White Sands, New Mexico
This is about the fifth time that I drove around for an hour or two searching for a campground that may or may not exist and that may or may not be open for the winter.
I got to the White Sands National Park just in time for a fantastic sunset and with the complete assumption that there would be a simple campground. No. None. I think there are hike-in camps, but again, like back in Texas at the Enchanted Rock (that I was so excited to camp at and had pulled up right at twilight as well) there was no campground. The nearest place was twenty miles back east from where I came. Annoying. The GPS got confused and sent me through some massive dirt roads. Straight into an unmarked dead-end. I had to drive back out of that mess and onto the main road to follow the little brown signs to the Oliver Lee New Mexico State Campground… it was dark by this time. Pitch, New Mexico, desert dark.
Prior to this search for sleep I actually did go into the white sands. Deep in. Sand everywhere. It’s the Sahara. It’s the Gobi. It’s the Kalahari. At least according to the movies. A number of films are shot out there and based… not there. (There was a film being shot there when I entered the park… something with Clooney and based… in the middle-east, not the southwest.) It’s the perfect location, the light is fantastic and the scenery is clean and magnificent. For the actors the sand in the eyes either adds to the character or makes the day impossible. The wind blows the fine light grains horizontal.
It is disorienting because there are no trails, no paths, so with the turbulent wind (that could hold the weight of a standing body) there is no way to find your way back. I enjoyed the textured surface. It was the first hike I’ve ever taken barefoot.
*Note: This is the last entry from my... blogy blog... http://id-iloveamerica.blogspot.com/