Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Westward Bound Again . . . Arkansas, Branson, MO and into Texas

Natural Bridge of Arkansas

Arkansas . . .
For the second time this year we are making our way out West. Fall of the year, and the leaves are just starting to turn at home. Hoping to see some color on our way westward.

I will begin in Arkansas where we took a back road from Little Rock up to Branson, Missouri. We made an overnight stop at our favorite Walmart near Clinton, and as always had a fairly restful sleep.

We made our way thru the hills of Arkansas where everywhere we turned there were little roadside flea markets doting the landscape. The scenic beauty of the Ozarks led us to Arkansas Natural Bridge, hidden away at the bottom of a very narrow, steep and curvy road. I would not advise taking the drive in anything larger than our motor home (28 ft).  This 100-ft. sandstone formation was millions of years in the making. The stone archway was actually used as a bridge during pioneer days and the Civil War and there are legends of its being a hideout for Jesse James and his gang. Huge spherical boulders dot the landscape here. Where they come from, I don't know. Some stories say they were formed when the ocean covered the landscape and the water rolled over the rock.
Narrow and steep road leading down to Natural Bridge - not for the faint-hearted RVer

Me and Sweet Pea at 4 mths old in front of Natural Bridge

Path to Natural Bridge
Entrance Cabin

Small cabin with a Spherical boulder

Inside of cabin

Old bootlegger

Branson . . .
Branson, Missouri was our next stop. Musicland Kampground in downtown Branson was our choice for a couple of nights in this great little town. The campground was nice, but very hilly driving around to find our site. Navigation into our particular camping spot was difficult as the sites were close together and we had to make a sharp turn to get into it. We only saw one show while staying there and that was The Sons of the Pioneers. Really cool show and one of the performers was a native Hickory, NC guy from Guy's hometown.  Also, while in Branson, we visited the Butterfly Palace to see their exhibit. A nice little side trip.
Butterfly seat

A flower that the butterflies loved
Never touched a lizard before . . .
Oh, I can't forget about coming across Lambert's Cafe. What a pity they were closed. I did want some rolls throwed my way. Maybe next time!

Lambert's Cafe - Home of the Throwed Rolls

Joplin . . .
If you want to see one of the largest used RV dealers and parts house in the country look no further than Joplin, MO. We spent a while there just looking around.
Colaw RV Parts in Joplin, MO

Driving toward Texas we received a call from our son. He informed us that one of our friends back home was in a National Shooting Competition back in Oklahoma City. Pity that we didn't know this earlier. Would have loved to watch him compete.

Amarillo . . .
Heading into Amarillo we came upon our favorite Rest Area. This is actually a storm shelter for travelers. A very sturdy building with signs everywhere warning of rattlesnakes outside. We didn't see any.
Texas Rest Area

Snake Signs

Sweet Peas Texas Look

In Amarillo we wanted to spend a couple of nights at the State Park outside of town, but after driving all the way out there we were told no vacancies. What a shame! But we did get Sweet Peas first hair trim at a local Petsmart.

From there we had a choice of driving into New Mexico and heading up the interstate into Colorado Springs, but instead we chose to take a shorter back road into Colorado. What a mistake. The most desolate road we've ever been on. Thought we would never make it to the NM/CO border. We finally crossed the border and found a Walmart to boondock at before heading on toward Colorado Springs.

Stay tuned for our next blog post which will take you further into Colorado.

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