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STOP #257

Texas has the highest posted legal speed limit in the entire country. If you get on Texas State Highway 130 on the east state of Austin you'll see the only 85MPH speed limit signs in the country. Thankfully we weren't on that highway with THE POD today, but 80MPH speed limits are common on most rural Texas Interstate Highways.

What we did see were numerous speed limit signs of 75MPH on two-lane country roads that connect small towns together all over Texas. Now I won't tow THE POD over 65MPH without a good reason. It's just not safe for a half-ton cargo pickup truck (our Ford F-150) to tow a nearly 4-ton travel trailer (THE POD) any faster. Physics just makes that a bad idea!

Sure our truck is "capable" of towing a trailer 85 MPH, and maybe the driver is even skilled enough to handle that kind of speed, but the weight ratio between the truck and trailer just shouldn't be pushed to those limits. Not to even mention the fact that the brakes were never meant to safely stop that much weight in an emergency situation.

When the speed limit is either 70MPH or 75MPH, we travel at 65MPH when towing THE POD. If we stack up 3 or more vehicles behind us on a two-lane road I'll look for a place to safely pull off the road to let everyone pass. If nowhere safe can be found there are short passing lanes set up every 20 or so miles, usually along an uphill section of the road and they'll just have to wait for one of those to pass us.

We arrived safe and sound at our reserved campsite at Ratcliff Lake Recreation Area in the Davy Crockett National Forest. It was a little bit after noon and like most of our journey today, it was raining when we arrived, which only made the driving conditions today even more dangerous!

The campsite photos were taken the next day after the rain stopped.

Our spacious site with the woods for a backyard.

Wasn't much of a view until the rain stopped.

TUESDAY - The last time we purchased propane was back in August. Lately we've been frequently running our furnance at night to keep our water tanks from freezing up, it uses a lot of propane, much more than the oven and stove top do.

We only have one and a half of our three 30lb. propane tanks left full, therefore it's time to refill the empty tank. The town of Crockett is about 20 miles away and fortunately they have a Tractor Supply Store with a propane filling station.

A large number of RVers like the convenience of using the standard 20lb. tanks, you know the ones you can exchange at Home Depot and outside of many gasoline stations. However, you pay extra for that convenience, about 25% extra. You know me, always trying to save a dollar here and there! They all add up.

After purchasing the propane we located the cheapest price in town for gasoline, thanks to my Gas Buddy app, at the Murphy Station outside of Walmart. Across the street from Walmart we saw a "new to us" burger chain and we were supposed to look for lunch while in town.

TX Burger was started in 1973 and currently has eleven locations across East Texas. Their claim to fame is using only all natural, never frozen, Nolan Ryan Angus Beef for their burgers and creating hand spun milk shakes using Blue Bell Ice Cream.

In case you didn't know, Nolan Ryan is a Hall of Fame Major League baseball pitcher who played for the Houston Astros from 1980-1988 and finished his career playing for the Texas Rangers from 1989-1993. Nolan Ryan's has pitched 7 no-hitter games, three more than any other Major League pitcher. Today Nolan Ryan co-owns several cattle ranches throughout Texas.

Also the Blue Bell Ice Cream company was founded in Brenham, Texas in 1907. So between the burgers and the ice cream they're keeping it an all Texas menu.

With all that said you'd think it would be a winning combination. Tricia's Cheddar JalapeƱo Bun (which was an extra $1.25) was the best thing about the whole meal. The burgers were nothing special, I prefer the burger from the other Texas chain restaurant, Whataburger (with over 700 Texas locations). And the hand-spun shake was very thin with ice cream.

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