Posts Tagged “texas”

Anyone who thinks there’s nothing to see while driving across the Great State of Texas is a fool. If you look hard enough you can spend weeks visting oddball attractions in the Panhandle, like Jesus in a Box and Cadillac Ranch.

RV Pitstop at Cadillac Ranch, Amarillo Texas

Should you decide to venture far beyond the interstate, then an overnight stay in Littlefield is mandatory. This small dusty Panhandle town is just west of Lubbock. There’s not a lot to this place, which is probably why its most famous hometown hellraiser, Waylon Jennings, would tell folks he was from Lubbock.

Footprints of a Legend at Littlefield Texas City Park

Unlike our first Panhandle Pitstops road trip, this time we knew to slow down and stop to check out the only museum in America dedicated to Waylon Jennings, Waymore’s Drive-Thru Package Liquor Store and Waylon Jennings Museum.

Waymore’s Drive-Thru Package Liquor Store

As fans of both Outlaw country music and adult beverages, we were happy to stop and pay homage to one of the greatest musicians of all-time (yes, that’s right, now shaddup).

Waymore’s Drive-Thru Liquor Store LIttlefield Texas

This little family-run establishment was founded by Waylon’s brother James. On any given day you’ll find him, some other relative or friend of the family running the store and ready give to you a personalized tour.

Waylon Jennings’ first guitar

The day we arrived, Waylon’s niece was our hostess. She happily shared non-stop stories about his life and relatives with a lovely Texas twang that was so fast we only grasped about half of what she was telling us, but she was adorable nonetheless.

Clean-cut teenage Waylon Jennings: Who knew?!

Much of the collection was gathered from family garages and attics, some from e-Bay and some from who knows where. Capitalizing on the Outlaw music connection, they’ve even gathered cool relics like this custom stage jacket made just for Johnny Cash:

Can you feel the presence of The Man in Black?

There’s a pair of Waylon’s trademark “Flying W” boots. It’s obvious, don’t you think? Nobody can ever fill this cowboy’s shoes.

Boots Too Big to Ever Fill

Rumor has it that Waylon didn’t have a lot to do with Littlefield because of some feudin’ that happened between him and this side of his family at some point, but if there is some bad blood there, we didn’t get a sense of that at all.

Waylon Jennings Mural at the Drive-Thru Liquor Store

The cheapskate in me looking for signs that we were going to get hit up for money for this lovely tour. But nope, they weren’t asking for cash or trying to exploit their connection at all; this was just genuine friendliness from salt-of-the-earth people who are proud to be associated with Waylon.

Of course we couldn’t leave without buying something, so we picked up some cheap beer and thanked our lovely host for an unforgettable time.

Some people think Waylon deserves a fancy-pants memorial with more pizazz. After all, you can’t escape the irony of having a liquor store museum dedicated to a genius who died far too early from substance abuse issues. But so what, I say; Waylon was as real as it gets, and so is this one-of-a-kind Outlaw establishment.

IF YOU GO: Be sure to stop and stay at the free Waylon Jennings City Park. It has free RV camp sites for small to medium rigs, complete with water, electric and a dump station, all for a donation. And oh, it even has sanctioned horse-shoe competition courts!

Waylon Jennings City Park, LIttlefield Texas

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We dislike staying in RV parks for many reasons, but when we do need to plug into the grid, we seek out the most offbeat, weird places to stay in a RV. Out of every state in America, Texas has more than its fair share of quirky RV trailer courts, and Landa RV Park in New Braunfels is the mutha’ of ‘em all.

Look out, it’s Landa low bridges

Landa This, Landa That

Our Landa Love Affair began back in the day, when NuRVers was just a baby and consisted of a core-group of hard-partying, crazy, full-time, child-free full-time RVers. A live-and-let-live bohemian vibe made Landa a great place to spend winter. You could pretty much do anything you wanted to as long as your racket wasn’t louder than the hourly freight trains that run directly behind the park.

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Through the years, NuRVers have come and gone at Landa, and the winter party scene is no more. Management has also kicked out most of the DIY-RVers that kept things interesting (but a few still remain).

Landa funky DIY RVs

Yet for some reason, Jim and I felt compelled to spend a month along the Comal River once again. After all, it’s ground zero for the awesome Texas Hill Country music scene, everything is within biking distance and the rent is cheap, so why not, right?

Landa RV dump station camping

The daily river toobing along this private stretch of the Comal River is awesome. Where else can you pay just $400 a month for rent and have a spring-fed, crystal-clear river at your back door? It just compels you to chill out!

Landa booze toobs

But the longer we stayed there, the more that Landa’s many quirks got on our nerves. Like the off-leash dogs who shit everywhere and tormented Wyatt.

Landa rat dogs crapping everywhere

Then there was the nosy neighbors who felt it was OK to inquire about my “relationship with Jesus.”

Landa trucks worth more than homes

The final straw was the neighboring family of five, who for some reason was allowed to rent a long-term spot while living in a pop-up tent trailer, despite Landa’s rules prohibiting non-self-contained RVs. Yes, there were five people living in there.

Landa misfit families

We’re not RV snobs by any means, and they wouldn’t have bothered us so much if the tween-aged kids weren’t rock-throwing maniacs (we think they were the cause of our mysteriously shattered RV window). And oh, if their mother wasn’t constantly screaming at the top her lungs for some reason or another.

All this piled on top of sleep deprivation from being awakened by train horns blaring at 3AM each night, got old real fast. When April was over, we couldn’t wait to leave. I’m not sure if we’ll ever stay there that long again, but if we do, the NuRVers crowd needs to have to hold a reunion so at least all of the partying will distract us from the Landa Looney Bin.

Landa cheap camping on the Comal River

So long Landa.

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There’s a rockin’ buzz hanging over Texas and its vortex hovers directly over the Hill Country.

From blues to folk to Tex-Mex, rockin’ music you just don’t hear anywhere else is a beloved part of the lifestyle. In just one month of trailer trash camping along the Comal River, we’ve caught several great club shows by some of our favorite musicians like Ray Wylie Hubbard:

Ray Wylie’s music has taken an exciting direction with the addition of his 20-year old son Lucas:

We became fans of musicians we hadn’t heard before, like Kylie Rae Harris

And Larry Jo Taylor and the Tejas Brothers. You can listen to all three on the KNBT podcast, here.

When we can’t get to Texas, you can bet we’ll be tuning into KNBT FM, ground zero for the best Americana music in the country.

If you love Americana music, there’s no better place to catch live shows than Central Texas!

 

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Are you a Beaver Believer? We are!

There’s something magical about watching an endless parade of giddy adults pull into a gas station to pay homage to a beaver.

But these cult fans aren’t stopping for just any old beaver, and not the same ol’ potty break. Nope, they’re pulling over to pay homage to Buc-ee the Beaver, mascot of the cleanest, sparkling restrooms and fun-filled convenience store, souvenir shop and gas station in America!

In 2010 we told you about the day we fell in love with Buc-ee in Luling, Texas. This time, upon our return to New Braunfels we were ecstatic to learn that the biggest Buc-ees store opened just up the road from our spot at Landa RV Park.

In the grand style of the Great State of Texas, Buc-ee’s hit a home run and did this one up BIG! With 60 gas pump stations and 83 restroom stalls so clean you could picnic in ‘em, we were awestruck by the size of the New Braunfels Buc-ee’s.

You’ve never seen so many people who are excited to take a leak. And with good reason  . . .

With two hand sanitizers in every stall and always-present attendants, Buc-ee’s restrooms recently earned them the honor of having the cleanest restrooms in the nation!

The best part about Buc-ee’s is that it’s not just a place to stop and take a leak. Buc-ee’s is a place to dive into the best of Texas culture!

Buc-ee’s has the biggest selection of kitschy, gourmet and spirited texas-centric products, from homemade fudge to home decor.

And of course, no river toobing season is complete without a Beaver Tube. You’ll be the coolest toober on the Comal with Buc-ee by your side!

Don’t worry about going hungry, Buc-ee’s has you covered . . . In queso!

The next time you’re driving across Texas, hold it and wait until the next Buc-ee’s location appears on the horizon.  I guarantee you’ll fall in love with the Beaver.

See you next time Buc-ee, we’ll be back.

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75 steps. That’s how far it was to get from our front door to the campground outhouse during our stay at Black Gap Wildlife Management Area.

Black Gap is an undeveloped piece of rugged desert paradise in the Big Bend. No sissies allowed here. But if you’ve got what it takes, and your rig is small enough to fit in the headquarters campground, the only public outhouse in the entire area is available for your use. It’s a genuine Clivus Multrum so even on the hottest days it doesn’t stink or attract flies.

We love the solitude and scenery here and as a bonus, camping costs nearly nothing, just a $12 permit that’s good for six months. There are way more secluded places for small RVs in Black Gap, but we opt for the spot near the outhouse. By using it instead of our own latrine, we can reduce our water consumption and extend our stay from a typical 7 or 8 days to nearly two weeks!

Even when you’re conscientious about water usage, it’s unbelievable how much of this precious resource goes toward toilet flushing. Sure, some boondocking RVers will flush with gray water, but we found that using dish water to flush the toilet is just nasty. And although eco-groovy RVers like to talk about how cool RV composting toilets are, only few RVers are crazy brave enough to actually use one. Based on RV composting toilet reality checks like this one, we’ll pass, thanks.

Yeah, it’s inconvenient to walk 75 steps to the outhouse. But having this kind of scenery all to ourselves for as long as possible is totally worth it.

 

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