Texas Department of Transportation

Travel & Outdoor
Texas Highways Magazine

Texas Highways Magazine January 2020

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
Read More
12 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
plan on it

The richness of Texas offers limitless opportunities for exploration and discovery. It can take a lifetime to experience the variety of what it has to offer, so each year in January, our editors focus on one travel intention for the year ahead. I’m resolving to introduce my family to Rockport. Before my kids get too old to appreciate its slower pace, I want them to experience the charm of the close-knit community, the beauty of the crystal-blue beach, and the eclectic mix of shops, art galleries, and historic homes. Here’s what the rest of our editors have their sights set on this year: Michael Hoinski, Deputy Editor: I bought my first tent a year ago, after rain during an overnight music festival seeped through my wife’s old tent and on to my…

1 min.
behind the story

For “A Golden Journey” (Page 52), Contributing Editor E. Dan Klepper recreated part of Cabeza de Vaca’s 16th-century journey through the Gulf Coast and West Texas. Collaborating with Writer-at-Large Clayton Maxwell, he staged a photo shoot in which Rodrigo Trevizo, Klepper’s friend and a Presidio native, portrays de Vaca. “We wanted to show de Vaca as he might have appeared after his shipwreck—when his journey through Texas began—and how the journey changed him by the time he arrived in present-day Presidio,” Klepper said. Klepper devised costuming for Trevizo using available references illustrating what a Spaniard like de Vaca would have looked like during the period as well as how the native people of the region might have adorned themselves. While the team encountered few challenges in Big Bend, shooting in…

1 min.
featured contributors

Michael Corcoran Based in Austin, Corcoran has covered Texas music for 35 years, and he reveals some of the lessons from his career in his essay, “For the Record” (Page 14). Since becoming a freelance writer in 2011, he’s reported forgotten stories of Texas’ musical pioneers. “Trends fall in and out of fashion,” he says, “but history never gets old.” He previously worked as a critic with the Dallas Morning News and Austin American-Statesman. Corcoran is working on a book about Austin’s music scene. Clayton Maxwell Writer-at-Large Maxwell spent a year researching her story about Cabeza de Vaca, “A Golden Journey” (Page 52)—and what she learned stuck with her. “I can’t eat Texas pecans, oysters, or prickly pears without thinking of the thwarted Spaniard who trudged naked across our state about 500 years…

3 min.

Big and Bright Texans have indeed been doing wonderful things to preserve our night-sky heritage [“The Stars at Night,” December]. Your readers might be interested to know Cindy Luongo Cassidy, of Driftwood, whom you quote in the article, received the International Dark Sky Association’s highest award in November, for lifetime achievement in reducing light pollution. And she’s not done yet! Paula Marks, Buda The December cover image features one of my favorite Texas destinations, Big Bend National Park. However, the caption on Page 5 reported the photo as being from Guadalupe Mountains National Park. The Guadalupes are fantastic, but that park is not certified by the IDA as a dark-sky park. Big Bend recently achieved this official designation and is proud of it. Lance Ray, Denver, Colorado TH: December’s cover photo features Cerro Castellan in…

3 min.

Retired rancher Bob Cates has been chasing the cowboy lifestyle since he was a boy. Born in the Oklahoma Panhandle, he spent his career raising cattle across the High Plains, from Oklahoma to New Mexico. In 2007, Cates and his wife, Jimmie, retired to the tiny Texas Panhandle town of Channing—10 blocks wide and surrounded by the rugged breaks of the Canadian River—to be closer to family. He found new purpose in Channing’s most noteworthy structure: the 121-year-old general office of the legendary XIT Ranch. At its peak in the early 1900s, the XIT was the largest fenced ranch in the world, encompassing 3 million acres and 150,000 head of cattle. When Cates learned of plans to move the building to Lubbock, he organized a local campaign to preserve the…

12 min.
for the record

Rats and the middle seats of full flights. Those are my biggest fears besides death. So when I entered the abandoned building from an unlocked door and saw the colony-size bag of rodent poison on the floor, I lurched back. Rats! But I didn’t drive six hours to be turned away by the threat of hideous, long-tailed disease carriers (though I have driven six hours because neither window or aisle were available). Without fear, I stepped into the shards of sunlight coming through the broken windows. The building had most recently been used to store dog food for the Howard County Humane Society, which attracted the vermin. What drew me, though, was the small wooden clump of a stage where Corsicana native Lefty Frizzell invented a new, syllable-stretching way to sing…