An unforgettable hike…..(I survived)

Day  7

LOCATION:  Lajitas, Texas
CAMPGROUND:  Maverick RV Resort
WEATHER:  Cool!  Highs only 73 – Hooray!

We awoke to wind and overcast skies.  There was a chance of rain (much-needed), but it cleared off.  Taking advantage of the cooler temps, we got an early start for some hikes in Big Bend Ranch State Park. 

Our first hike was the Buena Suerte (Good Luck) Road in the Contrabando (contraband) River region. 

This was the route for the bustling trade of illegal goods between the US and Mexico – mostly liquor and wax.  Wax was made from the candelilia (little candle) plant that grows abundantly in this area.

We found very old, rusty tin cans along the way, including several beer cans that had the old church-key openings. 

There were interesting patterns in the rocks.

Then, another trail  leading off from the Buena Suerte Road.  When you see the landscape from a distance, you don’t appreciate the variety of plants and rocks.  When hiking, you see so much diversity. 

Then, on to hike #3 – Closed Canyon.  We started the hike on a creek bed.  As we hiked deeper into the canyon, it became steeper.  When it rains, there would be a flash flood through here, moving the water through the creek to the Rio Grande. 

I was caught off guard at one of the first steep slopes, and with tiny gravel on top of slippery rocks, kerplunk!  I was down.  I skinned my elbows and bruised my palms.  From then on, it was a combination of flat creek bed, with steep, slippery slopes in between.  I gave up trying to walk down them, so I sat on my bottom and slid down the next 20 slopes! 

All around us, we looked straight up at rocks more than 15 storeys above us.  Very impressive. 

Now, the return!  Big trouble!  The first several slopes were almost impossible to climb up.  There was nothing to hold on to, and no firm steps.  I really felt that I might be stuck!  I tried to climb on my hands and knees, and got part way.    Another couple appeared and helped George get me up.  George pulled my arm while they pushed my butt.  Sure glad a camera was not around at that point!!!!  I got pretty tired of negotiating these 20 or so climbs on the way back.  Phew! 

We stopped at a picnic area with tipis for shelter.

And, other stops with nice overlooks of the Rio Grande.

Back home, I took a glorious shower.  I was covered with dust and needed to clean out my scrapes. 

We celebrated the end of our first week, and the eve of George’s birthday with a bottle of cava.  Pop!

DINNER:  Leftover leftovers – chicken pasta with vegetables.  Side salad. 

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