Road Trip – New Mexico

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Just got back from a road trip to New Mexico.  We saw lots of old and new.  The shops along Canyon Road in Santa Fe are fun to walk around with great conversation fodor, and potential new project ideas for us at home.

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Of course the eats are always terrific with great New Mexican green chile and green chile cheeseburgers like the one at The Shed.

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We visited Red River for the first time.  At 8600′ the weather was still cool if not a bit chilly.

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We stayed at the Junebug Campground and loved the babbling brook behind our camp.

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Outside of Las Vegas, NM we visited the Dwan Light Sanctuary on the United World College  campus for the first time.

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The Light Sanctuary was conceptualized by Virginia Dwan (funder), Charles Ross (solar spectrum artist) and Laban Wingert (planner – architect) and opened in 1996.  It is intended as a place of peace and spiritual refuge.  We found the play on the light through the many prisms cast onto the walls of this circular building 36′ in diameter by 23′ high, to be fascinating.

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Following our brief visit at the Sanctuary we did an overnight at the newly re-opened  Harvey house, Castaneda Hotel, in Las Vegas, New Mexico.

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Th Castaneda was originally opened by Fred Harvey in 1898 in the heyday of railroad hotel hospitality.  The hotel has been closed since 1948 and only just re-opened in April 2019.  It was refurbished by the same folks that re-opened the La Posada Hotel in Winslow, AZ, not far from our own home.  They did a fabulous job keeping true to the heritage, architecture, and furnishings of the period.  It was an enjoyable step into the past.

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From there we stepped even further into the past when we briefly visited Chaco Canyon near the border of NM / AZ.

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Chaco Canyon is quite the impressive complex of ruins built by the Puebloan culture over a period of 300 years between 800 AD and 1100 AD.

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The vast community spreads over miles with multiple story buildings, whole civilizations, ceremonial grounds, and shrines.

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To see the architecture, windows, doors, rooms, walls, and vastness from a culture so long ago was truly awe inspiring.

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Photos cannot do it justice.

Unfortunately, by late May it was already terribly hot (86F), and with Journey not allowed on the trails, we were unable to stay long.  If you find yourself in the area (and it is a long way off the beaten path), it is certainly worth a visit.

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From there we overnighted at Navajo National Monument.

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Which, at it’s higher elevation was cooler for Journey.

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Our campsite offered terrific views of the canyons at sunset and sunrise.

It was a quick tour of a lot of fascinating historical sites… but made for a great get away.  Next time, we’ll have to go earlier in the year (or later) when it is cooler and more comfortable for a pet not allowed on National Park trails.

We missed you Dave….

 

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Sycamore Canyon

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The advantages of driving down long bumpy roads and hiking steep treacherous trails are found at the end of the road, wherever that may be, and the views one can take in.  Such is the case with this special AZ treasure, where we discovered Indian ruins now several decades ago, up high in the cliff wall overlooking the amazing landscape below.

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The morning glow and first sunlight as it peaked over the hills were enough to give one pause as we relished our recent visit to this treasured place.

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They say, take time to smell the roses.  I say, take time to enjoy the beauty around you, wherever you may be.

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