Texas Department of Transportation

Travel & Outdoor
Texas Highways Magazine

Texas Highways Magazine April 2019

Texas Highways, the official travel magazine of Texas, encourages recreational travel within Texas and tells the Texas story to readers around the world. Renowned for its photography, statewide events coverage, top weekend excursions, off-the-beaten path discoveries, and scenic destinations, Texas Highways helps readers discover the treasures of the Lone Star State.

United States
Texas Department of Transportation
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12 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
the long and winding trail

While we know there’s plenty to keep travelers busy across our vast state, we’re also aware that committed road-trippers don’t brake and turn around at the state line. In planning our feature story on the Guadalupe Ridge Trail, which extends 100 miles from Guadalupe Peak to Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico, we knew that stopping at the edge of Texas in a remote section of the Guadalupe Mountains would be giving the experience short shrift. So this month, we’re partnering with New Mexico Magazine to share the story of this dual-state treasure with our neighbors to the west. For our joint feature story, Managing Editor Wes Ferguson made his second trip to explore the Guadalupe Ridge Trail. As the fall 2017 artist-in-residence at Guadalupe Mountains National Park, he had spent nearly…

1 min.
behind the story

Willie Nelson, this month’s cover subject, has a long history of helping to preserve the natural beauty of the Lone Star State through the Texas Department of Transportation’s “Don’t mess with Texas” campaigns. Nelson filmed his first DMWT public service announcement in 1989. In the 30-second video, he sits on a stool in the middle of Pace Bend Road in Spicewood and sings a version of his song “Mammas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys” with an anti-littering twist. In 2016, the 30th anniversary of DMWT, Willie’s son, Lukas Nelson, filmed an advertisement in the same spot singing the same song. “I’m sure Dad got a kick out of it back in the day, and I get a kick out of it now,” Nelson told Austin NBC…

2 min.

The March issue is a winner, especially “The Boogie Woogie Highway” article. I’ve been looking for a good excuse to visit East Texas, and now I have one. Frank Reisch, Dallas SMALL-TOWN TREATS Texas Highways posted just today about J & P Bar and Grill in Comstock. Funny how the universe points you in the right direction when you happen to be just passing through a small Texas town. Erik McCowan, Smithville I love me some Underwood’s! The barbecue, the rolls, the cobbler—and the memories! It was a big treat when my grandmother took us to Underwood’s. Linda Kitchens Gunn, Dallas My husband drove to Wiseman House Chocolates in Hico to buy truffles and toffee. Then he brought them with us to Spain to surprise me on Valentine’s Day. He’s a keeper! Joyce Stewart Hobbs, Flower Mound Big Bend…

3 min.

Landscape painter Gabriel Salazar has long been inspired by the lush fields of citrus and palms surrounding Donna. As a boy, with the help of his father’s American employer, Salazar immigrated to this Rio Grande Valley town from a small community near Monterrey, Mexico. Salazar honed his artwork as a teen, and his drawings soon captivated a gallery owner from Austin, who in the 1970s recruited him to the capital city to work in art restoration. After about seven years away, the beauty of Donna called Salazar back. It’s a beauty that has endured through change: Part of a Mexican land grant established in 1834, the sleepy farming community became a modern gateway to Mexico in 2010 with the opening of an eight-lane international bridge. Happy in his hometown, the…

15 min.
the rio wild

It was midday on Día de los Muertos as I hurtled down a rain-swollen Rio Grande, my illusions of control over my canoe evaporating like dew in the Chihuahuan Desert. A threat waited immediately ahead: a partially submerged tree periscoping above the churning surface. Unless I maneuvered around it, I would likely end up capsized and adrift in a flow surging around monolithic rocks strewn across the utterly remote Mariscal Canyon. Before this I’d only ever canoed across placid lakes. I’d gone on a guided whitewater day trip in an inflatable raft as a kid, in New Mexico, but I was home before dinner. And yet, with little to no river-running experience, I had just committed to a week on the only stretch of river in Texas that is federally designated…

5 min.
old ranch, new tracks

NEW TRACKS LLAMA RANCH BED & BREAKFASTS Cypress Road, Kyle. 512-847-3909 or 512-268-3211; llamatracks.com When David Allen plows fields or bales hay at his ranch on the Blanco River near Kyle, he’s following old footsteps: those of his great-grandfather, Ezekiel Edward Nance, a former Arkansas state treasurer who settled here in Hays County in 1853. But David is also making new tracks on the land where he grew up. He and his wife, Shyrle Allen, have turned their working ranch into a country getaway with a pair of authentically restored historic lodges—and about a dozen llamas. “We were trying to diversify,” Shyrle explains of both the rentals and the woolly Andean pack animals living the good life at New Tracks Llama Ranch Bed & Breakfasts. Despite the newness in the name, time seems to…