Big Bend Chat
Big Bend Community => Places of Interest Surrounding the Park => Topic started by: SHANEA on June 29, 2008, 12:20:30 AM
I discovered that the town of Fort Davis out in the Davis Mountains of west Texas was also on the stagecoach route. And further, on hiking trips in the Guadalupe Mountains National Park I learned of a place within the park that was known as "Pine Springs" that, too, was a stop. (http://leeaper.spaces.live.com/Blog/cns!7EE1761E672E1F1F!892.entry)
I am the author of "The Butterfield Overland Mail (and Stagecoach) article (actually there is a series of four). I would like to make one slight correction. The location of the 'Springs' within the Guadalupe National Park was incorrect. The actual name was "Pinery". After this spring ceased to flow water to the surface, the Butterfield Overland Mail Route was then rerouted through Fort Davis on it's journey to and through Franklin, TX (El Paso).
Welcome aboard Luke. Greetings and salutations.
If anyone is interested in seeing some really interesting Butterfield Station Ruins, as well as some world class rock art, I would recommend heading over to Alamo Mountain which is on BLM lands in New Mexico just north of the Texas border. It is about halfway between El Paso and Carlsbad. I can't remember the exact roads traveled to get there. However, I know that I made it in my Honda Civic.
If anyone is interested in seeing some really interesting Butterfield Station Ruins, as well as some world class rock art, I would recommend heading over to Alamo Mountain which is on BLM lands in New Mexico just north of the Texas border.
(GASP!) Imagine that....world class stuff on BLM....and it gets along fine without an overabundance of administration.
It is about halfway between El Paso and Carlsbad. I can't remember the exact roads traveled to get there. However, I know that I made it in my Honda Civic.
This is the Otero Mesa area, east of the Ft. Bliss McGregor Range. It's also just west of the NM part of the Guadalupe Mountains. While it is remote from services it is relatively easy to access. Despite the excellent condition of the road network, it exhibits significant wilderness qualities and is a wonderful place to spend time....alone, because almost no one goes there and usually the only people you will see is the occasional rancher who leases the public land for grazing. Purists will be offended by the roads, fences and cattle, but that's their loss.
Since it is BLM land, there are no signs pointing you to it, so it's not overrun with tourists like NPS areas and you will have to figure out what to do without trail guides and interpretive signs.
It is a place you do not just happen upon on your way somewhere else; it is the destination. This is the kind of place that will make you question why you bother with national parks when you have thousands of acres entirely to yourself. It's a wild experience, not a managed one.
I was hoping to hear a good bit more about the Butterfield stuff. Please come back to the initial topic.
Moderator note: Thanks for the reminder. I split off the off-topic stuff to Presidio's whine topic (http://www.bigbendchat.com/portal/forum/index.php/topic,6350.msg71198.html#msg71198)
I have a dumb question about the old mail and stagecoach route.
Many years ago (1970's) I did some work around the Mammoth Mine area in Presidio County. Not really a mine, more like a prospect. There is a really neat old adobe structure a couple of miles away from it called Quinn Camp, located surprisingly on Quinn Creek. It is next to Quinn Spring. I was told by a couple of the (very few) locals that Quinn Camp had been an alternate stop for the Butterfield stage. Anyone know anything about this?
The Quinn Camp adobe has very thick walls at the base that taper upward. Someone poured a cement floor inside at a time after the adobe was built. It had a sheet metal roof on it when I was there, and an interior wall had been added to separate it into two rooms. There was a very welcome wood stove inside. Quinn Spring is the only spring or well for miles around, but the water is only barely potable.
I have not been able to find any info on the Quinn Camp area. There are, however many, many tracks of, I think, Oligocene age animals in the vicinity of Quinn Spring. They are in a water-laid ash layer. There are tracks of camels, horses, rhinos, maybe sloths and titanotheres, and other critters that aren't around anymore. It is a really cool place. I wish I could go back with more time to explore, but that area is pretty much off limits.
I stayed in the Quinn Camp adobe for a couple of weeks when I was working down there. I wouldn't trade for the experience. Maybe some day I will tell the story of how the refrigerator that is standing against the west wall got there.
Any info on that area would be appreciated