Webb County High Point Trip Report

multiple areas north of Oilton (940+ ft)

Date: November 11, 2001
Author: Scott Surgent

Thanks to Bob Martin who gave me good information about this area. Access is from the town of Oilton on TX-359 about 40 miles from Laredo, 20 miles from Hebbronville and not far from the Zapata HP. In Oilton, go north on Welhousen Road near the post office. It soon turns to gravel. Stay the course as the road makes a 90-degree bend west, then curves again to the north. There are 7 areas but 4 can be immediately dismissed and 1 can be strongly identified as the likeliest candidate, as it is the largest and is a noticeable swale of land seen from both the north and south.

I made a hike of about 1/4 mile west along an old road cut attempting to find "Border" Benchmark but with no success.

Two more areas are along side Welhousen Road and can be easily visited although it's probably not necessary. The larger area is intersected by the road itself but the land to the east is clearly higher, so I shimmied past the fence and walked in the brush about 500 feet. This land is located above some bluffs and is the usual flat scrub land, with just enough undulation to make out humps here and there. The land doesn't contain any "surprises" (e.g. rocky outcrops or spires) which essentially summarily dismisses 4 small areas from contention, makes 2 more weak candidates and strengthens the one large area. Visual inspection supports this but without careful surveying I can't be 100% sure. I place it at 90%.

A man-made area shown on the map near a gravel pit is so tiny it can't possibly contain the HP. I ignored it.

The day was highlighted by a nice visit with a lonely Border Patrol checkpoint guy just east of Oilton. This isn't a heavily traveled highway so he took longer than usual to wave me through. He asked me of my business so I just told him I'm highpointing - showed him my maps, too! He seemed surprised anyone would be in this region who didn't have actual business to attend to. He went through my backpack, peered in the windows, then let me go. An hour later, I went through same routine again near Freer, though this time it went quicker.