Once again we encountered more of the contrasts of New Mexico. White Sands National Monument is a beautiful place with soft white dunes and beautiful vistas. It happens to be surrounded by the White Sands Missile Range, whose mission is to “provide Army, Navy, Air Force, DoD, and other customers with high quality services for experimentation, test, research, assessment, development, and training in support of the Nation at war”. In fact, the road leading to White Sands National Monument and between Las Cruces and Alamagordo is regularly closed due to due to testing of missiles and other scary devices. The Trinity SIte, where the first nuclear bomb was detonated, is located at the far north end of the missile range (closed to the public).