2011 Southwestern USA travel blog

Carlsbad, NM - Carsbad RV Park & Campground, Site B17

Carlsbad, NM - Carlsbad RV Park & Campground, Site B17, another view

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 0 - Our route - 239 miles

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 1 - They have these in every...

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 2 - Pecos, TX has the smallest...

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 3 - Who would have thought it

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 4 - The town of Pecos, TX...

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 5 - another one

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 6 - and another

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 7

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 8 - miles and miles of nothing

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 9 - green fields of something in...

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 10 - they flood the fields of...

Carlsbad Caverns 0

Carlsbad Caverns 1 - on the drive in

Carlsbad Caverns 2

Carlsbad Caverns 3

Carlsbad Caverns 4

Carlsbad Caverns 5

Carlsbad Caverns 6

Carlsbad Caverns 7 - the cave to the restrooms 750 feet from...

Carlsbad Caverns 8

Carlsbad Caverns 9

Carlsbad Caverns 10

Carlsbad Caverns 11

Carlsbad Caverns 12

Carlsbad Caverns 13

Carlsbad Caverns 14

Carlsbad Caverns 15

Carlsbad Caverns 16

Carlsbad Caverns 17

Carlsbad Caverns 18

Carlsbad Caverns 19

Carlsbad Caverns 20

Carlsbad Caverns 21

Carlsbad Caverns 22

Carlsbad Caverns 23

Carlsbad Caverns 24

Carlsbad Caverns 25

Carlsbad Caverns 26

Carlsbad Caverns 27 - wire ladder used by the National Geographic Society...

Carlsbad Caverns 28

Carlsbad Caverns 29

Carlsbad Caverns 30

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Carlsbad Caverns 34

Carlsbad Caverns 35

Carlsbad Caverns 36

Carlsbad Caverns 37

Carlsbad Caverns 38

Carlsbad Caverns 39 - the natural entrance where the bats fly out...

Carlsbad Caverns 40 - the adobe structures built by the CCC in...

Big Bend to Carlsbad, NM 11 - NOT a happy end to...

Sitting Bull Falls 1

Sitting Bull Falls 2 - Open range on this county road gives...

Sitting Bull Falls 3

Sitting Bull Falls 4

Sitting Bull Falls 5

Sitting Bull Falls 6

Sitting Bull Falls 7

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Sitting Bull Falls 9

Sitting Bull Falls 10 - makes sense to me!

Sitting Bull Falls 11

Sitting Bull Falls 12

Sitting Bull Falls 13

Sitting Bull Falls 14 - the top of the falls - can...

Sitting Bull Falls 15

Sitting Bull Falls 16 - near the bottom

Sitting Bull Falls 17 - the end of the canyon where the...

Sitting Bull Falls 18

Sitting Bull Falls 19 - the nicest home we have seen in...

Sitting Bull Falls 20 - coming back into Carlsbad after the falls

Sitting Bull Falls 21

Living Desert & Zoo 1

Living Desert & Zoo 2

Living Desert & Zoo 3 - Javelinas

Living Desert & Zoo 4

Living Desert & Zoo 5

Living Desert & Zoo 6

Living Desert & Zoo 7 - Great Horned Owl

Living Desert & Zoo 8

Living Desert & Zoo 9

Living Desert & Zoo 10

Living Desert & Zoo 11 - Think I'll stop here in the...

Living Desert & Zoo 12 - Desert Willow

Living Desert & Zoo 13 - the Ocochillo that has received water...

Living Desert & Zoo 14

Living Desert & Zoo 15 - a Star Cactus from Africa

Living Desert & Zoo 16

Living Desert & Zoo 17


Our 239 mile trip from Big Bend to Carlsbad was anything but uneventful. Two miles before arriving at the campground our right rear duals blew and also managed to bend the aluminum wheel. It also tore up the right rear jack wiring and who knows what else. Five hours later we managed to make it to the campground.

We are staying at the Carlsbad RV Park & Campground with 50 amp full hookups, including cable, and a lot of wind which they don't charge for. We have decent Verizon coverage and a clear shot to the satellite.

Tuesday found us going to Carlsbad Caverns about 23 miles from the campground. This made my third trip to the caverns - the first in the 50s with my parents, the second with Doris, Misty and Michelle in the late 70s. Many things have changed each time I have come. The first time, the tour was very rudimentary and very little safety precautions. It had only changed slightly when Doris and I came with the girls, carrying one on each hip, though there were many more safety rails. Now there are two unguided tours - one from the natural entrance and one taking the elevator down to the Big Room. We chose to take the elevator down. It was still about a 1½ mile hike around the Big Room which took almost two hours. The formations are really unbelievable and the Park Service does a great job with the lighting and presentation of the entire passage.

Next we made the drive over to Sitting Bull Falls in the Lincoln National Forest about 50 miles from Carlsbad. The falls is fed by a small spring whose flow varies substantially according to season. Not much was flowing when we were there. It was a pretty drive though and we enjoyed the trip very much.

Wednesday was spent trying to get the Mothership fixed. We were able to find a truck repair place where they were very good and managed to get the levelers fixed where the blown tires had torn up the wiring.

Thursday morning we went to the Living Desert and Zoo in Carlsbad. It included a 1.5 mile trail through the park where you see many different desert plants and also many animals that inhabit the area. I included several pictures of some of the unique items. That afternoon was spent trying to get the kitchen slide repaired. We were not as fortunate as we were with the levelers. A link on the unusual chain that is used to open and close the slide had cut a link pin and smashed one of its integral rollers. The small service center here helped a lot but did not have the parts for repair so the rest of the day was spent in an effort to stabilize the slide so it doesn't creep out during travel - hopefully we were successful on that - tomorrow will tell.

Tomorrow we head for Alamogordo, NM and White Sands National Monument.

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