Sunday, September 30, 2007

Liberal, KS

We left Tucumcari, stopping in Hooker, Oklahoma for diesel ($3.089/gallon). We're now at the Mid America Air Museum in Liberal, Kansas...they have a large paved lot and allow RVs to spend the night.

Miles driven: 220.2
GPS coordinates: N 37° 02.287' / W 100° 57.103'

Friday, September 28, 2007

Dinosaur Museum

Today we visited Mesalands Community College's Dinosaur Museum. Although smaller than many museums we've visited, it is very nicely's a result of a combined effort by Mesalands Community College and the Tucumcari community to create a museum where the fossils of Quay County and eastern New Mexico can be exhibited.

The museum has on display the world's largest collection of bronze skeletons, fossils and replicas of prehistoric creatures. The bronzes were created as part of the College's fine arts program. Created using the lost wax method, the durability of the bronze invites visitors to touch the exhibits.

The museum also has on display one of the world's only Torvosaurus skeletons, a rare carnivore from the Jurassic Period that is related to Tyrannosaurus rex.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Cactus RV Park - Tucumcari, NM

We left Santa Rosa State Park and headed to Cactus RV Park in Tucumcari, one of our Passport America parks. We're spending a few days here to do laundry and shopping before heading up to Smith Center, KS to have our bedroom slide problem fixed.

After setting up, we had lunch at Del's Restaurant which is within walking distance of the RV park, and then did some grocery shopping at the local Lowe's.

Miles driven: 65.3
GPS coordinates: N 35° 10.287' / W 103° 42.610'
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Saturday, September 22, 2007

Santa Rosa del Lima Chapel

On our way back from Puerto de Luna, we stopped to take pictures of the remains of the Santa Rosa de Lima Chapel, erected in 1879 by Don Celso Baca.

We had lunch at the Comet II Restaurant. Since we'd read about the PDL chilies from Puerto de Luna, I had the PDL chili enchilada which was excellent!

Puerto de Luna

Puerto de Luna (meaning "gateway to the moon") is a small town south of Santa Rosa famous for it's unique strain of chili that has been cultivated here for over 100 years (known by the locals as PDL chili). Before the coming of the railroad, PDL was the most thriving village in the area and was the county seat before it was moved to Santa Rosa.

According to legend, Coronado's conquistadors built a bridge across the Pecos here and watched the moon come up behind rock outcroppings. However, the town was really named after the Luna family who have lived in the area since the 1860's.

The town is also famous for being the place where Billy the Kid ate his last Christmas dinner. Alexander Grzelachowski (or "Grezla" as the locals called him) was a retired Civil War chaplain was a friend to outlaw Billy the Kid. Billy was a frequent visitor and ate his last Christmas dinner a Grezla's home on December 25, 1880 while being escorted to the jail in Las Vegas, New Mexico, by Pat Garrett.
The Nuestra Senora del Refugio Church in Puerto de Luna, pictured above, was built in 1881.

Scuba Diving -- In the Desert?

The Blue Hole in Santa Rosa is a scuba diving mecca. The natural, bell-shaped pool is 80 feet deep and has a constant water temperature of 62 degrees. The invitingly clear water (visibility is 80' when undisturbed) in the spring well is produced from a cave system near the well's bottom that generates about 3,000 gallons per minute.

Indeed, there were scuba divers in the Blue Hole...taking classes, I presume.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Santa Rosa Lake State Park

We're now at Santa Rosa Lake State Park in Loop B of the Rocky Point Campground. After setting up, we drove into Santa Rosa to do grocery shopping.

Miles driven: 57.5
GPS coordinates: N 35° 02.160' / W 104° 41.319'

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Bosque Redondo Memorial

Today we visited Bosque Redondo Memorial at Fort Sumner State Monument.

Fort Sumner was the center of a million-acre reservation known as the Bosque Redondo Indian Reservation. In the early 1860's, the Navajo and Mescalero Apache Indians were starved into submission and then forced to march hundreds of miles to the Bosque Redondo Reservation (the Navajo call this journey the Long Walk). The Mescalero Apache left the reservation without permission in 1865, but it wasn't until 1868 that General Sherman was sent to Fort Sumner to negotiate a new treat with the Navajo, which allowed them to return to their original homes in the Four Corners region.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Sumner Lake State Park

We left Tijeras this morning, stopping at a gas station in Moriarty to get diesel ($2.869/gallon).

We're staying in the East Side Campground at Sumner Lake State Park...the first campground as you come into the park. It has several spaces with both water and electric (which costs us $4 per day with our annual permit). We have a nice view of the lake.

Miles driven: 142.2
GPS coordinates: N 34° 36.851' / W 104° 22.646'

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

We took the truck back to Zangara Dodge in Albuquerque for another oil change. They have an express lube lane, so it only takes a little while to have an oil change done.

Afterward, we did grocery shopping at the Smith's grocery store on the way back to the park.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I started a load of laundry after breakfast, and we then drove into Albuquerque to do some shopping at Costco.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Back to Tijeras

We left Bluewater Lake State Park this morning and headed to Hidden Valley Resort in Tijeras, stopping at the Roadrunner Restaurant at the Route 66 Travel Center west of Albuquerque for lunch.

Miles driven: 125
GPS coordinates: N 35° 06.266' / W 106° 20.202'

Saturday, September 08, 2007


Bluewater Lake is very low compared to what it has been in the past...we don't know if this is a seasonal low, or if it's because of drought, but based on the vegetation growing in the areas where the lake once was, it's probably been low for a while. In fact, there's a big warning sign on the way into the area where we are camping that says to slow down because there's water ahead...well, the water is probably at least 1/4 mile away!

Someone brought in some horses and dropped them off...guess the state allows the area to be used as a grazing area. I never stopped to count the number of horses, but there were at least half a dozen or more, including a couple of colts. They wandered through the space next to us one day...which really got Maxx's attention!

Thursday, September 06, 2007


Ross and Beverly left early this morning since they had about a 300 mile trip to their next destination. It was great seeing them again!

Earl and I spent the rest of the day just lazing around.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Bluewater Lake SP, Day 2

Earl and I drove into Grants to do grocery shopping and fill up one of the propane tanks.

In the evening, we again had dinner with Ross and Beverly. This time, I made the salad and veggies, and Beverly cooked crab cakes and more bread (the crab cakes came from Costco...we'll pick some up the next time we're there, because they were really good!).

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Bluewater Lake SP Again

We're back at Bluewater Lake State Park, this time to meet some friends, Ross and Beverly Taylor. Ross and Beverly are Lazy Daze owners who stayed at our place in Quartzsite after having picked up their brand new rig at the factory. They've been in the Northwest and are on their way home to Fredericksburg, Texas.

Ross and Beverly arrived shortly after we had set up and we had a nice visit with them...despite the rain. During a respite in the rain, Earl barbecued brats, I fixed some rice, and Beverly prepared a salad and made some bread (she has a Just for Dinner bread maker which makes a small loaf of bread in just 45 minutes rather than the 3 to 4 hours of a normal bread maker).

Miles driven: 125.0
GPS coordinates: N 35° 18.210' / W 108° 06.509'

Monday, September 03, 2007

Back to Farmington

We drove back into Farmington and stayed again at the Mom and Pop RV Park. After setting up and unhooking, we did some shopping.

First stop was the Best Buy to buy a new flash drive after the one I had finally gave up the ghost. We then went on to Safeway where we first bought diesel ($2.929/gallon) and then went grocery shopping.

Miles driven: 128.6
GPS coordinates: Not taken