Severe weather was on the way and again caused us a change in plans. We were planning on heading to Lubbock, Texas on our way to Albuquerque, New Mexico area, but the weather changed our minds. A 2AM hail storm also made it obvious we were not in the right place at the right time. The hail was large enough to make a lot of noise, but not large enough to cause damage. We decided we were going to head to Lakewood, New Mexico instead of Lubbock.
We saw many scary looking clouds on our trip west on I-20:
But we did not have any bad weather. We did learn that a tornado had crossed I-20 by Abilene, TX a few hours behind us.
After a long day, our longest drive ever of 437 miles, we were camped at The Ranch SKP Co-op in Lakewood, New Mexico. It was windy but the place is very friendly. Their free wi-fi was being flakey and our antenna and amplifier were unable to give us a reliable aircard internet signal so we put up the dish in the wind, luckily the motorhome blocked the wind from hitting the dish:
The cactus was blooming:
There were lots of rabbits for us and Evita to watch:
We were close to the campground we stayed in October 2002, but we like it here better. We drove up to Artesia and down to Carlsbad on April 10th to see how it they had changed. The social at The Ranch is well attended and fun in the afternoon. It was a windy day and many of the activities in the area are outside, so we didn't do any sightseeing.
Carlsbad Caverns April 11, Part 1 (Natural Entrance), Part 2, Part 3, Part 4 (Big Room), Part 5, Part 6, Part 7 (Scenic Drive), Part 8
April 12th we drove the familiar route of US285 north, we had driven it going south in 2002.
This is what it looked like for much of the route.
We did see pronghorn and these two are the best photos we got at 60mph:
When we intersected I-40 we turned west and headed to Hidden Valley Resort in Tijeras, just east of Albuquerque. We travelled 244 miles today.
We last stayed here in October 2004. We liked our campsite better this time.
We were close to our friend's Ann and Ken, who we met in Winnepeg, Manitoba in August 2005. They were out exploring and were leaving the next morning.
We did get to visit with Ann and Ken in the morning before they left, we need to get together again.
There were birds for Evita to watch, including bluebirds:
We enjoyed being by Albuquerque and took advantage of good restaurants and having a Trader Joe's and Costco around.
April 14 Sandia Crest Part 1, Part 2
We had two 4-star meals in Albuquerque, Cervantes and Los Cuates, both New Mexican restaurants. Ann and Ken recommended El Porto but we did not get a chance to try it ourselves, but we will be back.
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