sent out the email I headed NW again up Hwy 87 towards Big Spring which is my destination for tonight.
When I went through Brady I saw they had a MacDonalds. I think I would have done better to wait till I got to Brady to use the Internet access at the MacDonalds as well as have a Sausage Mcmuffen for breakfast with a Sr coffee.
San Angelo – When I went through San Angelo I stopped to visit San Angelo State Park but the lady at the gate told me I could go in if I wished but the river was dry…..so I just made a U turn and went back out to Hwy87.
Big Springs -
I Arrived at Big Springs around 2:PM. It is seriously hot here at 98 degrees and a burning hot sun. I don't believe it will be very comfortable camping here tonight so I may have to give that a little thought. At least the humidity isn't too bad at 18%! (MISSING)
I stopped at the MacDonalds here to use their free Wifi to get on the Internet and check out a few things. http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/state-parks/big-spring
Big Spring State Park.
I am glad I did a bit of research as I found out the actual location of the “Big Spring” is in Comanche Trail Park south of town off 87.
So I will go there first and then go to Big Spring State Park.
Most people call this city Big Springs but the actual name of the city and park is Big Spring as there is only one Spring.
I visited the Big Spring location. The actual spring has dried up as the water table had fallen below the level needed to replenish it but water is diverted from a nearby lake to keep it full so it has the appearance that it did when it was
flowing. After I had been moving around in the 100 degree heat for a while I could well appreciate how much travelers and soldiers were glad to see it. It was roasting hot today and my left arm got so sunburned that I had to put on a long sleeve shirt to offer it some protection while I was driving.
After I visited the Big Spring I checked out the scenic drive in Big Spring State park. It was OK but I don’t think it is worth going out of the way as much as I did to see it. Also I found it is day use only and no camping, although it was too hot to camp anyway.
In any case it was just too darned hot at 100 degrees to enjoy anything so I decided to go on to Snyder to stay overnight because it was too hot to camp and I figured hotel rooms in Snyder would be cheaper. I was wrong there. After driving the long hot drive to Snyder when I got to Snyder it was 103 degrees !!
There weren’t any big towns between Snyder and Caprock Canyons State
Park so I just had to bite the bullet and rent a room in Snyder at the Days Inn. I got nailed at $78 a night for the room. Granted it was a nice room but $78 !!!
So I rented the room and settled in for the night. Tomorrow I will head up the scenic route marked on the map to Caprock Canyon State Park and Palo Duro Canyon State Park.
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