Greetings from Las Cruces, NM!

Monello

Awww, jeez
PREMO Member
Today we drove up to Dripping Springs Natural Area at the foot of the Organ Mountain. It's a short 15 mile drive from the campground. A few miles out and you are in the high desert. Few roads and scrubby landscape. They have a few awesome housing developments out that way. All adobe style homes. They fit right in with the landscape.

Each mile up the road, we gained elevation. We passed a trailhead that acts as what is refered to out here as dispersed camping. No amenities, no nothing. You haul it in and haul it back out. The closer we got to the mountain, the more visible the fine details became. It's the same view we have from our campsite only upclose you appreciate the beauty of nature.

They have a visitor center. The gal running the place today is a transplant from New Orleans of all places. The area is under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management. I thought they fell under the Department of Agriculture, similar to National Forests. I learned they are under the Department of the Interior, just like National Parks. There is a diarama in the visitor center. We got a brief overview of the entire region. The organ section of the mountain is granite. To the right of the granite is mountains that were created by lava flows. No matter how it got there, the mountain is impressive. I only wish our pictures captured the enormity and majesty of the view. There is some wildlife in the area but I think you have to be really lucky to see anything. There are warnings about what to do if you encounter mountain lions.

BLM manages 245 million acres of public land. Those lands generate $96 billion for the US government and provides 468,000 jobs. Gotta love a country that has a ton of open land.

After our mountain drive, we went downtown to the town square. They were having a rally for the New Mexico State University's rodeo team. They had live music with a bunch of team members lassoing dummy steers. They were giving lessons to some junior cowboy wannabees. A few food trucks lined the square. We got a drink at the brewery then ate and walked the down town. The downtown is hard to get a read on. It's not run down. As a matter of fact it's on it's way up. But they have a lot of useless stores and quite a few are vacant. They have an abundance of churches for some reason. With a few more popular stores, this could be a rocking area. I think of how popular the Riverwalk of San Antonio is jammed packed with humanity on a daily basis. This area could be a mini riverwalk with some TLC by the right people.

The weather here has been amazing. I don't think they get much rain here. Today it was 83 but in the high desert it's very pleasant. Not chilly but not hot like it would be on the east coast. Our mornings are on the chilly side in the low 50s. Once the sun comes out, the mercury climbs quickly.

Pics to follow.
 
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vraiblonde

Board Mommy
PREMO Member
Patron
So today we made the pilgrimage to Sparky's in Hatch, NM - home to the world famous green chile cheeseburger. Monello and I split one and also sampled their BBQ offerings. It was a tasty burger.

And I got an education. I bought a jar of green chile stuff, thinking I would use it on everything. It was bland and boring. Today I learned that the sauce is to be snubbed and what you're supposed to do is chop your own green chiles and add them to your food. This is why Sparky's burger was sublime and mine was not.

Hatch is a one-horse impending ghost town with a single attraction. People come from everywhere to eat at Sparky's.

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There is one block with Sparky stuff - it's a restaurant AND a roadside oddity.

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Monello

Awww, jeez
PREMO Member
It was like eating lunch on the navy ship. Stand in line and wait your turn. And wait we did. In the end it was well worth it.

The drive up was amazing. A couple miles north of Las Cruces and we were in the desert ringed with low mountains. It was about a 40 mile trip each way, with about 34 miles of it desolate. Lots of pecan orchards and some sort of low, green crop.

Chiles, the veggie that made Hatch. Or is it the other way around?
 

Monello

Awww, jeez
PREMO Member
The best part of today was just checking out a pizzeria while going back to the car after strolling around the farmer's market. The sign announced both pizza and a bakery. What they do is make bread for sale during the day and sell it out of the restaurant. They only have a few products, mostly baguettes.

But it is the most amazing bread, that rivals anything out of New York city or northern New Jersey. Zeffiro is the pizzeria part.



1 of their promo photos.

We'll have to try thier pizza next week.

Before returning to the campground, we rolled back around to Mesilla. The goal was to get past the plaza and see the rest of the town besides the tourist parts. 1 of the things about the great Las Cruces area is the lack of the neighborhood watering hole. They have a few breweries downtown but lack the shot and a beer low brow tavern.

On the main drag we saw a sign for a bar called the Palacio Bar. So we had to stop and take a look. Not too many cars in the parking lot. The outside wall was decorated with an enormous mural of the clydesdale horses pulling a Bud carriage. The bar is very much in the SW style. There are only a few patrons in there. All female including the bar tender. She must have felt sorry for me since she turned the TV on to the basketball game.

Vrai searched high and low for the beer taps. None to be found. She figured they didn't offer any draft beer. I did spy a contraption on the counter behind the bar area. It had beer variety names on it. It was a bright, shiny thingamabob. When she was asked, the barmaid verified that they did indeed have beer on tap and listed what they had. We told her what we wanted. Dos dos equis. Then she fetched 2 glasses and dropped what looked like a huge washer into the bottom of the glass. The glasses had a hole in the middle of the bottom of the glass. She then put the glass over a spout over the beer portioner and beer flowed from the bottom to the top of the glass. It stopped when the beer level reached the top of the glass.

Here's a demo of how it works. Maybe you have already seen these in your favorite bar.


1 more thing about the bar. In the evenings it turns into a dance hall. They have a lot of rules for dos & don'ts. There is a blacklist of who can't get in. I counted 9 women's names on the list. Must be a rough crowd after hours.
 

Monello

Awww, jeez
PREMO Member
Today's adventure was a hike the Dripping Springs Trail. A sloped ∼ 2 mile trip 1 way. At the end is a historic settlement that served as a sanatorium and hotel. The spring drips from the rocks, into a reservoir that is now filled in. It's amazing to see a spring at that elevation. That water has to travel all the way from deep in the earth to finally run out in the high desert mountain. It's not much of a spring but it's impressive not the less.

The stroll back was much less arduos than the trek uphill. This will be good training for when we reach the Grand Canyon. We took a bunch of pictures but like always, they won't do justice to the view we see when we are there

Pics to follow.
 

nutz

Well-Known Member
They have a few breweries downtown but lack the shot and a beer low brow tavern.
:whistle: El Patio Bar, My brothers place Try looking under pool halls instead of low brow tavern :cheers: Last time I was out that way I was investing in LaCumbre beers. I really liked the slice of Hefen and the Malpais stout. Project Dank sounded good but not for me.
 

vraiblonde

Board Mommy
PREMO Member
Patron
:whistle: El Patio Bar,
How funny! I took a pic of it when we were in Mesilla the first day.

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There are a ton of brew pubs here. We've been hanging out at Little Toad Creek because I like the blonde they have on tap, but El Patio is only about a mile from our RV park.
 

vraiblonde

Board Mommy
PREMO Member
Patron
The stroll back was much less arduos than the trek uphill.
I thought the trip down was more worrisome because the gravel was loose and the last thing I wanted to do was slip and open up a body part. Walking two miles while injured just didn't sound like fun to me, plus you'd have had to listen to me whine and bitch. :jet:
 

So_what

Yes I'm an MPD, But who's
Ex in-laws used to live between Las Cruces and Truth or Consequences. Right near Elephant Butte Lake. I've been to most of the places you're describing. Check out the Hot Springs in T or C👍
 

So_what

Yes I'm an MPD, But who's
Used to be a little Hole in the Wall bar near the entrance to the State Park at Elephant Butte Lake, spent a lot of time in there.
 

Toxick

Splat
That section of earth is my most favorite part about living on the earth. The rugged beauty of that desert, the climate, the people. I can't wait to move back there.



When I lived over there, there were only two things I missed. Crabs and scrapple.


And I can live without scrapple.
 

Monello

Awww, jeez
PREMO Member
Of all my body parts, just the small of my back is sore today. I figured it might be the calves or thighs that were feeling achy. For the most part we are urban hikers. We hit the farmer's market and make a few rounds of that. San Antonio had a great FM as did Des Moine, which probably set the bar high for FMs.

I'm glad people are chiming in that have been to this area. I wish our pictures could capture the mountain vibe you get when hiking close to them. I did a youtube search for some videos of that area. Most are crappy with a lot of camera movement that makes you seasick. Others are too long and I don't want to bore anyone. If I come across a decent one I will post it. I wish everyone could come out and experience the high desert mountains at least once.

The RV is perpetually in need of some sort of minor adjustment. Yesterday I got my 2 overhead LED light bulbs installed. They were on order at the local parts place. Now we finally have all our overhead lights functioning as they were intended. I still have 1 compartment door prop that is wonky. I might try to find a replacement and do it myself. I also have a new windshield on order. 7 years ago I took a rock to the face and it slowly turned into the dreaded spider web crack. But I finally committed to getting it replaced. Once we leave here, we'll have a new, shiny windshield. Now if I could only find someone to replace my carpet with some sort of flooring.

For grins I did an online appraisal of the RV. I got a ridiculous lowball figure. It's amazing the depreciation these things take. Good thing I didn't buy this as an investment. I look at it more as an investment in adventure and memories. My rig has served me well over the years. July will be 12 years since I purchased it used. It was 2 years old and only had 2,958 miles on it. In 12 years I've only put another 32,300 miles on it. My up and back to Alaska added about 1/3 of that. We aren't road warriors. Instead we prefer to drive for a day then spent as much time as we can in 1 location.

But if I got another rig and used it for the next 12 years, it would probably be worth it. I'd be a much better RV purchaser knowing what I know now. I'd like to get 1 more slide out. The next rig WON'T have carpet in it. The carpet is just too hard to keep clean. I think about switching things up and get a quality 5th wheel. But I'd have to drive it and some times I'd have to back it up into the spot. The RV backs up just like a car. The 5th wheel is more or less a trailer. I know I suck at backing up a trailer. It shouldn't be hard but I never grasped the nuances of doing it correctly. I've backed a few boats down a boat ramp. It took me a few tries to get it right. And even then I was off the mark a bit. The other rub with the 5th wheel is the under carriage storage.

So in the meantime we keep looking.
 

Yooper

Up. Identified. Lase. Fire. On the way.
PREMO Member
Hi, Vrai & Monello!

Came across this today and thought of you both.

I think you're both Western movie or history fans. If so, think "Tombstone."

'Cause if you are and if you're heading further west to AZ, then check this out: Dragoon, AZ. Not too far over the NM border (about halfway to Tucson).

Check out the link; has a map. You'll see why I thought it was cool and thought you would too!

Link: "The Grave of Johnny Ringo"

--- End of line (MCP)
 

Monello

Awww, jeez
PREMO Member
Hi, Vrai & Monello!

Came across this today and thought of you both.

I think you're both Western movie or history fans. If so, think "Tombstone."

'Cause if you are and if you're heading further west to AZ, then check this out: Dragoon, AZ. Not too far over the NM border (about halfway to Tucson).

Check out the link; has a map. You'll see why I thought it was cool and thought you would too!

Link: "The Grave of Johnny Ringo"

--- End of line (MCP)
This is a great website. They have an awesome search feature. Gotta bookmark this.

Thanks for thinking about us. We value input and feedback from people who have gone before us.
 
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