|West Texas morning sky|
When we crossed the border into New Mexico, we stopped at a very convenient Visitor Center, picked up information on City of Rocks State Park and Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument. When we asked the lady working there how long it would take us to drive from Deming, NM to Gila Cliff Dwellings Nat'l. Monument, she said, "Three hours." Glad we asked!
|New Mexico Visitor Center|
|History outside Visitor Center|
So we made up our own "Flash Drive." After lunch at Irma's Mexican Restaurant (thanks Catherine and JoBeth for the recommendation), we headed north on U.S. 180 to Hwy 61 which took us to City of Rocks State Park. After three miles on Hwy 61 we came to the turn for City of Rocks. There is a $5 per car day use fee which we happily paid.
City of Rocks State Park has a few water/electric pull-through sites; otherwise, the park is for boondocking. A small Visitor Center plays a movie about the huge volcano (1,000 times more powerful than Mt. St. Helens) that erupted millions of years ago. Over the ensuing years erosion has carved the rocks into different shapes and towers criss-crossed with natural paths.
|Irma's Mexican Restaurant for lunch|
|A very cool state park!|
|Bob is on one of the naturally formed pathways.|
|I found my nicbe!|
|Overview of one part of City of Rocks|
|Just another scenic view.|
|Grasses and rocks.|
|Bob is 6' tall. You can see how big some rocks are!|
|Sheltered tent site.|
|Pull-though site #28 (no amenities...boondocking)|
From City of Rocks, we headed east to Hwy 152, turned left (west) on Hwy 152 and headed to the Santa Rita mine overlook, one of the world's largest open pit copper mines. Copper has been mined there since 1801.
|Santa Rita open pit mine|
We then drove through Fort Bayard National Historic Landmark. The fort was activated in 1867 to help fight off the Apaches who raided the area. After the fort was abandoned as a cavalry post in 1900, it was converted into an Army medical facility to treat tuberculosis.
|Ft. Bayard's previous hospital.|
Between 1890 and 1910 floods washed away the original Main Street. What used to be Main Street is now the Big Ditch Park. In recent years, many art galleries and eclectic restaurants and shops have opened in Silver City.
|The Big Ditch Park|
|Mural on Silver City Food Co-op building.|
|Art can bee found throughout town.|
|Murals on building exteriors|
|Former windows are now beautifully re-created.|
|Close-up of one window.|
|Bob at 1870's log cabin, see sign below.|
We even found Billy the Kid's homesite.
|Hearst (?) Church, 1898|
|Opera House from the '60s, 1860s that is!|
|The Buckhorn Saloon|
From Pinos Altos we hightailed it back to Escapees Dream Catcher RV Park. The park doesn't have cable, but there is a clubhouse with a high definition TV with cable. We settled in there to watch "The Amazing Race." I didn't even fall asleep. Love that show!
Now I am falling asleep over the computer as I write this. Must get sleep. Good night.