In the North Texas area, we enjoyed visiting Possum Kingdom State Park. Don't know what it's like after that fire a few years back.
Now if you want to go out west to the Panhandle (which some folks call West Texas), I'd recommend Palo Duro Canyon SP and Caprock Canyon SP, in that order.
I'd stay away from both in the summertime unless you're taking an overnighter on the way to someplace cooler.
We are going to be spending 4 days in May in the Moab area during our trip west and would like to get some campground suggestions from those with experience there. We could stay in Arches National Park but the campground is way north and we would prefer to have the more central location in Moab. There seem to be 8-10 choices around Moab but we would like to get some opinions.
We've spent a couple of nights in Arches Campground (which is one of the most scenic campgrounds in the national Parks Sysytem) and then moved to Moab to a FHU commercial RV park. The advantage is that staying inside Arches gives you a leg up on visiting the park, and less drive time to and from the park. See my sig picture for an example of one of the campsites.
If you have any military background you should check out USAA. No ATM fee's..... Ever!
You don't need a military background for USAA bank...only for their insurance products. I'm sure about this one; I actually go to the main bank in person, but only when I need to access my safe deposit box. I use online banking exclusively now.
I really like being able to use ANY ATM and not pay any fees.
As an Economics teacher, I recommend
(1) a reputable local credit union and use online banking services. Some credit unions are better than others for online services. Best bang for the buck, and they won't tack on all the little fees that large national banks like Bank of America, Chase, WF are likely to charge.
(2) For a full service bank, I'd recommend USAA. You do not need any military connection to bank at USAA; that is only for their separate insurance company. USAA is most excellent when it comes to banking online or by phone; they caught scammers using my debit card number in South Africa (!) and nixed it immediately. A similar attempt was made on my brother-in-law, and they caught that, too. Since they cater to military serving around the world, USAA puts a lot of resources into their online banking services.
I have Good Sam for Camping World and fuel discounts, and the occasional campground discounts. We travel a month each summer and have not seen the need to purchase anything besides a national parks pass and Texas State Parks pass. RV Park Reviews and general internet searches give us the results we want for campgrounds; whether or not the campgrounds we choose provide a discount is an afterthought.
This is our 10th Winter in the Valley, Never felt unsafe, we go out at night at will and even hit a few local bars. Maybe what some people fear is being a minority or not speaking Spanish?
I'm German-American who lives in San Antonio, so I'm definitely in the minority in my neighborhood, city and county. I live and work with people whose friends, relatives, and family have been murdered across the border in Nuevo Laredo, Monterrey, Matamoros. I'm related (by marriage) to Tejanos. The Valley can be a nice place to visit, but I avoid the border for good reason. I obviously don't have any need to be near northern Mexico for good reason; being a racist is not one of them.
And it is not very nice to imply those who avoid the area do so because of racism.:(
As was said I don't know of any Texans who say they are going to the Valley on vacation. I don't know of any Texans who say they are driving across the border into Mexico..... Why??? well first of all ain't nothing there but wind, sand, and,,, hmmm ok just wind and sand. If you want to be a Texan and a land owner, you can get land super cheap in the Valley. It is so far away from anything that most Texans who do live there fly out to other parts of Texas instead of drive. Also the border towns in Mexico is where all the violence is. Lets see Matamoros Mexico across the border from Brownsville last week 3 gun fights with 13 dead in one day??? Now there are those who will say oh it's the media lying....lol lol lol ok.... Alot of the violence and also the problems Texas ranchers have that live along the border never make the national news channels. Don't get me wrong, we still go and vacation in Mexico, but we fly to the interior now instead of drive thru the border states. But hey it's a cheap place to winter, but if it was me I would stay in the areas around or below San Antonio or the Hill Country. Not a whole lot of difference in the weather, but that is also a hit or miss. We have years that yes the weather is beautiful, even in the Valley. But then we also have years where it is cold and wet. Oh and there is always the wind. So if you really like playing shuffle board and card games inside the parks fence, then the Valley will be your cup of tea. But if you want to be able to go and see things and do stuff then the Hill Country and San Antonio/Houston area is the place. Pretty much every weekend there is a festival, rodeo, pro sports event, wine tasting, Formula 1 racing, Oh and did I mention shopping and the best resturants in Texas. I think for the difference of maybe 5-10 degrees I would stay in the Hill Country. Just my opinion, I just live here...lol lol lol
steelpony's assessment of the Valey may seem a tad harsh, but it is the most realistic portrayal of the region I have seen on this strand. FWIW, I have been a resident of South Texas (except for a couple USAF tours overseas) since 1976 (even dated a "Valley girl" from Weslaco in college), and I would prefer Rockport or the Hill Country to the Valley for long-term wintering.
FWIW, we use the term "Winter Texans" around here because the term "snowbirds" seems to ruffle some feathers.
We love to visit Oliver Lee State Park outside Alamogordo when it's NOT hot. You can reserve sites with electricity and water (there's only a few). Nice big sites with a beautiful view and hiking trail into Dog Canyon.
We're looking for a four-season TT for a few years in the future when we retire. We have the same problem with finding dealers anywhere near our area (South Texas), so Arctic Fox and Outdoors Mfg. are non-starters. So far we've learned that Denali has four-season packages. Mesa Ridge/Roamer seem to be pretty good quality four-season trailers, though the 100" width does cause some concern.
Just a block or two down the street from Alamo is Menger Hotel. Here is where Teddy Roosevelt signed up his "roughriders". Go in, the bar is just as it was back then. This is an awesome place to see. Try it, I think you will like it...
The bar also has ax marks from Carrie Nation's temperance gals. A walk through the Menger lobby while on Alamo Plaza is a real treat.
McKinney Falls SP is nice too.
If you're going for a FB game, you'd better book now wherever you decide on!
X2 on that! We couldn't get into McKinney falls SP this weekend, and the Horns are only playing the Aggies. The NMSU Aggies, that is.
And asking one more thing. We won't be in hurricane season in mid to late October, will we? Can't see driving that distance and setting up on a beach, just to be blown away.
That is a risk anywhere on the Gulf Coast in October. However, we generally don't see as many hurricanes along the south Texas coast as the NE Texas coast and LA, MS, AL and FL. Doesn't mean it can't happen, but there is the potential for natural disasters in most places. Now that I said this, as a USAF captain I sat in on a briefing 21 years ago in NAS Key West where the 1st lieutenant weather officer assured the admiral that based on computer modeling, Hurricane Andrew would most likely veer north or possibly south, missing south Florida. Don't know if the young man got to keep his job or not...:S
About 1 1/2 blocks east of the Alamo there is the River Center parking garage with several stories. pay parking
or, across the street from it, there is a large open parking lot (pay parking)
From Ft. Sam, you can go West to N. Alamo Street, then stay on it all the way downtown. You'll pass the Alamo on your left. Turn left on Crockett and go east until you see the parking lots. Not far. You might get lucky and find a parking place right on the street..if you're lucky. Parking is as safe there as anywhere else. Plenty of good eating places in the River Center, just go inside the Mall.
Sorry, I get my rights and lefts turned around sometimes, lol
I also usually park at the Rivercenter Mall parking lot. It is near Alamo Plaza, and you can catch the river barge for your Riverwalk tour from the lower level of the mall. I recommend the river barge tour before going sightseeing on foot along the Riverwalk.
My choice to eat on the Riverwalk is County Line Barbeque, which is a local restaurant.
With a large TT you may end up with little or no weight capacity to haul something in the bed.
That Sundance 322 RES has a gross weight of 10,500 and hitch weight of 670 lbs. My guess is that there should be plenty of weight capacity left over for cargo in an F-250.
Texas strictly enforces it speed laws.
That depends on where you are driving. In many places in Texas (Austin), you are a traffic hazard if you are driving at or below speed limit. In west Texas on IH-10 the speed limit is 80 mph, and I see plenty of people exceeding that. Common rule of thumb on open highways in Texas is that you are OK as long as you are 5 mph or less over the speed limit. There are speed traps in some locations, but not like there were in the ridiculous 55 mph days.
I should add that when towing I stay under 65 mph due to trailer tire speed limits. That makes the stretch of highway from Kerrville to El Paso interesting sometimes when others are going 80-85 mph.
We are leaving Sunday morning for a few days. Plan is to stay at Overland Trail Campground and toad from there. Never been out West or pulled a toad. We are in the adventure mode. :B
That is right in town, which is a very nice small town. Be sure to visit the state park while you are there to scout it out for future trips, and for the view off the mountaintop.
A star party at the McDonald Observatory is an unforgettable experience if you can get in.
In Ft. Davis I really like the small Overland Trail Museum.Ft Davis Attractions It is all about the stage coach and local history, and is in an historic building. The museum and parts of town are featured in a nice family movie called "Dancer Texas Pop. 81".Dancer Texas Pop. 81
Almost forgot...an ice cream cone in the caboose is a nice way to finish up a visit to the Fort.
Thanks everybody looks like we will stay a couple days in Wilmington area didn't know there was so much to see thanks again.
Don't forget the donuts, and do visit Fort Fisher. "Last Strong hold of the Confederacy"
And there is a train museum on the water front, and a great museum in town
Don't forget the aquarium at Fort Fisher while you are there; it is really uniqueFort Fisher Aquarium. There is so much to do in the area now. I lived in Kure Beach my K-6 years (Carolina Beach Elementary School)and have considered eventually returning there for my retirement, but real estate prices are off the charts! I guess I'll have to be content visiting with the travel trailer...
After all these years I still remember the smell of those doughnuts mixed with the salt air!
We love Palo Duro, but avoid it in the summer. Sure, the show is going on, but you will have to endure the heat. We go for Spring Break sometimes, but the weather can turn on a dime. Once we almost got snowed in on our last day; another time it snowed during the middle of the trip and was incredibly beautiful. Anyhow, if I wasn't a teacher I'd visit in April or early May.
If you want to avoid the low water crossings (when the water is high, of course), stay in the Hackberry area. As I remember, it is close to a playground for the kids, too. The Mesquite area is very scenic, but across a series of low water crossings. I don't remember if there is a playground there.
The Armada has a pretty short wheelbase. I don't think you will be happy with such a long trailer. Go to the scales with everything and everyone you intend to put in the Armada and a full gas tank. Check the rear axle rating. Add the weight of the Equalizer. Do the math. I expect that you will be over the ratings with that trailer. We own an Armada abd it is only 2 of us. We have determined that it is best to stay under 600lbs dry hitch. 15% would put you at the 910. We believe in a safety margin.
We no longer pull our 29' Rockwood with the Armada. The short wheelbase was an issue, though the engine and transmission were more than adequate. If I had to do it all over again I would go with a shorter trailer with less tongue weight; maybe then auto air shocks wouldn't have failed...and THAT was darned expensive. It was pretty stressful driving in the mountains, but when unhitched, the 4X4 Armada was a great vehicle to have for exploring. I do miss that aspect of it.