Thursday, April 19, 2007
We took our time getting off, we hated to leave I suppose. We loved the view. I had an epiphany over the last few days that what I like most about this life style is the pleasure of envisioning that I have my perfect hacienda where we are staying. Seeing the sights and meeting new people is pleasurable, but it’s the exuberance of day-dreaming that I live where we are that is most important to me. It’s hard to get into that mental place if we are constantly on the move. I need to have my coffee and cocktails with same view for a few days to make myself believe it.
We passed through another Border Patrol checkpoint today. I have no idea if the swarms of Border Patrol out here have any positive effect on illegal immigration, but it sure has provided a lot of jobs. Guess who got the jobs??? But, of course.
Percha Dam SP north of Las Cruces is not a scenic park. But it is on the way west and it is about empty. The US Fish and Wildlife Service brought in an exhibit trailer this afternoon and has programs all weekend. What luck for us! Maybe a fish fry?
We will make a long day trip up past Silver City to the Gila Cliff Dwellings NM in the morning. I don’t care to drag our rig into these mountains.
There are three state parks within two miles of us. I suppose the dammed up Rio Grande is a major attraction in the desert. If the wind lays down, we will paddle the yaks.
It seems that wind in the southwest blows two speeds in the spring, breezy and windy. The latter is 25 plus. We have learned that when its very windy (50MPH or more) all rigs vibrate, but it is still not comfortable. Spring is the windy season and the rainy season is July and August, except when they have unusual weather with rain, like now.
I am about finished with Buffet’s 1992 “Where is Joe Merchant” Hey, it’s new to me. He conjures characters and plots that are unique to say the least. I find it difficult to believe that he has not had a “hit” in 20 years as fertile as his mind is.
Friday, April 20, 2007
A very long, but splendid day. We drove 2.5 hours on various mountain roads to Gila Cliff Dwellings. Highway 151 is one of THE great driving roads in the country. It may be the leader for having the most turns per mile. In many stretches, it’s one turn after another without a break. Most turns are ho-hum, others warn you to slow to 10mph. I found 20mph to be fine in the van. I daydreamed about driving the road in something low to ground, with 6 forward gears, a throaty engine and BIG finned brakes. Of course I would obey all the traffic laws! I would not want to attrack the attention of the police who patrol the highway on Friday afternoons looking for drivers who are trying to make a little time getting to their mountain home for the weekend.
The road is terrific, but so is the scenery, the best and the most varied we have seen this trip. Some LONG views from above 8,000 feet.
Almost to Gila Cliff Dwellings is Lake Roberts, small, but charming. The first good-looking lake of this trip. Deep green water. Just south of there, is a fine Forest Service CG that we will return to one day.
Our destination, Gila Cliff Dwellings, was worth the trip. You get to the cliff caves, by walking up a narrow canyon, slowly climbing 180 feet to the catwalk in front of the six caves. You can walk through the three larger and interconnected caves. Each cave is divided into several rooms by stone masonry. They were built about 1240 and abandoned 30 years later. Perhaps due to severe drought in the area.