Sunday, November 21, 2021

HOWDY, Y'all!

Gordonville, Tx.  Lake Texoma Thousand Trails RV park

Wifi: AT&T is ok, 5G.  T-Mobile, so-so

High: mid 60's      Low: 40's-50's.  Site: Q16 Back in, full hookup

Howdy! You know you are in northern Texas when you see Texas longhorn cattle, dry dusty prairies, brown landscapes, and big bugs. Everything is bigger in Texas, right?

We have arrived in northern Texas and have been here for a week and a half. Only a few more days, and we move to the next Thousand Trails park in Columbus, TX.
  We've been busy! To start off, here's our park....Lake Texoma...300 acres about a mile from the very large Lake Texoma, which is the "Striped Bass Capital of the World". We'd get excited about that, but neither of us fish. The park is about three miles from the Oklahoma border, so we are just inside Texas at the moment. There is a terrific hiking trail right near the bridge after you cross the lake into Texas, called the Cross Timbers hiking trail...more about that in just a bit.

There are boat ramps, fishing docks, a LOT of two tired track trails (old campground trails? ATV trails?) to explore, lots of trees but they are not a problem at the park when parking and situating your rig. 

It's just nice to have shade when it's hot. There are two swimming pools-one of which is being renovated, and candy bars and ice cream at the office (we are regulars, haha). We believe the campground is situated next to Corps of Engineer land and that the park shares some of this land, is Sparky's understanding. There is a Corps of Engineer park right at the bridge crossing on the Texas side called Juniper Point, which is about 3 miles from our park and there are multiple RV parks near completion or in development near Lake Texoma. It must be a hot spot in the summertime! There are at least three marinas in the area as well. At one of the marinas, the closest one to the park, is a decent restaurant called Pelican's Landing. As far as any other shopping/dining, you have to drive about 25 miles, so stock up before coming in. We've been using the Dollar Tree for basic needs, it's a nice little store about a mile from the park. Gordonville is a super small town. The post office is about a two car parking spot with a cool antique gas station across the street.

Nearest big town is probably Sherman, about 25 miles away. HOBBY LOBBY? YES! JOANN FABRICS--YES! (Yep, Sparky has been to see them several times since we've been here, explains Eldo.) Sparky ALWAYS has a craft project that needs SOMETHING! Here's a couple of the latest she has completed this week....A wool table topper....

Ornaments....Hand stamped copper with little ornament symbols on the edges and holiday words inside the ornament....
A table runner for Sparky's daughter....Sparky LOVES the red truck decor theme that is so currently popular. Guess boomers are loving the nostalgia theme....

Back to the park..The park has gravel sites, most are fairly level. Interior roads are bad, lots of potholes and patch jobs, and if you ride a bike, be careful, you'll be dodging them constantly. For people who know the TT system and parks, the roads remind us of the conditions at Lake Conroe. Bathrooms and showers are showing their age, but they are clean. They do seem to be having electrical problems as the whole row behind us in the park is out of commission due to electrical problems They are updating electric in the park and recently put in a lot of new 50 amp boxes. Unfortunately, quite a few of those sites do NOT have sewer so they are just water and electric.

The lake is not very developed as far as houses or vacation homes. It looks very bare around its shores. Guess it's a boaters' lake for fisherman and sailors.

Hagerman Wildlife Refuge is 17 miles from the park. It's worth a trip there to take the auto tour (very informative!) around the refuge as the visitor's center is currently closed. (November 2021) It consists of 11,320 acres and five hiking trails and is open sunrise to sunset. The longest trail is Meadow Pond Trail and is 5.7 miles round trip. What's interesting about this refuge is that cover 300 acres of crops are grown to actively manage and support the wildlife and birds there. In other words, farming there is for the birds! We saw THOUSANDS  of white geese on our one visit there and some northern shoveler ducks. The refuge is a stopping grounds for migrating birds south in November and many species have been spotted there. 

A zoo is 25 miles away, the Red River Historical Museum 30 miles, and the Cross Timbers hiking trail about three miles from the campground. (Sparky, you said that, reminds E. She must really like it). Yes, she did!

Back to the hiking trail---Cross Timbers Lake Texoma Trail....accessed at the Juniper Point Corps of Engineer Park at Lake Texoma. It's a FOURTEEN mile trail. Sparky did 4.5 miles total and the first part was VERY strenuous, even more so with sciatica constantly reminding her --YOU SHOULDN'T DO THIS! so she took it easy. Constant ups and downs, narrow rocky, root filled paths and slippery leaves covering everything. You are climbing up and down through the forest around the lake. There are some great views so check out the reviews on the All Trails app. Sparky loved this bench that somehow made it up through a very narrow, steep trail section and planted itself under the rock shelf.

Sparky spotted the ideal resting place for turtles, but as far away as she was, they either heard her or saw her? and one by one, plopped into the water as she hiked way above them. Maybe something else spooked them! (You have to look VERY closely at the dots on the log to see all of them, haha. Sorry about that!)

At another clearing, there was a stone fire pit, logs conveniently chopped and ready to use for the fire, AND---hot dog forks hung on the tree trunk! But this is a public trail, so that was kinda weird. Who's going to be carrying hot dogs on the trail, unless you know about this ahead of time, or that's one of your quickie meals while back packing!

Sparky highly recommends this hike if you want a workout, haha. Can't speak to the rest of the trail except you pass views of three marinas around Lake Texoma, they say, with more nice views of the lake. The trail is well marked with white circle trail markers and notice that they place markers high and low, awwww...Thats nice,
as Sparky is looking at her feet most of the time so that lower one is perfect!

With that, my friends, we say goodbye for now, and see you down the road....

sculptures outside a cattle/horse ranch

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