A relaxing alternative route through New Mexico, Texas and Louisiana
featuring Casino Camping in Louisiana
We ran into a woman in Durango at the campground there and she had recommended we visit a place where the buffalo roam wild in a campground. Sounded very interesting at the time, I must admit. And we were headed in that direction so we pointed our RV in the direction of Caprock Canyon, Texas and slid out of our RV resort on the west side of Albuquerque and headed through the city on the old Route 66.
We followed the old historic mother road from the RV resort through the downtown and on the other side of downtown we opted to pick up I-40. We took that to US 84 and headed south at Santa Rosa, New Mexico. Then at Fort Sumner we took US 60 east passing through Taiban, Clovis and Texico, New Mexico. Be very careful if you are planning to stop for lunch. We waited too long and didn’t feel like making anything in the RV and ended up at a Long John Silver’s in Clovis, New Mexico.
When we got to Bovina we took US 86 to Quitaque, Texas but not before passing through Dimmitt, Nazareth, Tulia and Silverton. We spent a lot of time absorbing the road and sights along the way. After all, this was a road trip and it wasn’t so much about the destinations.
It was intriguing how many poor towns we passed along the way. Family farms have long since given way to corporate agriculture if you follow this route. Market towns have long since ceased trading. There was, as is the case with many of these types of places, a certain melancholy to the road.
We got to Quitaque and turned up the road toward the Caprock Canyon State Park. We missed the office being open by minutes and got out and filled in a form to pay for camping the following day. The campground was apparently full though and we drove down increasingly narrow roads until we found the camping area. Outside the horse flies were seemingly attacking the RV and the heat and the dust were everywhere. We then realized that perhaps this wasn’t the best idea and turned around and left. It would be a great idea if you have a reservation and don’t mind horse flies that resemble birds.
We got on the road and soon passed a great little Phillips 66 gas station in Turkey, Texas and continued our journey along Route 86 to US 287 until we got to Childress where we spent the night at the Pilot. The town, itself, is a bit of a ghost town. A typical Texas town that suffers from poverty that is counterbalanced with a pride in their local football team and an unusual overcompensation of patriotism. Beautiful brick streets and buildings are there for the looking though!
The next morning we headed down the 287 toward Wichita Falls and then Dallas and skirted around the city to get onto I-20 heading east. We took that all the way to Shreveport, Louisiana where we decided to spend the night at Diamond Jack’s Casino. There is a small campground here and it is actually quite pleasant and you can walk to the casino and all it has to offer. The check in was a lengthy process and the line was long. I’m not sure what the problem was but hospitality took a backseat to the process.
We got reserved at the front desk of the hotel for a camping spot and headed back to the campground. We got hooked up and decided to check out the restaurant in the casino. It was an all-you-can-eat type place but was actually quite good. There were a few other options for food too. There was what looked like a movie theatre lobby that consisted of a bar and some type of food service. We didn’t go inside the actual casino but if you do not like smoke, don’t think about going. I suppose that’s probably true with most though.
All in we did enjoy it here. Our campsite backed right up to the river and it was an easy walk to and from the casino and its services. It was a nice enough place and we’d definitely go back if our travels took us in the direction. We hadn’t tried spending the night at a casino before but will definitely do it again with the hopes of playing some slot machines next time. And the best part of this journey was that it was mostly the road less traveled.