Oh my gosh! I can’t believe this wind! Actually it wasn’t bad driving; I had a headwind but it wasn’t throwing the car around. Once we entered the mountains there were two places on I-25 where signs warned of gusty winds and they had wind socks up so you could see how strong the wind was, and what direction it was coming from. What a great idea!
Along the way I kept hearing about a free car giveaway at a car dealership in Los Alamos. They are giving away a 2012 Chevy Sonic. Wait….a four year old car??? Is it just me, or is that REALLY strange?
I am at Rock Hound State Park, outside Deming, NM. It’s quite a bit higher than Deming and the wind is constant, they tell me it’s 35 mph sustained and I don’t know WHAT the gusts are! My kayak straps are humming like crazy and the car isn’t even moving!
Above: Snow-capped peaks near the park
I originally was going to stay at the Escapees park in Deming in their $5 dry camping area, but having no propane-operated fridge made that a bad idea. The RV repair guy was not open, of course…it’s Saturday! So I’ll have to wait until at least Monday to get it looked at. I didn’t go past that park but all the other ones I saw were just big parking lots and I wanted something a little more back-to-nature. It was supposed to be 7 miles outside of Deming but that must be as the crow flies; it’s actually 13. And the campground was completely full! Yikes. I saw that the handicap site was empty so I asked the camp host and he said I could have it for the next two nights, and he moved a traffic cone so I could get in.
It took a long time for me to try opening up the camper, as the roof halves are prone to fly apart in big winds. I released the wind straps and had them ready to click into place as soon as I got it up, and at first just opened it a little bit. Whoa, it tried to blow right out of my hands! So I held onto the upper roof for dear life for about 5 long minutes until it died down a little bit and I was able to quickly get the 2 halves together and the wind straps cinched. Phew! It is intermittently blowing rain too. Low tonight for Deming is 30, probably a little colder up here.
Above: The campground nestled up against the mountain. Too bad the wind is coming from the other direction!
I got all set up and had a late lunch and then heard a knock on the door. Some folks in a Class B van camper said they’d paid for this site for last night and tonight, and they’d been to Mexico to the dentist all day and wanted their site. Oh crap! We talked to the camp host and he said it was their fault for not telling him they were coming back today. And that they should have left something on the site to show they were coming back. In this wind??! Isn’t it HIS job to know what sites are rented and what are available? (He says it isn’t). I was willing to move but I sure didn’t want to, it meant packing up all this stuff and moving to town. I asked if I could get my money back, because they have a “strict No Refund” policy. So he went to the visitors center to talk to his boss. In the meantime the lady would not leave me alone so I told her I’d pack up. The guy came back just as I was finishing putting everything on the bed and he said THEY had to go, and they were giving them a refund. Boy that lady was spitting mad, and I don’t blame her. But if I’d left at that point, I would not have gotten my money back! So I am glad I can stay, but feel bad for them since they’ve just spent 5 hours at the Mexican dentist and all they wanted was to park and be “home”.
The park is having their big Luminaria Lighting at 5 pm today….with high winds and intermittent driving rain…..sounds like a bad idea to me! Those paper bags are going to billow around and catch fire and they’ll have a MUCH bigger luminaria than they really wanted! It might be interesting but I’m not going, I’m happy to be inside in this wind. And BTW, the camper isn’t stopping it much, there’s quite a fresh breeze coming through the camper! Nice. I have a feeling the electric heater is going to run constantly all night long.