Monday, May 26, 2008

Viejo Padilla, Tamps

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Viejo Padilla, Tamps is located along and in Presa Vicente Guerrero also known as Big Bass Lake famous as a fishing spot for sportsmen. Viejo Padilla is located 40 kms Northeast of Ciudad Victoria. VP has a long history. It was actually the original capitol of the state of Tamaulipas. When the reservoir was enlarged, Viejo Padilla was in its path. The federal and state government decided to move the town 15 kms East along the main highway. Nuevo Padilla is a very modern town that was well-planned with a grid system for streets. Each family received a large lot along with a 150 sq mt home. The houses appear like American style homes but are made of cement and block.

So if VP was flooded 40 years ago what is left? Over the years, the water subsided and took on its current level. Out of the water or ashes so to speak rose the oldest part of the town which included the main plaza, the original church built in 1745 and the primary school which was erected in the 1940s under Ex-Presidente Miguel Aleman and also named after him. When we first stumbled on to VP, we were looking for a place to spend the night along the reservoir but didn't have much luck so we decided to move on. As we reached Nuevo Padilla, we stopped to fill up with gas and asked about a boondocking spot. That was when we were told about VP. When we first arrived there, we thought the school may have been an ex-hacienda not knowing anything about the town at the time. Since then we have returned many times.
During the day, depending on the weather, you will find fishermen catching fish for sale. Based on the name, yes, the bass are big, juicy and delicious and priced just right. They will even clean them for you. The boat ramp is 200 meters away and I encourage any rver who is a boater or fishing enthusiast to give this place a try if you are heading South for the Winter or along the East coast for vacation.In the evenings, people (of which there are very few of them) return to Nuevo Padilla. The sun begins to set over the water and on windy days you can here the waves as they lap onto the shore. The great thing about boondocking in VP is that they tore down the houses to remove valuable materials when the town was moved. But guess what is left? The foundations of the houses around the plaza which make it an ideal rv park in the wilderness. We have never had to level our TT yet. You can literally park anywhere you want including the plaza area. We have spent 90% of the time there completely alone at night. You can setup the grill, run the generator or do pretty much as you like.If you do a search on YouTube for Viejo Padillo, a young guy named Hector has done two video clips in Spanish of the history of VP.
How to get to Viejo Padilla from Reynosa: this is the easiest route taking Hwy 90 to the 180/101 South or Hwy 40 t0 Matamoros and then heading Soutn on 180/101. When you arrive to Nuevo Padilla continue South for 12 Kms. Turn left at the billboard with the big fish. This is the road to Viejo Padilla. This road is 15 kms long and ends in the water of the resevoir so you can't miss the place.
From Laredo: take Hwy 40 across to Matamoros and take the 180/101 to Nuevo Padilla continuing on 12 kms turning left at the billboard with the big fish and driving 15kms to the town of VP.
This makes an excellent first night stop after crossing the border and you are guaranteed an excellent nights rest.
Live today like there is no other, peace to all!

1 comment:

  1. Hi

    Thank you for taking me back to one of my favorite places. My mom is from Viejo Padilla,she was a student from that school. I had been there a few times and that place is magical. When we go there, my mom and my relatives tell us about the school, the church, the market, etc. We walk around and they show us were their houses were located and they share their memories. One of my friends found this and send it to me. I just show it to my mom and I was reading her what you wrote about. She said Thank you!