Bisti Wilderness, New Mexico.
This is the storm the inevitably blew us out of our campsite. Though this made a nice photograph this storm also brought 30mph winds with 50+mph gusts; our tent almost blew away, you couldn't open your eyes or sand would blow in them, and say goodbye to a camp fire and cooking dinner.
It was my intension to stay up all night to take night photos when I got to this amazing place, but the storm shattered my dreams and there are slim chances I will ever be able to go back here
When we arrived in the badlands earlier in the day there was an empty old pickup truck parked on the drit road that goes into the badlands, didn't think too much of it at the time. As I said above we were forced out of our camp later that night and had to leave. The dirt road that led back to the highway was pretty rough and rocky and my poor 96 Accord couldn't go faster than 25mph on it, I also noticed that the truck was gone on our way out. While loping along we began to realize this would be our last chance to light off the fireworks we bought earlier on the trip. We stopped and it seemed like the wind died down a little, so we cracked open a couple Killian's Irish Red's and set up a mortar.
Mortars are some of the most fun fireworks you can buy in my opinion. They shoot up 100 feet in the air and detonate into a shower of bright streaming sparkling light. We had enough fireworks to compete with Disneyland and were determined to light them all off. At one point we heard a very faint sound, something like Mexican music coming from a car stereo (remember this is the middle of nowhere and the highway is still like a mile from us and hardly any cars are on it). It didn't deter us though, but we were on a little bit higher guard. Along with mortars we had roman candles, bottle rockets, and this box that had 150 tiny missiles that shoot up and explode like a miniature mortar and was very entertaining to watch. I start bringing up the idea of getting robbed or murdered out here, the perfect mood killer to a good time. During all this we hear the music faintly come back now and then until it eventually stopped. We weren't exactly sure what to make of it and it was kind of getting scary.
While in the process of lighting the fuse of something that could probably blow my hand off we heard a car door slam shut. That was the last straw. My mind is bringing together the truck we saw on the way in, the Mexican music, and the sound of a car door slam when we should have been the only ones out there, I just can't ignore it; I'm paranoid in the dark when I'm only in my backyard at home. Not to be racist here but I was having No Country For Old Men flashbacks and we all wanted to get the hell out of there that second. The Bisti Wilderness is the perfect place for big drug dealers to meet in my view, and our high flying fireworks would be a perfect signal for them to know we were there and where we were "if" they were
We swiftly and haphazardly threw everything we had out of the car back into it and got into the car in the "I don't care if you can barely sit in your seat and have stuff piled on top of you" type of fashion. On our 25mph journey out I kept expecting a truck to suddenly ram us full speed from behind or something. It's dark and stormy outside and an imagination can run wild.
Now I can't be certain that there was anybody there at all and if we just scared ourselves, by me talking about No Country for Old Men perhaps, but we weren't sticking around to find out. We drove up 1hr 30min to Farmington and stayed in a cheap motel that night and bought Burger King for dinner, in place of the awesome meal we were
going to cook out in the badlands.
As I went to sleep I started thinking about whether there was someone out there or not. I also began thinking of the storm that only died down once we started leaving. If the wind didn't come and we stayed in our campsite and there was indeed another, possibly dangerous, person there with us, what would have happened? It's all deep speculation of course and not really riding on many facts, but it's still kind of scary to think somebody could have come up on us and surprised us while we were sleeping that night *shiver*