August 20, 2004
Dear Subscriber:

The Olympics are going on in Athens.

Greece, not Texas or Georgia.

Maybe they SHOULD be held in Athens, Texas. Maybe they would
draw bigger crowds.

I watched a couple of events last night. The athletes were
bickering about the judges. The announcers were bickering
about the athletes. In basketball, the US Dream Team took
a nap and got hammered by the Puerto Ricans.

Overall, the Olympics seem to be in a collective bad mood.

Through it all, my attention was continuously averted to the
stands. Nobody there...which, I guess, translates into nobody

Then to top it off, one of the TV announcers had to make a
political speech. I suppose he was trying to fill time while
everyone was bickering.

I changed to the Animal Channel.


Lots of talk around here about water or the lack thereof.

Seems the village of Cloudcroft is using more water than it's
producing. They're even talking about trucking in water to make
ends meet.

They had an emergency meeting of all the important people in
town late last week and they came up with an idea.

Why not just buy water from the private land owners with good
wells outside the village?

Which brings up the question...if the private owners want to
sell their water who's gonna pay for running the pipe and who's
gonna bury it because if you don't bury it it will turn into a
PVC popsicle in the winter and there's not anybody around here
that has more water than they know what to do with so what if
the private owners don't want to sell their water?

I think the plan was hatched by the village administrator. I
started to call my county commissioner and ask him what he
thought of the village administrator's plan, but then I
remembered my county commissioner WAS the village administrator.

Stay tuned. This is gonna be interesting.


Then, with my frustration level peaking, I had to be watching a
sports show on television when the announcer said "so and so" 
was retiring from football long before the usual retirement age.
He said "so and so" made 8 million dollars a year for the past 3 
years. I think that's a total of 24 million.

The TV guy's question was, what is "so and so" gonna do when he
runs out of money? I think he was serious.

I should have never left the Animal Channel.

Don Vanlandingham

A rainy week, adding about 2 inches to the annual total since
last Wednesday.

Total precip since the first of the year...14.77 inches.

The high during the reporting period was 75 at noon Wednesday
(8-11). The low was 43 at 5am Thursday (8-12).

For an up-to-the-minute glimpse at Cloudcroft weather, go to
Cloudcroft.com. It's available 24-7 and it's free.
New water restrictions have been issued for the village of
Cloudcroft, severely restricting outside watering, vehicle
washing, etc. Check with the village office (682-2411) for a
complete list of restrictions.

State officials will visit Cloudcroft later this week to
assess the emergency needs of the village and what kind of 
help they can offer. Trucking in water is an option.
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Cloudcroft's local newspaper.


Q - I heard picking up pine cones in the forest is against the
law. Is this true?

A - We checked with the Forest Service on this one. They said
anything removed from the National Forest requires a permit, be
it firewood, rocks, pine cones, etc. A spokesperson told us the
Forest Service will probably not issue a citation if you're
caught with a sack full of pine cones, but I suppose they could
if the ranger was in a particularly bad mood.

I won't tell if you don't.
September 1 -- High Noon book club. 12pm. In the library. Bring
your lunch and join us in discussing THE RED TENT by Anita

September 3 -- Cloudcroft Labor Day Fiesta

September 4 -- James Canyon Auction & BBQ. Party Barn in
Cloud Country Club (Highway 82 near mile marker 27). Dinner
begins a 5pm, Auction at 7pm, and dance at 9pm.

September 11 -- White Sands Star Party.

September 18 -- Lumberjack day. Cloudcroft.

September 18, 19 -- Run to the Aspens Car Show. Cloudcroft.

September 18, 19 -- White Sands Hot Air Balloon Invitational.
7am both days.

September 19 -- Gary Johnson’s Cloudcroft Run. World’s highest
certified 10k run. For more information call 505-687-2133.

September 25 -- Mountain Garden Club Style Show.

October 2, 3 -- Oktoberfest. Cloudcroft. Aspencade tours.

November 27 -- Beginning of Christmas in Cloudcroft and Santa

Cloudcroft Art Society meets the second Thursday of each month,
5:30-7pm, in the Old Red Brick School House.

Would you like to help deliver meals to the homebound around
Cloudcroft? Monday through Friday deliveries. Call the
Cloudcroft Senior Center at (505)-682-3022. For information on
other Senior Center services, see their web site, listed on the
Cloudcroft.com Links button.


Mountain Garden Club meets every third Monday of each month.
Call (505) 682-2910 for more information.

Senior Van from Timberon to Alamogordo leaves the Timberon
Lodge promptly at 8:30 every Tuesday morning.

Free Vitals Clinic. Cloudcroft Senior Citizens Center, every
Wednesday. High Rolls Senior Citizens Center, first Thursday
of each month.
Dear Newsletter:

Recently there was a local news story where a veterinarian was
arrested and charged with obstructing and abetting by a New
Mexico Game and Fish officer because someone brought in an 
injured fawn for his care. 

The officer wanted the name of the person who "broke the law" 
by picking up the fawn and bringing it to the vet. The vet 
refused to give the person's name and was therefore subjected
to handcuffing and arrest.

The charges were later dropped, the game officer was made to
apologize and instructed to attend "sensitivity" (or common 
sense) training classes.

But here is a different story sent to me from a friend who 
lives in Madison, Wisconsin, where a fawn in distress was 
taken in by a caring family and is being nursed and cared for
by them. 

Jack L. Schuller
Ruidoso, NM




Dear Newsletter:

Fool Hardy! I don't think so. What did you give up moving to

Traffic, angry drivers, the drudgery of an office job, and so
much more. In return you get to enjoy the mountains and trees
every day. Sure you have to contend with snow, which I imagine
can be more than annoying at times. But in return you get to
enjoy a life style and beauty which I imagine never gets old. 

I feel such a sense of peace and awareness of God and His glory
when I am in Cloudcroft. There is an empty place in my heart
which can only be filled by my infrequent visits to the 
Sacramentos. No wonder the Native Americans thought the 
mountains were sacred places!

But as I often say, I hope that too many people don't feel the
same way. We need lots of people to prefer the comforts and 
conveniences of the cities, otherwise Cloudcroft would be 
overrun. Keep extolling the virtues of mountain life, but 
don't tell everyone! I envy your lifestyle.

Lee Phillips

Dear Newsletter:

Sometimes the rainfall at my cabin differs significantly from 
the weather site. I know you can't disclose the location, but
is it safe to say it's within the village boundaries?
Bill Paxton
Fort Worth/Cloudcroft

[The weather station is located (as the crow flies) about a
mile outside the village.]

Dear Newsletter:

I really enjoy your newsletter and thank you for all the stuff
you do.

My wife and I moved back here to stay about ten years ago. It
seams that we have always had a problem with were to put our
trash, we live 2 & 1/2 miles south of the Village. Every time
I load the trash in my car and take it to town, the dump is

Am I just unlucky or is there a set time that it is open?

Also are we aloud to use other dumpsters in town? 

Thank you,
Buster Blount

Dear Newsletter:

I read Mr. Ortega's letter, and want to thank him for his 
service to his country. He may be a little sensitive at this
time, to be able to think that there was something like hate
in your statement. I think all Americans need to stop looking 
for political correctness and learn once again to appreciate 
humor and truth.

We came from El Paso to Cloudcroft in the 1970's, and were 
jealous of the natives having had it all those years before 
we discovered it, then I learned there were not many natives,
that they all came from somewhere else, even if it had been 
a generation before we arrived.

I made it a practice to ask patients at Gerald Champion Hospital
where they came from, and can only remember a couple who were
native born New Mexicans. It was only from curiosity that I 
asked, because we were new to NM.

I enjoy your newsletter, the animal stories, the people who
wanna be, and even the news!

Jerusalem, AR

Dear Newsletter:

It's your old Arizona buddy who moved near an Ozark town in 
Read the receipt for hummingbird food. That's about what I 
always use, but because the wife is diabetic all I had in the
house was that stuff that says to use it just like sugar. May
work for humans but the hummingbirds know the difference. They
never finished what was in the feeder and I finally had to 
throw it out. I went to town and got some real sugar and made
more of the stuff. Now they drink it just fine.
You can fool some of the people some of the time, but not the

Peace and love.

Frank and Sue
Mtn. Home, AR

Dear Newsletter:

I enjoy reading your newsletter and hearing the wonderful 
stories of the beautiful Sacramento Mountains. The best part
about living in El Paso is knowing that I am only 2 hours from
paradise at anytime of the year. 

I am writing only to say that John (Allen and Carol's boy) needs
to have his head examined. As a former Red Raider!, I would 
rather rot in a shallow grave that be less than a half a state
away from the broken horns of TU. As we used to say P on UT! 
Guns up and keep up the great work with the newsletter.

J. E. Adams
El Paso, TX

Dear Newsletter:

Your comment was: "The University of Texas and Texas Tech get
along like water and motor oil", and you couldn't have been
more accurate.
When I was a senior in high school in 1968, Coach Darrell Royal
and one of his assistants, Mike Patterson, visited my home to
offer me a scholarship to play football at the University of
Texas. I was shocked and honored to see the coaching legend in
my own home, because I was not a highly sought player. They 
didn't take it too kindly when I told them I had already 
decided to attend Texas Tech. Coach J. T. King, and his 
assistant who recruited me, John Conley, had convinced me that
I would love playing for the Red Raiders, and they were right.
(In the middle of my freshman year, Jim Carlen replaced J. T.
King.) We had a hate-love relationship with UT -- we hated 
them, and as a result loved to play them.
Like the fellow you mentioned in your newsletter whose son 
"jumped ship" to UT, I've had to make adjustments, because my
older daughter just graduated from UT, and my younger daughter
is a sophomore there. My son, who is a senior in high school, 
has now expressed interest in the same school as his sisters. 
The good news is that none of my kids are very big sports fans,
so that has helped keep peace in the family. Except for one 
Saturday every fall.
Keep up the good work with the newsletter, and...Go Tech!
Russell Ingram
Plano, Texas

Dear Newsletter:

This is your neighbor by the water tank, Christie. 

I just read the newsletter, which we love (Alan is from Tech 
too, ya know!) Anyway, we were out of town last week, went to
San Diego for our 20th anniversary, visited Cabrillo National
Monument and got an info sheet there on a photo contest. 

It is called "the 2004 National Parks Pass Experience Your 
America Photo Contest". The winner wins a trip for four to any
National Park and there are many other prizes. 

When I saw this it made me realize that we had been to three 
National parks in 2 weeks! We went to the White Sands full moon
night, it was great. Then on to Carlsbad Caverns and then 

I hesitate to give you this info for the newsletter, because I
want to win and don't need any competition. But, I know that
there are some beautiful pictures that others have out there
and the contest ends in Jan. 2005 so we all have time for more
picture-taking fun. 

For more information on the photo contest go to:


For info on America's Nat'l Parks go to:


For info on photography go to:


Also info on getting a family pass for $50.00 per year for 
unlimited entry into all National Parks at:


Thanx, see ya 'round the water tank,

C. Givens 

Dear Newsletter:

In regard to the frightening story told by Patricia "Still In
Hiding," what you describe, Patricia, is not only harassment
and a probable case of B&E, but most likely falls under the
stalking laws of your state, and perhaps even the Federal 
government. A starting point to learn more about stalking laws


There seems to always be at least one officer in every 
community who uses the law enforcement agency s/he works for,
as an excuse to deal with inappropriate personal desires and
frustrations. (I am not trying to disparage the law enforcement
community with this statement. To the contrary, as a former 
member of that community, I am simply stating what everyone 
knows - there is always that "one bad apple" in most every 
community, agency, organization, company, etc. When they carry
guns, bad apples can be quite scary.) 

Stalking is a crime - whether you do or do not know the 
perpetrator "intimately." It is not a private domestic matter,
if you are not currently dating or cohabiting with the 
individual. If all else fails, in your efforts to find legal
protection Patricia, call the FBI's Office for Victims of 
Crime in Washington, DC (202-324-3000). (The FBI investigates
both situations of federal stalking law violations, and 
allegations of misconduct on the part of local law enforcement

I sincerely hope that the community you were forced out of was
not in the Cloudcroft area... this beautiful part of the world
is seen by many as a haven for those who retreat here, whether
full- or part-time. 

Retired Federal Victim Witness Program Coordinator 

Dear Newsletter:

Thanks for printing my letter and my neighbor's picture of the
cub on our upper deck. 

My letter troubled some people. My point was we have all feed
the deer and birds in the mountains and up until this summer we
didn't have this much trouble with bears. 

Now even those who have dogs and cats have had to quit putting
food outside. Since the scare we too have quit putting out 
corn. My bird feeder was up on the upper deck and way out under
the roof. We never dreamed that little cub loved sun flower 
seeds so much! 

We however did not put feed out to get pictures, we just got 
back in from playing golf and I had my camera with me when I
went out on the upper deck to take a picture of the Momma bear
and cub below. But yikes the more adventurous twin was on the 
deck after having climbed a tree to get there!

Weatherford, TX
Mayhill, NM

Dear Newsletter:

I'd like to 'second' the points made in the letter from Ms 
McBrayer in the last Newsletter and add a few of my own. The 
idea of bear sightings is so popular in the CC Newsletter that
it seems worthwhile to pass on additional pertinent information.

I also want to commend "KJ" for deciding to put out his corn
for deer after the bears go into hibernation, which I think is
usually by December, but bears are individuals like the rest of
us and I think their times of entry into hibernation vary as
well (for example, by sex and age). 

Deer wouldn't really benefit from any supplemental feeding 
during the warm half of the year anyway, when their forage is
(usually) more plentiful, so it's a great idea to wait until
winter when the bears are in hibernation. 

The same argument works for the bird feeders too. Actually, 
maybe a salt lick or protein block would be less attractive to
bears than corn, but I don't know about this. Bears seem to
like everything!

Many animals become problems for humans (and ultimately to 
themselves, due to their own safety) when they are fed, but 
bears are the biggest and most dangerous example of this. 

Any bear that visits your property AND finds food there is
now a "problem bear". It will be back. It poses a danger to 
you. Game & Fish takes this danger very seriously. Either 
you'll end up calling G&F or one of your neighbors will. 
G&F will then attempt to remove the bear (they will usually

The bear will be taken to another mountainous region where 
other bears live. Bears are territorial and the newcomer bear
may end up being killed in the relocation area. Another way 
the relocated bears die is on the return trip they so often 
make to their home area. They become roadkill. Maybe they 
make it back to their home area. They are resourceful and 
they have good memories. 

The problem bear raids homes for available food again (pet food
located outside, unsecured garbage, unguarded or unmaintained 
orchards, beehives, bird feeders -- a major food source --
fragrant fruit-filled compost piles, etc).

In New Mexico, a problem bear is subject to a "three strikes"
rule. After three of these home violations, G&F now puts the
problem bear to death. Why? When these large, capable animals
get near your home and loved ones, they are putting all of you
in true danger and this cannot be tolerated.

My reaction to seeing a photo like the one taken in Sherry's 
yard is probably different than most readers. I would like to 
respond "oh how cute!", but I just can't anymore. I am 
profoundly saddened when I see photos of bears on people's 
decks and porches, standing up against their windows, etc. I 
know they are now problem bears and may be killed in the
future. Please learn to see bears the same way and please show
your love and concern for them by vigilantly ensuring no food 
is available to them around your home.

I think it is most satisfying when I don't see bears at all -- 
only their sign -- or only a very rare and precious distant 
sighting. It's satisfying because I know the area bears are 
safe. This is the way it is supposed to be. Bears are naturally
very reluctant to get anywhere near humans.

There are now only some 4,000 bears in the entire state of NM
(the exact number is uncertain); their numbers have declined in
the last several years of this severe drought and with worsening
pressures from mountain homeowners, hunting, etc (I am not 
against hunting).

It's what we've been told all our lives in our national parks
and forests: "Don't feed the animals!" That means direct 
feeding or indirect feeding, such as leaving food out for some 
reason, which the bears will definitely find.

Lyn Canham
Sandia Park, NM

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Copyright © 2004 Cloudcroft Online
The Travel and Visitor's Guide to Cloudcroft, New Mexico.
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