Badlands bike and hike

If you’ve ever wanted to see the Badlands, go now … they are crumbling. It’s a world of sandcastles on the Crayola plains. Stunning vistas but when you get up close, you experience the effects of extreme weather washing them away. Last night’s lightening infested skies brought torrential rain and thundering wind that shook Betty like a space shuttle re-entering earth’s atmosphere. How the tenters survived we can’t say, but the morning sun shone dry and the campground emptied for the day’s activities. Our Badlands bike and hike would have to wait, as our booked site #4 was unexpectedly petite … Continue reading Badlands bike and hike

I Feel a Badlands Arising

Mushrooms and cactus are out. Bison and prairie dogs are in. Bison are the largest land mammal in North America. They weigh up to 2 tons and stand as tall as 6.5 feet. Extremely agile, they can jump up to 6 feet high and reach speeds of 35 mph. We didn’t see them do anything other than eat grass and wallow in the dirt, but Sheri is obsessed with their big furry face and “here’s me lookin at you” stare. Similarly, acres of prairie dog towns stretch across the landscape. The social animals never shut up, chirping and waving their … Continue reading I Feel a Badlands Arising

Rolling Condo on the Prairie

John Grisham and his buddy Scott Sowers accompanied us on the two day 550 mile trek from Walsenburg, Colorado through construction laden, jersey wall confined, darting traffic, heavy drive workload, big city Denver, into sleepy/creepy Cheyenne, Wyoming and up to Hot Springs, South Dakota and Wind Cave National Park. On the long, trance-like stretches, they told us the story of The Confession – a frustrating fictional account of the Texas Legal System but was told like it could have been based on a true story. Their 7 hour yarn ticked away the miles as mountains merged with cities giving way … Continue reading Rolling Condo on the Prairie

Rocking the Rockies

From “Life Elevated” in Utah, to “The Land of Enchantment” in New Mexico, it was time for a shot of “Colorful Colorado.” On the one year anniversary of our retirement, we pulled up jacks and coasted off the mountaintop campground in first gear, slipping out of Santa Fe at dawn. We had 250 miles ahead of us – plenty of time to reflect on Meow Wolf, our last year of travels and tribulations and what provisions we needed at Walmart. An hour up the road, we hit the Las Vegas strip: not the neon one in Nevada, but the virtually shuttered … Continue reading Rocking the Rockies

Art and Altitude in Santa Fe

It would have been incomplete to leave New Mexico without a visit to its state capitol of Santa Fe, known as “The City Different” for its history, arts, architecture and outdoor adventure making it National Geographic’s pick as the number one “Sense of Place” in the entire world. Or at least that’s what the Official 2019 Visitors Guide says. Truth be told, we wanted to experience the hype of Meow Wolf’s House of Eternal Return, a massive art exhibit backed by Game of Thrones’ George R.R. Martin. We had no reservations, and no intel on the area, but we felt … Continue reading Art and Altitude in Santa Fe

mOjo Caliente

When you want to drop out of the daily grind, come to New Mexico – The Land of Enchantment. When we drove across southern NM last year visiting Carlsbad Caverns, long stretches of cactus fields and pecan farms and the serenity of Radium Springs, we thought NM should call itself the Land of Entrancement. Its nature lulls you into a hypnotic trance that frees the cluttered mind. In Northern Taos, it was all about sunsets and juniper fields. A lush high desert where the wind always blows, the sun always shines and even the post bloom flowers leave an inspiring … Continue reading mOjo Caliente

Far Flung in the Taos Box

New Mexico’s premier whitewater run is 17 miles through the Rio Grande Gorge, a black basalt chasm with stunning cliffs, plentiful bird life and big horn sheep, which we saw all of those. This section, known as-the Taos Box, boasts class III-IV rapids with steep drops and wave walloping fun. Far Flung Adventures has been running the box since 1974. The staff is seriously committed – serious about safety and committed to fun. We rolled in on our Comos at 7:30am as the guides were finishing up their morning granola in their Earthship office. Christine greeted us like we were … Continue reading Far Flung in the Taos Box

Earthship Biotecture

While the big car companies are battling it out to be first to market in the the autonomous driving vehicle movement, an environment-friendly company in Taos, NM has been working on the autonomous house for almost 50 years, becoming a top eco-construction and self-sufficient living company in the world. According to Biotecture pioneer Michael Reynolds, there are 6 human needs for a harmonious life on earth … Food, Energy, Clean Water, Shelter, Garbage management and Sewage Treatment. His Earthships are the manifestation of sustainable living design. Our family architecture major is spending the summer learning how to build them at … Continue reading Earthship Biotecture

Biking Burque

After a month of communing with nature we were ready for livin’ la vida local in central New Mexico and there’s no better way to get to know a city than on a bike. The Spamway ride gave us a taste of the east side – the place you go to do top secret research, rent a cheap apartment, shop in a chain store, get outta town or get caught in a tourist trap. Very utilitarian. The west side had yet to be explored, so we mapped a route from Kirtland for an 11 hour “live life like locals” ride. … Continue reading Biking Burque

Nuclear Spamway

Albuquerque is famous for its history with nuclear power. Sandia Labs, home to the National Nuclear Security Administration, sits adjacent to Kirtland AFB. It makes a beautiful backdrop to our panoramic view from the Fam Camp. Los Alamos, home to the first nuclear bomb, is just 80 miles north. With all of that nuclear energy in the air, we had to drop in on the National Museum of Nuclear Science and History, which is conveniently located directly out the back gate from Fam Camp. For less than a Jackson for both of us, we got our history on following the … Continue reading Nuclear Spamway