Kent and Carol - Mobile travel blog

Road going down to Alamogordo

White Sands National Park Visitor Center

Yucca Plant Growing through the sand

Kids jumping into the sand

Plowing the sand

Dunes with mountains in background

1 of 6 layouts at Train Depot

HO layout

UP in the barn

Passenger car

B & O with 2 pasenger cars

Fake Steam engine

Their track covered with grass

View of Space Museum from RV Park

View from Space Museum, overlooking the city, White Sands in the distance.

Wednesday, March 28, we drove to Alamogordo, New Mexico. It was a very windy day and the RV is so aero-dynamically designed that it was hard to keep it on the road. Carol thought we were going to be tipped over on our side a couple of times. We then had to drive up the Sacramento Mountains to Cloudcroft, a ski town and then back down to the valley where Alamogordo is located. The drive down was a continuous 6% grade, which drops 4500 feet in sixteen twisty miles. There were large warning signs for truck drivers and two run-away turn offs for trucks. I had to use the engine exhaust brake the total way down. This also was great treat for Carol, so the whole trip to Alamogordo was a white-knuckle trip for her. We arrived at the Evergreen RV Park by early afternoon. They had both Wifi and cable TV. Thursday morning we drove the Jeep to White Sands National Monument. By watching a video program at the visitor center, we learned that these dunes were made of Gypsum sand. Most other dunes are made with silica sand. The gypsum holds just enough moisture that desert plants can grow in the dunes. The Yucca plants may have their roots in the ground and a long stem grows through the gypsum and exposes the green leaves out the top of the dunes. We then drove the eight-mile road through the dunes. At a couple of places there were some kids jumping into and sliding down the sand dunes. At one place we saw a plow pushing the sand to clear a road. It looks just like plowing snow off a road. An interesting place. The desert valley surrounding the white sand dunes is the White Sand Missile Testing Facility, a NASA Testing Facility and Holloman Air Force Base. That afternoon we went to the Toy Train Depot. It has many model train layouts that include all gages; Z, N, HO, O and G gages. Outside the old depot building they have a 16-inch miniature train ride, the same size as the ones at Line Creek Park. They have three trains here also but they are in poor condition compared to the three trains at Line Creek Park. These trains here need new paint jobs and they do not have any window glass (plastic) in the windows. The track is completely surrounded by grass without any ballast gravel. The track is not mounted on wood ties that I can see and it looks like it has welded metal straps between the rails. The track goes down the edge of a park for about a mile, makes a turn around loop and returns on the same track. It cost $4 for the ride and there were very few riders, I was the only one on the train and no one was waiting. They operate from noon-5pm, Wednesday-Sunday.

Friday we went to the New Mexico Museum of Space History. They have six floors of space items and an outside display of rockets and space equipment. That afternoon we went to the I-max theater which in the evening turns into a planetarium. Both of these buildings are on the edge of the college campus and in the foothills of the mountains overlooking the city of Alamogordo. Saturday we headed for Deming, New Mexico.

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