San Angelo Riverwalk

30 04 2017

San Angelo Visitors Center

Who knew there was a Riverwalk outside of San Antonio?  At the confluence of the North Concho, the Middle Concho and the South Concho Rivers, San Angelo has constructed a beautiful 4 mile river walk.  Along the walk are gardens, parks, exercise areas, golf courses and a river stage.  Beginning at the impressive Visitors Center you can stroll all the way along the river to the original “Block One”, the first location of buildings in San Angelo complete with Miss Hattie’s Bordello Museum.  Originally a town built to support the Ft. Concho Fort, San Angelo has grown into a city of over 100,000 residents including about 10,000 students at the Angelo State University.

San Angelo Riverwalk

Commemorating San Angelo’s historical importance as a wool marketing center

In addition to the RV sites at the State Park, there is an very nice RV park located on the shores of Lake Nasworthy at the Spring Creek Marina and RV Park.  With rates up to $55/night, it’s a bit more pricey than the $28/night that we paid.  The Lucas Oil Drag Boat race is held on Lake Nasworthy in late June.

With winter weather beginning to clear to the north, we opt to make a move to Bottomless Lakes State Park just east of Roswell.  We spent 6 nights at Bottomless Lakes last year – complete reviews are here.  After just a quick overnight this year, we’re back on the road to Las Vegas, NM.  More from Las Vegas…

Bottomless Lakes State Park

Bottomless Lakes State Park





Excitement at Bottomless Lakes

29 04 2016
Bottomless Lakes State Park fire

Bottomless Lakes State Park “Overflow Fire”

We’re now on our 5th day at Bottomless Lakes State Park.  After arriving on Sunday, we’ve watched several winter storm systems move across our northward path and through the Denver area.  With temperatures here in the upper 70 and low 80’s, we’re not anxious to proceed north into snow and cold.

Late yesterday afternoon a brush fire erupted very near the State Park.  Fanned by winds gusting to 25MPH, it was a bit too reminiscent of some of the smokey Spring times we’ve had in the foothills of Colorado.  After burning over 100 acres and belching smoke into the sky for most of the afternoon, NM state and BLM personal had the blaze under control by dusk.

Campers at northern campgrounds were asked to evacuate, but here at Lea Lake the rangers explained there was not an imminent threat due to wind direction and an expansive wetland area between us and the fire.  They also insured us that if it became necessary, we’d have plenty of time to pack up.  Fortunately the winds died down just before sunset and we enjoyed a pleasant, calm, evacuation-free evening.

Bottomless_Lakes_Fire





Bottomless Lakes State Park, Roswell, NM

25 04 2016
Bottomless Lakes SP Site #11

Bottomless Lakes SP Site #11

In a long driving day, we’ve departed Texas and re-entered the Mountain Time Zone.  The original plan called for an overnight in Guadalupe Mountains National Park.  But, as appears common, winds were expected to be gusting to about 50 MPH through that region, so we opted to detour to the east, away from the mountains.  Unfortunately that means a transit of US 285 from Pecos to Carlsbad.  After having traveled south along this route last year, we knew this to be one of the roughest sections of road we’ve driven.  With heavy truck traffic rumbling through, even on a Sunday, the road is heaving and crumbling everywhere.  It’s 85 miles of truck bouncing, cupboard jarring, teeth gritting travel.  And, combined with about a 20 MPH side wind, the day wasn’t a pleasant journey – making it all that much nicer when we arrived at Bottomless Lakes State Park outside of Roswell, NM.

Turning east at Roswell it’s tough to imagine anything with trees and water across the seemingly endless plains stretching to the east.  But, just 5 miles off the main road is Bottomless Lakes State Park – a natural oasis around a handful of small lakes in the Pecos River valley.  Not truly bottomless, the lakes were formed similarly to Carlsbad Caverns when limestone eroded to create massive underground caves.  But, here – the cave ceilings eventually collapsed, filled with water and created the nine lakes that vary in depth from 18 to 90 feet.

Bottom Lakes SP, Lea Lake

Bottom Lakes SP, Lea Lake

We’re parked at Lea Lake Campground, 32 campsites at the southern end of the park, near the beach, volleyball and group pavilion.  The sites here are spacious, level and most offer water and electric.  6 of the sites also have sewer ports.  12 sites are available for online reservations at reserveamerica and the remaining 17 RV sites (and 3 tent sites) are walk-up only for $14/night.  We’re in site #11, a walk-up site at the far end of one of the loops offering nice privacy and even some shade from a few small trees to each side of the RV.  There’s a concrete covered patio with a picnic table and clean, graveled pad.  For some of the lowest per night costs,  New Mexico does a great job with the maintenance of their state parks.  We have good T-Mobile access here, and even a fairly good free park WiFi available.  And, there are 10 or 12 over-the-air TV channels from Albuquerque.