Eric & Cindy's 2008 New Mexico Trip
Created by Eric
Cindy, Oscar (our dog), and I visited my parents in New Mexico. We left Thursday, September 11, 2008 and returned Monday, September 22, 2008. Below is a day-by-day log of our trip. We traveled by car.
(Click on pictures to enlarge)
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Cindy, Oscar, and I left our home in Wisconsin and proceeded through Illinois and Missouri. The highlights of the day included traveling on old Route 66 (we are somewhat nostalgic) and driving through St. Louis, MO. It rained most of the trip - remnants from Hurricane Ike. We stopped for the night in Joplin, MO.
St. Louis, MO
Cindy took pictures of the Arch and of Busch Stadium while we passed through St. Louis
Friday, September 12, 2008
We continued our journey along old Route 66, passing through Oklahoma, Texas, and arriving in New Mexico. Our highlights for the day were visiting the memorial of the Oklahoma City bombing in Oklahoma City, OK, and the Route 66 museum in Clinton, OK. We stopped for the night in Santa Rosa, NM. That's were we would turn off of the highway and head south, towards my parents.
Oklahoma City memorial
We arrived at the memorial at approximately 1:00 pm. The memorial includes a museum and an outdoor memorial to the victims. We walked through the outdoor memorial; an impressive and moving sight. Cindy commented that it is probably more impressive at night. Some of the pictures that Cindy took are posted below.
The pictures on the top row: 1). A chain link fence that lines the memorial. 2). Field of empty chairs - each represent a victim. 3). Gates of time - 9:01 one minute before destruction.
The pictures on the bottom row: 1 & 2). Monument at church across the street. 3). One of the two Gates of Time that frame the moment of destruction - 9:02 a.m.
Route 66 Museum, Clinton, OK
We stopped at the museum while driving along the old highway.
Saturday, September 13, 2008
We left Santa Rosa, NM, and made the final 3-hours of our trek to my parents. What I remember most about that day, besides arriving at my parents, was the scenery along the way. We finally arrived at around noon. Neither Cindy or I can remember what we did for the rest of the day. We undoubtedly took it easy.
The way the clouds were hanging over the mountains that Saturday morning made for an awesome sight. I can remember Cindy talking on her cell to Amy and telling her how gorgeous it was. Cindy took pictures while we were heading down the road. Two of the pictures are posted below.
Mom & Dad's house
A very nice house. Not only is the house nice, but you can see mountains if you go out either the back door or front door.
Sunday, September 14, 2008
We went to Church in the morning and to White Sands in the late afternoon/early evening.
Mom, Dad, Cindy, Oscar, and I went to White Sands National Monument. The scenery made me feel like I was back in Wisconsin in the middle of January, after a snowstorm.The eight pictures below were taken at White Sands
Monday, September 15, 2008
All five of us - yes, even Oscar - went to Roswell. Cindy & I went to the UFO museum while mom & dad stayed outside with Oscar. The museum was OK but not what we expected.
After Roswell, we went to Bottomless Lake State Park.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
The four of us (we left Oscar at home) went to Mexico. After we left Mexico, we went to Columbus, NM.
Stacks of rocks (Cairns)
While on our way to Mexico, we noticed stacks of rocks along the highway. Mom & Dad told us that they are known as cairns. Illegal aliens put them there and are used to mark paths. Dad pulled over to the side of the road so that Cindy could take the pictures below.
After we crossed the border, Cindy and I both posed in front of a statue of Pancho Villa (more about him later). Then we went to The Pink Store, which is a restaurant and store. One of mom & dad's friends met us there and joined us for lunch. After we ate, we shopped.
We visited the Visitor/Education Center at Pancho Villa State Park. Columbus is where Mexican troops, led by Pancho Villa, attacked in 1916. This is the last time the continental U.S. was attacked (until September 11). Cindy took the picture below (left) in the Visitor/Education Center. The picture on the right is Pancho Villa himself.
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
The four of us went to Carlsbad Caverns. It was a several-hour trip and took all day, but it was well worth it.
Cindy took several pictures inside the cavern, but most did not turn out. I scanned the post cards that I bought and posted them below. The one picture that Cindy took that is posted below is called "The Boob"
The picture of Cindy & Mom was taken outside the caverns.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
The four of us went to Lincoln, NM, which is where Billy the Kid (pictured below) pulled some of his shenanigans (killing people).
Friday, September 19, 2008
We visited the Three Rivers petroglyphs
Three Rivers petroglyph.
Between A.D. 900 and A.D. 1400 over 5000 petroglyphs were carved into the basalt rock of the Upper Tularosa Valley by the people of the ancient Mongollon culture.
The trail that we hiked through was 1 mile long, round trip. The path was pretty rugged in spots - I'm glad nobody got hurt. Also, rattlesnakes are known to be in the area, but we didn't see any. Cindy took several pictures of the petroglyphs. Three of them are posted below.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Today is the day that we would start our journey back home. But first we would go back to White Sands to watch the hot air balloon launch.
Hot air balloon launch at White Sands
Approximately 15 - 20 balloons launched from White Sands.
Cindy took many pictures. I posted some of them below.
Journey back home
Cindy the Navigator decided to take a different route back home. We would go from NM and pass through Colorado, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, and, finally, Wisconsin.
We wanted to call it a day after we made it through Denver, CO, but we couldn't find a motel. It was almost midnight when we did find one, in Morgantown, CO. We were getting a little tired and crabby by then. We had traveled 650 miles, and that was after getting started in late morning/early afternoon.
Sunday, September 21, 2008
I wanted to get started early and find a hotel by 5:00, so that we could get a bite to eat and get settled by 7:00. That was when that Packer game started. We made a stop in Gothenburg, Nebraska, at the original Pony Express station. Otherwise, we spent the day in the car - all of it on Interstate 80 in Colorado, Nebraska, and, finally, Iowa. We traveled just over 500 miles.
Pony Express Station, Gothenburg, Nebraska
The station was, I would guess, 500 sq. ft. It was full of mementos and pictures. I purchased a post card, which I scanned and posted below. We also snapped a couple of pictures.
On our trip - both there and back - we saw several wind farms. I can remember seeing them in Illinois, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Nebraska. We came upon the wind farm pictured below on Sunday. It was right next to the highway (I-80). I think it was in Nebraska (Nebraska and Iowa looked the same).
Monday, September 22, 2008
We finally made it home. We did stop and see the freedom rock in Adair, Iowa, and we also visited our daughter Amy at her house in Waukesha, Wisconsin, before getting home.
I had found out about this 12-ft tall, 55-ton rock from an email that someone had sent me a few years ago. The artist honors veterans by painting the boulder before Memorial Day. He has done that every year since 1999. As you can see by the pictures, his work is quite impressive. For more pictures, check out his website: bubbazartwork.com