|Baby, its cold outside!
We are camped 30 miles from Santa Fe, New Mexico. It is snowing outside. Big flakes, blowing snow type snowing. We are staying on Lake Cochiti, an Army Corps of Engineers park. Our senior pass is accepted here so we are paying 10 bucks a night for water and power. We are using the water but so far our solar system has kept up with our daily electrical demands. In spite of marginal weather, I might add.
Yesterday we partook in a stroll ‘up’ memory lane for Nancy. We went to a national monument called Tent Rocks. She was first here 10 years ago on a voyage of discovery. The area is a geological delight. Many eroded hoodoos have caps on them due to differences in hardness of the layers making up the pinnacles. The rock is not as colorful or smooth as similar structures in Zion National Park, but the formations are no less dramatic. Nancy led us on the trail that leads to the top of the site via a deep and tight slot canyon. In some places the bottom of the slot canyon is just wide enough to place your foot. Fortunately, the walls slope away enough for most people to fit through. It does get pretty cozy in these sections when you encounter someone going down canyon. Once out of the slot canyon the trail steeply ascends via a series of switchbacks up 643 feet to the top of the compacted volcanic ash badlands. The view was impressive. We could see all the way to the lake at our campground.
On our descent we encountered about 100 third-graders on a field trip heading to the ridge top we just left. The group was well organized with groups of five kids plus a chaperone spaced intermittently along the trail so as not to create log jams. It was a great experience for me to be able to share Nancy’s return to this beautiful spot as well as see 100 energized school kids about to start their summer vacations this weekend, zipping up and down the trail with their anxious handlers trying to keep up.