I lived in Silver City, New Mexico for about a year when I was 8. I had always heard about Carlsbad Caverns and wanted to see them, but we never got a chance to get out there, so when I saw the signs for it yesterday, I decided to take a quick detour….thats what cross country road trips are all about right? (It was a bout 20 miles out of my way). For being so far out of the way (the site is pretty much in the middle of the desert), it was PACKED with tourists. They were cool with photography, even flash photography so I grabbed most of my gear, a tripod and a few flashlights (to paint with light if needed).
I was aiming to spend about an hour there, but it ended up being 2 and half hours. I took one walking tour, it was a MILE long! It is impossible to explain in words how expansive and utterly amazing this was. The caves just went on and on and on and on. Truly an awesome site, if you ever have the chance to check Carlsbad Caverns out, you absolutely will not be disappointed.
Surprisingly, there were a ZILLION tourists at Carlsbad Caverns. I am learning though that tourists follow displacement patterns that have random sized gaps, they come and go with gaps in between them, whatever the attraction, and some are longer than others. This was a 25 second exposure (on a tripod as there wasnt a ton of light down there). I had most of my gear with me, including a large MAG Light and a Speedlite. I spent a good 20 minutes, again just waiting, for a gap in tourists so I could run around without having anyone in the shot or to have to worry about getting my camera kicked over. This was the first exposure for this particular shot (a test shot) and I ended up liking it the best.
So before I hit the road yesterday, I thought I would swing by (one of the many) UFO museums in town. Most of their displays were newspaper clippings, photocopies and affidavits from “eye-witnesses”. Many of the statements were from military personnel who actually saw and/or handled alien bodies or what not. I think the most interesting thing I saw was a US government protocol manual for the clean up of Extra Terrestrial Crash Sites, but who knows maybe that was a fake too.
I was a little disappointed to learn that the supposed crash site isnt even in Roswell. Nope, in fact its not even close, its about 75 miles North East, about in between Roswell and Albuquerque. Im still a little unclear on how Roswell has successfully claimed the “rights” of the crash aside from a few of the citizens of Roswell inspecting the crash site. I asked around to see if I could drive up and check it out, but apparently it is now closed. The crash site is on private property and they are worried about liabilities of tourists falling out there or something. The museum seemed to believe that there was something in the works for a museum out there as well once they work it all out. Details of the Famous “I” Beam from a witness who held it as a young boy.Some Scraps of metal found at the crash site….um….like 40 years later. Testing proved it to be made of earthly materials. UFO Classification Chart. Very handy….And lets not forget the Alien Autopsy scene from the movie Roswell.
I was able to get myself into 2 of these shots for the 365, unfortunately, I realized I wouldnt be able to use or publish them in anyway other than a personal blog such as this. 🙁
While I am still highly skeptical, yet a big time X Files fan, this was a pretty fun little stop. I was glad I was able to check it out and spend a few hours in what is probably one of the most famous towns in the US when it comes to UFOs- this is what unique American Culture is all about!
Ive always been a fan of these “World’s Largest” Statues. On the way to Roswell yesterday I saw the “Worlds Largest Pistachio” at this HUGE Pistachio Farm. Inside they had every flavor Pistachio you could imagine, and free samples of each flavor. Lemon-Lime were utterly mind blowing so I bought 2 bags. Wow…they are sooo good! On my way to the UFO Museum this morning, hopefully they can direct me to the actual location of the Crash Site, something Ive always wanted to check out. After that, a nice 9 hour drive to San Antonio for The Alamo! 🙂