Our first impression as we drove into Brantley Lake State Park was that it was an ugly place. It turned out to be the Ugly Duckling of our trip. We stayed 5 nights the longest of any campground yet.


It was ugly at first because of the stark  landscape. The campground sat up on a knoll and could be seen for miles around. The man made Brantley Lake in the middle of this desert seemed so out of place.


But there was beauty on this ugly knoll. As we sat at our campsite we were entertained by a parade of wildlife. An assortment birds including quail, morning doves, and road runners, rabbits, jack rabbits, and lizards all passed us by.

The night skies clear, dark and just plain amazing, as were the sunsets and the sunrises.


Here’s a shot of the Star Ship Enterprise caught from our campsite.


Every afternoon around 4:00 the wind would pick up. One day it was especially fierce and so we spent about 45 minutes erecting a wind block out of our camp rug. It worked (kind of). Sue was very proud that her knot tying skills were up to the task!


We took a side trip to Sitting Bull Falls. It was amazing to see this 500 foot water fall surrounded by an arid desert.

In the state of New Mexico you can buy an annual pass for $210 that will get you into the state parks for one year. Yes that’s right, you can actually camp in New Mexico for one year for $210. Now that is a good deal. While I was in the shower room one day I met a truck driver who buys the pass every year just for the showers!!

Here is a meditative rattling session from Brantley. Please enjoy. Click here


  1. Thanks for sharing your travels! Living vicariously through your photos and narration. Looking forward to seeing you on the east coast!

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