After 5 weeks in the Big Bend area of Texas, we finally moved on. Marathon, Texas is the first town we passed through and stopped to stretch our legs. It’s named after Greece because Albion Shepard, a former sea captain who bought land there in 1882 said the terrain reminded him of the plains of Marathon, Greece. We walked the couple blocks of town and poked around the Gage Hotel. Built in 1927, this anchor of the town is gorgeous with its 7.5 acre garden, fire pits and pool. Back on the road, we drove through miles of not much…just ranch after ranch, range land and, well, Texas.
Judge Roy Bean Historical Saloon and Museum
In lil’ ole Langtry, Texas we stopped in at the Judge Roy Bean Museum. Judge Roy Bean was an eccentric saloon keeper and Justice of the Peace, a.k.a. “the Law West of Pecos”. Fiction became so intermingled with fact that he became a legend in his lifetime. Court was held on the porch with spectators on horseback. He seldom consulted any law, just used his own judgement and liberal quantities of bluff and bluster. All offenses were finable and he simple pocketed the fines. Bean reached the peak of fame in 1896 when he staged a heavyweight title fight just over the river on an island in Mexico because boxing matches were illegal in Texas. This all seemed very Texas to me.
Seminole Canyon State Park
Our new campsite is a primitive one on Amistad Lake in Del Rio, Texas. Down the road a bit we visited Seminole Canyon State Park for an afternoon of hiking. The weather started out warm with a bit of drizzle. Humidity of 100% is new to us but didn’t stop our hike. We enjoyed a 7.5 mile loop that gave us views down into Seminole Canyon and eventually the junction of Seminole Canyon and the Rio Grande River. At one point in the hike you get a good view across the canyon of Panther Cove which has ancient cave rock paintings. One of the paintings is of a leaping panther dating back to 7000B.C! The hike was pretty easy; perfect for our recovery week.