We’ve had such an adventurous week! After one quick night in Pueblo, Colorado, we headed to Alamosa with a brief stop on the way at a little coffee shop in Walsenburg for smoothies. Across the street there was a Catholic prayer rally going on – they were praying the rosary for America. How cool! I’d never seen a public Catholic prayer meeting before.
From Alamosa we headed over to the Great Sand Dunes National Park. We debated back and forth about whether to wear hiking boots or just regular walking shoes… the shoes won out, and boy were we glad! Little did we know that the only “hiking” involved at the Great Sand Dunes is a half-mile walk through deep sand to the bottom of the dunes. If we would have had boots on it would have been even harder to slug through all that sand. We spent a while sitting on a low ridge people-watching while enjoying the spectacular view. Someday if we go back, maybe we’ll bring our disks and slide down the dunes – but what we learned during our people-watching is: if you’re going to slide, don’t wear shorts, and be sure whatever you slide down on has some kind of lip. Otherwise you’ll have sand in places you probably won’t want it.
On the way back from the dunes we decided to stop at Zapata Falls – a post I read about it said it was an easy, family-friendly trail, and if we wanted the best view of the falls, we’d have to cross the creek. No problem!! HAHAHA our first clue that the poster might have been exaggerating a little was the sign at the bottom of the trail: “this is a steep, arduous trail that climbs 400 feet in 4/10 of a mile, and the only way to see the falls is to cross the creek – watch for icy rocks.” Indeed, it was a steep, rocky trail (more like a wash than an actual trail) and we had to wade (or try to balance on the slippery, icy rocks) across the creek THREE TIMES in order to even see the bottom of the falls! At that point, we were wishing we’d chosen hiking boots instead of walking shoes. But we prevailed! Deron was braver than me, and managed to step across from rock to rock, carrying Hooley and dragging Brynn, while I timidly tried to find the shallowest parts to wade through (so I didn’t fall, but I was wet up past my ankles). He even went as far into the cave as he could to get pictures of the icicles at the top of the falls. So pretty! Worth the hike for sure!
After two days in Alamosa, Colorado, we headed to a Harvest Host winery in Blanco, New Mexico, via the Wolf Creek Pass WHICH IS NUTS!! I thought the Grapevine was steep and scary – it’s only 4,160 feet and a 5% grade. The Wolf Creek Pass goes right over the Continental Divide, tops out at 10,856 cold, snowy feet and has a 6.8% grade. Even the warning signs are crazy! After the white-knuckle ride over the pass, we were happy to arrive at Wines of the San Juan. The owners were a sweet, older couple (the wife reminded me of my Grandma Chapman). We chatted with them, tasted a couple wines, and then headed into the coach for the night.
Back in Colorado, we spent the next two days driving through/hiking/exploring the many archeological sites at Mesa Verde National Park. The rock formations and cave dwellings were so cool! Pictures do not do them justice. A ranger told us to watch out for the feral horses that live in the park because they can be vicious. Deron managed to get close enough for some pics of a group of them at one of the sites, and then later we saw one crossing the road. I had to ask Deron what the difference between feral (domesticated but left to fend for themselves) and wild was. Yet another new thing learned on this trip!
Finally, just because we could, we stopped at the Four Corners Monument and took a quick pic with our feet in Arizona, Utah, Colorado and New Mexico simultaneously. Now we’re camped in Gallup, New Mexico, near the Badlands. The landscape in this part of New Mexico is so weird! It’ll be completely flat for miles around, but then there’ll be random HUGE rock formations just sticking up out of nowhere. Makes us feel like ants 😊
Looking forward to the Pacific Northwest landscape we’ll be seeing in a couple weeks!
praise & prayer
We’re scheduled to have our leveling system repaired in Phoenix next Wednesday. However, though the parts were shipped and have arrived in Phoenix, the mechanic is having trouble getting them delivered to his shop. Apparently (because of manpower issues I guess) they’re just sitting in a truck at the trucking company’s yard. Since we’ve got tons of sites reserved over the next several weeks the timing of the repair is critical. Please join us in praying that the parts get delivered before Wednesday!
Earlier this week I felt impressed to start praying for marriages; one of the enemy’s tactics is to cause discord and disunity, especially in families. So each night I have been praying for a different married couple, asking God to work in and bless their marriage. Please feel free to join me in this effort if you feel led to! And if you are married and would like prayer in general, or for any specific aspect of your marriage, please don’t hesitate to message me! (It’s possible I’ve already prayed for you, but I absolutely won’t mind praying for you again!)
learning curve / random observations
- We probably should have looked into the National Parks Annual Pass about 5 National Parks ago – but oh well, we’ve got one now!
- Even with a mail scanning/forwarding service, getting mail is difficult if you’re living the #nomadlife. Sure, we can have it forwarded, but the chances of us being where they send it when they send it are slim. Still working on the timing.
- We could spend a year in Colorado and still not see all the things. What a beautiful state!
- A good website can make or break a business – if an RV park has a difficult (or no) website, forget it! I’m moving on. Ain’t got time for that!
- Just because you see a big dirt lot on a satellite image, which will be perfect for a 41’ RV + tow car to turn around in, doesn’t mean the dirt lot won’t have a chain across the entrance…thus creating the need to unhook the tow car, make a 3 point turn in the RV, then rehook the tow car.
4 thoughts on “sandy dunes, snowy peaks, stony homes”
Your pictures are fabulous. If better in person then it must be truly awesome to behold! So happy you are having a wonderful special adventure!
definitely adventurous. The falls looked so cool (bone chilling, actually.) Thanks for the prayers for our marriage – it’s better than ever! Praying for the part installation. Are you going through the Pursuit of Holiness with us? I’ll mail you a copy.
I emailed you 😊