[The first part of this trip to El Malpais is here.]
My goal for the second part of this trip was El Morro RV Park – perhaps better known for its Ancient Way Cafe, an excellent restaurant. The park has cabins, camping, and full hook-ups for RVs, showers, washers and dryers, and great hiking. No cell service for me, but they do have wifi.
I found a cosy site under the trees. Plugged in the camera battery charger and retired to my chair with my book. It was nice sitting outside reading. And watching for wildlife – many birds, a squirrel and a chipmunk. And chickens. Some of the permanent residents here keep hens.
This tiny community is rich in artists – there’s a shop packed with fascinating creations; there is lots of outdoor art. Being creative is just a normal part of life – and they show it here.
We hiked to the top of the mesa where there are acres to explore and incredible views.
A delightful couple from Colorado were in the space next to me. They have a Tiger RV – only 16’ long. Very sweet. We had breakfast together at the restaurant and then we walked around the property, by the cabins, through the outdoor art gallery.
I stayed just two nights. At $30/night, it’s more than I like to spend. And I wanted to get to the campground just down the road at El Morro National Monument. First we went to the visitors’ center and then hiked for a couple of hours – the long hike over the top.
It was nice to be able to take all the time I wanted. It was a warm day and there’s not much shade on the top. Cassie had to stay on the leash all the time, but she still got a good workout. And she loves finding pools of water.
Not far from the visitors’ center is the El Morro Campground – no services except vault toilets. But the sites are beautiful. And it’s free. I picked an east-facing site.
It would be perfect to watch the full moon rise.
There are only nine spaces here and they filled quickly for the weekend. Folks came on Saturday to pick piñons. When they left, elk ventured in.
We hiked the shorter trail that goes along the the wall with the inscriptions. We had all the time in the world to read them – from native Americans to travelers to soldiers.
I met my neighbor – a women traveling in a van with a severely disabled man and a big husky-like dog. All interesting beings, but quite a job camping under those circumstances. And they do it fairly often. I was impressed. Made my outings look so simple.
And I met a nomadic woman who was from Santa Cruz, my old stomping grounds. Current Santa Cruz sure sounds different from my time there in the 80s and 90s. I think the town got fat and greedy. This camper lives a fascinating life and I hope to have her as a friend. I invited her to visit Truth or Consequences. One of the benefits of camping for me is meeting folks who like a similar lifestyle.