Peculiar, MO

Peculiar, MO

Park Review – Peculiar Park Place RV Park

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐
Location:  Peculiar, MO.
Site Quality / Amenities: Asphalt roads and gravel sites. Some sites have trees for shade but most do not. Restrooms and showers, self-service laundry, activity room for card playing, puzzles, or darts. This is an old KOA park but it has been updated and is nicer than most KOAs.
Type: Commercial Park
Access: Easy access 27 miles south of downtown Kansas City along Interstate 49.
Staff: Friendly family owned park.
Cellular/Wi-Fi: Good AT&T and Verizon service. There was high speed WiFi per the park but we didn’t use it.
Restaurants: We ate at Merle’s American Tavern in Peculiar at the recommendation of the park staff but only found the food to be so-so. We’d probably look elsewhere if we stay in the area again.
Nearby parks: We didn’t look at any other parks in the area.
What we liked: Clean, well run park.
What we didn’t like: Sites are somewhat close together and are gravel. Some of the interior roads are a bit narrow but were doable even with a large rig. Our truck alarm went off several times although I don’t believe anyone was actually doing anything to it. This is only the second time something like that has happened.
Verdict: This is a nice park for a one or two night stopover when travelling through the area and we’d stay here again.

Wilson, KS

Wilson, KS

Park Review – Wilson State Park

We stayed one night in this park on the way east toward Missouri. Located in the heart of the Smoky Hills, Wilson State Park is considered by many to be the most beautiful in the state. Wilson Reservoir features a rugged shoreline punctuated by scenic cliffs and rocky outcrops.

Wilson Reservoir offers excellent white bass and striped bass angling. The Cedar Trail in the Otoe area is a one-mile loop with a concrete surface and is great for a leisurely, low-stress walk. The 24.5-mile long Switchgrass Bike Trail is popular with mountain bikers to pursue this challenging activity.

Wilson Wildlife Area is located on the upper end of 9,000 acre Wilson Reservoir. The 8,069-acre public hunting area is made up of 5,000 acres of rugged rolling hills of native prairie, approximately 2,000 acres of cropland, and 1,000 acres of riparian timber along the Saline River, Cedar Creek, Turkey Creek, and Elm Creek. The area has a waterfowl refuge that was established in 1996.

Wilson State Park

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐
Location:  Wilson, KS
Site Quality / Amenities: Asphalt roads and gravel sites. There were a few small trees to sit under that that provided a small amount of shade. Restrooms and showers were provided although we did not use them. 50A electrical service with full hookups.
Type: State Park
Access: Easy access about 5 miles north of I-70, and west of K-232.
Staff: We had minimal interaction with the staff but when we did they were efficient and professional.
Cellular/Wi-Fi: AT&T was reported as marginal but Verizon speeds were great.
Restaurants: We did not eat out while here.
Nearby parks: We didn’t look at any other parks in the area.
What we liked: Unlike much of the state, this area included many rolling hills.
What we didn’t like: The site we were in was not very level. No shade over the site.
Verdict: This is a nice park with lake views and rolling hills and is a good option for a few days when travelling through the area. We’d stay here again.

Sweetwater, TX

Sweetwater, TX

Park Review – Bar J Hitchin Post

Rating: ⭐⭐1/2
Location:  Sweetwater, TX
Site Quality / Amenities: Roads and sites were gravel. Some mesquite trees for shade. Restrooms and showers, self-service laundry, Office with Pool table, TV, and Lounge Areas.
Type: Commercial Park
Access: Easy access right off I-40 west of Sweetwater.
Staff: Friendly family owned park.
Cellular/Wi-Fi: Decent AT&T and Verizon service for an overnight. There was WiFi but we didn’t use it.
Restaurants: We ate at Skeets in Sweetwater. The chicken fried steak was good but overall the place was just ok.
Nearby parks: We didn’t look at any other parks in the area.
What we liked: Easy access for a one night stop. There are two truck stops for fuel at that exit. Cheap full hookup sites with 50A service.
What we didn’t like: Train tracks nearby but we only heard them during the day. Close to I-40 so there was some road noise.
Verdict: This is a nice park for a one night stopover when travelling through the area and we’d stay here again.

Goliad, TX

Goliad, TX

On October 9, 1835 a group of Texas citizens, led by Capt. George Collinsworth entered Goliad and attacked the Mexican garrison stationed at the Presidio La Bahia and were successful in taking possession of the fort. This action followed the incident at Gonzales a week earlier where the slogan “Come and take it” was coined daring the Mexicans to come and take a cannon that protected the city. From here the Texans marched out and captured Ft. Lipantitlan, near the Nueces River on November 5th thereby cutting off the last remaining line of Mexican communication from San Antonio to Matamoros.

After Texas gained its independence from Mexico in 1836, settlers began arriving in the Goliad area, lured by the prospect of rounding up stray cattle that belonged to the nearby missions. Ranching became the primary economic driver, and the age of the cattle drives began in the late 1800’s. Local ranch owners drove thousands of head to railheads in Kansas and Nebraska for shipment to the coasts of the U.S. As railroads were built, cattle were no longer driven up the trails and the economy of Goliad shifted to cotton and other types of farming along with beef production. With the influx of Mexican citizens fleeing the Revolutionary turmoil in Mexico and the population of Goliad grew to 13,000 in the 1890’s. By the 1940’s cattle raising and agricultural production again became economic generators and that continues today.

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Rockport, TX

Rockport, TX

After spending the summer and fall of 2021 on a long loop through the north west we decided we wanted to spend some time chillin in Texas. We figured the Rockport area would give us a lot of options with the gulf nearby in Port Aransas, lots of history, nature areas and some good seafood. While there were a lot of activities in the area, many of them were small. For instance the Farmers Market and Market Days activities only had a few vendors and light attendance particularly in January and February. By March and April things were picking up. Other events like Pardi Gras, Oysterfest and Crawfish Festival were better attended.

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