Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Southwest Colorado

Last week was spring break, so we took some time to explore the southwest corner of Colorado. We stayed in Durango and explored from there.

We drove from Durango to Silverton and Ouray, CO along "the million dollar highway". The views were beautiful. I would not want to drive these roads when it was snowing because there are no guard rails on any of the roads. You can look straight down the side of the mountain.

We also went to the Hovenweep National Monument which is on the border of Utah and Colorado. It is really out in the middle on nowhere.
The ancient Pueblo people built their community along this canyon. We hiked around the rim and then back through the canyon and up. It is a two mile loop where you pass the remaining structures from 800 years ago. That is amazing to me!

Since we were in the vicinity, we stopped at the 4 corners region where one can stand in four states at the same time! It really wasn't as cool as I thought it might be. They do have a cool marker so you can see which state you are currently in. I have now stood in Utah, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona at the same time.:)

We also headed over to Mesa Verde . We went here a four years ago during the summer and had a wonderful time. It was much cooler this spring, in fact it was snowing while we were there.Most of the sites are closed during the winter, but we were able to hike down to Spruce Tree House.

These pictures are from inside Spruce Tree House. The ladder descends into the kiva where they would have sacred ceremonies in the earth. Aren't the walls amazing? It is unbelievable that each of these stones in hand carved and carried through the canyon to form this structure. Each of the rooms was tiny-5x6 feet.

Here is another site built into the side of the canyon wall. You have to climb up 36 ft. ladders to access some of these location. They would use footholes and hand grabs to climb up to their home. It is such a beautiful place.

Thanks for looking! Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone.:)


APA said...

Oh, WOW! Incredibly beautiful pictures from a magnificent landscape. Thanks so much for sharing your Spring Break with us! Durango has long been on our list of travel destinations as well as these very areas you visited last week (it was a lovely lady from Durango now living in Taos NM who peaked our interest). Can't wait! In the meantime, I'll be happy to live vicariously through your adventures. :)

Dionne said...

Those pictures are beautiful, sounds like it was a wonderful vacation!
I visited a park in Arizona similair to Mesa Verde, but I can't remember what it was called now.
I've only ever been to Denver and Steamboat Springs. I'll have to visit Colorado again sometime, it's really beautiful.
PS - Now you're on the homestretch and summer is only a few short months away!

ohthatashley said...

I've always wanted to visit Mesa Verde. It's so beautifully spooky. Great pictures!

whoopdedoo_5 said...

looks like a fantastic trip! I want to go too! :) great pictures too!

QuiltedSimple said...

How pretty! Todd goes hunting in Mercer, Colorado (for Elk) every 2-3 years, and I'm sure the pictures don't do it justice! What a wonderful vacation - and thanks so much for sharing such beautiful scenery!

Iva said...

Of all the places I've visited, I think Mesa Verde has to be one of my favorite places. It just blows my mind that people actually lived in those cliffs, and that some of the structures still remain after all these centuries! Now after seeing your pictures, I'll have to add Hovenweep to my next trip west.

Stephanie D. said...

Great pictures, Audrey! I haven't seen Mesa Verde, but I did get to Bandolier and saw some of the cliff dwellings there--so amazing! The only trip I ever made to Durango was a business trip and I was only there a couple of hours, but thought it was gorgeous!

bearbear said...

I loved the tour. I especially liked seeing inside the Spruce Tree House but I probably couldn't be in one of those rooms as claustrophobic as I am but that was neat. Everything was something I'd not seen before (and probaby won't) so thanks very much for the tour. I'm sure you had a great time.

Nat said...

Great pics, Audrey! Glad you got to have a good spring break. Are you going to get to come to AL at all this summer?

Karen said...

Audrey, I am one of those natives who's never been to any of these things. It sounds like you had a fun time!

edeenut said...

I have enjoyed looking through your quilting posts, just discovered you. I also had to comment on your Colorado trip, I love those sites you visited, the million dollar high way is pretty and I agree very scary if it were snowing.