We wake early. Light just beginning to show on the horizon. We go for walk in the growing morning glow. The wind is picking up today to around 20-30 mph and there is a dust storm warning.
Yesterday we went for an exploratory walk in Spring Canyon, a nearby park managed by Rock Hound that is a day use only park.





The mountains are completely different than at Rock Hound. Being in a narrow valley makes it feel friendlier.
We’re at the top picnic spot. You can see the covered picnic spots going downhill on the way out of the valley. We’ll return here in a couple days to hike the trails.
Today, I plan to go to Deming for plastic boxes to replace the falling apart cardboard shipping boxes I’ve been using in the van to organize daily use and perishable food, and frequently used electronics. To do laundry and setup an appointment for Sherman to have a Spa treatment, get Almond milk and Tent Stakes, and an oil change.
I setup the tent using the stakes that came with it, and yesterday in afternoon wind, all the stakes came out except one. It was flapping upside down hanging on by one stake. A guy in an RV across the way saw it and come over with some REAL tent stakes and set it back up. I want to be able to give him back the same kind of stakes he so graciously used to save the tent from tumble-weeding away.
I also think about going to Silver City to connect with a client for remote support. I haven’t been able to find a public free wifi location in Deming that’s not in a hamburger joint or motel. I look a the weather alerts regarding the dust storm and it shows map of the dust storm warning areas and I see that about 2/3 of the road to Silver City is in that area. I think how bad can it be? And decide to just “go for it”.
Before leaving I decide to “flatten” the tent. I put everything back in the van and remove the tension from the flexed tent poles, and put rocks on top of the flattened tent to hold it from blowing around.
In Deming I get everything done, and leaving the auto place decide to check the weather one last time. This time the alert says to expect 30-40mph sustained winds with gusts to 60mph in the dust storm areas. That seals the deal. We’re going back to the park and batten down the hatches.
On the way back, it’s about a 15 minutes drive, I can see the dust clouds coming.
I stop. Roll down the window and take this photo. The road is still clear. The wind is blowing at me.
This is looking behind the van. It’s already crossing the road.
What I can see is scary. It’s like a thick yellow-brown fog. I was thinking more like blowing sand on the beach. No. This is a cloud of very fine dust that creates a land cloud.
Now I understand signs saying DANGER, blowing dust may reduce visibility to ZERO.
We get back too the park around 11:30, before the cloud arrives. I connect to power and rearrange the gear for sleep. There’s no telling how long the dust will last or how bad it will be. I’ve only read about dust storms. What I remember makes me VERY happy to have a sealed little box to sit in while hell blows by.
We settle in for the duration.
I can see the dust cloud in the distance about noon. Notice the mountains are still visible.
The winds are stunning. Reminds me of being in hurricanes. During the gusts, the van rocks a couple inches. In the beginning, Sherman lifts his head to see what’s happening, then the rocking becomes included in normal.
Same scene an hour later. The mountains are no longer visible.
The wind begins to settle down to a steady strong wind and the dust has passed us by around 5pm. I can’t imagine what it would be like to be in one of these weather events that lasted for days while being in a some enclosure that allows some of the wind and dust to enter. Very scary…
About 5:30 the winds have settled more and we go for a walk. Both of us need to pee. There is some clear sky in the direction the winds are coming from. A good sign.

The forecast is for a calm day tomorrow. If so, we’re headed back to Spring Canyon. There are Ibex’s here that were gifted by Iran pre-Iranian Revolution. It would be soooo cool to see an Ibex!