The VLA is a famous radio astronomy observatory purposefully in the middle of nowhere, and is home to an array of 28 giant satellite dishes spread in formation across the desert. At the small museum, you can learn about the importance of the VLA, and then get up close to a couple of the dishes on a self-guided walking tour of the grounds. The place is odd yet fascinating, and definitely worth a detour.
This refuge is a prime spot to see sandhill cranes migrate in the winter months (around November-February). If you go for sunrise, you will likely see masses of cranes taking off for the day, and if you go at sunset, the cranes will be coming back and landing in the wetlands.
I had never heard of the Organ Mountains, and happened to find them on a random Google search while in Alamgordo. This rugged, wild mountain range is stunningly beautiful, and a bit underrated. White Sands is world famous, but the Organ Mountains are only about 30 minutes away, and way less known. The natural area is managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and offers a variety of trails through the mountains and foothills. We did part of the Baylor Canyon Pass trail, and it was great. Stay for sunset to see the peaks light up with orange sun.
Deming is the definition of a small town, but if you’re in the area, stop here and see the Deming Luma Mimbres Museum. The museum, housed in an old armory, is anything but small, and is basically a museum of…everything. The exhibits include pottery, gemstones, fashion, historic cars, collections of everything from button hooks to metal bells, the history of the town and more. We stopped on the way from Las Cruces to Tuscon, and were impressed by the seemingly endless rooms inside this humble-looking museum.
The Coronado Historic Site used to be the home of the Kuaua Pueblo. The Native American people built their village by the Rio Grande River for the water source and fertile soil. Now, the land is an archeological site where you learn about the history and significance of the native people and see both artifacts from the original pueblos and recreations of some of the buildings.
Copyright Abby Venture