TOUR AMERICA, 2020: BOSQUE, NEW MEXICO, LAND OF ENCHANTMENT

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Places We Have Called Home In 2020

Home Is Where We Park It:  Kiva RV Park & Horse Motel

July 6, 2021

Temperature 99 Degrees

National Museum of Nuclear Science and  History

We had several things on the docket today so we were up and at it bright and early.  Well, bright and early for us.  We were out of the house and on the road by 8:15 am.

Our first stop was at Aspen Dental for a follow up visit and the completion of my free exam.  I was told that based on the results of my exam that they would give me a suggested plan of treatment for the reminder of my teeth.  Well, I have their suggested treatment plan and all I can say is once again Mexico next year is looking even better.  Really, I don’t understand how anyone on a fixed income can afford dental care today.

After the dentist we were off to Albuquerque.

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This was our destination for today.  The Museum is a national repository of nuclear science information chartered by Congress and located in Albuquerque.   The mission of the museum is to serve as America’s resource for nuclear history and science. The Museum presents exhibits and various educational programs that convey the diversity of individuals and events that shaped the nuclear age.

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Unfortunately, this is as close to the exhibits inside the museum as one can get at this point in time.  The reason being, of course, due to COVID-19.  A volunteer at the Museum we talked to explained they simply don’t have the staff that would be needed to complete clean the Museum each night after closing before reopening the next day.  So, the Museum remains closed.  We knew this, though, before we even left home.  So, why did we come?

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We went because we also knew that Heritage Park had just reopened.  The nine-acre outdoor Heritage Park is filled with planes, rockets, missiles, cannons and a nuclear sub sail.  The museum collection is the largest aircraft collection for public viewing in the state of New Mexico.  Come on, lace up your walking shoes, put a comfortable hat on your head, keep a bottle of water handy and let’s go inside and see what we can discover.

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A replica of the tower used in the Trinity Test.

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The Trinty Test was the code name for the first detonation of a nuclear device by the US.  It was conducted on the Alamogordo Bombing and Gunnery range which is about 70 miles – as the crow flies – southeast of where we call home at this moment.  It is also in the vicinity of our next stop on our journey home.  The test was necessary because the complexity of the design of the bomb raised questions as to whether it would even work.

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To conduct the Trinity Test a 100 Foot Tower would need to be constructed.  The original tower was manufactured off site and then shipped in sections to New Mexico where it was assembled.

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A copy of the original purchase request for the original tower.

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A better picture of the tower showing the steel framework, the various platforms, the steel ladder, and Gadget in the middle.

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The nuclear device detonated at Trinity, nicknamed Gadget, was shaped like a large steel globe.  It was a plutonium implosion device which was of the same design as the Fat Man Bomb that was dropped on Nagasaki, Japan.

Next.

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The 280 MM Atomic Cannon was the largest nuclear capable mobile artillery piece manufactured in the United States.  It really didn’t have much of a range.  Honestly, I never even knew we had an atomic cannon at one point in time.

When it comes to bombs, well, we had a few ways to eliminate the human race.

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Along with the bombs we also had missiles.

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The first guided missile ever deployed by the United States Air Force.

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The replacement for the Matador was the Mace which was an early cruise missile.

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The BOMARC was designed to intercept and destroy incoming enemy bombers.

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The Snark was an intercontinental cruise missile.

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The Jupiter was an important link between early short range rockets and later weapons that could reach any point on earth.  It was the first to use a heat shield on its nose cone the design of which would later be used on the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo spacecraft.

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The Thor was an intermediate range ballistic missile that was developed and deployed early in the Cold War.  It had a range of 1,500 miles.

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The US built the missiles, provided the spare parts and training.  However, Britain agreed to provide the bases, infrastructure and personnel.  Each missile was designed to fit inside a Globemaster transport II aircraft for delivery to Britian.

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The ultimate missile of missiles.  The Peacekeeper was the most powerful, accurate, and technologically advanced Intercontinental Ballistic Missile we ever built.  It could reach any target anywhere in the world.

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One Peacekeeper could deliver a number of nuclear warheads on different targets at the same time.

Then there were the airplanes.  Here are some of the most notable.

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Silverplate was the code word for the aircraft modification project for the B-29 to enable it to carry an atomic bomb.

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We’ve covered the nine acres and it is time to call it quits.  The temperature is soaring and its time to find some shade and a cold drink of ice tea.

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Yes, I did manage to get a new T-shirt.  The gift shop was open.

Well, we went one more place today but I’ll save that for tomorrow.

That was our day on The Road of Retirement.  We count ourselves lucky that we at least found another place open.  Some people live to shop.  Well, we live to sightsee and sightsee we will as often and whenever we have an opportunity.  Time for some shut-eye.

Thanks for coming with us today.  We always enjoy your company and appreciate your comments.  Catch you tomorrow.

These are the voyages of  Elvira and it’s two intrepid travelers.  Our continuing mission: to explore as many new states as possible, to seek out new acquaintances and make new friends, to boldly go where we have never been before.

See you on down the road!

 

 

2 thoughts on “TOUR AMERICA, 2020: BOSQUE, NEW MEXICO, LAND OF ENCHANTMENT

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