It’s been cold the last two days and we’ve driven into Silver City to hang out in the Javalina Coffee Shop — dogs allowed. I’ve balanced my bank accounts and planned spending for the next month.Worked on a client job. I’ve cleaned up old email. From 1000+ unread, I’m down to 35 that need further attention.
I’ve grown tired of the below freezing mornings and windy 50 degree days. I looked at other nearby parks and found that Rock Hound, an hour south, is 10-12 degrees warmer than City of Rocks. That’s a difference of 26-28 overnight to 36-40 overnight. A HUGE difference in an unheated van and being outside in the morning.
I drove down yesterday morning to check out the park and talk to the camp host about getting a spot. When I get there I discover that the park is full. She suggests getting there at 7am to be there when people leave to grab their spot. So, this morning we are at Rock Hound at 7:15, walking the circle of residents looking for clues that someone is packing. About 8, I see a woman moving her stuff around. I ask if she’s organizing or packing to leave. She’s packing to leave. So, I move the van into a parking spot in the site to wait and offer the help with anything that she’d like assistance. I help her fold-up her tarps and tent, she does a little rearrange in the car and she’s off. We have a spot!

About 15 minutes later the camp host comes by and says that she may need to give this spot to someone else who’s in the overflow area. If so, she points to another spot where the people are leaving within the hour. I can have that spot if the overflow folks want this one as it’s easier to back into.
30 minutes later she drives by in her golf cart and says we’re good here. I start setting up. This is the first time I’ll be setting up the tent.
We walk to the Visitors Center to pay for power and look at exhibit. Since I have an annual permit it’s $4 a night for power. We walk back and I setup the tent, put 3 boxes into it from the van plus the requirements to do cooking.
We walk one of the loop trails that goes partway up the mountain the park is nestled against.
The sides of the mountains are covered by Bunny Ear cactus. Very few other cactus species around.

We return, eat, hang out at our covered picnic table, then walk some more through the little botanical garden of local plants.
To sleep at dark… 7pm.