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27 June 2006 Click
on the pictures to enlarge them.
Greetings again from New Mexico.
It has been a very dry year. Through spring,
Albuquerque has only had 0.31 inches (7.9 mm) of rain since the end of 2005.
Wild fires have been a problem here in New Mexico. Several days of high winds
have also made the situation worse.
WINTER AND SPRING TRAVEL
Unlike last year, when we spent a month in Australia, we have done little
travel this year. As the year began, our motor home was in the repair shop
waiting on a new engine. After we did get it back home, we were able to take a
one-week trip to test it. Later we took a shorter trip to test it further before
we launch out on our big journey of the year in July and August.
BOSQUE DEL APACHE
In February, we once again joined friends from church in a one-day trip to
the Bosque Del Apache National Wildlife Preserve. Every winter the preserve is
visited by tens of thousand of birds who have flown down from the north. (Mostly
geese and Sandhill Cranes).
Flying in to the preserve.
RESERVE, MOGOLLON, & SILVER CITY
In the last week of April we took a short trip to Southwest New Mexico. Our
first destination was near Reserve, NM, where we would meet Sandi and Dave –
friends from church. On the way we stopped for rest at the Very Large Array (VLA).
(An array of radio telescopes on the Plains of San Augustin - west of Socorro,
Some of the dishes of the VLA.
We stayed in an Apache National Forest camp ground for three nights.
Apache National Forest campsite.
During the two days we spent time with Dave and Sandi. Among the things we did
was to visit the old mining town of Mogollon. (Pronounced muggy-own.)
Waiting for cheap gasoline.
Dave, Sandi, and Linda with tailgate lunch.
We drove from Reserve down to Silver City, but stopped on the way to see the
Catwalk. Mining activities required creek water that was piped down the canyon
on a suspended catwalk. The old piping is gone, but the catwalk has been
improved for recreational use.
Robert at entrance.
Up the canyon.
Linda on part of the catwalk.
While hiking up the canyon we saw this fault. Notice the vertical
A geologic fault showing displacement.
We spent three nights in Silver City. That is where Linda went to college, so we
visited Western New Mexico University. We also went to see the Gila Cliff
Dwellings National Monument. The Cliff Dwellings offer a glimpse of the homes
and lives of the people of the Mogollon culture who lived in the Gila Wilderness
from the 1280s through the early 1300s. The Gila was our nation’s first
designated wilderness area.
The dwellings are in the caves.
Closeup of one of the caves.
We have wanted to visit the Blackwater Draw Archaeological Site for many
years. It is between Clovis and Portales on the Llano Estacado, in the eastern
plains of New Mexico. Thousands of years ago the site was a water hole for the
animals that roamed there including mammoths. Archaeologists discovered mammoth
bones at the site along with fluted stone points that became known as the
“Clovis point”. The ancient culture is known as the Clovis culture. Later
cultures hunted Bison there after the mammoth became extinct. We also saw the
oldest known well in North America.
Blackwater Draw today.
Juvenile Mammoth feet.
Excavating Bison bones.
Last year at the Zoo Parents reunion, we won a free behind-the-scenes tour
of the Albuquerque Zoo. We were finally able to take the tour in February and
take two friends with us. It was quite enjoyable.
Big cats watched us carefully.
Or just slept.
Linda’s favorite watched cautiously.
We were home for Easter this year, and we enjoyed singing the special music
that our choir presented on Palm Sunday and on Easter Sunday.
The family had three graduations at the end of May. Linda’s niece, Stacy,
and her step-brother, Chris, graduated from high school. Linda’s brother, Jim
Baxter, received his master’s degree as well.
Chris and families.
Chris, Norma Jean, James, and Stacy.
We were pleased to have Robert’s third cousin, Robert Howard, visit us with
his wife and two grandsons. They were on a camping trip out west from their home
in Belleville, Illinois.
Robert with Cousin Robert.
SUMMER TRIP PLANS
We will leave on 5 July for an eight-week trip to the east coast.
Planned trip in green.
THE BOTTOM LINE
We continue to be thankful for the Lord’s provision for us. We trust in Him,
and pray that you will do likewise and enjoy a wonderful summer of 2006.
Robert & Linda
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09 July 2007