13th – 14th Nov 2018
Alpine to Del Rio 327kms Truckin’
The lack of degrees was astounding. Luckily our room had a good heater. When we woke in the morning, it was still below zero, but by the time we dragged our butts out of bed, it was evens. We decided to eat at the Diner, that is attached to the hotel. Penny’s Diner, is done in the old diner style, and we sat at the counter. The kitchen is exposed for all to see, and there is no way to hide anything. It was great to experience. We had a good warming breakie, then got in the truck, and off we went.
Freezing morning, funky Diner, and happy team Wiljen after a hearty breakfast.
Our decision was to just get to Del Rio, and ride on tomorrow. We will have three or four days of warmer, and better weather. So we did just that. It was an uneventful drive, with just one stop in Langtry for lunch. Will did a great job of driving, and got us to Del Rio safely without incident. For me it is now a bit boring being the passenger (don’t get me wrong, I’m not driving on the wrong side of the road). It looked like a really interesting and pretty area for cycling through. But hey, weather is whatever it wants to be, and it was being annoying right now.
Haulin our huge load isn’t cheap, and driving into the head wind was not fuel efficient either. I was glad to drive some of these hills though, they were steep buggers.
We booked into the Motel 6, our home away from home, and contacted Tatum, Tami, Dave and Tom, who were also in Del Rio. We all ended up going out for dinner, and having another great night. We discussed the ACA route, talking about options, as one section is closed due to flood damage. Will and I decided to stick with highway 90, through to Uvalde, then head north to rejoin the official Southern Tier route. Tom is doing most of the planning for Team Tatum, and had decided on a little backtrack route, which is shorter, but with two huge days (which include climbing), it would be too much for me.
Del Rio to Brackettville 65kms
Now, I would be lying if I told you all that we were loving ourselves sick right now, we are not. We are missing our family, we are tired of being on the move all the time, and sleeping in different beds. We are running out of energy, for the “on the go” life. But hey, this is nothing new to us. It is normal on a long stint away from your comfort zone. So it takes us a little bit more to get up and at em. Will does well, and is out the door by 9am, taking Haulin’ Us, back. Simple thing to do, just drive it 850 meters down the road, drop it off, and cycle back. Only no one was there, and he was lined up behind a bunch of other people, waiting. Eventually, someone came, he dumped the truck, and it was time to ride again.
A beautiful morning, still cool, but not freezing. Getting out of Del Rio, was easy, and we found ourselves smashing along Highway 90, over the rolling hills, heading east. We made great time, and saw a few interesting things. This region is mostly Ranch country, so lots of fenced off areas, cattle and ostrich? What? Yep, there was a thriving industry for their hides, and now they still farm them for food and hunting.
What we thought was a Velociraptor, is actually a Rhea. A flightless bird from South America. They use the skin, feathers and meat. People pay to come hunt on these ranches now, t makes more money than cattle. Hmm.
We had a great little lunch break at a rest stop, then smashed out the final kays to Brackettville. There were lots of trucks carrying huge pipes, but all day we had a good wide shoulder. It was a pretty good days ride, and we arrived in town in good time. The only place to stay is Fort Clark Springs, so we headed straight there. Stopping at Security, we were directed to the camping and RV area, with the promise of an RV to stay in overnight. It’s still zero at night, and a bit cold for me.
At last a picnic area. These things are rares as hens teeth, so you make the most of it when you see one.
Very friendly butterflies. One took a particular liking to Will, and was also a bit of a poser. Beautiful.
Will’s new friend. How lucky is he?
Well, the RV wasn’t a goer, so we ended up in the tent, with the very kind option of moving our mats into the recreation room, that is heated, if it got too cold. That sounded fair. So we set up, got changed, and rode back through the Fort, to town to find some dinner. Option One was closed, so up the hill to option two, which (according to Google), opened in fifteen minutes. We sat and waited, but nobody came, so back down the hill to last option Pizza. A strange little place, with a car wash, and the counter guy packing a nine mill semi- automatic pistol. I kid you not. Anyway, we ate some crud, had a beer, then rode the two kays, in the dark, dodging deer, back to camp. We sat in the warm rec room, watching the oldies play dominoes, before showering and snuggling down in the tent. It was going to be a cold one.
Coming into Brackettville, it is a strange little town. Fort Clark is kind of a community, all of it’s own, with gorgeous historical, stone buildings, an old movie theatre, motel, and housing. Really interesting.
The RV park, and campground, was full of deer, and about 2kms from town.