November 25, 2013

Our Fall Adventure, Part 4: Capulin Volcano National Monument

On the advice of Mr. Cool's brother, we made a fairly short detour from Raton, NM to visit Capulin Volcano.  I had no idea that that part of New Mexico had been rife with volcanos--and we had a great hike--we had the volcano all to ourselves!  The volcano had a lovely shelter built in the 1930s, and a winding road initially carved out with plows and livestock.  We managed three stamps in our National Park System passports this trip, and each one was amazing in its own right.  I'm not sure if Lincoln will remember this trip, but hopefully we can show him the stamps and trigger a faint recollection!
Lincoln near the top of the volcano--overlooking the vent (and parking lot!)
View from the top of Capulin--you can see Baby Capulin, a smaller cinder cone volcano.
Volcanic rock near the vent.
The 1930s era shelter, built with bricks of volcanic rock.

November 23, 2013

Our Fall Adventure, Part Three: Scottsdale

The main part of our trip was spent relaxing in the best place to relax:  a spot known for retirees!

We spent a lot of time in the pool--Lincoln swam for ten straight days!

We commemorated our trip to Arches in Lego.

We visited the Phoenix Children's Museum--Lincoln loved the forest made of pool noodles!

We rode a train and carousel!

We enjoyed our time as a family--this was our first long trip that was just the three of us, and while we did get a bit tired if each other, we also had a lovely time!  And we got to eat this lovely thing at Oregano's!

November 14, 2013

Our Fall Adventure, Part 2: Montezuma's Castle National Monument

I remembered stopping by this beautifully set cliff dwelling when I was a little girl traveling through Arizona--and I was pleased to find it as simple and lovely as I remembered.  
This is the main building that remains--not huge, but well-preserved.  And the ancient peoples who lived here picked a gorgeous place to live--and we were lucky enough to visit before all the sycamore trees had lost their golden leaves.

November 12, 2013

Our Fall Adventure, Part 1: Arches National Park

Once again, as the leaves changed color, we loaded up for a family road trip.  This time, we decided to start with a park that none of us had visited--so we left at 4 AM for Moab, UT.  

I was amazed at the beauty--I has not expected simple stone arches to be so peaceful and powerful--but I am learning that I am drawn to that timeless combination of stone and sky.  I also loved how accessible each arch was--definitely within the wheelhouse if an anti-hiker and a 4-year-old!
First stop--Balanced Rock--which highlights the fragility of these time and nature-sculpted art pieces.
Mr. Cool and Lincoln's favorite hike was through a narrow crevasse and sand to Sand Dune Arch, which awed us with its colors.
An easy climb led us to Windows and Turret--more lovely arches, forming perfect frames for sky.
Early the next morning we set out on a longer hike to Landscape Arch, which is an amazingly fragile piece of stone.
On our way back, we viewed Pine Tree and Tunnel Arch.
A simply grand trip--and we had just begun our adventure!  (I will leave you with one of this knitter's favorites:  Sheep Rock!)