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New Mexico: White Sands National Park

  From February 2022 On one of our first days in Las Cruces, we drove out to White Sands National Park.   East of the city,  I noted the turn off for Aguirre Springs Campground where I stayed in 2018 .  As we approached the national park, we rose in elevation to the point that we were in the snow again.   There are a variety of "trails" at the national park.  We took the longest one at the end of the road, Alkali Flats, which was about 5 miles.   Basically, you walk through the sand using line of sight to the next visible marker.  The semi-frozen condition of the sand actually made it easier to walk uphill.  Where the sand thawed in the sun, it was one step forward, 1/2 step slide back.   In the middle of it all, Julia had to sit down and take in all of the wonder.   We hiked some some sand dunes a few years ago at a Jockey Ridge State Park in North Carolina, but White Sands was on an entirely different scale for size and beauty.   

San Sebastian del Oeste

 From December 2021

This is the final post from our excursion to San Sebastian del Oeste from Puerto Vallarta.  Once we exited the bus, we were on our own to explore this mountaintop village.



It's a quaint little town, but I would rather have been refining my tortilla-making technique at the little roadside bakery. Things were completely shut down here for about a year during the pandemic, and we got the feeling that the damage to business was considerable.  This part of the excursion was anticlimactic, but it was still fun to walk around.


After an hour of wandering, it was time for the long ride back down the mountain to Puerto Vallarta.  We made it back in time for dinner and sunset.


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