Valley of Fires and Carrizozo, New Mexico.

Screenshot_20171020-091013Carrizozo, New Mexico is about an hour away from Alamogordo and at about 40 mins from Ruidoso. But if you are in Albuquerque you will take a bit over 2 hrs.

I love the drive. The plains early in the morning or late during the evening are just gorgeous.

I think of the wild, wild, west during these drives…The Spirit of The Southwest is definitely for me!

The Valley of Fires Recreation Area has several campsites (some with hook-ups!), and provides access to the Carrizozo Malpais; a petrified lava flow on the west side of the town.

We enjoy bringing our picnic most of the time, but this beautiful, small, southwestern town has several eateries as well. There are picnic tables, and a big shelter with a fabulous view. This is one of my favorite places to picnic with the fam.

We camped here once before and the experience was exhilarating. The darkness, the sounds of the wild, and a feeling of being so close to nature; it could bite me. Glow sticks, finger flash lights and dinner by the fire made for great family time. This was my first time making biscuits in a Dutch oven covered with embers. I felt like a real camper!

It does get quite windy, and during the summer months the sun can be very harsh. We have found that visiting during the Fall is the best time. But don’t skip a visit to the town of Carrizozo!

You will want to visit the Carrizozo Heritage Museum and go back in time to see how life used to be in Carrizozo and the area.

If you are looking for New Mexican Art, you will love these two Carrizozo Treasures: The Tularosa Basin Photography Gallery, and The Malkerson Gallery on 12th street. (Find a map here)

Now, there is a challenge Carrizozo has for visitors interested in a fun activity right after dinner: The Burro Challenge. 21 Painted Burros have been placed around town, and you might be able to locate them all if you keep your eyes open. Share your selfies on Instagram with #PaintedBurros and #Carrizozo

We are already planning our next visit (It’s fall!) and will definitely be sharing more on the Spirit of The Southwest we found in Carrizozo, NM.

The outdoors, natural wonders, and history! Take the virtual tour of Valley of Fires Recreational Area:

Two Rivers, One Experience

Picture this:

The sound of a long noisy river canopied by strong, tall pines. Fish are here and there, hiding under numerous rocks that lie like big stepping stones across the river.

A steep hill begging to be climbed borders the western side of the river, and on the border opposite to it is a play ground with a picnic area. A bit further, across the busy street; a pizza place is waiting to feed hungry urban explorers.2rivers

Having young children doesn’t necessarily mean one cannot commune with the wild Spirit of the Southwest. Ruidoso’s Two River Park (yes, two rivers actually run through it) provides a means for families to experience the wildness of southwestern nature, and the comforts necessary to make the outing effortless and invigorating.

Take the Virtual Tour and see what a beautiful setting.