(Artesia, NM) Hi 84 Lo 52 -- Yesterday we had a great travel day to Artesia, NM.
We saw lots of different terrain, from low hills to completely flat, and from agricultural fields to oil fields, to... fields of nothing. We like going around a curve or over a hill and seeing new sights. (Click on photos to enlarge them.)
When we got into New Mexico passed through huge fields of oil wells. They were everywhere, some painted in different colors. We were amazed! If you look on Google Earth, or the Google Maps satellite view, and look along US 82 just west of the NM/TX border see thousands of them.
From a distance they look like mosquitoes.
And up close they look like praying mantises.
There were also some derricks.
A gas well in the distance was shooting flame.
We arrived at Artesia RV Park 3:00 after about five hours of travel. But we are now in Mountain Time, so it was actually 2:00 local time, giving us an extra hour to get set up and relax.
Our site. Each site has a small tree next to it.
All the sites gravel pull thrus with full hookups.
Today was bright and sunny, perfect for a drive up to Roswell, about 30 miles north of us. As most everyone knows, Roswell is the location of a reported UFO crash in July 1947, and over the years the various controversies and conspiracy theories have turned the whole "Roswell Incident" into quite a legend. Did aliens really land? Was it really just a weather balloon? Was there a massive cover up by the Air Force? Maybe we'll find out at the International UFO Museum.
The museum is on Main St. in downtown Roswell, a town that's larger and busier than we expected.
Before going in the museum, we took a walk down Main St. for a few blocks. As expected there were several tacky, alien-related souvenir shops. Most of them look like they've seen better days.
Also downtown is this beautiful statue of John Chisum, the famous cattleman of the 1800's who was portrayed by John Wayne in the movie "Chisum".
There were aliens all over town, most of them either green or dressed in green. :)
We then went into the museum, which was a bargain at only $3 each (senior and military rate; regular price is $5). The museum isn't very large, but it does have a lot of information, both about the Roswell incident and UFO's in general.
Most of the museum was what I call "wall reading."
However, there were some 3-dimensional displays, such as this alien "family."
And this static display of the reported alien autopsy that was conducted at the nearby Roswell Army Air Force Base in 1947.
Being an old Air Force guy, I got a kick out of this.
One whole section of the museum building contains the UFO research library, with over 5,000 books all related to UFO's and alien abductions. It was quite an impressive collection
One room had hundreds of binders containing documents related to UFO sightings all over the world. This is a small portion of them.
We really got wrapped up in all the information and ended up spending over 3 hours in this wonderful small museum. And after all that time, and all that reading, we still don't know what to believe. Like they say around here, back in 1947 "something" happened in Roswell. We may never know the whole story.
We headed south back to Artesia. On the way we spotted this RV in front of us with a bush wrapped around the bicycle on the rear rack. I wonder if they knew it was on there?
Here's a closer look.
We got back to the park and relaxed the rest of the evening. Tomorrow going to go in the opposite direction, south to Carlsbad Caverns National Park. That should be fun.
See you tomorrow.