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Old 04-21-2013, 06:34 PM   #1
3 Rivet Member
Natchitoches , Louisiana
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 150
Chisos Basin Campground Big Bend NP

We headed over to BBNP last weekend, a 14 hour drive for us from north Louisiana. Spent our first night in Abilene State Park, almost exactly half way. Abilene SP is a pleasant and quiet park and a good place to stay if you are east or westbound across Texas. We drove down through Marathon into the Big Bend and set up camp about an hour before sunset on our second day of travel. Believe it or not the temps were in the low 40's and we got rained on as we settled in! The next three days were absolutely perfect, blue skies, mild temps, and only a few bugs. We checked out the visitors center, store, lodge, and also drove over to Rio Grande Village to see what those campgrounds had to offer. We were at BBNP so I could ride the perimeter on my road bike, which I did on the second day, about 29 miles in one ride. For the road bicyclists on the forum, my route had a net elevation gain of about 2000 feet, an average 3% grade (with one hill at 15%!!) and several looooong uphills and downhills to complete on the circuit. Attached are a few photos of our trip.
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Old 04-30-2013, 05:02 PM   #2
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2005 25' Classic
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 346
Great pictures. I wish we could camp in Chisos Basin, but our 25' AS is too long to drive up the mountain. We once camped there in a tent, but now we are spoiled and gave away the tent.


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Old 04-30-2013, 05:31 PM   #3
3 Rivet Member
Natchitoches , Louisiana
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 150
On a previous trip, camping at Cottonwood in a 23FB, I spoke to a Park Service employee about that "20 foot max trailer length" rule for Chisos. He told me much larger trailers have made it through the hairpins without hitting anything, and that the lodge and store are supplied by some really large tractor trailer rigs. I think the problem actually lies with the size of the campsites. Very few of the sites are big enough for trailers longer than 22 or 23 feet. There are a few though. And Loop 1 allows generators. I was also surprised to see several real toilet facilities at Chisos as well as a few faucets with running water placed throughout the campground. When we were there the campground filled to capacity every night and about 80% of the sites were occupied by tent or van campers. Despite that the campground was very quiet at night and the camping conditions were about perfect.
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