Monday, September 30, 2013

In Case of a Government Shutdown Tomorrow, Alternatives for your Travel

If the federal government shuts down tomorrow, our national park facilities (Big Bend National Park, Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Fort Davis National Historic Site and Chamizal National Memorial) will lock the gates and be unavailable for our use until Washington resolves the budget issue.
If you  were planning to head our way for one of our national parks, there's no reason to stay at home. Here are some alternatives:

If you were headed for Big Bend, now might be the time to engage an outfitter for a river or jeep or horseback riding adventure.  

If you were interested in birding and wildlife watching, there are plenty of other sites available to you on the Far West Texas Wildlife Trail (a cooperative project between our Texas Mountain Trail and Texas Parks and Wildlife), and all the trail info is online here.
   Big Bend Loop
   Marathon Alpine Loop
   Davis Mountains Loop
   Upper Rio Grande Loop
   Guadalupe Mountains Van Horn Loop
   El Paso Rio Loop
   El Paso Uplands Loop

Hiking can be done in many locations on the Far West Texas Wildlife Trail, but here are some of our favorites:

Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center in Fort Davis
Madera Canyon Trail in the Davis Mountains Preserve (a dawn to dusk Nature Conservancy trail)

And OF COURSE, our state parks:
Big Bend Ranch State Park
Fort Leaton State Historic Site
Barton Warnock Visitor Center
Franklin Mountains State Park
Hueco Tanks State Park and Historic Site (visitation is limited, call the park ahead for information)

Some important state park closures to note:
    Balmorhea State Park's springfed swimming pool will be closed today through Wednesday, October 2.  It will reopen this Thursday.
    Davis Mountains State Park is closed for major infrastructure work through mid-March, although the Indian Lodge will remain open for visitor stays.

Don't forget to check our Texas Mountain Trail events calendar for special events across the region!

And of course, our towns will love having you stay in campgrounds, hotels/motels or B&Bs, and dine in our restaurants!  Come out and enjoy the Texas Mountains, whatever Washington decides to do!

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