Not All Who Wander Are Lost

Not All Who Wander Are Lost
January 17, 2017 - Florida Keys

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Rock Hound State Park

We spent the afternoon yesterday at Rock Hound State Park.  The state parks in the southwest are certainly different than we are accustomed to.  No rivers, lakes, grass or trees with leaves on them.  However, beautiful in a different sense.  Desert scenery with mountains for a backdrop.

The park has a very nice campground with large sites and water and electric hook-ups at some of them.  The cost is $14 a night and they waive the $5 daily entrance fee.  If we had known that, we would have probably stayed at this park rather than where we are now.  No two mile dusty gravel road to travel down.

Here’s a picture from the entrance to the park.  You can see the campground on the left.  The mountains are called the Florida Mountains.

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A very unique feature to this park is that visitors are allowed to take up to 15 pounds of rocks with them.  We hiked two of the trails totaling about 2 miles.  I couldn’t believe how quickly I got out of breath.  We climbed about 4,000 feet in elevation on our drive from Phoenix to Deming, and I definitely was feeling it as soon as I started climbing uphill.  Supposedly, you can find the thunderegg rocks in this park, but since we didn’t know what we were looking for, I have no idea if we saw any :)

Next, we drove a few miles to Spring Canyon State Park.  This is a day-use park with some picnic shelters.  We hiked about another mile on a trail in the canyon.  Here we are at the start to the trail.  No animal sightings.  But there sure were a lot of flies on all of the trails!  What’s up with that?

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As you drive around this area, you see quite a few orchards.  I couldn’t imagine what type of fruit trees they were growing out here in the desert.  It turns out, they are pecan trees.  Did you know that the pecan tree is the only nut tree native to North America?

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This area has lots of agriculture including cotton, pecans and red and green chili peppers.  It’s all about the irrigation.  I am so amazed that there are all these crops growing in the desert.  I sure have learned a lot these past few months.

It’s quite windy again today.  When we arrived, we asked the camphost if it is always this windy.  She said only in March and April.  We’ll be in New Mexico for two more weeks.  I guess we’ll find out if she was right.

Don’t wish upon a star – Reach for one!

3 comments:

  1. Many of the NM parks do have lakes. Elephant Butte, Brantley lake, Bottomless lakes, are a few and I know there are others,. Still basically desertscape. We will be leaving Albuquerque by the weekend so will miss you. Hope all goes well, looks like you are getting some great hiking in. Tell Kevin we are sorry Wisconsin lost this week.

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  2. I'm surprised about the pecan being the only native North American nut tree. Does that mean that all the nut trees that grow in the wild up north are invasive species??

    Perhaps if you took a shower before hiking you wouldn't be bothered by flies! :) (just kidding):)

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  3. Very interesting blog.

    Considering the scarce resource of water, I do have to wonder why we are insisting on irrigating the desert rather than letting each different ecosystem do mostly what it does best. In this area it would seem to be solar energy to get us off our diet of oil and coal. Or maybe windmills in March and April. :-)

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