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  1. #1

    Default US-380 Dallas TX to San Antonio NM - Any Advice?

    Hello,

    My wife and I are a couple of snowbirds making our way slowly across the southern US from coast to coast. Our intention is to camp where it's warm enough and seek out budget accommodation when it isn't. At the moment we're in the Florida panhandle and we're planning to make our way to Dallas TX via Mobile AL, Natchez MS (which looks interesting) and Shreveport LA. From there we want to head west to California eventually. Using our paper road atlas (and Google maps) I see that we could get to New Mexico via the US-380. Does anyone on the forum have any experience of this highway and its general condition, ease of driving, etc? We can see that it passes through Roswell NM so we could stop there and have some fun at the UFO attractions, but is there anything else worth seeing along the way? Or are there any other routes we should be considering?

    Many thanks for any help you could give us,

    Gavinm

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Not Specifically

    There are over two and a half million miles of paved highway in the United States (and another million and a half unpaved - some of which are designated state highways!). Rural two-lane highways, such as US-380 through west Texas, are driven infrequently and then mostly by locals. So not surprisingly, I have not driven this particular road. But I have driven other west Texas roads, including federal, state, and local farm-to-market roads, and have found them all to be well maintained, pretty much wide open roads. In fact, I have occasionally found local roads to have higher speed limits than Interstates in west Texas because Interstates have federally imposed maximum speed limits.

    You say you're snowbirds. If by chance you are also Buddy Holly fans, a short side trip to his home town of Lubbock and the Buddy Holly Center might be in order. And if your sci-fi movie fans, just west of Socorro is the National Radio Astronomy Observatory whose Very Large Array (VLA) has figured prominently in several of them.

    AZBuck

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,545

    Default

    Camping in an RV?

    Two places that come to mind in NM are Carlsbad Caverns National Park, and White Sands National Monument. Both are in easy distance if you're using US-380 and heading towards California anyway.

    Like AZBuck, I haven't driven US-380 either. But generally, we've found US highways to be in good condition.


    Donna

  4. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by gavinm View Post
    Hello,

    Does anyone on the forum have any experience of this highway and its general condition, ease of driving, etc? We can see that it passes through Roswell NM so we could stop there and have some fun at the UFO attractions, but is there anything else worth seeing along the way? Or are there any other routes we should be considering?

    Many thanks for any help you could give us,

    Gavinm
    Hello,

    I done US380 from McKinney, TX (US 75 Intersection) to San Antonio, NM (I25 intersection). If you like west Texas scenery then the route is for you. There is not much to see however I did see sand dunes part of Texas state park. There are also bigger sand dunes in NM. The US380 is all farming community road so you will be driving along side big one-ton trucks. New Mexico side of US380 has few attraction such as a skiing place near Ruidoso, mountain scenery and Native cultural attractions...

    Conditions are good from when I traveled before however it depends on particular day and weather conditions. Most part of US380 is single lane and easy to pull over in case of emergency. Many small towns in between for quick stop.

    US380 has very little traffic past US287 all the way to I25 in New Mexico... Enjoy...

  5. #5

    Default

    Hello,

    A big thanks for all your replies. Nice to get some first hand experience of travel along US380. A country road without a lot of traffic might be a good way to avoid interstate trailer traffic. Not sure if there any other non-interstate alternatives across this part of Texas. Side trips to Lubbock, the VLA, the Carlsbad Caverns and White Sands will be added to our list of sights - we're just taking our time and have plenty of opportunity to "zig-and-zag" from our course:-)

    So far in travelling down to the Florida panhandle where we currently are that most US highways are in excellent shape and a good alternative to taking the interstate. So far, so good.

    Donna - to answer your question we're tent camping. Just as well we're from Canada and are prepared for some of the cooler nights:-) Although if it's too cool we'll be in a Comfort Inn, etc., etc.

    Thanks again, Gavinm

  6. Default

    Well the other east-west US highway is US82 but it will take you so far before you will need to go up or down and likely get back on US380.

    Yes, West Texas is probably the best place in US to do zig-zag for up/down and east/west direction. There are so many US and state highways to choose from...

  7. #7

    Default

    jm98, thanks for suggesting an alternative. From the US highways we've so far travelled down, you're quite right, we're spoilt for choice. We'll report back on what we find.

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