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Domestic Travel

New Mexico

7 - 8 April, 1995

The state flag of New Mexico
The Great Seal
The state flag of New Mexico

We were returning to Wyoming from Houston by way of the Hill Country,
and the Guadalupe Mountains of West Texas during Spring Break in 1995.
Camping our way across the country was the way we did things back then,
mainly because I was a cheapskate, but also because it was easy to do.
We had spent the previous night at Pedernales Falls State Park, and driven
like psycho banditos to get to the Guadalupe's by dark. There, we were
creeping around the Pine Springs Campground loop at dusk, hoping to find
an empty site, but it was for naught. High season. I hadn't counted on this
place being so popular. All was not lost: the rangers at Headquarters told us
about a desolate patch of BLM desert just across the border in New Mexico
where we could pitch our tent. And it was free of charge, too!

Driving like psycho banditos into the dusk
Dusk in the mountain
country of West Texas
7 April 1995
Didn't take long for the blazing sun to heat things up.
Gooood morning
New Mexico!!
8 April 1995
The van was our cooking platform at the time
Guarding the coffee
before breakfast...
8 April 1995
The girls learned to appreciate dry outhouses on this trip!
Kara returns from
the powder room
8 April 1995

We pulled off of U.S. 62 several miles beond the Texas-New Mexico border, onto
a dirt track, slowly following our headlights until we found a brush-free clearing for
the tent. I think we ate snack items for supper, which was easy, and the kids liked
junk food anyway (we'd had a good breakfast in Fredericksburg. That was our big meal
for the day). Alissa & I tucked all four kids into their sleeping bags and sat outside the
tent, sipping wine under the star-studded, clear desert sky. The cool temperature was
in itself intoxicating and inspiring. We too retired, albeit a little late...

This old quilt was our ground cloth inside the tent.
Jenna helps Alissa
pack up our stuff
8 April 1995
It was a good ol' tent...
Fold & roll time,
New Mexico desert
8 April 1995
I don't recall having to ask for help back then... they just helped.
Brianna & Ben
folding up das tent
8 April 1995
Pretty cute. Cheap labor, too!
4-year-old Jenna
gathering the poles
8 April 1995

We awakened to a blazing sun, with the tent our only shade. We quickly
packed up our things so we could get on the road to our next stop, at Gigi's
house in Monument, Colorado. First, however, we backtracked to the border to
line up for photographs beside the state sign of New Mexico. Tradition!

Four-count-'em-four children.
Ben, Eli, Kara,
Jenna, Brianna & Alissa
8 April 1995
Had to run like crazy to get in the picture!
U.S. 62 at the
New Mexico border
8 April 1995
The prominent cliff is El Capitan
Guadalupe Mountains
of West Texas beyond
8 April 1995
We became experts at being minimalists.
Our humble van,
pointed North
8 April 1995

Sometimes you get more out of being in the desert than you think.

I know for certain that we did!

All images 2012 EBBoykin, Jr
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