Roadtrip (Archive) (398)
The Barton Warnock Environmental Education Center (HC 70, Box 375, Terlingua 79852; 424-3327; www.tpwd.state.tx.us/park/barton/ ), which serves as the eastern entrance gateway to Big Bend Ranch State Park, interprets 570 million years of geological history and the 5 biological landscapes of the Chihuahuan Desert of Big Bend. A bookstore, gift shop, and self-guided 2.5-acre botanical garden augment the informative educational exhibits. Admission: $3, free age 12 and younger. Guided tours, $5 per person, minimum 8 people. Hours: Daily 8-4:30.
The Chihuahuan Desert Research Institute (Box 905, Fort Davis 79734; 364-2499; www.cdri.org) offers hiking trails and educational programs. The CDRI promotes the area and produces films, publications, and other media about the region. Admission: $2. Hours: Mon-Fri 9-5, Sat 9-3.
History buffs and nature lovers will enjoy the Judge Roy Bean Visitor Center, located a half-mile south of US 90 on Loop 25 in Langtry. The center offers narrated dioramas tracing the life and times of Judge Roy Bean, the "Law West of the Pecos," along with the restored Jersey Lilly Saloon. Adjacent to the center is a well-interpreted Chihuahuan Desert nature trail, including information on medicinal and practical uses of many desert plants. Hours: Daily 8-5; closed major holidays. Call 291-3340.
The Chisos Basin, in the Chisos Mountains of Big Bend Natl. Park (Box 129, Big Bend Natl. Park 79834-0129; 477-2251), provides campgrounds, a restaurant, motel, gift shop, and post office. For other lodging information, call 477-2291.
The Web site of the Brewster County Tourism Council (Box 335, Terlingua 79852; 877-BIGBEND; www.visitbigbend.com) offers a plethora of Big Bend literature, including accommodation and other visitor information. Another good source of information on area services, attractions, events, lodging, and shops is the free Big Bend Area Travel Guide, published by the Big Bend Area Travel Assn. (Box 401, Alpine 79831; 877/BIGBEND).