Bracketville, Texas
Alamo Village
Comstock, Texas

April 3rd

A Texas water fountain outside a restroom. Also note the ventillation system with the open-air ceiling!

A real Texas Longhorn just outside our driver's side window.

The sign in front of Alamo Village (population 2 - we think)

Part of the movie set on Main Street.

Movie set church in the town square.

Ok, we've changed plans but are entitled to! We were originally headed to Fort Stockton for a 2 day rest/relaxation, but decided to go to Bracketville, Texas instead. Dennis and Denise (remember Dallas) recommended we go there and visit the Alamo Village. So, without too much thought, we headed out of San Antonio due west on Route 90.

Route 90 was a fantastic road; 4 lanes most of the way and a speed limit of 70 except through the small towns. Bracketville and Alamo Village weren't that far away, so we decided to make it a pit stop and continue on toward Comstock, Texas. But first, let me tell you a little about Alamo Village.

The village is a movie set originally created for John Wayne by the owner of the 1700 acre ranch. 72 movies, 6 documentaries, 6 music videos and 13 commercials have been filmed here so far. Some of the movies include "Arrowhead" - Charleton Heston, "The Alamo" - John Wayne, "Two Rode Together" - Jimmy Stewart and Richard Widmark, and "Bandolero" - Raquel Welch. One side of the town was created specifically for John Wayne and his movies, and the other side was created for various other filming endeavors.

The Alamo at Alamo Village.

On our trip to Bracketville, we saw Border Patrol fixed-wing aircraft doing figure 8's in the sky and Border Patrol vehicles all over the place. It appeared they were searching for someone or something because the parked vehicles (off the side of the road) did not have officers in them. It was obvious they were in the brush somewhere! We also encountered an Immigration Inspection Point about halfway between Bracketville and Comstock. I guess we looked like non-Hispanics because the INS officer only asked if we were U.S. citizens before letting us proceed. No ID's, no searching the truck or trailer, et cetera.

Amistad Recreational Area (a huge National Park on the Amistad Reservoir) was next on the agenda because we were going to park ourselves there for the night instead of continuing on to Comstock. We saw 3 trailer rigs pulling off Spur 104 so we followed them thinking they knew there was camping down there. Whelp, wrong we were again. The road came to a dead end at the boat ramp. We did however, see some very nice scenery, some goats and even a Road Runner (John saw it) on the side of the road. It disappeared into the brush before Sissy could get a glance (John said it was being chased by a coyote).

Move set at Alamo Village.

The city of Del Rio was next for fuel because Dennis and Denise told us to keep the tank reasonably full down here. We stopped at the last Exxon out of town (because the price was cheapest) and John began fueling. Sissy took the credit card into the station and spotted 2 Harley riders pulling up. Not paying attention to what she was doing (walking and looking at the same time) she almost fell flat on her face (John missed it), but the riders jokingly said they didn't see it either. After fuel and a quick oil check, westbound we were toward Comstock.

John chatting with the local Sheriff.

It was getting late in the afternoon and we were in the middle of nowhere. We spotted a pristine RV Park on the side of the road and pulled in. Gravel roads, gravel campsites, gravel surroundings were all there was except for the metal office building (locked) and several trailer rigs. We pulled into one of them and discovered they had electric, water and sewer. Shortly, the campsite host came riding up on his electric wheel chair and spoke to us while holding his finger over the little metal hole in his throat. He said "fill this out and give me $15.00", and "the cable TV channels were 3, 5 and 7."

The park wasn't much, but the people were very nice. And besides, we were only doing a pit stop before heading to our next stop: Big Bend National Park (yup, that was a change also). After hooking up, John went exploring while Sissy updated her journal. John saw some folks picking up something and had to go there and ask what was up. They were picking up un-exploded firecrackers from the night before. And to think, John thought he might have been able to pick up gold right from the parking lot.

Boy, the criminals were small in them, thar days!

Dinner was next (steak and baked potato - John dropped his on the floor) and then it was time for relaxing and getting ready for bed. The bike stayed with us in the trailer because we weren't planning to ride it, and we wanted an early start in the morning. Big Bend was about 4 hours away.

UPDATE ON OUR PLANS - We've decided to skip Denver and Grand Junction, Colorado on this leg of our trip due to weather. They're still getting snow there, and crossing the Rockies in April is not a good idea (recommendations from several people who've tried to do that.) So instead, we'll be visiting Big Bend for a couple days, heading north to Roswell, New Mexico and shooting west to Arizona. Hurricane, Utah and Las Vegas will now be after Arizona instead of before it. Our time frame to San Diego should still be accurate, but between San Antonio and San Diego it is all scrambled up!

John & Sissy EXCLUSIVE RATINGS: (1 bad - good 10)

  • Campground - 5
  • People - 10
  • Roads - 10
  • Scenery - 8
  • Traffic - 9
  • Things to Do - 3
  • Weather - 8

Next page in chronological order

All photographs are Copyright @ 2002 - 2008 by John T. VanderHeiden.
For information concerning your usage of any photographs, please see our User Agreement.