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Road trips from Dallas

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Hi all
We are heading to Dallas in late January as it is from there that we have an international flight to catch.

We will have about 10 days and thought we would hire a car and do a road trip from there. We're interested in hearing some good music, seeing some quaint towns, learning more about the civil rights movement and I guess trying to avoid places where there will be heaps of snow and therefore difficult to drive.

Our initial plan was Memphis, hot springs in Arkansas, Clarkesdale, Oxford, Austin.

If anyone has any other suggestions or must see places please let me know!
Many thanks for all your help.

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    The chances of seeing 'heaps of snow" in that part of the country in January are relatively small. While it will be "cold" (think in terms of daytime temperatures below 50 F. but probably above freezing) the weather shouldn't cause you any driving problems unless, of course, you are unlucky enough to encounter an ice storm which will shut down driving for a day or two. Fortunately, they don't happen too often so the odds are in your favor you won't see snow or ice.

    Now, to visit the towns on you list will require about 1,500 miles of driving, assuming you want to start and end your trip in Dallas. I suggest you go to Google Maps (click on "get directions") then plot out your driving route. That will give you some idea of the distances and travel times between the various cities/towns you want to visit. For instance, it's about 300 miles from Dallas to Hot Springs. From there it's an easy 3 hour trip to Memphis. Clarksdale and Oxford are about 1.5 hours from each other. You then have a pretty long haul back to Austin so you might want to stopover in Shreveport (mid-way between - 6 hours Oxford and Austin). It's about a 3.5 hour drive from Austin to Dallas.

    You should know that there is an awful lot of very rural area between those cities/towns so you won't be driving through very many "quaint towns" unless your definition of "quaint town" means places that are only 2 or 3 blocks long and maybe having a stop sign or blinking light at the main intersection.

    Your routing will probably take you near some National and State Parks however, I'm not sure you'd find them all that interesting during January.

    One more hint: Once you plot out your driving route use the "zoom" feature on Google Maps to bring up details of the various points of interest you'll be passing.

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    Heading into central Texas is do-able. Austin (the capitol), Fredricksburg, Gruene, New Braunfels, Luckenbach (Willie Nelson did a song about this town). This area is about a 3 hour drive from Dallas.

    Let us know what you're interested in and we can provide more details.

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    I think you are too far from the Deep South states to make a trip rewarding.

    There is plenty in Texas to see.

    If you like art and architecture, Dallas has plenty but Fort Worth has more and a much more Western atmosphere to boot. The Amon Carter Museum of Western Art is as good as it gets, the Museum of Modern Art is a wonderful building, and Louis Kahn's Kimbell Art Museum is one of the most famous modern buildings in the world.

    Wild nature: go north to Palo Duro Canyon, south of Amarillo to see Texas's grand canyon. On the way, visit Archer City, one of the dying towns that inspired the film "Last Picture Show." In the opposite direction, Big Bend National Park is likely to be pleasantly warm, and the country is magnificent. Nearby (in Texas terms) is Marfa, a very isolated small town turned into a major international art destination by minimalist sculptor Donald Judd. The film "Giant" was partly made there.

    South of Dallas are Austin, the state capitol, and the sort of Seattle of the South -- high tech prosperity, good food, funky music, a big scene. San Antonio is further south and home to the Alamo -- deeply moving despite being in a terrible setting -- the charming River Walk, and a nice mission, mostly reconstructed I would guess.

    Take RoamsAround's warning on ice very, very seriously. It doesn't happen often, but when it does, nothing moves for 24-48 hours. Watch the ubiquitous Weather Channel ever day beore setting out. Have enough food with you (and stong drink!!) that if you were stuck for two days in a hotel without food service, it wound be an adventure.

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    Having been to 32 of our nations 58 National Parks(Hot Springs is only 2 hours from where I have lived for 45 years), Hot Springs is absolutely dead last and #31 would be well ahead. You probably wouldn't want to spend more than 1/2 days there.

    My favorite part of Arkansas is The Buffalo National River(Upper Buffalo area is the best). Normally in January, the waterfalls our outstanding. My favorite waterfalls/hikes are Hemmed in Hollow, The Lost Valley, Pedestal Rock(2 loops here and a waterfall), and Glory Hole Falls(the best small waterfall I've ever seen anywhere and I'm somewhat of a waterfall nut). Hemmed In Hollow is the tallest waterfall between the Rocky's and Appalachians.

    If you have been to Columbia River Gorge in Oregon, the Upper Buffalo is like a mini version of it. You are likely to see Elk here too.

    You couldn't go wrong seeing Memphis or Nashville.

    Normally, there is no snow. If it does snow it is gone within 3 days normally. Ice is just as common as snow. If we get ice or 1/2 inch of snow, everything shuts down(schools and businesses). We have very little snow removal equipment here. This happens normally 1 to 2 times every year. So, it is possible to have snow or ice anywhere, but you just don't know. It does not ever snow here long enough for the snow to be around for a couple of weeks.

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