Dave Parker, Pete's Hueco Tanks Country Store Feb. 1996

Dave Parker was the Head Ranger at Hueco for an eternity. His tenure marked the Golden Age of Hueco. He was the most totally cool non-climbing ranger that one could hope for. He was not a "truck" ranger - he would be out there with us. I remember the time I fell near the start on Plastic Fantastic, and took a king swing low and fast across the belay area, where everyone was hanging out. The belay rock for Plastic is about 30 feet off the ground, and I swung right at Dave! We collided, nearly knocking him off the boulder, but he clutched me and hung on as we both swung free of the ledge.

His true calling is his art - whenever one visited his house at Hueco there would be a new painting to admire. In 1995 he realized that he could make a living as a full time artist and said adios to the TPWD. If you are interested in seeing some of his work, visit the Wilderness Museum in the Franklin Mountains State Park. Some of his paintings may also still be hanging in the Hueco park headquarters. Many of his best pieces were given to friends - Fred Nakovic, Don Hardin, and others.

Dave, I really miss being able to go to your on-site house at Hueco after a day of climbing, check your latest canvas, have a beer and unwind.