Friday, February 22, 2013

Elephant Butte SP

We drove to Truth or Consequences (T or C) early this morning. Did a load of laundry which just happened to be right next door to Carmen's Kitchen. While waiting for the laundry, we both had a breakfast burrito. Carol was good and had a veggie one but I had chorizo and extra green chili sauce on mine.

Then we made a WalMart run and topped off the propane tank in anticipation of boondocking with freezing temps. at night.
The Elephant Butte SP offers three camping levels. Water and electric sites, dry camping in a developed area or primitive, i.e. no facilities of any type.  We're camped directly on the shore line in what's classified as primitive.

The lake level is near the historic low because of the extended drought throughout the Southwest.
In this link, you will see Rattlesnake Island near the bottom of the park map.

Park map

This photo is Rattlesnake Island taken from our campsite. The tower is a small weather station.

I climbed to the top of the "mountain" and took this picture of our camping area. We have this entire place to ourselves. Now and then, someone would drive, or walk, down mostly to let their dogs run around. Gopher generally has the beach to herself. Fortunately she didn't go swimming today. She's really a mess when wet and sandy.

We'll be here probably until about the 28th when we'll start heading north.

Got some good news today. Our house is coming along very well. The closing has been moved up to March 28.

My mother passed away on this day last year.  If you have things you would like to say to someone you love, do it when they are alive. I know.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Finally. We made it to NM

Friday, February 15.

We were finished with the closing on the house and on the road about 10am. After driving for most of the day, we spent the night at a Love's Travel Center near Live Oak, FL.  There is an Arby's attached to Love's and Carol noticed a sign advertising two fish sandwiches for $5. That plus a large order of fries was our celebratory grease bomb dinner for the closing on the house this morning. 


We left about 7am heading for the Sand Lake campground to join up with our Lazy Daze friends Ted and Liz. Sand Lake campground is part of a FL State Forest.  Each campsite has electric and water hookups plus there is a  central dump station. Our site is directly on the lake.

Ted and Liz are escaping the MA winter by drifting around FL.  They are talking about joining us for the Balloon Fiesta this year. We first met them in Burlington, VT in either 2003 or 4 $10/night if you're 65 or over.
 A beautiful sunny, but very cool, day.
I filed our tax return today. The internet makes traveling so easy.


We left the campground about 10am. The plan was to take a leisurely drive along US 98 which follows the beach all the way to Pensacola. I didn't think it was the height of The Season. It was a mad house of traffic all the way. Not a relaxing drive at all. We did drive by the SanDestin development. When I was working for the bank, we foreclosed on the entire development. My job was to manage the property on a daily basis. Jennifer was in college in New Orleans at that time. Now and then, she and some of her friends would come down to SanDestin and I would set them up in a luxury ocean front condo. for the weekend. One of the perks. of the job. :-)
We left Florida about 2pm for, I suspect, the very last time.
About 3:30 we got to the Mississippi Welcome Center. We're here for the night.


Left about 8am for Beaux Bridge, LA. Our destination was the Crazy 'Bout Crawfish and Cajun Cafe we heard about on the Yelp! app. We split the crawfish festival platter which included  crawfish salad, crawfish gumbo, crawfish etouffee, fried crawfish tails, crawfish boulette, crawfish pie, crawfish macque choux and crawfish jalapena cheese cornbread.  What a great lunch.

 The plan was to stay at the WalMart in town for the night but we decided to continue on to the Texas Welcome Center. We're here for the night. The mile market here is 880!!. It will take us three days of steady driving to get to the NM border. Our initial plan was to go to the TX Gulf Coast for a few days. We've been there several times so decided to just continue west to NM.


Headed west about 8am. We stopped at Texas Paddy's Texas Kitchen in Schulenburg for lunch. We shared a pound of brisket, some onion rings and sweet potato fries. A very good lunch.  The brisket was enough for tonight's dinner.
It's 3:30. We're at a rest area for the night on I-10 just west of Bourne which is just west of San Antonio.

On Wednesday we had lunch at the Rix Pit Bar-B-Que and Discount Warehouse in Fort Stockton, TX.  Before you get to the restaurant part, you walk through a junk store then a used book store. We split an order of fried catfish.

  Stayed the night at a rest area west of Fort Stockton.

On Thursday, we finally got out of Texas. It was just over 1,900 miles from Fort Pierce to the NM border.  We were really glad when we saw MM 1 on I-10.  On our way here, we passed through FL; a tough place to beat in the winter. AL and MS. LA, a the state with our favorite Cajun food then TX, a great state for Bar-B-Que.  I doubt we'll ever be back to any of these states again.

 It was very windy today plus close to freezing. The weather forecast said the winds were from the west between 30 and 50 mph. Most west bound traffic on I-10 was driving at about 60mph vs the typical 80mph. We were driving straight into the wind which is much better then having it blowing from either side.
Today we're camped at the Leasburg Dam SP just north of Las Cruces. Water and electric site for $14/night.  Nice to be off the road.

 Now things slow down a bit. We don't want to be in Longmont until March 3rd or 4th.