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Road trip to berlin--

Whines and I are taking a road-trip vacation at the end of July. I think I've got the first leg of the trip mapped out - Austin to west Texas, west Texas to Carlesbad, NM.

That still leaves us about two days of play-time for the ride home from Carlesbad to Austin. Are there any must-see destinations loosely along that route?


( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 25th, 2008 07:29 pm (UTC)
Be advised - a vast territory of NOTHING is on the far side of Abilene. The next spot of interest I saw on I10 was Albequerque. Be very well stocked on MP3s and water - it's dangerously hot now. Having a toolkit and spare engine coolant on board is wise too.
Jun. 25th, 2008 07:36 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the advice :) Actually, I've done the trip from Austin to Marfa before, it's long and dull. So good advice on the tool kit and coolant :)
Jun. 25th, 2008 07:38 pm (UTC)
beautiful, and worth it just for the old lady's stories!!
Jun. 25th, 2008 09:00 pm (UTC)
Shockwave is right, an extra bottle of water is worth the weight, but you knew that.

It's been years, but Sonoma Caverns in W. Texas were smaller than Carlsbad, but more varied and interesting.
Jun. 25th, 2008 10:53 pm (UTC)
Is that Sonora? We were going there on our way west, so that's on the checklist already :)
Jun. 26th, 2008 12:35 pm (UTC)
Hmm, I'd always thought it was Sonoma, in West Texas. Give me a second to research.

Nope, you are right Caverns of Sonora

Edited at 2008-06-26 12:42 pm (UTC)
Jun. 25th, 2008 11:51 pm (UTC)
Monahans Sandhills State Park, and Davis Mountains State Park (there are nice historic hotels in Ft. Davis, and there's the Indian Lodge in the park as well). If you want to venture farther off the route, there's a very nice historic hotel in Marfa, along with the famous Marfa Lights.
Jun. 26th, 2008 12:55 pm (UTC)
Depending on how far west you go, there's always the Guadalupe Mountains National Park which has some nice (steep) trails. Outside of hiking and looking at the mountains, there isn't much to do.

About 150 mi (3 hrs) northwest of Carlsbad is a little city called Ruidoso. It's nestled in the Lincoln National Forest. There's a ban on fires out there if you wish to go camping, but that shouldn't matter since there is a sprinkling of quaint little bed and breakfasts nestled in the mountains. I always found it to be a nice change of scenery. Also, you'll find the OFFICIAL Smokey the Bear Museum which is the perfect place to pick up some stuffed animals for your ursine friends.

There's also Roswell which is scary hickish and has one or two kitschy tourist traps centering around the whole UFO crash landing.

Lastly, there's White Sands National Monument. If you arrive on a cloudy day or when there's a full moon, the dunes seem remarkably eerie and alien. Unfortunately, the park has been known to close when there is missile testing going on at the adjacent missile range, but the odds of that happening are slim. Also, you're not allowed to camp in the park overnight. I know that the visitor's center closes at 5PM, but I'm not sure when tourists are asked to scram.

But I take it you guys are planning on staying at the caverns late to see the bats, it'd probably be too late to head north. The roads wind in and out of the hills and there are a ton of deer out at night. Which reminds me, be sure to get your breaks serviced before heading out if you plan to travel at night. There are deer all over the roads come night fall and accidents out there can be quite bad. I'd also be sure to carry an extra container of coolant around in the unlikely event you spring a leak or find yourself running low.
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )