Bayou Bound and traipsing through Texas Hill Country, 2008 travel blog

Our campsite tucked among the rocks

Our covered picnic table

The park

Some huecos high up in the rocks

A few petroglyths in the unprotected part of the park

Graffitti defaced petroglyths - reason the rest of the park is with...

Ruins of the Escontrias ranch, it was a stopover for the Butterfield...

3 buzzards on the rocks

A potrait of the west - rocks, buzzards and chaparral


El Paso, Texas, is a heavily polluted city so I gave it a wide berth. Taking the bypass loop we circumvented El Paso and drove the less travelled highway 54. Our destination was the Hueco Tanks State Park about 34 miles north of El Paso.

Each campsite is wedged among the rocks with the sheltered deck tucked inbetween the boulders. Ours was elevated with a grand view of the surrounding desert. There are no trees here, only shrubs, because it is so dry and hot. But what a beautiful place to camp and star-gaze! It was so clear at night and the stars twinkled brillantly in the velvety sky.

NATURAL HISTORY

The large natural rock basins "huecos" have supplied trapped rain water to dwellers & travelers, including Apaches and Kiowas for millennia. Earlier Indian groups, from Archaic hunters and foragers of thousands of years ago to relatively recent Mescalero Apaches, gathered and camped at these rock formations and created drawings and carvings of mythological designs, human and animal figures on the rocks. The site's notable pictographs include more than 200 face designs or "masks" left by the prehistoric Jornada Mogollon culture. Hueco Tanks State Park certainly warrants a longer stay.

In more recent times this location was used as a watering place for the Butterfield Overland Mail Route.



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