West Texas Off Road ATV Tour
So you're the weekend warrior eh? Well, better load up that ATV of yours (Go to Shark Kage FB profile to check durable atv ramps for your truck) and head to West Texas. It doesn't get much more fun that zooming off road up and down the west Texas hills on an ATV, enjoying some stunning scenery, and learning about the desert's geology, history, and fauna.
During a trip to West Texas to enjoy a fantastic two day music festival at one of our favorite resorts, we signed up for a three hour off road ATV tour during our stay at . Lajitas Resort is sandwiched between Big Bend Ranch State Park and Big Bend National Park with the Rio Grande River along the southern edge of the Resort and in November 2011 they were hosting Jimmy LaFave's Singer Songwriter music festival, so it didn't take long for us to decide to head west.
We took three days, golfing and camping along the way, to get to Lajitas and over the next 5 days had a fantastic time enjoying Lajitas Resort, playing golf on their outstanding golf course (Black Jack's Crossing), hiking in Big Bend, exploring Terlingua, listening to some fantastic music, and riding ATV's. To learn more about this great trip, read our West Texas Adventure article.
One morning before the music started we headed over to the Lajitas General Store to meet our ATV tour guide, Bill. We got a short introduction from him on how to ride one of his powerful ATVs, put on our goggles, and took off in a cloud of dust trying to keep up with Bill. Those ATVs are fast - each one can handle two riders and has a huge engine with a top speed of 65 - to us novices it seemed like we were doing 65 and still had lots of throttle left. Not only are they fast, but they are a blast to ride and very stable and comfortable.
Bill led us over to the north side of the Resort where we quickly traversed through the desert, over a couple washes, and zig-zagged our way up a switch back trail to the top of a tall hill. When we finally caught up with Bill's dust trail, he was stopped where the trail abruptly ended with a drop off to the desert 300 feet below and he was calmly waiting for us to arrive and to make sure we stopped short of the end of the trail! We dismounted and finally had an opportunity to take our eyes off the trail and take in the view which was stunning! We could see for miles in almost every direction - the 7000' peaks at Big Bend National Park off to the east, the Rio Grande river valley and the Resort's golf course just in front of us followed by views well into Mexico and it's mountain ranges, plus hills and mountains of all shapes and colors on all sides of us. Wow! Stunning vistas.
As we stood in awe taking in the view, Bill departed with a small portion of his vast reservoir of knowledge of the fauna, the geology, the history of the area, and other fascinating tidbits of information. Very interesting and we leaned a lot about how the area was formed, the use of some of the desert plants, the impact of volcano's and uplifting, and lots more. I leaned more in 25 minutes than I retained from six years of college!
When our brains were close to full, we mounted the ATVs for an exciting ride back down the mountain. From there we spent the next two hours riding through arroyos and washes, up and down the hills, and stopping several times for a geology, history, wildlife, or plant lesson or just to take a break and enjoy the view. What a blast and all too soon we were back at the Lajitas General Store, shaking the dust off our clothes, and thanking Bill for such a fun, thrilling, and informative trip! We got to get up close and personal with the Chihuahuan Desert and we learned a lot from Bill that we were able to take home with us as well as what seemed like a large part of the Chihuahuan Desert in our hair, ears, and clothes - luckily we left all of those nasty cactus needles where they were!
If you're heading to West Texas we can highly recommend a stay at Lajitas Resort and their off road ATV with Bill, who was very personable, extremely knowledgeable, and made the tour very fun, interesting, and informative. You can choose from several tours including two to four hour rides or even an ATV Treasure Hunt. Lajitas Resort has several unique and comfortable lodging options, a spa, good restaurant, an RV Park, hunting and shooting, horseback riding, and a fantastic golf course that we rated as one of the Best Resort Courses in Texas! And when you stay at Lajitas you have easy access to Big Bend National Park and Big Bend Ranch State Park plus miles of hiking and biking trails, rafting on the Rio Grande River, several fun bars, and some good restaurants in Terlingua. Check out our map of the Big Bend area for things to see and do. .