Mountain and Basins Road Trip
By: Rylee, Anna Marie, Haley, Rithick and Jill
Midland (The starting Point)
MILES: Midland to Fort stockton= 105 miles, Fort Stockton to Big Bend= 99.2, Big Bend to El Paso= 289 miles, El Paso to Guadalupe Peak= 111 miles, Guadalupe Peak to Midland= 195 miles (799.2 miles in total)
Big Bend National Park
This is a place in far West Texas where the night skies are very dark and there are canyons in ancient limestone. There are hundreds of bird species in this desert area. The diversity of species is the best in the country. This place is also rich in history. Native people lived in/or passed through this area for more than thousands of years. There presence is evidenced from pictographs and archaeological sites. This magical place is called Big Bend National Park.
The Guadalupe Peak is the highest peak in Texas. You usually enter with a car into the park and then hike the trails. You can drive them to if you want. If you go to Guadalupe Peak it is 90 miles closer to Big Bend than El Paso is. There is also an airport close to it. The entry fee to this national park is five dollars per person for adults 16 years of age and older and is good for seven days. You can bring your dog on campgrounds and very little trails. Dogs are not allowed on most trails.
Rio Grande River
The Rio Grande River is 1,896 miles long holding the record of the fourth longest river in the United States. This river has been used as a boundary between Mexico and the U.S since 1848. It rises in high mountains then continues to flow at high elevation. The river cuts through the middle of Mexico then makes its way into Texas stopping in El Paso. IN New Mexico the river goes through the Rio Grande Rift. About 3 million years ago water drained from San Juan mountains in Colorado forming the river that takes apart New Mexico and eventually the west and southwest boundary and the Texas-Mexico border, before emptying into into the Gulf of Mexico. It's quite the sight to see!
The Pecos River runs through New Mexico and Texas, but it enters the mountain and basins region just to the East. The river flows Southeast creating many boundaries. Those many boundaries include Loving and Reeves, Reeves and Ward, Ward and Pecos, Pecos and Crane, Pecos and Crockett, and Crockett and Terrell counties. Then the long river enters Val Verde County at the northwestern corner. Then the Pecos River makes it’s way into it’s mouth, The Rio Grande River. In addition to being a boundary for so many Counties the river serves as a boundary for most of the mountains and the arid region of Texas. From all this information the main thing you're probably getting is that this river is very big, well it is! The river adds up to be 926 miles long! It might not be as long as the Rio Grande River but its a beautiful sight to see and a great place to catch some fish.
Arid: (of land or a climate) having little or no rain; too dry or barren to support vegetation.
Barrack- provide (soldiers) with accommodations in a building or set of buildings.
The first Europeans in all probability were Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca and his three companions, survivors of an unsuccessful Spanish expedition to Florida, who passed through the El Paso area in 1535- 1536, although their exact route is debated by historians. Several years later, in 1540–42, an expedition under Francisco Vázquez de Coronado explored an enormous amount of territory now known as the American Southwest. The first party of Spaniards that certainly saw the Pass of the North was the Rodríguez-Sánchez expedition of 1581; its arrival marked the beginning of 400 years of history in the El Paso area.So in conclusion not many Europeans traveled to this area but a lot of the Spanish people did.
Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca
The Jumano was a very big tribe that lived along the Rio Grande River. They lived in permanent homes made of wood and adobe bricks (the bricks made by drying clay in the sun). The tribe would paint the inside of their homes black, white, red and yellow strips. Of course living in the mountains and basins the land was very dry so they would grow all of their crops around the Rio Grande River. They would gather wild plants and buffalo, the buffalo being very important to them because lots of the clothes and weapons they made were made out of the animal. They also traded it using it as if it was money.The tribe didn't last to long though, the Apache tribe attacked them, they faced a drought, and caught diseases brought on by the Europeans.
Locations of Indian Tribes
Fort davis was built in 1854, named after secretary of war, Jefferson Davis. It was located strategically located to protect immigrants, mail coaches, and freight wagons on the Trans-Pecos river of the Chihuahua Trail and the San Antonio-El Paso road from 1854 to 1891. Under command of General Davis E. Twiggs it was evacuated in 1861 at the start of the civil war. Only 20 Confederate States Army troops manned the fort during John R. Baylor's invasion of New Mexico.
The McDonald Observatory is an astronomical Observatory is located near Fort Davis in Jeff Davis County. The facility is located on Mount Locke in the Davis mountains of West Texas. The site of the McDonald Observatory is property of the University of Texas at Austin. The Observatory is equipped with a wide range of astronomical tools, and to add to it in 1939 the McDonald Observatory built the Otto Struve telescope. The 2.1 meter or 82 inch mirror made it the second largest in the world at that time. The construction of this telescope took place in 1933 and finished up in 1939. The Otto Struve telescope was designed by the Warner and Swasey company and constructed by the Paterson Leitch Company. The Otto Struve telescope was named after a Russian astronomer named Otto Struve. The telescope is still in good shape and in use to this day. Now the telescope is controlled by a computer, and weighs 45 tons.
Check out this document for more information on the Otto Struve telescope::http://mcdonaldobservatory.org/research/telescopes/Struve
Hotel Room(s) Total:
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