From Carlsbad Caverns we made our way towards White Sands National Monument in New Mexico. White Sands is a huge dual purpose field of gypsum sand. One purpose is for the government to use it as a missile test range. The second purpose is for it to be a National Monument. It's pretty neat.

First we stopped in Artesia, NM to eat dinner and spend the night. I had a flank steak with green chiles and cheese. Delish.

John had green chile stew...

Movie theater on the main drag of Artesia.

We slept. We woke up. We went to the chaos cafe for breakfast. I had scrambled eggs with green chiles and cheese.

John had a really good omelet and some biscuits.The food at the Chaos Cafe was amazing. Highly recommended.

In short order we rode through Alamagordo and headed over to the White Sands. First, we hiked the big dune trail.

John volunteered to be the tour guide. We headed off to marker #1.

We paused while this beetle crossed in front of us.

We saw these tiny tracks.

We came across this poor beetle, stuck on his back. He thrashed around like mad, and you can see the marks in the sand from his attempts to flip over. We photographed him, then flipped him over onto his legs. He seemed grateful.

John reads about something interesting on the "trail."

Here we are at marker #17. Up ahead you can see #18.

There was a guy up on the big dune with his dog.

We headed back into Alamagordo where we ate at Si Senor. We highly recommend this place. Good chips and salsa.

Good green chile stew and sopapillas.

Good fried relleno.

We then rode back up to cloudcroft and got a room at the lodge. The lodge is an old-timey hotel, and you feel like you're in the Adirondacks while you're there. Of course, you're really in New Mexico, and you're at about 8,900 feet, but the feel is similar.

Looking down the hall towards the great room.

A nice sitting area.

A little frost on the grass the next morning.

From the rear of the building.

John's breakfast. Biscuits and eggs and gravy.

I got the same old same old. It was amazingly good. We ate at the lodge restaurant. We recommend it for breakfast, but it was god-awful for dinner. the evening before.

From the road on the way up to Ski Apache in Ruidoso.

F*cking beer drinking litterbugs. This kind of thing drives me crazy.

The BEST hamburger I've ever had. At this little place in Cloudcroft. It's got everything, and they fry the crap out of it on an old griddle, so it's crispy and greasy and AMAZING.

Heaven on a plate.

Fresh, homemade french fries. These were also out of this world.

John making the final adjustments...

Heading home, we stopped to snap a few pics in this cotton field.


This little shit made a bunch of noise while we tried to enjoy some good Texas BBQ in Brady on the way home.