You can't use the generator at the Juniper Campground before 8am - a major issue for the coffee junkie! Much aggrieved, Sarah insisted we depart early, and so we did - heading for Abiquququ (or something) and Ghost Ranch, both homes for Georgia O'Keefe.
Abiququququ is another one of those small Americana kitsch tourist traps. We stopped for lunch at the inn, where we ate a sandwich with a grand name, and (much to her disgust) Sarah drank coffee from the yellow mug supplied. Meanwhile, we entertained ourselves by watching and trying to capture (photographically, not judicially) the humming birds that flitted around the terrace. Not so easy to do! But using a small tripod, a remote, and a great deal of patience - we got these:
Then it was off up the road to Ghost Ranch, the 21000 acre site that O'Keefe called home for 50 years or so. It is quite an impressive landscape, although once more Sarah found the museum and 'gift shop' a gross disappointment. Actually, she said it was shameful and embarrassing. Hmm. Not so good then?
The geology, nevertheless, is quite extraordinary throughout the area. 600 million years exposed in clear boundary layers - rich in both fossils and geophysical evidence of past lakes, seas and deserts. Shame our Christian rock-friend wasn't around to explain it - but I'm sure we can manage to live with the facts instead of children's stories.
Ghost Ranch geology
The location is undoubtedly special - I tried to create a 360 degree panorama, but I might have to just dump it. Apparently my photographic skills are not up to that yet (keeping same height, loose tripod, different light as camera rotated, inability to see the stupid screen, chipmunk sabotage). So I restrict myself to these:
Georgia O'Keefe's Mountain
Late afternoon, we headed away from Ghost Ranch, and Abiququququququq, heading North towards Pagosa Springs. Into the hills, and into Colorado. What a drive! Beautiful, massive and verdant valleys with endless mountains matched only by endless skies. I for one was not sorry to leave the dust behind!