Too the next park we go. Say farewell to Caballo Lake as we roll south to Guadalupe Mountains National Park. It's here that we can hopefully find a spot to park in the RV parking lot. They'v only got room for 9 rigs our size, and it's on a first come first serve basis. So it's hammer down and towards El Paso as the miles stack up. Upon our arriaval highway 10 slows to a crawl as we pass a semi truck carrying cardboard being extinguished.
The elevation is starting to stack up and so are the winds. We get the the outskirts of the Guadalupe mountains right as the hill really starts to climb. Staring forward at what lies ahead I make the go ahead call to pull over and unhook Shirley. There is a steep unmarked grade that I know will be a tough climb.
The hill gets steep. Real steep. Just where you see the road end in the picture above it hooks to the right and climbs at probably 9-10%. This is the first time I've been forced to climb most of a hill in 2nd gear without Shirley attached. She's got the power... oh that Cummins power. But there's no chance of keeping her cool without taking my time and keeping the load light. The GPS displays what I had thought to be the problem. We're at 5,600 ft and the turbo is huffing hard. Add to that a 20mph headwind with 30mph gusts and it's a recipe to overheat the little diesel humming along 35ft behind me. At last the crest is made and we can turn off into the RV park. A quick chat with the host shows us that there are two spots left. Good enough for us because we only need one. With Roo resting at a final altitude of 5,850 we can set up camp for the night. It's gonna be a sleepless night for sure. This sea level body doesn't like altitude and the wind is blowing violently.