Some things don’t last forever but if you go RV camping in Big Bend, Texas, the spirit of the Old West lives on.
The Old West is right here in Big Bend.
If you’ve never been to this part of what locals call “Far West Texas,” you’re not alone. It’s an isolated and tough country along the Rio Grande River where only the most daring come to explore.
But if you’ve got some fuel and time to make the trek, you’ll see why the Texas Big Bend is a great spot to explore a crazy quilt of wide open desert terrain, craggy mountain peaks and riparian wetlands with epic birding opportunities.
Notice how you don’t see any people?
Why Go RV Camping in Big Bend
One of the best reasons to go RVing in this Texas region is Big Bend National Park. With the Rio Grande River as the dividing line between the park and Mexico, colorful birds from the Northern climates and tropical latitudes converge in this birder’s paradise.
Up high in the stunning Chisos Mountains, hard core trails challenge even the most rugged backpackers and equestrians.
Just a few miles away in Big Bend Ranch State Park, epic mountain biking trails tease agile riders in the backcountry. Just don’t be fooled by the area’s natural beauty: this terrain is so tough that expert hikers routinely get swallowed up in its deep arroyos.
Follow the trail . . . or else!
If you’ve ever seen the movie “No Country for Old Men,” you’ll recognize the terrain. The movie was filmed here because nowhere else in the U.S. is as intimidating as the Big Bend.
But thankfully when you go RVing in Big Bend you won’t have to sacrifice modern comforts.
Take a break from roughing it in Lajitas.
Part pricey tourist trap, part historic epicenter of the Texas Republic, Lajitas’ long and colorful history begins with native people caught off-guard by Spanish explorer Cabeza de Vaca.
Centuries later, Big Bend locals were similarly stunned when a multimillionaire bought the entire town for $4 million dollars with big dreams of turning it into a cush playground for the uber rich.
Today that fantasy is dead but Lajitas remains the one place where you’ll enjoy the easy life in a dusty, remote outpost.
Full hookups and great scenery. What else is there?
Maverick Ranch RV Park is the crown jewel of camping in the Big Bend. Located within an easy drive from the nearby attractions like the Terlingua Ghost Town, this large park is a great base camp for exploring the area.
Even the barbecue pits are bigger in Texas.
When you walk around Maverick Ranch it seems like the RVers all seem to know each other. That’s because they do. Every winter you’ll find a friendly group of Maverick Ranch regulars – snowbirds from as far as Canada who come to stay at the warmest spot in the West.
Maverick Ranch is across the road from a full-service resort hotel and offers RVers equally nice amenities like full hookups, a recreation center, swimming pool and laundry facilities. But the best reason to come here is the Whitfords, a supremely talented singing duo playing authentic Americana music three nights a week.
Join the hillbilly hoedown three times a week!
Know This Before You Go RV Camping in Big Bend
- Stock up on everything before you come down. Aside from the Canadian wilderness and Alaska, this is probably the most remote part of the Lower 48. Before heading down to Big Bend, be sure to stock up on groceries in the little town of Alpine. Located 110 miles north of the national park entrance, Alpine is the last place for an assortment of provisions. If you forget something you’ll find some basics in Terlingua, but the higher prices reflect the remote nature of living there.
- Know the best times to visit. Spring break is the busiest time of year for this part of far west Texas. This is when all RV parks and campgrounds get packed with kids and families on break so it’s wise to have a reservation. Don’t wait too long though; summertime temperatures are routinely in triple digits so unless you enjoy that kind of heat, plan to arrive in late fall or winter.
- You won’t have reliable cell or data service. Kiss your cell phone service and broadband goodbye in most of Big Bend territory. Only Terlingua and Lajitas have service and it’s hard to come by inside the national park.
- Come in a well-maintained RV. Don’t count on mechanics or garages to save you if something goes wrong. The closest reliable repair shops are over 100 miles away in Alpine.
Come prepared, or don’t come.
With all of the warnings you might think that RV camping in Big Bend isn’t worth the hassle. For some folks who don’t want to work so hard to travel so far, it’s not.
But if you want to step into the last realistic glimpse of the Old West and see nature you won’t find elsewhere, head on down and you won’t be disappointed.
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