Back in the car to Fort Stanton (the reason for the commercial rivalry that caused the Lincoln County War), again well before anything opened. In addition to its role in the Apache wars, Ft. Stanton served as a WPA camp, a POW camp during WWII, a TB sanitarium and a school for developmentally disabled. It was recently opened for tourists. Here's the sign:
On to Carrizozo, a major junction on old trails and 2-lane highways (US-54 & US-380). It's also a bit of a folk-art center, and is known for painted burros (you know, like painted ponies, cows, dogs, etc.) all over town - and I do mean 'over.' They're on the roof tops, as well as the streets.
Headed west along US-380, which passes through the 'Valley of Fires,' a volcanic lava flow about 5000 years old. It's pretty extensive, but we just stopped along the roadside where it cut through.
At Socorro, we stopped by the welcome center for maps & suggestions. Weren't impressed by the food at the recommended restaurant, but the plaza is nicely done. San Miguel was supposedly the first one in New Mexico (under the name of Our Lady of Succor), but it fell to ruins. The current one was built on the same site in the early 1800s and the name was later changed when a vision of St. Michael (San Miguel) warned the people of an impending Apache attack.
We stopped at the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge. This is the winter home of greater sandhill cranes. No pictures, so we pressed on to the El Camino Real International Heritage Center, which coves the history (and prehistory) of this important trail from Mexico to the province of Nuevo Mexico. Oxcarts were often used.
On to Truth or Consequences, formerly known as Hot Springs, where we had dinner and relaxed at the HIE. Tomorrow we go on to Las Cruces to visit Sandra's Uncle Murray, with an en route stop at Ft. Selden. Then it's on to Deming for the night. 262 miles for the day, 1671 for the trip.