Add another sticker to our map

20141122_120915This year, I had unused vacation. Quite frankly, it’s not something I’m used to. Seriously, I’ve only had jobs that didn’t provide vacation for the past *mumble something* years. Being a contractor kinda sucked that way. But I’m not here to extol the virtues of having a real job, and I doubt you’re here to read about my normal every day life. Not that it’s bad, it just makes for rather dry reading. Woke up, had coffee, drove to work, did computery stuff, came home, watched back episodes of The Walking Dead… Pretty straightforward stuff really. But back to leaving town and getting to add a new state to our map.

20141123_102620New Mexico, Land of Enchantment. Our first camp site was at Brantley Lake which was kinda on the outskirts of Carlsbad, NM. As usual, no matter how hard I try I ended up arriving in the dark and had to park and wait until the morning to see what the rest of the campground looked like. Just like a Birthday present, you open up in the morning…

Appearance-wise, it’s really a nice place. the problems are not related to the campground itself, but the area surrounding the campground. There has been a lot of drilling in the area, and the smell from those rigs blew over to our rig the night before. It was so bad in fact that our CO/LPG detector went off. Being in the area left me with a slight headache, and I really feel bad talking down about the campground because of it, as it isn’t their fault at all. They just happen to be down wind… Which is the other issue we had. The days we were there the wind was so strong I was a little concerned we would lose something off the roof of Backseat Betty. It finally stopped blowing the night we left. Maybe it just didn’t like us there. But there are some very good points about it. If the wind is blowing in the other direction, it’s not too bad. And we were able to get a few good images of the campground.

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20141124_171609I really wish there wasn’t drilling in the area, because it would have been a really lovely place to stay. On the positive side, the drilling will move on after they get the pump in place, and you shouldn’t have as strong of an odor in the near future. Though I will probably stay someplace else and visit the lake a few times before I camp there again. I have to admit though, the prices for electrical hookups being only $14 a night compared to Arizona’s $30 a night is kinda nice.

20141123_140649-2After the walk around, we headed out to check out Carlsbad Caverns. At this time the bats have all migrated south, which kinda made me sad, but I was oddly okay with it because I have a crappy superpower of being able to hear bats’ echo location. We would like to come back to see it when the bats are there. We kinda miss out on the bats swarming out of the cave… You know… the whole thing this cave is known for. We did, however, go on the guided tour.

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More images located here

We returned to the trailer that evening, and the scent of drilling had subsided, but was still present. Needless to say I was happy that it wasn’t stinky. I fired up the grill and made steaks, taters and broccoli. It was a good night. We played Monopoly, and I lost miserably. The next day we were headed to Roswell, one of my inner kid’s choices for places to see.

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