Sunday, December 18, 2011

White Sands, New Mexico

About 10 miles after leaving Texas heading to the White Sands in New Mexico, I was surprised to see a U.S. Customs and Border Patrol post that stopped everyone.  I’m glad l brought my passport with me today, it made my life easier.  At their post they must have had at least 100 vehicles with the green boarder patrol logo on them.  What an expense that must be (and those were just the ones that were off duty), when l compare it to what l’ve seen in Canada, USA wins hands down on big budget spending.

It was a overcast day, and it was hard to see the mountains in the distance.  I was driving in a valley between two mountain ranges.  The desert is so vast, but funny enough, full of plant life.  Lots of little scrubby bushes filled the floor of the desert.

[caption id="attachment_399" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Overcast Day, Mountains in the Distance"][/caption]

As l was driving on hwy 70 heading towards White Sands (heading toward Las Cruces, NM) l could see in the distance what looked like snow mounds.  l was surround by typical desert landscape then out of nowhere, there were these mounds that looked like snow.  It was bizarre.  I knew what it was, because that is where l was heading.  It must have really freaked out the pioneers.  Imagine trekking in 100 degree heat in the summer and seeing snow mounds in the distance.  Not up a mountain, but at the 100 degree heat level.

[caption id="attachment_394" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="White Sands in the Distance"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_395" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="White Sands"][/caption]

It really is quite spectacular.  The gypsum crystals come down from the mountains in the rainwater and deposits in this location (there is a small lake), as the water evaporates, the gypsum crystals remain and over hundreds of thousands of years you get this…..

[caption id="attachment_396" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Looks like snow"][/caption]


[caption id="attachment_397" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Sand, Sand, Sand"][/caption]

It cost a big whopping $3 to get in to The White Sands National Park, and the admission fee is good for 7 days.  Bargoon!!


[caption id="attachment_398" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Yep, that's snow in the sand. It must have snowed in the last couple of days and little patches remained on the side of the road"][/caption]

The first thing l noticed after l got out of my car is the silence.  It could be because it is off season and there are not many tourists around.  But it is quiet.  The sand seems to gobble up the noise. I’m sure when they test missiles it’s not quite the same, but today is very quiet and peaceful.

[caption id="attachment_400" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Picnic area totally empty"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_402" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Can you see the snow capped mountain in the distance?"][/caption]


1 comment:

  1. Beautiful - I so want to see the rest of this country. And the world too!

    By the way how do I get in touch with you other than on here? Or is that not allowed? Email me from my website and let me know :)