RV trips do not always work out as planned

Sometimes our RV trips do not always work out as planned. Here is an example of one of our planned routes, change the route, go back to the original planned RV route. We left WinStar Funtown RV Park, in Oklahoma heading to an overnight stop in Quanah, Texas, on our way to northern New Mexico.

By the time we arrived in Quanah, something had come up that made us decide to cancel our trip and go home. So, the following morning we began traveling south toward home.

All is well that ends well

Happily, the situation at home resolved itself during that day. We changed our direction again, this time heading toward southern New Mexico. One of the reasons we do not often make RV reservations is that plans change, and if we have paid reservations, the amount paid is usually nonrefundable.

RV trips do not always work out as planned

RV park reservations are excellent security to have, and we do reserve in advance sometimes. Suppose you want to stay at a particular park, especially a state park, on weekends or holidays? In that case, you must reserve far in advance.

Most all destination locations will always require reservations. We have had luck getting a spot, though, by calling many times to check on cancellations by other campers. Plans constantly change.

Staying flexible

We also stay flexible by staying at Harvest Hosts or BoondockersWelcome sites that we can very often request the day we need them. Highway rest areas and even Crackbarrel or Bass Pro Shop parking lots are good overnight last-minute stay locations.

This is how our carefully routed trip suddenly became a grand wandering adventure. We drove many extra miles after rerouting, but we found some West Texas gems along the way. We appreciate how traveling in our RV allows us flexibility and that we can change plans on a dime.


This little town is eight miles south of the Red River boundary between Texas and Oklahoma and was our first stop on this grand adventure. After only about a three-hour drive, we stopped for the night at the comfortable and well-maintained Back-Forty RV Park in Quanah for an overnight stay.

RV trips do not always work out as planned

Quanah gets its name from Quanah Parker, the last Quahada Comanche chief. A monument to Quanah Parker Monument is at the Hardeman County Courthouse. Chief Quanah Parker is supposed to have left this great blessing on the town of Quanah during one of his visits.

“May the Great Spirit smile on you little town, may the rain fall in season, and the warmth of the sunshine after the rain, may the earth yield bountifully. May peace and contentment be with your children forever.”


You can read more about this fascinating Comanche leader at TSHA Quanah Parker. Many books are available about this colorful leader’s life.

Medicine Mound

RV trips do not always work out as planned

As we were driving around, exploring Quanah, we saw a road sign for Medicine Mound. A quick Google search told us that Medicine Mound is a ghost town near four natural earthen dolomite mounds. Off we went in the Jeep to find this place.

With elevations of 200 to 250 feet, these mounds are unusual in the flat land around Quanah. The Comanches considered the mounds to be sacred land with healing properties.

Medicine Mound Community

RV trips do not always work out as planned

Nearby Medicine Mound community was once a bustling little town with several businesses and a population of 500. A fire in 1933 that destroyed most of the town and the Great Depression both contributed to this becoming the ghost town it is today.

RV trips do not always work out as planned

The once vibrant town of Medicine Mound is a ghost town now with only a few buildings still standing. One of those buildings, the Hicks & Cobb General Merchandise Store, is now a museum. It was, of course, just our luck, closed at the time we visited.


Our “changed” route took us through Monahans. This west Texas town considered the “Center of the Permian Basin,” was covered by ocean.

Million Barrel Museum

400 Museum Blvd.
Monahans, TX 79756

The Million Barrel Museum was one of the curious sights we were looking forward to visiting as we traveled through Monahans. This vast oil storage tank, constructed in 1928, was used only one time to store a million barrels of crude oil.

Only once, because it turned out that the tank, actually a giant dish shape that paved with cement, could not support the weight of a million barrels of crude oil, it cracked, and most of the oil ran into the ground. The tank remained abandoned for thirty years.

After thirty years, Wayne Long purchased the tank, sealed the cracks, and filled it with water. He created a water park called Melody Park, planning to provide boating, fishing, and other water sports to this West Texas town.

The park opened one day and closed the next. The tank was no better at holding water than it had at containing oil! The tank became abandoned again until 1987, when it became a museum. The city moved other historical attractions in Monahans to this location.

We were disappointed to drive up to the Million Barrel Museum gate and discover a handwritten note stating the museum was closed for two days while the owners were on vacation! Saved for another day, I expect.

Monahans Sandhills State Park

I lived in this area when I was a young girl, and I have great memories of rolling and sliding down the giant dunes at this park. Some of the dunes are as high as 70 feet! Although the Monahans Sandhills are a great place to visit, our creaky old bones were not quite up for sandboarding this trip.

After leaving Monahans, we drove another three hours. We stopped for the night at a comfortable and safe highway rest area on I-20 at Nolan, Texas, and parked alongside other RV travelers parked there for the night.


Our next stop on this journey was Pecos, Texas, very near the New Mexico border and truly part of the Old West.

West of the Pecos Museum

120 E. Dot Stafford Street
Pecos, Texas

RV trips do not always work out as planned

The West of the Pecos Museum opened in 1963 and is in what was formerly a 19th-century hotel. The museum is chock full of all things wild west Texas. Artistically displayed memorabilia and artifacts are on display in at least 50 rooms throughout the three-story building. There are several outdoor exhibits to see as well.

The museum even has a full saloon complete with an animated and talking mannequin behind the bar. We were greeted at the old hotel’s lobby entrance and provided directions for our self-guided tour. Lots of history to see here and the highlight of our visit to Pecos!

RV trips do not always work out as planned

Pecos Boot Trail

Some of the fun things to see in Pecos are the various oversized and decorated cowboy boot sculptures placed throughout the town. These boots are similar to the turtles placed throughout Galveston’s business streets and the hearts on display in Waxahachie.

Texas Rodeo Hall of Fame

RV trips do not always work out as planned

We wandered through this beautifully renovated building honoring famous cowboys and cowgirls from rodeos throughout history. Pecos, as do a few other towns, claims to be the home of the first rodeo.

The Texas Rodeo Hall of Fame honors Hall of Fame inductees who competed successfully in rodeos. Artifacts and memorabilia from those individuals are on display here.

Memory Lane Car Museum

301 S. Oak St.
Pecos, TX 79772

The Memory Lane Car Museum in the historic district of Pecos houses a great collection of beautifully restored classic vehicles. We spent a few minutes here reminiscing about the great cars from past years.

These were a fun few days visiting some curious and historical sites. We enjoyed learning just a little about these west Texas towns and listening to the stories of some of the locals. We’re very close to the New Mexico state line – can’t wait to see what fun is waiting for us there!

RV trips do not always work out as planned

6 thoughts on “RV trips do not always work out as planned

  1. Pingback: What an amazing two month long RV adventure | Always Want To Go
  2. Pingback: Why vacation in Carlsbad, New Mexico? | Always Want To Go
    1. It was a lot of fun. We are never really sure what we will happen onto along the road.

  3. I love the spontaneity of your and Steve’s wandering sand all the interesting sights and museums! But y’all need to come home every now and then.

    1. We are having such a great time meandering around. We’ll be back home in a few days though.

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