Now that we’re settled in Tulsa for a few days, I thought I’d share our week full of activities in the wonderful panhandle of Texas. Plus, we’re visiting family in Tulsa and they have great connectivity. Unfortunately, it was hit and miss at the park we were staying at in Amarillo so I wasn’t able to do much on-line work.
Where to start? We were staying at the Oasis RV Resort just west of Amarillo and complete with a half buried RV as a greeting. Great park, aside from the inconsistent internet. The pads were level, the sunrises and sunsets were spectacular, and it made for a great hub for day trips.
Since we were just down the road from the quirky Cadillac Ranch, we had to pick up a few spray paint cans and put our logo on one of the half-buried cars, at least until someone else sprayed over it. Note to anyone in Amarillo – open a mobile truck placed strategically near the entrance to the Cadillacs and sell small spray paint cans and soft drinks. You’ll make a fortune!
No visit to Amarillo is complete without a visit to Palo Duro Canyon, the 2nd largest canyon in the U.S. While not my first visit, it is still breathtaking with incredible views and amazing colors. We opted out of the seeing Texas, the Musical, which takes place in the canyon, due to the heat. We’re wimps when it comes to hot weather and prefer the A.C. Instead, we had lunch at the iconic and often-seen-on-TV Big Texan. The steaks were good, we were serenaded by a cowboy, but, unfortunately, we didn’t get to see anyone try the 72-ounce steak challenge. Maybe on our next visit.Wildlife is plentiful in the area, from the longhorns at Palo Duro Canyon to the buffalo in Caprock Canyons State Park, down the road a couple of hours in Quitaque. The Caprock Canyons are stunning with glorious red canyons and vast rock formations as far as the eye can see. While the buffalo herd was probably our favorite animal to see, the prairie dogs made for cheap entertainment. Watching our springer spaniel mix, Sadie, bounce from one side of the truck to the other, staring out the windows and trying to figure out how she could get to them provided fun for all, except Sadie. We also saw buffalo at the Charles Goodnight home in Goodnight, Texas. It’s my understanding the buffalo come from the original herd belonging to Charles Goodnight. We took one road trip just for me. Back in the late 70’s and early 80’s, my family lived in the tiny town of Follett, Texas, located in the northeast corner of the Texas panhandle. The population is just under 500 people with one stop light and a school that holds all grades from kindergarten to senior. What wonderful times I had there growing up. My first job was at the café there, which still stands, just under a different name. The prairie land is both welcoming and haunting, while the people are friendly and caring. It had been over 30 years since my last visit. Great memories!
One of my favorite things about day trips is traveling through communities on your way to some place else. You never know what you’ll see. A few of our favorite finds included Turkey, Texas, the home of the late Bob Wills. The tour bus sits on a corner for all to see. We came across an old drive-in theater between Turkey and Quitaque that looked to be closed permanently. Both Dan and I have fond memories of drive-ins in our past so it was fun to remember those times. While driving through the town of Tulia, we came across a set of individually painted storage units. The artwork was impressive and an attraction itself. By far our favorite place to visit was the Jack Sisemore RV Museum in Amarillo. While there, I had the opportunity to visit Mr. Sisemore. He opened the museum so people waiting for their RV’s to be repaired would have something to do and it’s FREE! We spent at least an hour looking at camping collectibles, motorcycles, and RV’s of all shapes and sizes. I’m not sure if we liked it so much because we are now full-time RV’ers or because it offered such nostalgia for us. Either way, it’s worth a stop in Amarillo all by itself. And if you’re a fan of the Robin Williams’ movie RV, the museum is home to the Gornicke bus, featured in the film. We met many RV’ers who were just passing through Amarillo. I highly recommend staying a few days so you can enjoy all there is to see and do. Our week doesn’t begin to cover everything. Check out http://www.visitamarillo.com for more information.