The first place we visited was the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens State Park. Overlooking the Pecos River Valley, this park exhibits the varied plant and animal life of the arid Chihuahuan Desert region. We got to see mountain lions, elk, wolves and various other animals, but our favorites were the prairie dogs! We stood and watched and laughed at them for about 30 minutes!!
The next day we visited Carlsbad Caverns National Park. This is an amazing place! It is huge, it is hard to comprehend just how large the "rooms" are, and it is beautiful! We did the self-guided tour which was estimated to take about 2 hours, but I knew before we started that we would be in there at least 4 hours....I wasn't wrong! I was afraid I was going to have to drag Bruce out of there!
Here's his thoughts on the caverns: After seeing the caverns I was struggling to find the words to describe them and the feelings this place invoked. Luckily for me I ran across these words from Ansel Adams, a world famous photographer, who in 1936 tried to photograph the caverns but was never happy with the way his photos turned out. "...something that should not exist in relation to human beings. Something that is as remote as a galaxy, incomprehensible as a nightmare, and beautiful inspite of everything."
Here's a link to find out more about the caverns: http://www.nps.gov/cave/index.htm
The next day we drove to Guadalupe Mountains National Park which is actually just across the border in Texas. The scenery was spectacular, that's the only way I know to describe it! We walked to the remains of the ruins of the old Pinery Station, once a favored stop on the original 2,800 mile Butterfield Overland Mail Route.
To read more of the history of this and more about the Guadalupe Mountains, visit this website: