A Great Vacation: A Photographic Exploration of New Mexico

Updated on March 29, 2019
GeckosTrails profile image

Billy is a hiking and outdoors enthusiast. He is also the Owner of Ravenshire Creations and host of the YouTube channel Gecko's Trails.

New Mexico landscape
New Mexico landscape | Source

Welcome to New Mexico!

A few years ago my wife, Michelle, took a travel nursing assignment at a hospital in Roswell, New Mexico, so the family could visit some of the most beautiful places this state has to offer. The first thing that most people think of when they hear the words New Mexico is, of course, the Roswell UFO Crash. Oddly enough, we never went to the International UFO Museum and Research Center even once the entire time we were in Roswell. In retrospect, I regret not having gone.

Living Desert State Park, Carlsbad, NM

The first place that we went to visit was the Living Desert State Park in Carlsbad. We were very fortunate that our visit corresponded with their annual rock and mineral show. As a geographer, I love a good rock show . . . musically, too! There was a really great trail that took you through their zoo and garden exhibits as well as through some natural desert landscape features.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Desert SculptureSignDesert LandscapeRavenWalk through the zoo areaRoadrunnerDesert VegitationArroyoBat headBlack bearDesert VegitationDesert FlowerFlowerLotus blossomWater gardenDesert landscapeDesert deadwood
Desert Sculpture
Desert Sculpture | Source
Sign | Source
Desert Landscape
Desert Landscape | Source
Raven | Source
Walk through the zoo area
Walk through the zoo area | Source
Roadrunner | Source
Desert Vegitation
Desert Vegitation | Source
Arroyo | Source
Bat head
Bat head | Source
Black bear
Black bear | Source
Desert Vegitation
Desert Vegitation | Source
Desert Flower
Desert Flower | Source
Flower | Source
Lotus blossom
Lotus blossom | Source
Water garden
Water garden | Source
Desert landscape
Desert landscape | Source
Desert deadwood
Desert deadwood | Source

Calsbad Caverns

The next sight we went to see was the famous Carlsbad Caverns National Park outside of Carlsbad, New Mexico, near White's City. There was so much to do here and a LOT of walking to be done. We hiked through miles of caverns, ate lunch in a subterranean cafeteria, and sat in the amphitheater to watch the bats fly out of the caves at sunset. For a donation, you can even symbolically adopt a bat. We learned so much about the caverns, ecosystems, and local plant and wildlife. I would love go back some time!

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Ruidoso, New Mexico

Before we went to White Sands National Monument we spent a weekend in Ruidoso, New Mexico, at the Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort and Casino on Mescalero Apache tribal land. We spent a great weekend there with a lakeside view. I got to play slots in the casino and the family got to go horseback riding at the Grindstone Stables. We also got to experience a small pioneer town, authentic live western music, and chuckwagon dinner at the Flying J Ranch. All in all, it was an awesome weekend!!!

Click thumbnail to view full-size
SculptureSculptureBeautiful FlowerState flower of New MexicoThe lake view from our roomDucksSunset over the lakeView from the front of the hotelThe front of the hotel
Sculpture | Source
Sculpture | Source
Beautiful Flower
Beautiful Flower | Source
State flower of New Mexico
State flower of New Mexico | Source
The lake view from our room
The lake view from our room | Source
Ducks | Source
Sunset over the lake
Sunset over the lake | Source
View from the front of the hotel
View from the front of the hotel | Source
The front of the hotel
The front of the hotel | Source

White Sands National Monument in Alamogordo

Eventually, we made it to the great white dunes of White Sands National Monument outside of Alamogordo. We went into the visitor's center and learned all about why the sands in this region are actually white. Without giving away any spoilers, what we learned was really fascinating . . . and I'm not just saying that because I'm a geographer, either! We rented sleds and bought sled wax and got to sled down the great white dunes . . . it was truly awesome!!!

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Visitor's CenterDesert vegetationSweetheart photo opWhite desolationSigns of lifeParking lot?Great white seaThe trail goes onNavigating the dunesHand in the sand
Visitor's Center
Visitor's Center | Source
Desert vegetation
Desert vegetation | Source
Sweetheart photo op
Sweetheart photo op | Source
White desolation
White desolation | Source
Signs of life
Signs of life | Source
Parking lot?
Parking lot? | Source
Great white sea
Great white sea | Source
The trail goes on
The trail goes on | Source
Navigating the dunes
Navigating the dunes | Source
Hand in the sand
Hand in the sand | Source

Bottomless Lakes State Park in Roswell

There were many weekends in the desert heat where we went to cool off swimming in the saltwater lakes at Bottomless Lakes State Park just outside of Roswell, New Mexico. These lakes were created when salt caverns collapsed and created sinkholes which filled in with water from springs and rain. The landscape around the lakes was spectacular and the views from the rim road were breathtaking!

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Old water towerDesert through a knotholeSwimming at Lea LakeLea LakeIrrigation lockStairs from one of the lakesThe Devil's InkwellThe Devil's InkwellLazy LagoonView of Lea Lake from the rim roadSwimming at Lea Lake
Old water tower
Old water tower | Source
Desert through a knothole
Desert through a knothole | Source
Swimming at Lea Lake
Swimming at Lea Lake | Source
Lea Lake
Lea Lake | Source
Irrigation lock
Irrigation lock | Source
Stairs from one of the lakes
Stairs from one of the lakes | Source
The Devil's Inkwell
The Devil's Inkwell | Source
The Devil's Inkwell
The Devil's Inkwell | Source
Lazy Lagoon
Lazy Lagoon | Source
View of Lea Lake from the rim road
View of Lea Lake from the rim road | Source
Swimming at Lea Lake
Swimming at Lea Lake | Source

Until Next Time, New Mexico!

We had so much fun on our trip to New Mexico and saw so many wonderful sights. We got to do some amazing activities, meet new and wonderful people, and experience different cultures and traditions. I hope to go back someday and experience even more sights and lands!

© 2019 Billy W Mitchell


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      15 months ago from UK

      The phrase 'pictures speak louder than words' comes to mind. The photos are fantastic illustrations.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, wanderwisdom.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)