|Went in to visit Artesia,NM and get groceries. Easier to find tourist things than groceries. Artesia is noted for artesian wells, oil and gas wells, and now Hailburton is big there but they have a history of many local oil drilling companies and rigs . Town was decorated for Christmas but no lights on during the day, bet it was pretty at night tho. We decided to come back a different route so headed south thru Carlsbad and down to El Paso,Tx. No chance to get into Carlsbad caverns with reservations so we will come back to this area again. Nice trip back, had to go thru Guadalupe Mountain pass and the winds were kicking up but suppossed to be worse later in the day . Judi drove thru this pass and we made it. Stopped just south of the pass area at salt flats. Still a large area white like salt but doesn't taste like it, we both had to try. I guess there was a big fight here as the indians had been using the salt for tanning hides and preserving food and then the soldiers and settlers came in and decided they owned it and could sell salt, which they did for quite a while but a few people were killed during the fighting. They have a plaque telling the story(see pictures) Faced a pretty strong head wind coming home but still had 9mpg. and that's not too bad pulling the teton.