We left Socorro late this morning and headed south to Ruidoso where we planned to meet up with the Sakamoto family. They live in San Jose, CA and are in New Mexico visiting Kristina's parents. John has met our kids and I have met his, but this will be the first time we get the kids together.
On the way down, we stopped at the 'Valley of Fire' national monument to have our lunch. It is kind of a cool place. It is a valley filled with harden lava that was pushed up through volcanic vents rather than a volcanic eruption. The lava poured out of these vents and filled the valley approximately 5000 years ago. As you might be able to see from the pictures, as it cooled, it created really need tubes, bubbles, caves and other formations. This area is about 165 miles long by a few miles wide with an average depth of 65 feet.
We reached our hotel, the Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort and Casino at 2:30. Just in time for Deb and Emma to get to the stable for their horseback trail ride. It ended up being just the two of them with the guide. They were out for well over an hour as they rode through the woods, valleys and across a ridge that makes up this beautiful property. Deb was a bit nervous when the guide told her that he had seen a bear cub on the 9am ride and was chased by a pack of wild dogs on the 11am ride. Aside from seeing the bones of elk, cayote and a horse along the trail, the trip was uneventful!
We met the Sakamoto family late afternoon and headed to the pool. In addition to the pool, they had a steam room, a sauna and a huge hot tub with a small waterfall feeding the water into it. The hot tub was the big hit with the kids and parents.The picture on the top right is the view from our balcony at the Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort.
Tomorrow it is on to Carlsbad Cavern with a quick stop in Roswell to check out the aliens. We are planning to get to Carlsbad by mid afternoon, have an early dinner and then get a spot to watch the 400,000 bats fly out of the cave at dusk.