Percha Dam State Park

June 29th. We are again heading north on I-25, destination Percha Dam State Park

. Shade, I need shade and a few days to just lounge around in it. I feel horrible. These past few weeks dealing with ever increasing heat has given me a bit of heat exhaustion I think. I sweat like crazy, can’t drink enough water, and just feel like I am burning up from the inside out.
Prayers are answered with Percha Dam. We find a shady spot down by the Rio Grande River with a view of the small dam. Lots of activity with locals coming and going picnicking, fishing, ect., but although I have to move the van around a couple of times a day to stay in the shade it feels wonderful. DSC_0012 (1)DSC_0013 (1)Looking at Percha Dam From Our Campsite
A little glitch with my solar system and an email to my solar guy (thanks Chuck!!) gets things sorted out and we are back in business churning out power from the sun and the inverter quits overheating because the button on the charge controller got pushed to a different type of battery — or whatever it was causing it to shut down. The fan goes for hours and pulls the cool from a wet sports towel I have wrapped around my neck and shoulders.
INTERESTING PEOPLE: I meet a guy and his wife who are trying out their new-to-them Rialto. He grouses that several things do not work in it, but they’re managing and will get stuff fixed in time. We chat and the usual topics come up: Where you from? Are you full timing? What did you do in working career? He discloses they are from Hawaii and plan on settling in Silver City. WHAT? WHY? Who leaves Hawaii for Silver City?

They were organic farmers on Kuai and according to him the small island has been “discovered” and has over the past few years become a crazy madhouse. Not what they wanted for their golden years so they sold the farm and ended up in New Mexico.

Percha Dam State Park is fairly large. The upper area has the electric sites along with the flush bathrooms and showers. The lower area is along the river and where the primitive sites are located. There are a few shade covers, but most are just a parking spot with a table, bbq, and fire ring. Water spigots are located near the dumpsters and vault toilets. Most spots have decent spacing between sites.

DSC_0016 (2)Mama Squirrel and BabyThis cute guy drove the Wild Wiener Dogs crazy!  Notice the two little ones in the hole in the trunk on the bottom left.  🙂  Thanks for stopping by 2DogsTravel. Hugs, Shawna

Current Read: The Grace of Dogs by Andrew Root

It’s Here!

Friday, June 28th. Having gotten almost everything loaded up last night, we are up early. This isn’t unusual but actually it is a bit earlier than our normal routine. The dogs are put out on the lead to do their business while I gather items for a quick shower before leaving City of Rocks for the last time. The generator will be here today!

The shower feels marvelous, but what is going to feel even better is getting up into a higher elevation. This has been a tough few weeks dealing with ever increasing heat, but it is finally going to end, and I am excited.
We head to Deming where we pass the time waiting for FedEx to deliver the goods by checking supplies—we’re okay—getting ice and water, and a session at the dog park.
The boys romp while I visit with an elderly veteran. He and his wife settled in Deming a few years ago. He flew planes in Vietnam and had always wanted to become a commercial pilot after the war, but his eyesight was a smidge off and he was declined. Instead he bought a small plane and learned aerial acrobatics! He no longer has his plane, but keeps busy with his own two rescue dogs as well as volunteering at the local shelter. Another very interesting person.
The call from MotoTech comes in around 12:30. The genny has arrived, and we’re off to pick it up and be on our way to Las Cruces to get another problem solved.
It is very hot and quite humid in Las Cruces. As we are stopped at a red light I hear yelling and warnings to our right. I see a man with a gun. Oh shit. It takes a beat or two and hearing the words GET DOWN ON THE GROUND. DOWN ON THE GROUND NOW!! Before it registers that it is the law that has the gun, and as I am pulling up my camera two more vehicles, unmarked, pull in front of a black SUV with a very damaged front bumper and left fender. I get a nice shot of the unmarked’s. DSC_0005 (2)LEO Take Down in Verizon Parking Lot, Las Cruces
The two gals they had on the ground were in tank tops and shorts. That pavement must have been broiling hot!!
NOTE: Later after getting another SIM card for the Mobely (internet hot spot) and getting it working once again we head over to Wally. I see a piece of a black bumper and a left fender just lying in the parking lot. Looks like this is where the black SUV got into trouble! Wish I knew the “rest of the story.”
Our next stop is Leasburg Dam State Park a bit north from Las Cruces. It’s an okay park and there is a Fort Seldon nearby to see, but one night here is all we do.

In the morning, I reorganize the back between my bed and the back doors to once again accommodate the generator. I’m thinking maybe we will do one more night in the now vacated spot that overlooks the river below, DSC_0008 (2)We Were Going to Stay Here For Night Two, but ...

but go back to Plan A and we head out after spotting this guy crawling around the shade shelter in broad daylight. DSC_0007Bat Closeup

Thanks for stopping by 2DogsTravel!  Hugs, Shawna

City of Rocks, Third Time’s a Charm

So here we are —- back at City of Rocks and believe it or not we didn’t see it all the first time. Blessed with lots of wildlife as we wait on that genny.



I am happy to report that yes, the generator is here, and we are now on the road to more adventure, and hopefully some higher elevations and cooler temps.
Short post, lots of photos. Thanks for stopping by! Hugs, Shawna


DSC_0039Early Morning Can you see anything in these Rocks

The I Heart City of Rocks DSC_0034 I Heart the City of Rocks

CURRENT READ: Sully by Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger, the pilot who landed US Airways flight 1549 in the Hudson River with not a single fatality.

Pancho Villa State Park

While I patiently (cough, cough) wait for news that the new generator has arrived, the Chiweenie Brothers and I are up early each morning for a walkabout. Just before the sun peaks over the horizon is just about right. The park is just three miles from the Mexico/US border and being farther south is a wee bit warmer.  UGH!

DSC_007White Winged Dove
White Winged Dove

Pancho Villa isn’t just a pretty park, it’s a historical site with an interesting story and you’ll see more photos than I can put in this post.  Learn more about it HERE.

DSC_0077View of Park from Cootes HillDSC_0079Pancho Villa State Park II

We are rousted by the park ranger from our second spot in the park (I had moved the van hoping to utilize a more east-to-west orientation to minimize the amount of sun hitting MissAdventure). He won’t allow us to be at an electrical site even though we are not using any electricity. We move to the perimeter, but it leaves a lot to be desired, although we do have a water spigot at our spot. The way the primitive sites are arranged there is no way to have the van oriented with the sun, east to west, and it’s getting even hotter. Two nights of this and I decide to head back to Deming, check on that stinking generator, then head back to City of Rocks. From here in Columbus that’s about 60 miles so maybe we can have a few degrees shaved off the daily highs of 98+.

DSC_0074Site of the last hostile action sign

DSC_0088the first grease rack

As I am breaking camp I glance over to the site across the road and can’t believe my eyes. There are two owls seeking shade under the canopy covering the picnic table. I inch back around the van and grab my camera. They are still there, and I grab a few shots.

DSC_0095Pair of Great Horned Owls Staying out of the Heat
I think they are young owls trying to get out of the heat of the sun

Out of nowhere the wind does its thing and a sudden grab-your-hat gust of wind blows through and the owls disappear. I continue breaking camp, but I sure don’t remember those owls flying off very far, but they are gone. I wonder if they are in the tree next to the shade cover. I slowly and cautiously meander over toward the tree and discover that yes, they are in the tree. I get two shots, one of each owl, before they are spooked and fly off. Only one shot comes out. DSC_0096 Great Horned Owl
I finish loading up and we head back north to Deming where we will do the weekly thing: Supplies, ice, dog park, gas. I call MotoTech and speak with James. Cassie isn’t in yet, but he will have her call me. I try to call Westinghouse only to get a recording that “I have used up my allotted calls for the month.” WHAT THE HELL??? Excuse my French, but is this for real???
I am so angry at this point I . . . need to calm down. Evidently they have other customers who aren’t too happy with them as I am sure they didn’t install this little feature just for me. And if calling once a week to check on progress is too much, wellll, let me just say that I won’t be buying any more Westinghouse products. Ever. This is just the last straw. I fuss and fume my way through the weekly errands.
Just as we are ready to head north back to City of Rocks, I call Cassie who is the one who tells me that Westinghouse did not get the new generator shipped out last week as planned, that it will be going out today. A few hours later I receive a tracking number from the company. The generator is supposed to arrive this Friday, June 28th. Do I dare hold my breath?

Thanks for coming along on what has been a crazy six weeks. Not exactly what I thought our tour of New Mexico State Parks would be like, but it’s bound to get better. We have seen three very different, very pretty state parks. More than once it turns out, but it is what it is.  See you at City of Rocks AGAIN! Hugs, Shawna

Heading Back to Rock Hound

We have used up our allotted two weeks here in City of Rocks and must move. The logical place is back to Rock Hound while we wait for the new generator to arrive.

Laundry needs to be done and it has warmed up to mid-90s so we head out as soon as we’ve had our breakfast; me, oatmeal, The Chiweenie Brothers soaked kibble with about ¼ cup of raw hamburger each. I can get laundry done really early as most are open at least by 7:00.
While the laundry is dancing around in the washer I run over to Walmart, also open at the crack of dawn, (well, they are 24 hours so I guess they are always open! ) and grab supplies, stop by the ice palace (my name for it—a stand-alone, self-serve ice kiosk) and purchase a large bag, dump it in the ice chest then go get the-clean-by-now clothes. I’ll line dry them when we get to camp. Next it’s a quick stop at the library: A book, several movies downloaded, and a couple blog posts are scheduled.
The Chiweenie Brothers get their time at the dog park, a couple of hours’ worth. No hurry to leave here. Most campers don’t leave, if they are leaving, until noon, and it is easier to find a good spot if we wait until late morning, early afternoon to look for a camp. In this case it’s my favorite at the top of the parking chain—as opposed to the food chain, ha, ha—primitive site #3 overlooking the park and valley below. And it’s AVAILABLE!!!

DSC_0004Same Mtn, different view
Love This Mountain As You Drive Into Rock Hound

Still waiting for the generator to arrives. Thanks for stopping by Hugs, Shawna

Our last night at Rock Hound and we get this gift

City of Rocks . . . Again

June 10th, 2019, a Monday. We have, finally, last Thursday heard from Westinghouse. They consider whatever is wrong with the generator (I haven’t talked to the mechanic yet) to be unrepairable and since it is still under warranty they are replacing it. That’s good news and progress, but it means at least another week waiting. I love this park, but I would like to move on; obviously it won’t be this week. Patience, Grasshopper.
I think I am supposed to be learning patience, no? It’s hard—Really, really hard, but one can’t complain about where we are staying while waiting. And learning. *smile*. I am doing my best not to think of a bowl of Mexican Baked Potato Soup or yummy refried beans made in the Instant Pot on this blustery day. Besides, there are still a lot of rocks you and I haven’t seen yet, so enjoy.

If you would like to read more about The City of Rocks, please go HERE

DSC_0050The Monster Above Camp
This guy watches over our camp

Thanks for coming along on our tour of New Mexico’s state parks. Hugs, Shawna

CURRENT READ: Minding Frankie, by Maeve Binchy. A novel set in Ireland about a baby girl born to a dying mother and raised by the man thought to be her father and lots of loving people who adore this little one. Loved how the author ends the book with a clear picture of how each of her characters end up.
City of Rocks State Park, Faywood NM. With purchase of yearly camping pass ($225) primitive camping is free of additional charges for two week intervals. Without pass it is $10 a night for primitive sites (where we camp with pass). We have tables, a fire ring, and garbage can, water nearby, or you can stay at a site with electric for an additional $4 per night. For reserved sites with electric it is $14 per night. This state park has four vault toilets, two water spigots located near the windmills, regular flush toilets and showers at the visitor center complex, hiking/biking trails, and a botanical garden.

Off to Silver City NM

Late in the week we need to make a supply run so we break camp and head to Silver City, north of here. The Chiweenie Brothers are excited to be on the move; they always think we are headed to the dog park. In this case they are correct; Silver City has a dog park. WOOF, WOOF! DSC_0026

As is my usual M.O. I look up addresses for: Dog parks, Walmarts, libraries, places to buy block ice, laundry if needed, ect., and plug them into my GPS before we head out. It is important to arrange our errands according to how early we get moving and how hot the day will be, because the boys’ comfort and safety always come first.
Attractions and sightseeing are left to chance depending, again, on the boys; are they welcome? Is it too warm to leave them for an hour or so? Shade? Can I park somewhere that doesn’t get a lot of foot traffic so they won’t be constantly barking and bothering people? Whether or not I go do something depends on the answers to those questions. I glance over at the two hooligans on the passenger side wiggling around and play fighting, bursting with excitement. Yeah, they’re worth it.
This morning I need to go to the library to schedule blog posts, download a couple of books from my library in South Dakota, and also download a few movies to my Kindle tablet.
I spot this as I circle the block to find appropriate parking. DSC_0001









The library is a nice one and has a beautiful entrance and an interesting sculpture.






All our errands complete The Chiweenie Brothers get to spend time at the dog park and then we head “home” to City of Rocks, stopping to photograph the flowers that are blooming along highway 180.



And some local history   DSC_0017

Heading up our driveway, we take the loop around the park.

DSC_0018I just love this place.

We can see far out into the valley or look up into the rocks with the summer blue sky and white drifting clouds above us. Or we can look at George Washington, The Egyptian, or The Lady. This rock profile seems to change depending on the time of day and the shadows that are cast. Which one do you see?

DSC_0018Profile Rock in City of Rocks SP

There are not a lot of people here and traffic is minimal so it’s nice and quiet. As with the two other parks we have been to here in New Mexico, Bottomless Lakes State Park two years ago, Rock Hound, and now City of Rocks, the park is clean and tidy.

Thanks for stopping by 2DogsTravel. The Chiweenie Brothers and I hope you will continue to tag along on our summer adventure. Hugs, Shawna