One of the things we hope to do while we are traveling is to visit as many state parks in Texas that we can. So our first visit in the valley was to Falcon State Park. The trip there and back was just as interesting as the park itself.
Early in the morning we headed west of Mission driving parallel with the Rio Grande River going through Rio Grande City, Roma, then on to Falcon State Park.
Rio Grande City was an old city and really interesting. We drove through Fort Ringgold, which is one of Texas best preserved military post. The post was established in 1848 by Gen. Zachary Taylor and was used by Col. Robert E. Lee when he commanded troops in Texas. Today the fort is part of the Rio Grande City school system. They were in the process of refurbishing Col. Lee’s house so we were unable to tour it – RATS!
We did get to see Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto while we were there. This is a replica of the original shrine that is in Lourdes, France. The statue features Our Lady of Lourdes with a peasant girl who first had vision of her.
We headed on to Falcon State Park then and decided we would stop in Roma on our way back. Falcon State Park is located at the foot of a dam across the Rio Grande River. There is another dam further up the river in Del Rio, TX – Lake Amistad and Amistad Dam. I had lived in Del Rio a number of years and love the lake and dam so was really interested in seeing this one. I must say Falcon Reservoir and the dam was just as beautiful as Amistad.
Rio Grande River Side of Dam
The park was great also and we enjoyed talking to other park host there. There are great parking places for RVs and well as camping in tents. If you love to fish, swimming, boating, bird watching, hiking, and butterfly gardens this is a must see park.
We headed back to Roma to have lunch and look around the city. Roma is a very unique town in that it was established in 1765 as a major trade city for riverboats. The center of Roma is now a National Historic Landmark District with 38 identified historical structures. Texas Parks & Wildlife along with The Meadows Foundation are working to restore the building with local craftsmen. They are not currently open to the public but you can view work from the city’s plaza.
Roma is also one of the nine birding center in the area – Roma Bluffs. The bluffs overlook the Rio Grande River and really is a great overlook.
With all the neat things to see in Roma our great adventure there was while we were talking to a group of Border Patrol agent asking where to go for lunch. We were looking across the Rio Grande and talking to the guys when they told us to stick around as there was going to be some action.
Just for the fun of it we did and were totally amazed at what we saw. I still cannot believe it as it was about 1:00 in the afternoon with Border Patrol standing right there watching. This video tells it all – we are standing on the US side taking the video over on the Mexico side.
What an exciting day and one that we will never forget. On to our four days of workamping and then to our next adventure.