|he idea of staying in the kiva was quite appealing and we were looking forward to the experience. However, it was in need of several repairs that we didn't feel we were able to complete. As we discussed whether or not improvements could be made in time to stay there overnight, we met a woman who planned to leave her campsite the next morning. She was staying in a tent pitched next to a small shed with an attached covered porch area and a wooden frame with a green tarp. To secure the site, we left a note saying we would move in the following day.
The desert winds whipped through Adobeland as we began to set up camp the following morning in space number 5. Rain was in the forecast for later that day, so we wanted to get settled in beforehand. Setting up the tent was a struggle as it kept being lifted out of our grasps by the wind. We started by trying to set up the tent in the same spot the woman before us had done so. Frustrated by the wind, we moved under the shed's porch area, where the wind was a little less forceful. Also, it was difficult to secure the tent stakes in the sandy soil. Neither of us had ever camped in the desert before, so we didn't realize that our tent stakes would slide right out of the sandy soil. Every time we thought a stake was secured, it would pop out and one end of the tent would start billowing up in the wind. After a few struggles with the stakes, we placed large rocks on top of each one to hold them in place. The rocks were conveniently located near the shed on our camp site. After battling the winds, we managed to get the tent set up under the green tarp porch.
Next, we needed to hook up electricity. The closest structure with power turned out to be the group house. At one time, this was a lively community building where women would read, play games, and enjoy the wood burning stove. Vacant in recent years, it fell victim to packrat infestation. But, the power outlets still worked so we hooked up the orange drop cords we had brought and connected to the power.
After setting up the power, we started to move in to our space. We put our cooler, clothing, and camping equipment in the shed. We used the shed during the day as our living space when we weren't outside. It rained several days during our 2005 trip so we were very happy to have space to retreat to other than the tent. The temperature dipped below freezing several of the nights. Even with layers of clothing and sleeping bags, we had a hard time falling asleep and would often wake up shivering in the middle of the night. It was surprising how cold the desert nights could be, and we were pretty miserable most nights.