Friday, May 9, 2014

Day Eight at Big Bend National Park: The Persimmon Gap Drive

Today we made a driving tour of the area between the Panther Junction Visitors Center at the center of Big Bend National Park and the Persimmon Gap entrance at the northern tip of the park.

It is fascinating to drive through Big Bend National Park.  Along every mile and around each turn there are interesting mountains and stone formations to enjoy.

Tiny horses and hippopotamus-like animals once roamed a more humid Big Bend.  A display of fossil bones provides a glimpse into the past.

At the top of the ridge two tourists look into the valley beyond
where fossils were discovered.
In the foreground are the displays of fossil bones.
Area where fossils have been unearthed.

Another view on the road toward Persimmon Gap.

View along road toward the Stillwell Store.
A short distance outside the north entrance to Big Bend National Park is the Stillwell Store and RV Park founded by Hallie and Roy Stillwell and still preserving their heritage.

The Stillwell Store

Hallie Crawford Stillwell helped settle West Texas' most formidable land, the Big Bend, in the early 20th century. She fought drought, disease, the depression, and desperadoes! “Tough,” she says, “You had to be tough to survive!” To preserve her ranching legacy and pioneering spirit, Hallie’s Hall of Fame Museum was built in 1991.

The Hallie Crawford Stillwell Museum
Each day at Big Bend National Park has been a great adventure for us and tomorrow we plan to spend the day at Big Bend Ranch State Park -- also along the Rio Grande River and just west of the National Park.