Saturday, October 23 - We ran into the town of Truth or Consequences this morning to take a look around. A nice little town with some unusual little shops. We walked into several selling used books, collectibles, antiques, and even a gal that had a costume shop/art gallery.
We then decided to take a ride out of town, following the rocket ship stickers placed on various signs, to the New Mexico Spaceport America being built about 25 miles out of town in Engle. It is the world's first purpose-built commercial spaceport…estimated construction cost $198 million.
How does Spaceport America work?
- Like an airport, the spaceport is owned by the State of New Mexico and its citizens
- Like an airline, Virgin Galactic pays lease fees and user fees to use the spaceport
- Private companies pay fees to launch from the spaceport.
The rockets were even on cattle crossings.
It seemed like an awful long drive (especially because the sign said it was 16 miles not 25). There is NOTHING out here.
We did almost run into this fellow. When they say open range out here, they mean open range.
This historical marker gave us a big boost.
Much of the land out here is owned by Ted Turner of CNN fame. He even had a herd of Bison grazing near the road.
We eventually came to a construction site (a new road) heading back to the Spaceport.
There was a guard stopping all traffic.....not permitted back to the Spaceport. There was a couple on a Harley that arrived about the same time we did. We had passed each other at various pullouts on the way out. Here, he is working on the electrical installation at the Spaceport. He told us all about the place and even lent us his binoculars to get a closer look. The concrete runway is 200 feet wide by 10,000 feet long — nearly two miles! 42" thick with a 14" concrete finished surface, can accommodate almost any manned or unmanned aircraft in the world.
Can’t get close enough to take a good picture of the terminal. They are still working on this area.
Terminal Hangar Facility (THF) Facts
- Site Area: 670,000 sq. ft. including apron
- Terminal Hangar Facility Gross Area: 110,152 sq. ft.
It's going to be pretty impressive! For $200,000 you can ride the space-plane/rocket into the edge of space. There are already 400 people signed up. This is a PRIVATE enterprise undertaking. They had the dedication of the runway on Friday with all the important politicians from around New Mexico in attendance.
We also stopped to see the Elephant Butte Dam. It wasn’t exactly holding much water back.
We took Bella for another walk just behind our motor home. It is just so peaceful here.
We bought some fire wood and had us a beer.
The moon is AWESOME up here. Again, we just looked right out our front window to this…
Sunday, October 24 – Drove from Truth or Consequences, NM to Balmorhea, TX a total of 316 miles in 5.75 hours. It was an uneventful trip, and we are now settled in Saddleback RV Park for $10 per night for full-hookups. It is a Passport America Park. We've stayed at this same Park several times in the past. Its location and price makes a great stopping point when crossing Texas on I-10. We were the only ones in the entire campground.
Marsha did not feel good all day or night. She fell asleep as soon as we got here and woke up over three hours later not feeling much better. We had a very quiet night.
Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see you back real soon. Have a great day!