Arizona 2024: Day 11: Dwyer, NM: A Case of the Wind

Note that I am taking some geographical liberty with the city name. The official address of the state park is in Faywood, NM. But right next to Faywood, NM is Dwyer, NM. The weather apps give our location as all kinds of different names. Thus, I can pick what I want.

Pretty good night sleep. Except for the part where I had turned the propane off yesterday so the furnace was never going to run. At +2C overnight when you are in a tin can, you might want the furnace. I awoke at 0330 and straightened out that situation.

Morning walk was on the Hydra trail out into the grasslands and then one of the paths through the rocks back north to our fort.

We went out for a pre-lunch hike into the rocks. It had warmed up a bit but the wind has also picked up its pace.

Post lunch we found a little spot just above our campsite that was mostly protected from the wind. We brought our chairs up and sheltered out of the crazy winds. The only pictures I took were with the 360 camera.

The weather app said wind of 45km/h and gusts above 80km/h. I should bring an anemometer (provided I don’t have to learn to spell nor pronounce it) to keep track of some of these winds we camp in. Today compares to Angel Peak, NM and Matagorda, TX a few years ago. At least the ambient temperature got up to 17C so the wind was almost bearable.

I popped down the hill with Amy at some point for a nap. The gentle (it wasn’t always gentle) rocking of the van ensured I fell asleep quickly.

I have attempted to take several pictures of the continuous dust storm off to the west. Each time it has gotten bigger. Here is the latest dust storm picture. Mrs Milddogs has estimated that it is 12 miles away from us.

Dust storm bigger today

As the sun left our safe space, we migrated down to the van to prepare dinner. Lovely burritos, homemade (vanmade) guacamole and a salad.

We had planned on doing another hike but I replanned once I read there are actually showers here. No dump station, but there are showers. I gathered up my stuff and did the 1.0 km walk to the visitor’s center / showers. I took the western route knowing I would be blasted by the wind and airborne sand bit not caring as I was heading to a cleansing. Along the way I saw a tent, still anchored, but laying flat (I don’t think the people were in it) and then I saw an owl fly right past me and land in a tree near the botanical garden. Hello owl!

An owl. Shot at 3X on iPhone then digitally zoomed. Click to enlarge

The showers are similar to those at Oliver Lee except slightly less clean, so they get a 5/10. I took the eastern route back to use the rocks as a wind shield and hopefully minimize the re-gritting of my perfectly clean self. It mostly worked until I had to take the elevated path from the east to west side. I can re-de-grit some other day, maybe tomorrow on the way out.

Obligatory sunset picture.

Sunset with dust storm to the right

Last night I attempted to take some pictures of the stars. They show stars but each star seems to have a flagella. I need to work on those skills.

Mrs Milddogs and I had a van chat the other day which can be summarized as “how can flat earthers actually think the earth is flat?” It was a short conversation as neither of us knew (a good thing, I guess). But I offer this. If the sun sets in the west and I am in the west, shouldn’t it set right on my head?

Tomorrow we enter Arizona. I attempted to get an Arizona Land Use Permit, but can’t cause the form does not know about Canada. We are still trying to situate in the best weather within a reasonable distance, but so far this has been a challenge.

And away we go!

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