Trip Across The USA 2000


New Mexico

Downtown Santa Fe where the Native Americans sell their crafts

Cynthia at our hotel (Inn on the Alameda)

Everything is adobe in the downtown area

Cynthia at the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum One of the main attractions in Santa Fe

Cynthia at the "Flea Market" outside of Santa Fe.

The old fashioned stainless steel dinner on the way to Roswell

The old fashioned stainless steel dinner on the way to Roswell

Even Wal Mart believes that there are Aliens around

I caught one of the Aliens

Carlsbad Cavers, One of the largest caverns in the world

A stalactite about to join a stalagmite

Stalactites on the cavern ceiling

Before departing Roswell, we acquired this pass to Area 51 which is located just north of Las Vegas, Nevada.  Those UFO fans will note the importance of this.  The rest of you should ask your kids what it all means.  If we do not return as planned in early November, you will know that the Government Authorities  have gotten to us.  "May the Force Be With You"

At the Alamogordo Space Museum The upper section of a Saturn Rocket

At the Alamogordo Space Museum One of those supersonic sled used to test pilots at high speeds

At the Alamogordo Space Museum A Nike missile.  For you younger kid who think that Nike only refers to tennis shoes, you are WRONG

The Visitors Center at White Sands Check out that blue sky.  No smog out here.

The road in the White Sands National Monument

More pictures of the vegetation and sand

The transition from desert to the white sands

Visitors playing in the sand

Cynthia by the sand

Picnic areas with sun shelter

How they clean the sand off the read

The Very Large Array Radio Telescope Facility 6o miles west of Socorro, New Mexico. There are 27 of the antennas  They are moved around  on railroad tracks to form different configurations over a possible distance of 13 miles outward from array center.  The antennas act together to provide for an enhanced radio telescope image of the heaven.  Each Antenna weighs 230 tons  and the dishes are each 82 feet in diameter.

A row of antennas.  Their basic formation is that of the letter Y

There is a repair building for the antennas

The Trinity Site

The Trinity Site is ground zero where the first atomic bomb was detonated.  This is located in the northern portion of the White Sands Military Missile Test Site.  The entire test site is about the size of the State of Connecticut. 

The White Sands National Park with the beach sands that we visited a few days ago is located at the southern end of the test site, and it is open every day of the year. 

The Trinity Site is open two days a year.  One of those dates is the first Saturday in October.  The other date is in the Spring.  By the traffic we saw at Trinity, we estimate that there will be several thousand visitors today.  The government has set up basic facilities for the tourist to include portable restrooms, and there are outside vendors with eating facilities and souvenir stands with post cards etc. 

When the first bomb was constructed, the scientists were not sure that it would work.  The bomb's explosion is the combination of two detonations.  First, there is a conventional gunpowder explosion that compresses the radioactive material into a critical mass.  At that time, the critical mass of radioactive material then sets off the nuclear explosion. 

If the second stage nuclear explosion failed, the steel vessel would contain the radioactive material which would be recycled into a second attempt at building a bomb. 

At the last minute, they decided not to use the steel vessel.  Since the vessel was already at the site, they left it near the bomb at ground zero to see if it could survive the nuclear explosion.

There are many photo exhibits that were set up for the day at the Trinity Site. Above is the original steel vessel (that was NOT used for containment) prior to the explosion. It remained at ground zero (empty) during the nuclear explosion.

The Bomb was elevated about 100 above the ground.  A tower was constructed for this.  The base of one of the legs of the tower foundation still exists.

There is a monument at ground zero

A model of the first A-Bomb was on display at the site. However, the  first bomb itself was spherical in shape. The above is the shape of the bomb dropped on Japan with tail fins.

The Albuquerque Annual Balloon Fiesta This is the gasoline powered fan that is used initially to inflate the balloons on the ground before the propane heater is used

The colorful interior of a balloon

Getting ready for lift off

A few of the hundreds of balloons at the Albuquerque Balloon Festival.

Mesa Verde, CO

Located near the Four Corners area, Mesa Verde is perhaps the most complete and well preserved Native American Cliff Dwellings that have been found so far. Overlooking the Dwelling called ''Cliff Palace'' In order to judge the size of the settlement please note the tourists in the right side of the photo.

A close up photo of the dwelling

A portion of the settlement that is not in a cliff cave environment