Lincoln National Forest
Lincoln National Forest
April 1, 2006

Day 1
Trinity Site
Missile Park
White Sands National Monument
Space History Museum
Lincoln National Forest
Carlsbad Caverns National Park
Guadalupe Mountains National Park

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After gassing up the rental car in Alamogordo. New Mexico, I started toward Carlsbad through the Lincoln National Forest and discovered the San Andres Mountains. Well, it was only a discovery for me, but I wasn't expecting the slow, steep, winding road - rugged and beautiful. 

There were several spots along US Highway 82 where I wanted to stop, but I only stopped for photos once. The remains of an old narrow gauge railroad trestle looked particularly photogenic. But darkness was coming and this was a road I didn't want to drive in the dark.

The road did get better after I reached Cloudcroft. (9,000 feet). The long trip down the east side of the San Andres Mountains was an easie driver, but I pushed on to see as much country as possible in the fading light.

I saw a few deer during this stretch, but didn't see much wildlife during the rest of the trip. The other highlight was a roadrunner that crossed the road ahead of me the next day.

The cliffs opposite Tunnel Vista are popular for repelling

Fresnal Canyon along US-82
Fresnal Canyon

Highway US-82 in New Mexico
US 82 highway tunnel 

San Andres Mountain sunset.
Sun setting behind San Andres Mountains.

White tailed deer in New Mexico
Taken from a distance in low light - deer in foreground and cattle in distance

The best meal of the trip was late in the evening at Lucy's in Carlsbad - shrimp fajitas. Lucy's margaritas were better than the Double Eagle's, and about half the price. My favorite waitress at Austin's Bar & Grill in Olathe had recommended Lucy's Mexican restaurant.

I spent the too short night (the time changed to daylight savings) at the Days Inn in Carlsbad, New Mexico. 

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