Texas Road Trip: an update


An update to my upcoming bicycle road tour …

I’m borrowing this title from the movie, Animal House: when all the shit was hitting the fraternity’s fan, the dean and college were coming down on them, their solution? A road trip!

I’m still doing part of Adventure Cycling’s Southern Tier, but only the portion from El Paso to Austin, and adding in side trips to old Fort Davis in the Davis Mtns and Big Bend National Park. The latter being the birthplace for me of this whole bicycling tour idea. Here’s the first half of my route:

I fly out of here from GSP airport at 4:30pm, Saturday, April 16, with bike and gear and land in El Paso around 7:55pm, the day after my 74th birthday. I have a hotel room reserved east of the airport, the direction I’m pedaling, which has an airport shuttle service that will pick up me, my bicycle and gear at the airport. Sunday I get up my bike and gear redied, and head out on my journey across the Chihuahuan Desert of Texas. I’ll stop and do some shopping on the way out of El Paso: food, water, and necessities. The first day it may just be a short ride (22 mi) to Faben. (See spreadsheet below.) Depending how that goes, I can split the next segment into two days or not: a 23 mi to Fort Hancock and a 35 mi to Sierra Blanca, or do them in one long ride. I’m trying to ease into doing 50 mi days by doing a couple of short days rides at the beginning. Here in the foothills of South Carolina,,my longest ride has been 32 mi because of the substantial hills in any direction I go. So, 50 mi rides look pretty daunting. Out there though, a large part of my ride will be on fairly level ground, not the hills I have to contend with here. Although, there is a climb up to Sierra Blanca and ups and downs all the way to Sanderson Tx. Also, I’ll be adapting to a higher altitude. Here in Liberty, SC, we are at around 1000 ft elevation. Sierra Blanca is ~4600 ft.

My trip from Del Rio to Austin I’ll post about later. I have a plane flight out of Austin on 5/12, but have built in some extra days for weather and rest. A total of 915 miles. Wish me well!

For those that want to see the breakdown of my trip, below is the spreadsheet of the trip I’ve put together…

Day Date Stop/Camping Miles Comments
0 04/16/2022 El Paso, TX 0 Quality Inn Airport East w/ shuttle
1 04/17/2022 Faben 22 All services
2 04/18/2022 Fort Hancock 23 All services
3 04/19/2022 Sierra Blanca 35 All sevices
4 04/20/2022 Van Horn 39 All sevices
5 04/21/2022 Valentine 39 Vallentine RV Park, (361) 648-9281, Smokey Perez
6 04/22/2022 Ft Davis 41 Davis SP
7 04/23/2022 Alpine 24 Campground
8 04/24/2022 Camping 26 Dispersed camping on Hwy 118 S 26 mi out of Alpine
9 04/25/2022 Terlinqua 60 Campground
10 04/26/2022 Big Bend/Chisos 38 camping depends on what’s open, this is for Chisos Mts Campground
11 04/27/2022 Big Bend/Rio Grande Village 38 All services
12 04/28/2022 Stillwell/s 56 Stillwell’s Campground just outside Park
13 04/29/2022 Marthon 44 Campground
14 04/30/2022 Sanderson 54 All sevices
15 05/01/2022 Langtry 61 Wagon Wheel, Jesse owner, 432(?)-271-1074 or (431) 900-2248
16 05/02/2022 Comstock 28.5 All sevices
17 05/03/2022 Del Rio 32 All sevices
18 05/04/2022 Brackettville 30 all sevices
19 05/05/2022 Camp Wood 48 all sevices
20 05/06/2022 Vanderpool 37 Campgound and Motel
21 05/07/2022 Ingram 51 all sevices
22 05/08/2022 Johnson City 40.5 all sevices
23-25 5/9-11/2022 Austin** 47.7 Gary and Julie Stillwell’s ?, bike boxed, etc.
26 05/12/2022     flight home to GSP  8:10am
Total     914.7