Friday, November 5, 2010

We spent most of the month of November in Oklahoma.  For several days, we stayed at McClain's so that the awnings and slide out toppers could all be replaced.  They were full of holes from the hail storm we were in at Woodland Park, Colorado.  Much of the remaining time was spent with Chi and Gracie.

The nice thing of having the girls spend nights with us in the MH is that they are easily entertained. Ice cream cones, playing with the iPad, playing cards, doing puzzles - all fun things to do inside.

It was so nice to be back with our girls again!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

We Have Left the Mountains...

We are sad to report that we have left Eagle Nest and the beautiful mountains.  It is time to head back to Oklahoma.  While we are quite excited to see our granddaughters and their mom and dad, we are not looking forward the the hot temperatures that are still in Oklahoma.

Last morning at Eagle Nest it was 35 degrees. By 9:30  that morning it was up to 45 degrees and sunny. Temperatures have been running in the high 30's to low 40's at night and in the mid-70's during the day.  Perfect temperatures, if you ask me!  

So mid to high 90's in Oklahoma sounds HOT.  Oh,  and did I mention the high humidity there which makes the heat index be even hotter?

We plan to spend July, August and September in Eagle Nest next summer.  Marti has no room for us in July, but hopefully we will be at her park for August and September.  

So with fond memories of the people and the places, we say good-bye to New Mexico.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Cows in New Mexico Must Have Formed a Union.....

'Tis the strangest thing... cow crossing signs have popped up on all sorts of roads here in New Mexico.  We have seen them in the Carson National Forest, on New Mexico state highways, in populated areas and even on small mountain roads.

This was in the town of Questa...

When I see a cow crossing sign, I automatically look for cattle-guards in the road showing that we are entering open range areas where the cows can roam freely.  BUT... rarely does this scenario exist.  Rather, these signs just seem to be randomly placed in areas where we haven't seen a cow for many a mile.  Strange...

On NM Highway 120.  We are in a forest... no cows.

So I've come to the logical conclusion that the cows have formed a union so that if they ever wanted to roam, they could... and drivers would be alerted to keep an eye out for them.

On our last day here in New Mexico we finally found some free range cows... on the road to the little community of Idlewild.

Hm, dare I tell them that isn't a cow crossing sign? 

Maybe the cows now have a new purpose... to warn drivers of the windy roads.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Last Trip - Another Circle Tour

Our neighbors told us about another road we could take to Mora that was quite pretty so off we went on another adventure.  Actually any excuse to go to Mora and eat authentic New Mexican cuisine at Hatcha's is enough to get us in the car.

This trip we took NM 434 out of  Angel Fire to Black Lake.  From there we took NM 120 east to Ocate where we caught NM  442 south to La Cueva and then NM 518 to Mora.  From Mora we took the high road back to Taos.

After we passed these ponds on NM 434 we turned on NM 120.

To our surprise NM 120 is a dirt road!!!  Yup, it is a state highway and it was actually being graded as we drove on it.

We came out into a valley and saw some beautiful ranches.

Whenever we see a fancy gate, it makes us wonder what kind of house is up the road...

We went by some incredible stands of aspens.  Love their white bark.  We had the windows down and you could hear the leaves quaking in the breeze.

Back down in a meadow...

Then back up into the forest...

The road is not in near as good of shape here... lots of rocks and sometimes quite narrow.

Following along side a stream...

And then we came upon my favorite sign!  To be honest around the corner the highway once again was paved, but from the view point of the sign we didn't know this.
When we turned south on NM 442 we were once again in a big valley.  Unlike the previous one that was dotted with beautiful ranches, these were not near as prosperous or pretty.  I think it is fairly difficult to eek out a living in these parts.

Finally turning toward Mora...  mountains again in the distance.  Love that sight!

After a wonderful lunch at Hatcha's, we go back up in the mountains toward Taos.

We stopped at Ranchos de Taos to take pictures of the San Francisco de Asis Mission Catholic Church for Valerie.  The church is in the center of the plaza of the historic village of Ranchos de Taos.  The village was settled by the Spanish in 1716. 
Construction of this adobe church began in 1772  by Franciscan Fathers and was completed in 1815. The main body of the church is 35 feet wide by 125 feet long and is in the shape of a cross.  The adobe walls are four feet thick.

The history surrounding the church made me curious about the history of Taos.  Here is a short summary of its turbulent times.

Taos was established c. 1615 as Fernandez de Taos, following the Spanish conquest of the Indian Pueblo villages. Initially, relations of the Spanish settlers with Taos Pueblo were amicable, but resentment of meddling by missionaries, and demands by encomenderos  for tribute, led to a revolt in 1640; Taos Indians killed their priest and a number of Spanish settlers, and fled the pueblo, not returning until 1661.

In 1680, Taos Pueblo joined the widespread Pueblo Revolt. After the Spanish Reconquest of 1692, Taos Pueblo continued armed resistance to the Spanish until 1696, when Governor Diego de Vargas defeated the Indians at Taos Canyon.

During the 1770s, Taos was repeatedly raided by Comanches who lived on the plains of what is now eastern  Colorado. Juan Bautista de Anza,  governor of the Province of New Mexico, led a successful  punitive expedition in 1779 against the Comanches.

After the U.S. takeover of New Mexico in 1847, Hispanics and American Indians in Taos staged a rebellion, known as the Taos Revolt, in which the newly appointed U.S. Governor, Charles Bent, was killed.

My All Time Most Favorite Road Sign....!!!

Houses of New Mexico

We have seen a wide variety of house styles in our travels around this area of New Mexico.

We have see the abandoned ranches...

Abandoned adobes...



An abandoned adobe next to a modern home.

New adobes...

Old rustic log cabins... 

Fancy log cabins...

We got to go inside and tour this log home that is being built.

We loved this small guest house.

And then there are the eclectic houses, my favorite!

You can get a better idea of the size of this unique duplex by looking at the ladder.

The wild west revisited...

A kit house for the do-it-your-self person.

The Many Faces of Eagle Nest Lake

We have had such fun watching the changing looks of Eagle Nest Lake and surrounding mountains each day.  Each morning we eagerly open the curtains to see if the lake is calm or has white caps or if we can even see the lake.  The cloud patterns have also fascinated us.  Lots of storms over the mountains but they rarely seem to come down into the valley.  In the 360 degree ring of mountains around us, we have seen three different storms in the mountains at the same time.  None provided any rain in our part of the valley.

So here are some pictures of the lake  and mountains that we have taken over the month period we have been here.