Petrified National Forest

Here’s a scene which really gets you to thinking about history, the present and the past. The Petrified Forest is a rock solid door into the incredible past of Planet Earth. Clearly, my mind has never been as focused on the ancient history of humans and the movements of air, rock, and water, which have…

Painted Desert National Park: Remembering Naomi & Isaac

Here words do not find sufficient substance sublimity to capture the rare beauty of the landscape. As I have traveled now for the fourth time across America, I am grasped how differently the scenery is observed, and how important are the dimensions of the geological history and human history for understanding.   However, no matter…

Red Rock Park

Arriving in Gallup, New Mexico, my mind and heart again went back to 1962 when I was traveling through Gallup and stopped on my way to the Grand Canyon. Visions of the experience floated through my mind. The one clear image was visiting an Indian Reservation. Having read much about the conditions of poverty and…

The Pueblo of the Pecos River & Valley

The Pueblo of the Pecos River and Valley were rooted in a fertile valley with natural resources… the complete opposite of the “El Malpais,” the Bad Lands (read about my experience here). For centuries, they had farmed the land, creating products of woven materials, jewelry, along with much artwork. They had traded with tribes in…

“El Malpais”: The Bad Lands

Once again, the drive off the highway was a long, winding, slowly climbing experience. Along with the magnificent Sandstone formations, there were fields that appeared to be covered with black rock. Philip at the Las Vegas National Wildlife Refuge (read about it here) had spoken of volcanic activity at this place, which he had recommended. A…

New Mexico: Las Vegas National Wildlife Refuge

Driving again about 10 miles off the highway, I arrived at the turn leading to the highest elevation of a very large plateau surrounded by mountains, which appeared to be anywhere from 15 to 20 miles away. I had arrived at the Visitors Center at the Las Vegas Wildlife Refuge. A sign on the door…

New Mexico: Fort Union

In leaving Maxwell National Wildlife Refuge (read about it here), the thoughts of visiting Fort Union National Monument had become the mission. How interconnected the landscapes and humanity had become in my mind, heart, and spirit. The geographic and geological features of the land had been great motivators for the movement of civilizations. Strong forces…

WBUR Interview

If you didn’t have a chance to catch the interview of Gerry that aired on Friday, you can check it out online: 150 Years Ago, Olmsted Released His Historic Yosemite Report.

New Mexico: Maxwell National Wildlife Refuge

Leaving early in the morning the day after the fabulous immersion into the history and scenic wonders of Pikes Peak (read about it here), I drove through Raton Pass, entering New Mexico. No stops had been scheduled, but in previous travels through New Mexico, I had been drawn to both the dramatic dynamics of history,…

Colorado Springs, Pikes Peak, and Garden of the Gods

Leaving the northern-most planned destination in Colorado, I headed south on Route 25, perhaps to reach New Mexico. However, the traffic was congested in the Denver area. My thoughts went back to my travels in 1962, when I circled and crisscrossed around America for 7 months and over 20,000 miles. Today, at age 80, I am…

A Morning Conversation and Heading up and into the Rockies

I was ready to head up into the mountains, but the coffee wasn’t quite ready, and I asked the other person waiting where he was heading. “Just finished my delivery of Kia’s. Headed back to the St. Louis.” Burt, a truck driver, was a delight to speak with as he readily shared his life as a…