2012 Head for the Mountains! Alpine Adventure
This is preliminary from last years posting just to get it started.
Is it hot enough for you out there? Well, our club never shrinks from doing things in our Miatas, we just find ways to cool off! Like our Sundae’s on Mondays! Well, as promised way back in January at the planning meeting, I’m planning a “Head For the Mountains” trip out to Alpine and the Fort Davis area. When, you say? Mark your calendars for this coming Labor Day weekend! (August 31 to September 3rd) It’s a long weekend and we can cool off at the higher altitude of the Alpine/Ft. Davis area. Normally about 10 to 20 degrees cooler than San Antonio, this part of Texas will be a welcome respite from our heat (avg 73 max high 84 in September). (On Tuesday, July 12 in San Antonio it is 97 degrees but in Alpine at the Hampton Inn it is 82 degrees with a high of 90). Here is a map of the proposed route. The time doesn't reflect stops for breaks and lunch. Don't forget your radios and chargers so you will know what is going on! Here is a good set at Sam's Club - probably the best you can get. http://www.samsclub.com/sams/shop/pr...Id=prod1190334
We will leave from Haby’s Alsatian Bakery in Castroville (Hwy 90 West at FM 471 across from Sammy's Restaurant). Like last year we will meet at 8 am and leave by 8:30 am. It is posted on the back page of the newsletter.
You will be asked to sign the waiver sheet and it must be signed, including guests or non-members! If you are unclear of the proper run procedures, please visit http://www.bluebonnetmiata.org/cruise.html and click on Run Guidelines.
Now, before you worry about where that is, it’s on the way to our destination for lunch. We’ll take Hwy 90 west through Uvalde and have lunch in Del Rio. There are plenty of eateries but we’ll want to eat and run and continue west. We’ll make a quick stop in Langtry to see the Judge Roy Bean historic “Law West of the Pecos” site. After lunch we can join as one group to continue the trip to Alpine. From there, we’ll continue on west to Marathon and stretch our legs at the old Marathon Hotel. From there, it’s not much further to Alpine.
The “host” lodging will be at the Antelope Lodge, a quaint, historic facility I’m sure you’ll enjoy. I stayed there for the State Roundup a few years back and please trust me on this, you’ll enjoy the intimacy we’ll all get to enjoy in the large grassy courtyard where we can stay up, sit outside, gaze at the beautiful West Texas skies and swap stories. Each unit has it’s on drive up parking. I’ve talked to them and they will not raise their rates even for Labor Day weekend and with the Labor Day Balloon Fest going on. Rates are incredibly reasonable! Each room has a kitchenette included! I suggest calling them directly at (800) 880-8106 or (432) 837-2451.
Friday night, after everyone checks into their respective place of lodging, we'll meet at the Antelope lodge about 6:30 pm and have a reception party and make run plans then. There will be a drive over to Marfa to see the Marfa Lights, if there is an interest. If you want to eat elsewhere, feel free to be on your own.
McDonalds Observatory will also be open on Friday and Saturday night for a star party but check first to make sure about times (also check temperatures up on the mountaintop). Remember, these are only tentative plans and when you check in, look for a white board for actual run and event offerings. To book your reservations for the star party - https://mcdonaldobservatory.org/visitors/book/
Big Bend Balloon Bash will be happening Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Lots of events are scheduled for Labor Day weekend in Alpine including music and dancing.
Sunday and Sunday evening will culminate with dinner in Old Terlingua at the Starlight Theater. If you’ve never been there, you’re in for a treat. While it’s miles from anywhere, you’ll be amazed at the menu items and the great food. This will certainly be a dinner you’ll remember for a long time. Next door is a fantastic store for finding that perfect Big Bend keepsake. Also check out La Kiva if you get a chance. If you wish to go into Big Bend National Park the entrance fee is $20 per car. It is a long slow drive through the park but you are rewarded with some gorgeous views.
Alternatively, if a trip to Old Terlingua doesn’t suit your fancy, also on Sunday evening is the Fire Glow and Concert at Alpine’s Buck Stadium, featuring the balloon pilots as they “play” their burners in a fun and memorable outdoor concert. When the balloons simultaneously fire their burners, the audience experiences the heat of over 150 million BTUs – enough energy to heat 1,500 three-bedroom homes!
Monday, after breakfast, we’ll skedaddle back to the heat of San Antonio. All of this is just pouring out of my head. But, at any rate, make your reservations for this great weekend get away! We’ll have a blast!
Note: If the Antelope Lodge is booked then the Hampton Inn in Alpine has plenty of rooms and provides free breakfast. Rooms will fill fast since the Big Bend Balloon Bash is happening that weekend, the crews are staying here. Use AARP, AAA or Hilton Honors points to reduce your rate. The hotel is new and looks just like the one in Sweetwater. Reservations are cancellable until 6 PM Aug. 30th. or the night before you are booked. Other hotels can be found here.
Here are some links to the 2007 Bend the Bend Run. Friday, Saturday, Sunday. This was the same time of year, the same holiday weekend. If you have a pretty fast internet connection you can watch a collection of photos made into a video here. It may not work on an iPhone or iPad due to the Flash content.
If you want to visit more about this, please feel free to call me anytime on my cell phone at 210-846-1944.
Editor of In the Breeze
Bluebonnet Miata Club
San Antonio, Texas
If you aren’t going to Alpine this Friday, this email may bore you, in which case you can delete it…go on, it won’t hurt my feelings! HOWEVER, if you are…..
…as promised, I am going to list a few items…okay, more than a few, that I think are needed, or, at least, handy for your trip to Alpine.
- Sunscreen, at least 50 SPF, for best protection.
(With all this mosquito hub-bub going around, you may want to swing by WalMart for some Bull Frog Mosquito Coast SPF 30
Continuous Spray, 6 oz. Cannister) It’s an insect repellant AND a sunscreen!
- FRS Radios (Okay, they’re walkie talkies, two way radios, whatever…you want ‘em, you need ‘em…for best communication with all your pals on this trip!
- Lightweight jacket or sweatshirt, hoody, etc…or some kind of cover up. Those mountain evenings can get pretty chilly, really!
- Binoculars. You’ll see some pretty cool sights while out there and you may want a closer view! Like when Bubba drops his flashlight out in that famous “Marfa Lights” corn field!
- Camera. This may be a no-brainer, but believe it or not, I heard, “Oh, dang, I forgot my camera!” last year…over and over.
- Batteries. I’m not sure what your devices use, but it pays off to have some extra AA and AAA batteries for them!
- Sun protection for your head. Okay, stop laughing, you may have more hair than me, but what about your neck? Your ears? Those things need protection too! I suggest for the guys a bush hat from Academy. You know the one with the floppy brim all the way around. Looks dorky, but works well!
- A small ice chest…with a waterproof liner! Academy has a really cool small one for $15 that has a hard liner inside so you won’t get that leak inside your Miata!
- Snacks. While there are grocery stores out there, there aren’t any bargains, either. I buy most of my Granola Bars, etc, here and take them with me. When Granola bars aren’t available, I substitute with Snickers bars. *grin*
- FIX-A-FLAT. Lord knows we hope no one has a flat, but in case you do, and it’s a repairable type, you can fill up your tire temporarily with this stuff until you can get it properly repaired. You can get FIX-A-Flat at any auto parts store.
I hope you all aren’t offended I mention these items. I’m hopelessly a man with that enabler personality. I just want everyone to have fun, it’s as simple as that. See you all at the meeting Tuesday…you’ll get your t-shirts then!
Editor of In the Breeze
Bluebonnet Miata Club
San Antonio, Texas
Thanks George, we have had to buy things there because we were not prepared before. It really can get cold in an instant there just like last year. Remember how we were all huddled around the fire on Saturday then on Sunday going around the loop it was back up to almost 100.
It may also be good to get a set of tire plugs in case you get a flat, they will seal the leak then fill it with your air compressor that comes in all NCs. If you can avoid it, use the fix-a-flat as a last resort because it fills your tire with a messy goo that needs to get cleaned out later when you try to get the hole patched.
We should have a great time this year. The weather looks like it is cooperating and we have a lot of Miata friends to enjoy the time with.