Day 174 – 2/20/21 Sitting Bull Falls, Carlsbad Beach Park and Guadalupe Mountains Brewing

We had a super nice day checking out Sitting Bull Falls, Carslbad Beach Park and Guadalupe Mountains Brewing company.

I usually wake up before everyone, even without an alarm, but today, as soon as I woke up Carol woke up too, it’s like she was wired to me hahahaha.  Carol and the girls held me back in the room for some time as they finished setting up decorations.  When they were ready, Bella came get me and had me close my eyes as she walked me to the living room, then she said I could open my eyes and… SURPRISE!  That was awesome.  They had balloons, a piñata, cake, signs, cards, etc. the dinette was all decorated with birthday stuff.  I loved it.  Then they had me sit for pictures, and we sang happy birthday, and had cake.  Chocolate cake!  My favorite.  I opened my awesome cards and put my beer gift in the fridge :). Right as we were done with the cake, my parents called and I talked to them for some time while we got ready to go.  We then finished getting things ready and left to check out Sitting Bulls Falls.

The falls is in a canyon area, and you drive through a lot of what seems to be flat land with some hills, then you get to a spot where the hills are much bigger and closer together, and create canyons.  As you park, you cannot see the falls, as they are tucked in behind the canyon in front of you.  We chit chatted with the lady that checked us in, then hit the path to the falls. 

The path just goes up a bit, then turns towards the inside of the canyon, and there it was… a waterfall, in the middle of the desert.  That looked cool for many reasons, but the unusual part is that because of the recent cold front, there were icicles by the falls.  Also due to the icicles being there, we could not get too close, as large chunks were falling down as the weather was warming up.  Quite a cool thing to see.  We walked around and checked out the bottom part of the waterfall.  The girls explored the area, put their hands in the water, then eventually sat at a spot and enjoyed watching the water and talking to each other. 

When they were ready to move on, I wanted to take the trail that goes to the top of the falls, and keeps going up above the canyon.  We went towards the trail, and had to hike uphill first, which was a bit steep, but we made it.  It was pretty cool to be at the top of the falls.  We had to take a bit of an adventure to get close to the edge, but we all did it.  That was a fun side trip.

Then we went back to the trail and kept walking towards the top of the canyon.  We didn’t walk too long until we got to a spot that had a big rock wall, and the girls wanted to stop there and have lunch.  Carol brought each of them a “lunchables” pizza box, and they were all excited.  I walked a little longer by myself and got to a nice spot where the water from the falls was running.  I had a clear shot of the sun, shinning on the water, I was on a rock and the wind was blowing.  It was amazing.  I just stood there, closed my eyes, opened my arms wide…. Took some deep breaths… and all I could think was how awesome this was… how thankful I am for everything I have, for my family, for us all being healthy and for being able to do this trip together…. It was great.  <insert being thankful emoji here>. I took some pictures of that spot and walked back. 

That area I was in had lots of cow pies (poop), so you can tell lots of kettle free roam in that area.  When I got back to Carol and the girls they were enjoying their spot.  Carol was laying down on the rock wall, and the girls were finishing their pizzas. 

It was so windy that their pepperoni slices were flying away. Hahahaha.  We enjoyed being there for a while longer, and then headed back to the truck.  On the way back, we took the longer way through the trail, and it was pretty cool too.  Bella found some spots with snow still and made her mark by putting her hand print in one of the spots.  It was longer and it zig zagged down the hill towards the parking area. 

And we got to the truck and started driving back to town.  Next stop… lunch.  We went to Yellow Brix in Carlsbad and it was very nice.  We sat outside, enjoyed the warm weather and the sun.  I had a great meal and some beers.  The girls didn’t enjoy their food as much.  Carol also liked her choice.  As we got the check, Carol also got a birthday desert, which was Chocolate Molten Cake… yay!  I had some and the girls finished it off. 

By that time, I had also talked to a few people who called for my birthday.  I talked to my sister, Carol’s sister, brother and parents and later in the day with Bob and Judy.  From the restaurant, we headed to Carlsbad Beach Park for a walk and to check out the area. 

By time we got there, something I ate maybe was not going down well and I had major pain in my stomach… so walking around was a good thing.  We walked around the park, which is very nice with the water in the middle.  The park was full as people were enjoying the nice day.  There were lots of gatherings, some birthday parties, etc.  We walked around, the girls tried to play in the playground but it was too full.  We were there for maybe 90 minutes, and then got back to the truck. 

I was feeling a bit better as we left.  Our next and final stop was Guadalupe Mountains brewery.  That was what I wanted to do for my birthday, some hikes and then enjoy some time at a brewery.  This brewery is nice, the spot is big but is closed for inside dining.  Their outside was nice and big, and kind of covered.  The beers were great, and later on we ordered some pizzas which were very good as well.  The girls thought the pizzas were a bit spicy, but ate as much as they could. 

At the tail end of our time there, some guy invited himself to sit with us… WTF!  Worse is that he shows up with no mask, then I said to our crew “put your masks on quick” and he got the hint and put his mask on.  He sat there for maybe 3 minutes until his buddy arrived, then he went back to his table.  Creepy.  We had already paid, so when I finished my last beer we left to go back to camp.  This was around 8pm or more, and when we got to the campground gate, it was closed.  That’s when we realized we had forgotten the keycard, which opens the gate, in the trailer!  Oh crap!  Carol goes out and tried to cross under the fenced gate… ahahahaha.. that was hilarious, but nope, didn’t work.  Bella then jumped out of the truck and went, and of course she made it.  We gave her the key and she went to the trailer.  Bia then did the same and went to help.  hahahaha… what a scene.  During this, someone arrived behind us, it was someone just checking in late and they had the code… Carol explained what was going on, and if they wanted to share the code or wait, they chose to wait (properly) so they waited and watched it all. ahahahahahah. The girls were back with the keycard in no time and we opened the gate and were in.  Never a dull moment. Hahahahah.  

Once we were back in the trailer, I was reminded that we still had a piñata to pop, so I took a wooden spoon, Carol put the piñata on a stick and I hit the crap out of it.  Each hit would go with a “bam” yell… and soon the piñata popped… it was full of loving messages from Carol and the girls.  That was awesome.  That scared the crap out of Maggie though… she was hiding by my side of the bed, shaking…. ooops. 

And the last thing we did was pop the balloons.  I hit them as fast as I could with the knife popping them.  Bia and Bella wanted to try too, so they did some.  Then we cleaned up the mess and started getting ready for bed.  And that was it for the day.  

I had a great birthday day checking out Sitting Bull Falls, Carlsbad Beach Park, and enjoying some beers at Guadalupe Mountains Brewery.

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