Friday, April 27, 2012

The Great Escape

Vacation?  Holiday?

I know not of what you speak.

Honestly, in 25 years of marriage, we have been on 1 four day family vacation to Carlsbad Caverns and Amarillo, TX. LOL. Its a good thing we love our lifestyle! :) This is the first place we've ever had any help and we've never had neighbors so leaving the ranch was just not an option. Thankfully we did things like camp and hunt and fish with the kids, but those were all things we could do without ever leaving the dirt road. DH and I did get away for 1 night years ago. The people that owned the ranch gave us a night at the Gage Hotel in Marfa, TX for a Christmas gift one year. It was October before we were able to use it. LOL. My parents were down for a visit and we snuck away.

So last week we snuck off again. We have help at North Camp and he was about to quit and go back to TX and baby chicks were arriving the next week so DH called me on a Thursday morning at 11 and said, "Can you be ready to go at 1" I knew that 'fly by the seat of my pants' thing was going to come in handy!

I whipped up food for my FIL who helps us 3 days a week right now and stood in the closet contemplating what I had to wear that did not have barbed wire snags, or bleach on it. Then I popped on the internet and looked for a deal. Yay! Its the off season in the mountains and they are only 2 hours from us so I snagged a really good deal and off we went!
We got really excited when we saw this:

Yes, that is rain. We are in desperate need of moisture. Seriously. Not a drop since the 10" of snow we had at Christmas and last year was the driest, hottest year on record.

We stayed at a really nice hotel: Inn of the Mountain Gods. Its the off season so we found a really good deal.

And as soon as we checked in and admired the view from our balcony:

We were off. Ruidoso is a darling little town with lots of cute shops and character, but we sped right through there and headed for the hills.

After all, we came up here to hike and hike we did. I found out really quick that this mountain gal has been in the flats for far too long and although I walk for miles every day, hiking in the mountains is a different story. Wheweeee! I was a huffin and a puffin and we only hiked for about 2 hours before we lost the light. Still, it was magnificent and the air! Oh, I had forgotten what the mountain air smelled like! It brought tears to my eyes because I miss it so much.

Then DH and I scurried back to the hotel and bellied up to the bar.

These were included in our package deal. Those of you that know me are laughing because I don't drink. I don't have anything against it, I just don't. I might have half a glass of wine twice a year. I always joke that if I drink any more I'll either be sleeping under the table or dancing on top of it.

This hotel is on the Mescalaro Indian Reservation and the accomodations and staff were impecable. Never stayed in a place that had such attentive staff.

Then we really splurged and ate at the Hotel Restaurant.

Fab-u-lous! They had a chef who really knew how to cook a steak! And then the waiter brought this out:

Compliments of the chef he said. How sweet is that? Can I just say that we had never eaten anything like it. It was unbelievable. A Godiva Chocolate Mousse that we could not finish and we threw the other half in the cooler and brought it home to share the next day.

So, I figure most people sleep in when they go on vacation, or so I hear. Well if you plan to sleep in, don't go on vacation with us. LOL. We slept in until close to 6 and then DH paced until breakfast opened up at 7. Breakfast was also included in our stay and we scarfed down made to order omelets and hash browns and fresh fruit to fuel us for the day ahead.

Inn of the Mountain Gods also has a casino that we wandered through while we waited for breakfast, but we're not gamblers and we didn't even play the penny slots. They also have a venue for concerts and they have one every weekend. Ted Nugent was coming in a few weeks and Engelbert Humperdink (LOL) was there that weekend. Ronnie Dunn, from Brooks and Dunn was on the schedule too as was Alison Krause and Union Station, and Kellie Pickler.

After breakfast, we headed back to the mountains. In the summer, they are swarming with peoople and there is nary an open spot that is not filled with tents and camping families. We however, beat the crowds and we hiked for over 4 hours and never saw a soul. Perfection. Pictures do not do it justice, but it was so amazing:

It was pretty cold when we started out, but before long, I began shucking layers. I didn't trust these signs.

Thankfully I had my handy dandy boy scout with me to guide me:

 If I could find a  spot to plug in my sewing machine, you could just leave me here:

This is what the trail looked like in many places. I put my walking stick to good use.

Alas, responsibility called and we had to head back to the flats. DH's phone started ringing as soon as our phone's came in contact with a signal and he had several messeges. Sigh. This is why we don't get away more often. We ducked into this little cafe for a bite to eat in Capitan just as they were about to close:

Look how cute!

The food was really good too! Our great escape was a huge success and here's hoping it won't be another 12 years before the next one!


Dora, the Quilter said...

I too hope you don't wait 12 years until the next one!
That is a beautiful area, and I'm glad you enjoyed every minute!

Doniene said...

Good for you!! You know, I'm not sure everyone understands how difficult it is to get away from the ranch!!!But I do, so I know how much you treasure that mini vacation! I somehow missed your last post about the jungle quilt - so very cute!!


JMF said...

Wow only next time take me too!! It looks like my kindof vacation. I have a hard time getting my hubby to do much hiking tho.. We have done some in the Black Hills. Harney Peak was around 6 hours to the top and back down. With the kids we walked around Devils Tower in Wy, some day I to hike up Bear Butte. Glad you got away. This summer we are taking a 10 day bus tour to Canada to the Calgary Stampede rodeo.

quiltmom said...

Happy Anniversary to you and your beloved. It sounds like you had a fabulous time together. Thanks for sharing the great views that you had on your journey. Every couple needs the opportunity to go away and spend some special times together away from daily life.
Warmest regards,

NaomiG said...

That sounds AMAZING!!! I can almost smell the pine trees through your pictures. Looks like a beautiful place and a wonderful time. So glad you got to do it!!

Cow Pies & Mud Pies said...

Happy Anniversary! DO NOT WAIT another 12 years...what a fabulous get-a-way!! I loved all the pictures and so glad you guys had fun...BEAUTIFUL country. Wow.

Staci said...

What a lovely anniversary! And such nice photos! I'm sure it will be a treasured memory for a long time. Hopefully the next little trips happens sooner.

theona said...

I know you savor the moments you get away together. Like the others--I hope that these get aways come more frequently and for a little longer! Beautiful pictures.

Alycia said...

What a beautiful place, so glad you got to get away!! I drink like you LOL - half a glass and I am under the table sleeping..

Gorgeous Hiking pictures!

Anonymous said...

Not only a vacation, but a vacation for two! Does your DH hike in his boots? I just have to ask because I know most ranchers don't own anything other than boots!


Doniene said...

Just showed Mike these pictures on this post. He loved them, especially the rain cloud!! He does have one question for Gary, though. Why is a cowboy hiking when he could be riding?!!! LOL

Have a great day!!

Silvana said...

You are really lucky!

Karin said...

Happy belated anniversary!!!! It´s nice to sneak off for a little vacation every now and then. I hope you wont wait another decade to sneak off again to enjoy a special time together. Great pictures and thanks for sharing your special trip with us!

Saska said...

Just saw this post! So glad that you got to get away....
drink any more I'll either be sleeping under the table or dancing on top of it ...
we gotta get you out more!

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