Tuesday, January 09, 2024

Camping and Hiking at Rockhound State Park, New Mexico

Campsite view
View from the campground

Gem Rock examplesRockhound State Park in New Mexico is one of, I believe, only two state parks in the country that encourage rock collecting.  If one knows what to look for, there are a lot of geodes and other collectible and semi-precious stones.  They do ask that people limit what they take, but collectors are encouraged to go off-trail since most of the geodes near the trails have already been taken.  It was here that I learned that a rock that I found last year is called a “thunder egg”; it is a round stone that looks like a geode except the inside isn’t hollow.

Cactus FlowersI also learned that a conical mountain, like Miter Peak near Davis Mountains state park, is likely the remains of a lava plug from a volcano.  The lava rose and hardened and then erosion later cleared away the softer rock from around it.

View of flatlandT-Mobile coverage here was disappointing.  Even though my phone showed I had a strong 5G signal, my transfer speeds weren’t even adequate for email or texting.  I called customer support and found out that I was “local roaming” to an AT&T tower; it seems that T-Mobile still takes credit for offering high speed internet even though it isn’t on their tower, so customers don’t actually get what they think they’re getting. 

That aside, I really liked this spot.  I went on a nice hike along the side of the mountain next to the campground and had the trail to myself and the views were amazing.

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View of Mountains Wildflowers Bench
Lizard Looking up at mountain Overlooking Campground
Shaded Overlook Shaded Shelter Trail Selfie
Trail View Trailhead Wildflowers

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