Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Angel Peak Scenic Area, NM

Word of another free BLM campground leads us to the Angel Peak Scenic Area, just south of Bloomfield and about two hours northwest of Albuquerque.  It's a beautiful spot about 6 miles from the highway above a series of canyons which are full of oil and gas wells, which are very popular in this corner of New Mexico.  There are only a couple of short hiking trails here, but the best part of this stay is the people we meet.

Our next-door neighbours are Mike and Melissa, a great couple whom I wish we are able to spend more time with (and I'm not saying that because they might read this blog!)  Mike is originally from Georgia, and Melissa from Florida; they married only about one year ago and have been traveling in their trailer as "full-timers" with their two dogs, Bump and Shine, since then.  Sadly, they leave after we're here only a couple of days.

Across the road is Rick, many years our senior and from Pennsylvania.  A typical hippie (seriously - he's had two hip operations), he's a hoot even when he's sober.  His dog Sadie is a bit of an attention-whore, jumping into the lap of anyone who'll pet her.  What's amazing is that Rick lives in a tent!  For two years now!  At the age of 67!  More power to him.

Two young Japanese tourists also stop by for a night.  Meeka (not sure of the spelling of her name) and Mayumi are such sweet girls and are in awe at the spaciousness of our trailer.  Their home in Japan is smaller, they say.  The come to tour a part of the U.S. each year, but unfortunately this year have been forced to re-route their plans due to the closure of the national parks thanks to the government shutdown.  That's how they ended up here.  Mayumi is a healer and Meeka is a psychic - for real!  Mayumi says that Meeka's brain is broken!  These girls are a scream.

Last was Scott, a very opinionated Texan who had a lot to say about politics, economics, immigrants - well, you name it!  He must have a really good heart too - he travels with three dogs, one of which has no front legs and hops around.  She was born that way and Scott took her in when no one else wanted her.

The view from our back window, overlooking Angel Peak and the canyon below. We are literally perched on the edge of the clay cliffs.
From our hike along the rim - it's a narrow trail at the peak of this long series of badlands with sandstone peaks.
The gray ridge in the foreground is the one we hiked - not entirely easy, but challenging and requires nerves of steel in places.
Mike and Melissa - funny story about that bullet hole - and it's real, not one of those decals some wimpy Americans have! Years ago, back home in Georgia, Mike discovered someone trying to steal his stereo out of his truck, as well as trying to steal his truck! So, from the safety of his front porch, he warned the thief "I have a pistol and I'm not afraid to use it!" but the thief was not too impressed. As Mike took aim, meaning to shoot the ground, the thief started to run, but Mike "missed" and accidentally shot his own truck, inches from the thief's head! Only in America. The thief got away.
Mike, Melissa, Rick, me and Brad having a fire.
Rick, Mayumi, me, Meeka and Brad.

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