Sunday, April 17, 2016

Stuck on Wichita Falls

It’s a great lodge, so warm and welcoming and the food is amazing! Ribs last night and Burgers tonight. We had promised ourselves to eat less and try to lose some of the weight we gained over the winter. Looks like it won’t happen this week!

First things on our agenda? Laundry then sightseeing.

Lucy Park where the falls are located (Somewhere)

We decided to explore and where better to start than the falls of Wichita Falls? Except there AREN’T any. Well yes there are but they aren’t real!

One of the weird and wonderful stories about this place is that the falls got washed away in a flood. (I’m not kidding it’s true).

Back when the city was first starting to grow some genius entrepreneurs decided that with all the cotton growing around here they ought to set up mills to process it. The source of power would obviously be the water in the river, so they built a dam upstream of the falls. All went well except that they weren’t very good at building dams and after the dam filled up it burst. The suddenly release of all that water swept everything before it. Including the falls!

The Falls on the Wichita River
(Which aren't actually on the river at all!)

 So now there ARE falls, but they aren’t THE falls, neither are they REAL falls because they are made of concrete and the water is pumped up to them.
Didn’t I tell you it was weird?

After the falls and several miles of walking trying to find them (because there are no signs anywhere to tell you where they are!!). We went downtown to see the sights.
First stop was lunch at 8th Street Coffee Shop. A very pleasant place with really interesting decor.

Walking was our thing that day so we went to see the railroad museum which is only open Saturdays, the Wichita Falls Art Association gallery where we talked to some of the artists and admired the artwork. Then we stumbled on the North Texas History Museum.

This place doesn’t look much at all from outside but took hours to explore. They have a room dedicated to the development of communication and have the console from the 1960’s radio station, complete with the top 40 charts from 1964. Nice to see the Beatles had 3 singles in it at the same time, including the top 2! Well up there also were Gerry and the Pacemakers, Billy J Kramer, and the Rolling Stones. Talk about the British Invasion.

The console from the local 1960's Rock Station

More rooms showed the development of the city, oil exploration, the cattle business, Native American history, the Military in the area. Such a lot of exhibits and all well laid out.

A collection of over 500 used cowboys hats from a local store
forms part of the North Texas History Museum..

We were completely exhausted by then so we staggered back to the RV for a nap. An hour or so later there was a knock on the door and we were invited over to the lodge to try Joanne’s chicken and dumplings! Boy can she make chicken and dumplings!
The rest of the evening was spent with Barbara and the Ladies playing a dice came called Left, Right, Center which must have been hilarious judging by the howls of laughter, while I watched the Baltimore Orioles beat the Texas Rangers at baseball and chatted with Wayne over a delicious glass (or two) of Shiner Bock which is brewed in Shiner Texas (of course).

By the time we got back to the RV again we’d forgotten about tired feet and legs completely!

After some more walking on Saturday we had to batten down the hatches for a big storm system sweeping in. Predictions of 2-3” of rain, thunderstorms, hail and possible tornadoes really caught our attention! Although there were some flashes of lightning and lots of rain, we managed to dodge most of it.

Want to see some more weird things in Wichita Falls?

The BIG shopping cart sculpture.

The littlest skyscraper

The BIG shovel


  1. I enjoyed the story about the falls.

    Safe travels !

  2. I'm sure there must be a geocache hiding behind that big shovel. Do you CACHE?

  3. N we don't Sue, never got into it.

  4. We lived there for many years and enjoyed the area immensely. There is plenty of camping areas within 100 miles of the town. Hope that you enjoyed it. If ever there again be sure and eat at the Branding Iron restaurant. You will not be disappointed.

    1. Thanks for the restaurant tip, next time we're near there we'll give it a try!