New Mexico : Day 7

Thursday, Sept 9th. We woke up in the Guadalupe Mountains, again. An awesome sight, everytime. We had decided the previous night that we would hike one of the crazy trails around the montains and surrounding area.

Naturally, we picked El Capitan trail. 11 miles of hiking goodness. We had read that the total time was anywhere from 6 to 8 hours for the whole hike. We left around 8:30, and had a fantastic time.

This is where thing went a little awry. We had been in the bush for a few days now, unshowered. We were tired, cramped, sore and hungry. Ok, we weren’t hungry in the traditional sense, like “starving” We were just used to a little more food than we had been consuming over the past few days. Also, a steady daily diet of PBJ or tuna sandwiches is enough to make anyone grumpy.

Up until this point, meg had made plans for everything. She was the perfect vacation planner. She made whatever necessary plans far in advance, and the flow of the trip thusfar had been very fluid, and even.

During the planning stages of this trip, she often solicited feedback from me. More often than not, my answer was anvariably something like this: Meg, i love you. You’re doing a gret job of planning this trip, and i know you like to have a script for everything, but why don’t we wing it a little? why not leave the last 2 days just totally unplanned, and we’ll have an adventure of figuring out what we can do or where we can sleep.”

Reluctantly, she agreed.

Hindsight, as they say, is always 20/20. If i had the opportunity to go back and do it again, I wouldn’t change anything. BUT, in the future, I will not make the mistake of “leaving things unplaned” on any vacation from now until the day I die. Given our states of mind, it was easy for us to get a little crabby with one another. And we did.

After our walk, we drove to Roswell, to take in some alien related sights. We hit town around 4:45, and everything closes at 5. We did the speed tour of the UFO museum, and ate at a tex-mex chain called Pepper’s. The food was welcome relief from our PBJ overdose.

From Roswell, we continued north, only to find that the Smokey Bear National Park (or whatever the hell it was called) WAS NOT A CAMPGROUND. This kinda sucked, as it was getting dark fast, and we had no concept of where we could sleep.

We drove for a long time. We finally ended up in Oliver Lee Camground. It was 9 something at night, getting colder by the minute, and darker. We quickly set up our tent, played cards by flashlight until the self-inflating mats were full, and got some much needed sleep.

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