Tuesday, April 14, 2015

On the Road: Hords Creek Lake to Huntsville State Park

We arose early on Monday, April 6, to go to Huntsville State Park, a trip of 290 miles. That's not much when you are driving a car, but when towing a travel trailer, it is a pretty good trip. The first part of the trip followed the same route as reported in "On the Road: San Angelo, TX, to Mother Neff State Park." It was a pleasant drive. We stopped at the Shell station on the western edge of Gatesville for gas. It is an easy place to maneuver a trailer, and the gas prices there are as good as any other place in Gatesville.

At the cutoff to Mother Neff State Park, Highway 107 narrows down for a stretch of about 5 or so miles with no shoulders. At Moody, the highway improves. In fact, we've followed this route several times in our travels to Conroe, and we've always enjoyed the drive.

The trip today is 290 miles long.
At Eddy, the highway crosses busy Interstate 35 and becomes Texas 7, which we follow until we reach Interstate 45 at Centerville. From Eddy to Marlin, the drive is pleasant, as is the road surface. Once past Marlin, though, traffic picks up considerably and the roadway deteriorates in places. A large number of trucks follow this route for some reason, and not all are trucks related to oil field activity (water, gravel, etc.).

A few miles east of Marlin, we pulled off into a picnic area and made sandwiches for lunch. Unlike with our Rockwood, we are able to leave the table set up in our new trailer, so it was nice to sit at the table and enjoy a leisurely lunch.

At Kosse, there is an Exxon station with various services about 1 block west of the main intersection. It is a good stop for RVers. In fact, right next door is a nice little RV park, Camp Kosse RV Park. The website does not provide much information, but prices seem reasonable enough and some of the sites even are covered. A few miles east of Kosse, there is an open pit mine where coal is being strip mined.

At Centerville, there are numerous places to eat and stop for gas. Once on I-45, we made good time. Traffic on this interstate is always heavy, and most drivers assume the posted speed limit of 75 mph is a minimum rather than a maximum speed. Everyone seems to be in such a hurry! At Madisonville, there is a Buc-ee's at the southeast corner of the I-45/Texas 21 intersection. We like Buc-ee's: there is plenty of parking space for RVs, plenty of room to get to gas pumps, restrooms are clean, and they have a good drink selection. On down the road, a few miles north of Huntsville, there is a rest area with restrooms and plenty of parking for RVs.

Just south of Huntsville, we exit at Park Road 40 just past the enormous statue of Sam Houston. Huntsville State Park will be our home for the next 3 nights.

I did not like pulling the trailer on Texas 7 on this trip because of the heavy traffic as well as the poor road conditions. There were numerous potholes on the roadway. On our return trip, I'll take another route. And although this has nothing to do with the roadway, the wind blew hard from the south most of the day. Since we spent most of the day heading due east, the wind was hitting us broadside, and that just isn't a pleasant experience on bad roads. But you have to expect these things when you pull a trailer -- take the bad with the good.

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