5 Facts About New Mexico That Sound Fake, but Are Real
New Mexico is the "Land of Enchantment," and, honestly, just the name itself makes it sound a little bit like a fake Mexico. Check out some other New Mexico factoids below that, just like the name, sounds a little bit questionable at first.
1. The Atomic Bomb was invented in New Mexico - The atomic bomb was invented during the Manhattan Project, a secret research and development project that took place during World War II. The project was led by the United States and primarily based in Los Alamos, New Mexico. Los Alamos National Laboratory, located in Los Alamos, was the primary site where the atomic bomb was developed and tested. A successful detonation test was done in Alamagordo.
2. There is a Weed, New Mexico & the highest state capital in the United States is Santa Fe - Due to its location in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, at nearly 7,200 feet above sea level, Santa Fe is the highest state capital in the U.S. It also happens to be the third oldest city in the country. There is also a small unincorporated community called Weed located in Otero County, New Mexico. Weed is situated in the Sacramento Mountains and has a population of around 60 people. Despite its small size, Weed is known for its picturesque surroundings and serves as a gateway to recreational activities in the nearby Lincoln National Forest.
3. The largest gypsum desert in the world is in New Mexico - Ever heard of White Sands National Park? If you live in El Paso, it's not too far. The White Sands National Park covers an area of about 275 square miles (712 square kilometers) in the Tularosa Basin, which is situated between the San Andres and Sacramento Mountains. The park is renowned for its vast white dunes composed of pure white sand made of gypsum. It's one of the most amazing natural wonders in New Mexico.
4. There's a town that hosts a live duck race each year - The Great American Duck Race is a popular festival that takes place in August in Deming, celebrating the town's unique and quirky tradition. During the event, thousands of rubber ducks are raced in a specially designed track filled with water. The ducks are numbered, and participants can purchase a duck or multiple ducks to enter the race. The winning duck that reaches the finish line first wins the race, and participants have the chance to win various prizes depending on their chosen duck's performance.
5. New Mexico is home to the largest hot air balloon festival on the entire planet - Put this one on your bucket list. The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is a famous event that attracts folks from all walks of life. Picture this: colorful balloons as far as the eye can see. For nine days, this festival brings together balloon enthusiasts and pilots from everywhere. The main event is the mass ascension, where a massive swarm of balloons takes off into the air all at once. It's an incredible sight that'll leave you in awe. This year's event starts on October 7, 2023.