Guadeloupe Thoughts

Self portrait of Bernie’s new bull escape technique
Russell Gap
South of Hope, New Mexico

This week, mule Polly and I worked on our bull escape technique. It involves whiskey, limes and alfalfa hay. The story is coming.

Coming out of the Guadeloupes
Crow Flats, New Mexico

In the meantime click here for some hill thoughts….

In recent days, mule Polly and I have crossed the Guadeloupes, the range of hills that divides Artesia, New Mexico from Fort Hancock, Texas, our final Lost Sea Expedition destination. Unlike cars, which travel the gravel route in 3 hours, Polly and I took some time to look back on the trip we’re completing. We stretched the 110 miles to 12 days.

The Guadeloupes

From Artesia, New Mexico, the route climbs 2,500 feet to Russell Gap. Here, in the mile-high Chihuahua desert, we entered the lonely realm of winter wind and choya cactus. This is the land of 7 inches of rain. This is the land where, as the mailman in nearby Hope puts it, “the wind blows so hard, it’ll blow a post hole out of the ground”.

Choya cactus

While not extracting cactus spines from Polly’s muzzle and legs, I did some reminiscing on our Canada to Mexico voyage.

Man and mule reflect

Stages of desert life

Field recording notes: I made the following recording in the Lost Sea wagon while parked on a jagged ridge under Russell Gap. If you listen carefully, even though I’m sitting inside the wagon, you’ll hear the desert wind whistling between my words.

For some voyaging and vegetation thoughts, click on the audio player below.


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