Freedom and Liberty

Freedom and Liberty
I travel in Freedom but sleep in the security of Liberty (not only on the road, but in this amazing country of ours)

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Carlsbad Caverns and Moving Day to Texas

Location: Balmorhea State Park (el 3,300 ft); Balmorhea, Texas

All pictures taken with Nokia Lumia Icon 929 Cell Phone
(click pictures to enlarge)

On my last day at Brantley State Park, I visited Carlsbad Caverns. I've heard about them all my life but really never had a big hankering to see them. I'm not sure why that is, so it will stay a mystery, I guess. The drive to the Caverns took about 45 minutes since they are 30 miles south of Carlsbad.
Once you arrive at the main visitors center, the view is just spectacular as you gaze our onto the open plains. They say it was all under water a few million years ago. Maybe, maybe not. 
This is still at Brantely. The two cars belong to two women traveling by themselves and sleeping in tents. They are not traveling together, they just happen to be in the same campground. I only briefly talked to one of them. They are rightly "stand-offish" of strangers, especially men. Safe travels, ladies.

This carpet that is chewed up is from a visitor I had the first night.

This is the carpet after the third night. I left it in the garbage. Luckily, that is all they did. I checked my engine compartment and saw no evidence of their handiwork.

This is the view looking out over the open plains from the hilltop where the caverns are located.

I was given two choices to enter the caverns: 1) walk down a switchback path through the open entrance. This entry would be about a 1 mile walk, OR 2) ride an elevator down 750 feet right into the caverns. Hmmmm, after a split-second decision, I headed towards the elevators. As you leave the elevators, your 750 underground in the caverns. My mind had a hard time adjusting to it since everything seemed fake in the dim lights. If "It's a Small World" had been playing, you would swear you were in DisneyLand. To screw with your mind even more, there is a snack bar and T-shirt vendor within sight after leaving the elevator. I didn't feel like a snack so I hit the pathway. You follow the path for 1.3 miles and see different formations along the way. It was interesting in places, but mostly, it was repetitive. I'm glad I went, but I'm pretty sure I won't go back.
This is the dining area where you can enjoy a snack or drink while being 750 feet underground.

The walkway had handrails on each side.

Large formations. I think they were the Land of Giants.

I liked this location because it had a lot of fragile looking formations.

This old ladder represented how the founders got around the caverns

I don't remember the name of this spot. 

I think this was called the The Drapes (curtains)

I did find a bench where you can sit and look at the formations.

I pulled out of Brantley State Park this morning with only 150 miles of towing to get to my next stop which is Balmorhea State Park. I didn't take any travel pictures since it was similar to most of the flat land of central New Mexico. The difference today was the high number of oil field traffic on the road and well sites adjacent to the road. Except for the barren land, it looks like any other oil field I've seen. 

I'll be here at Balmorhea for 3 days before moving on. I'm not sure what I'll be doing yet, but will most surely will be enjoying the 50 amp service at my campsite. The temperature in bumping 90 degrees with direct sunshine on the side of Liberty. The 50 amp service allows me to use both A/C units at the same time. 
Campsite at Balmorhea State Park

The three New Mexico State Campgrounds I've stayed at only had 30 amp service. I've been disappointed in New Mexico State Parks. Granted I've only stayed at 3 of them, but the odds of being disappointed in all 3 is pretty high. The Corps of Engineer campground was great, which helped balance out the state somewhat.

It feels good to be back in Texas.  

This was a quick post. I'll go back and proofread it later. Maybe.

Ya'll take care of each other. I'll Cya down the road. 


  1. Great choice of campsite. Lots of rabbits around there.

    I have been down the ramps and stairs four times at the Caverns as well as around the big room. You made the right choice. The first time and then the second about thirty years later was good. The next two times were not far enough apart but the folks I was with had never been before.

  2. I've been to one New Mexico state park (Pancho Villa) and the showers were free. I'm from Washington state so I was impressed!