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5 Unusual Things I did in New Mexico During the Government Shutdown

January 13, 2019

1. The Very Large Array: Socorro, New Mexico

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.

The Very Large Array

2. Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge: San Antonio, New Mexico

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.

3. Organ Mountains: Alamogordo, New Mexico

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.

4. Deming, New Mexico

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.

This is one of the only photos I took of this museum. You can see exhibits like this bottle of water.

 

5. Coronado Historic Site

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.

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I'm Abby, an arthritic introvert living in Delaware and traveling the world with a chronic illness, a camera, and a love for ice cream. I'm passionate about outdoor adventures, and overcoming obstacles to make those adventures accessible.

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