Into the Desert: New Mexico and Arizona


I had never seen a desert, and at this point in the trip, I don’t know that it mattered much what the landscape was like as long as it was not Texas. I was giddy over crossing the TX-NM border because aside from Amarillo, it seemed like Texas was nothing but clusters of illogical highways surrounded by monotonous suburbs.

There was a lot of ground to cover in a short period of time so every time we were struck by a desert view Mari flew over to the shoulder, slammed on the breaks, I made a mad dash out of the car to snap photos, and then flew back into the car. By the end of the trip we had our routine down to about a minute flat. Sometimes we just skipped the pull over and I shot out of the window. I think the results were pretty decent:


On a couple rare occasions we took the time to both get out of the car and actually get in the photo:


All I wanted was to see a cactus. You know, like the kind with arms. The cartoon kind.

Not one.

Not a single cactus of any kind.

Until we got to the meteor crater gift shop. These were the ONLY cacti I saw the entire drive through the desert. Lame.


Despite the cactus fail, the meteor crater was incredible.


They even had a huge chunk of the meteor out in the open for everyone to get handsy with. Cute story: One night while I was waiting with Ethan (the 9 year old with us) for a to-go dinner order I asked him what his favorite part of the trip was so far.

His response: The meteor. But you know, I wish I would have licked it.

Me too bud. Me too.

I mean this kid is brilliant. How many times in your life do you get the opportunity to lick a 100 million year old object from space? I don’t know about you but this was my one and only.


And here is the genius child:


While the desert plains, mountain ranges, and meteor craters were a nice change of pace from the familiar East coast landscape, they did not come close to being as impressive as the Grand Canyon.

13 Responses

  1. There are lots of deserts in the West, and their vegetation varies widely according to elevation and latitude. I’m assuming you wanted to see saguaro cacti. You were in the Sonoran Desert, north of the range of saguaro. If you’d driven through Phoenix or, especially, Tucson, you’d’ve seen ’em in vast numbers. Saguaro National Park’s two branches near Tucson are well worth a hiking visit for future planning. There are no naturally occurring saguaros anywhere in New Mexico. So, another trip for you. BTW, there’s no Arizona-Texas border: New Mexico gets in the way. Keep traveling. Lots to see.Thanks for visiting Under Western Skies.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s