It’s a month (or week) before Thanksgiving and you decide you’d like to go hike Big Bend for the long weekend. Excited for the trip, you pull up the National Park site to see what’s available. It directs you to the site, you pull up the popular campgrounds, you put in your dates (Thursday-Sunday Thanksgiving weekend), and search.

0 results match your criteria.

PANIC STRIKES. What? It’s a month out! Surely there’s something.
Ok, let’s calm down. The Big Bend site said something about backcountry camping and drive-in primitive camping. There certainly will be some spot available in a park larger than Rhode Island… and the search button is clicked…

0 results match your criteria.

    big bend camping spots results screen shot

    Blood drains from your head, you feel woozy, your plans are quickly being destroyed and all your hopes and dreams of a Thanksgiving away from “Uncle Creepy” are dashed. You quickly rise to your feet, as if that would help the search, and you move the mouse and type at a frantic pace. You have another good idea, “Let’s see what’s available in the state park, it’s not as busy there, right?’ … and CLICK…

    0 results match your criteria.

      big bend ranch camping spot results screen shot

      You make your way to your freezer, pull out a bottle of vodka, and slowly unscrew the lid as you walk to the corner of the room. Your back leans against the wall as you slowly let yourself sink to the floor taking a long pull off the bottle on your way down. Your hair is tattered and mascara is streaked.

      But wait, you just had a brilliant idea. As your eyes droop, you crawl back to your workstation. You make one last-ditch effort to find something. With your index finger, you bang out V R B O and enter your dates one last time.

      0 results match your criteria.

      vrbo results screen shot

      Staycation it is! Great… that entails overconsuming copious amounts of alcohol and buying junk you don’t need because it’s on sale and a really good deal. You actually dread being drug out to Black Friday shopping. You’d rather #OptOutside.

      …Wait, what was it that Big Bend Guide dude said way back when? “Hipcamp, it’s like Airbnb but for camping spots”.

      Slumping in front of your laptop, you barely are able to type out Enter Terlingua and your dates…

      50 results match your criteria.
      You breathe in a bit of stormlight to heal the toxic effects from the alcohol (never mind, it’s from a book I’m reading) and do a little victory dance.

      hipcamp results screen shot

      Well, there you go. Hipcamp when all seems bleak. Also note, you can set up email alerts for state park reservations if there are any cancelations. I’ve actually had success in this.

      Want to find non-camping options like a cabin or luxury unit? LOL! Start planning for next year.

      Folks, please listen. This is a tough time of year for the community. There is limited water, you may get served on paper plates to conserve dishwasher runs. Expect wait times to be crazy. If you’re going to Starlight, get in line before they open or go late. Let Terlingua time flow, have a beer or five on the porch. Don’t be an entitled Karen asking for a manager. You can either cook over an open fire with some sausage you picked up at the Cottonwood back at your site or just enjoy the wait and take it easy. Breathe in the magic of Terlingua. Or wherever you happen to be staying.

      camping spot sign in terlingua ranch
      tent at night in big bend
      pitching a tent in terlingua ranch big bend


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