Carlsbad, New Mexico
Roswell, New Mexico
Carlsbad Caverns
Sitting Bull Falls

April 6th - 8th

Historic Fort Stockton, Texas Guard House.

John having a cool one with a local resident in Roswell, New Mexico.

Sissy chatting with a local in Roswell, New Mexico about John's friend above.

Lincoln National Forest in the mountains. Notice the snow on the ground which fell as we went through Cloud Croft, New Mexico.

Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico - 800 feet underground.

The drive out of Big Bend National Park was just as beautiful as it was going in; the weather was great and the scenery was even better. The speed limit in the park was 45 mph but that didn't matter because we were savoring every mile. Well anyway, onto Carlsbad, New Mexico it was after stopping several different places for propane fuel (nothing was open or they didn't have a certified person able to fill our tank.) After stopping at Fort Stockton to see the historic fort, eat lunch and top of the truck tank we continued north.

New Mexico was the only state so far that didn't have a Visitor Welcome Center just across the state line. Matter of fact, we almost missed the sign itself, and if it weren't for the change in road material, we probably would've missed the moment. The ride to Carlsbad was better than expected; sunny skies, warm temperature (70ish) and light traffic. It wasn't until we reached the city limit did we even see an 18 wheeler!

Stopping at Brantley Lake State Park (just north of Carlsbad), we discovered the camping sites were extremely expensive and they wanted to charge an extra $10 per day for our bike. So, we opted to continue on out of town and locate a private campground. About 5 miles north of the State Park we located 7 Rivers Cover RV Resort owned and operated by Don and Connie Manthel. It was a brand new, family owned campground with all level, pull-thru sites having full hookups. And better yet, it was much cheaper than the State Park, so we opted to stay there for 3 days and nights. We figured Roswell, Carlsbad Caverns, Carlsbad River Walk and Sitting Bull Falls were all within reach from this home base.

View of the high desert near Carlsbad, New Mexico.

A quick trip to Wall Mart for supplies (groceries, beer for Sissy and margarita mix for Sissy) it was in the truck before settling down for dinner and rest. We didn't experience any of the wild fires in the southwestern part of New Mexico or the thunderstorms in the northern part, but the wind rocked the trailer so hard we even thought sex was going on inside! During the night, Sissy even wanted to get inside the truck it was blowing so hard.

Sunday morning we were up bright and early despite the 2 clock changes we had the day before (from Central Time to Mountain Time and Daylight Savings Time.) We'd planned to take the bike to Carlsbad Caverns and Sitting Bull Falls, but the wind was still kicking and it was sprinkling by the time we got showered and dressed. So, in the truck we went to Roswell about 70 miles north. We saw the UFO Museum and Research Center and went inside the Alien Zone to purchase some gifts and take the tour for pics. We didn't realize Roswell was as big as it was; it even had the New Mexico Military Institute!

Shortly before lunch (we brought our own) we decided to take a ride through the mountains and drive the long way back. (We didn't have to be back at the campground for the pot luck dinner until 1700) We went first to the Lincoln State Monument (a grouping of several buildings in town) and parked at the Visitor Center for lunch. Then it was back through the Capitan, Black, Pajarito and Sacramento Mountain Ranges, and the Lincoln National Forest. When we reached Cloud Croft, a small ski resort at the top, it was snowing and the temperature was 35 degrees. Sissy was closing her eyes and grasping the truck seat while John casually negotiated the winding road (having a blast doing it also.) John thinks the downhill part was the best!

Lincoln, New Mexico fire engine - still in operation!

Whelp, back to the campground it was for the pot luck dinner with other campers at the resort. We met some nice folks from Michigan, New Hampshire and New Jersey. But before too long, it was time for downloading the 100+ pics we took, updating the web site and recording in the journal before bedtime. The next day was going to be another long one on the bike (weather permitting.)

Monday morning we headed to the campground office for gifts and to pay for another day. Then, it was on the bike to Carlsbad Caverns and Sitting Bull Falls after stopping by the U.S. Post Office in Carlsbad to mail 2 diskettes to Johnny and breakfast at the Pecos Cafe for breakfast. The weather was great and the wind had even died down a little (enough for Sissy to go), so we knew it was going to be a good day.

UFO Museum and Research Center.

Carlsbad Caverns were 45 miles from our campsite, but that didn't matter because we were on the bike. Up into the mountains we went taking pics all along the way. Once there, we used our National Park Pass to gain entry for free, and went directly to the "big room" for more pics of the caverns 800 feet underground. The brochures said to bring an extra jacket because the consistent temperature down under was 56 degrees. We opted to just keep our leathers on, but John had to shed them about half way through.

After the caverns, it was to a local gift store to look around and then onward to Sitting Bull Falls. It was nice, but we've been spoiled at Niagara Falls. More than a trickle, but less than we expected. I guess being a desert mountain had something to do with it. Sissy made a point to remind John that it began to rain (a mere sprinkle) along the way! It wasn't snow, but it was wet and she was going to log it in the journal! Big deal!

Sitting Bull Falls.

To make a long story short, the caverns and falls were well worth the ride. The scenery was beautiful and we were about the only ones on the road to and from. Anyway, back to the campground we went about 1600 for Sissy to do laundry while John took the truck into Carlsbad for a bath. The Texas mud was still aboard, and it had to be removed before we headed out in the morning.

Tuesday morning we planned to go back through the Lincoln National Forest (where the snow was) and drive to White Sands National Monument before ending up somewhere around Las Cruses for the night. We got up early, hooked up and were on our way.

John & Sissy EXCLUSIVE RATINGS: (1 bad - good 10)

  • Campground - 10
  • People - 10
  • Roads - 8
  • Scenery - 10
  • Traffic - 10
  • Things to Do - 8
  • Weather - 8

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