We stayed at a nice campground on the U.S. side of the border called Casa Blanca in Laredo Texas. We took two nights to get prepared for the crossing, getting vehicles worked on, supplies purchased, valuables secured, etc.
While checking all of the compartments, I found something strange. My power strip and flashlight had been melted! And the compartment door was blackened. Was there a fire? A battery explosion?
No, the exhaust was too short, causing the heat to come off the pipe, straight into the back of the compartment. Obviously causing it to get hot enough to melt! Glad I caught it before catching the truck on fire! That would have put a damper on the trip!
So we made a quick stop at a muffler shop, where they welded an extension. Haven’t had a problem since.
So the next morning we were off to the border! We chose to use the Columbia crossing, which is about 20 miles West of Laredo, due to being a small crossing. We hoped this would expedite our crossing, and it did.
The crossing was empty when we arrived. We got out TIP (temporary import permit) for our vehicles, our visas, and insurance.
Next we were told we needed to drive through the large XRAY machine. This allowed us to avoid being subjected to a complete hands on inspection. It was a fast process. Both of our vehicles were through in less than 10 minutes.
Next they brought a sniffing dog around to make sure we were not bringing drugs back into Mexico. The officer and dog were both friendly.
We had stayed in this area in 2012 when we passed through, so were anticipating catching back up with the people who ran the campground we had stayed at.
The drive was effortless and within 2-1/2 hours we arrived. The peaks were as incredible as we remembered. We checked out a couple of other campsites, but settled back on Homeros campground, as it is not expensive, and it is the closest one, literally at the base of the mountains.
We were saddened to hear that the owner, our new found friend from the 2012 trip had passed away in 2014. It was nice however, that his family continued on with running the facility, and welcomed us in.
The sites were only $80 pesos per person, or about $4.25 US dollars. We set up camp and ended up staying for 2 nights.
The hike to the top is well worth the views, as you can see for miles and miles. We enjoyed checking the area out, and met a fellow traveler named Betty. She was a single European girl traveling for 8 months throughout Mexico and South America. We shared coffee each morning, and swapped stories. It is always great to talk with fellow travelers along the way.
Next stop: Parras De la Fuente Mexico!