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Big Bend National Park

On our way across Texas, we took a short (for Texas; it was still 6 hours off-route!) detour to camp and hike at Big Bend, right where the U.S. meets Mexico at the Santa Elena canyon.

NRAO Very Large Array

On our drive from El Paso to Colorado, we decided to take a detour to the west to check out the National Radio Astronomical Observatory's Very Large Array installation. It is a tri-radial span of huge satellite dishes that spans up to 13 miles across in the high desert valley, with a network of rails that reconfigure their spacing to change the telescope's resolution, or move dishes to the maintenance bay. It is also home to the Bracewell Radio Sundial, the first and only of it's kind. Overall a totally worthwhile extra couple hours of driving to see such impressive engineering feats, and be reminded of all those that came before it.

Great Sand Dunes National Park

On our way to visit Crestone, we stopped over at the sand dunes to sleep and enjoy the sunrise.

Thanksgiving 2017 at the Grand Canyon

We decided to see the Grand Canyon for a week around Thanksgiving since we live out near the southwest. We stopped by Mesa Verde National Park on the way as well, spending the night in nearby Cortez. Then, onward to the Grand Canyon, where we spent another night and did some light hiking our first day there. We luckily got a camp site reserved for Thanksgiving evening in the bottom of the canyon, but weren't able to make it into the very popular dinner they serve. Everything about the drive there through the painted desert, seeing the Pueblo ruins, and of course the very Grand Canyon made it a very enchanting trip.

Visiting Creede, Colorado

Just a day drive a little farther into the mountains around the San Luis Valley, stopping into the old mining community where Jesse James' assassin, Robert Ford, was himself assasinated.

Popi's War Scrapbook

An old scrapbook of newspaper clippings from unknown dates during World War II. Sources also unknown, they could be from a military publication or a civilian publisher. The scrapbook is in poor shape, so I wanted to digitize it before it went any further. It's been sitting in a zipped Trapper Keeper at the bottom of a foot locker (also his from military) for the last 15 or so years, so I'm happy to be able to share it here now as it is an interesting vignette of the times.

Snowy Sand Dunes

On our third trip to the Great Sand Dunes National Park, we were delightfully surprised with a nice coat of snow on the ground, and a spectacular sunrise to boot. By the time we climbed up Star Dune, the highest sand dune in North America, the snow had largely disappeared.

Wolf Creek Avalanche School AIARE 1

Over the past few years visiting resorts in Colorado, I find myself enjoying the hike-to terrain the most gratifying experiences and rides. So, I've been looking into more backcountry type trips, and since we're staying in Colorado for the winter, it's a perfect opportunity to practice and meet people who can teach me a thing or two. Towards that end, I took the 3-day AIARE I Avalanche Course at Wolf Creek Avalanche School in the southern San Juan mountains, a place reknowned not only for its snowfall, but for its dangerous conditions. It was an eye opening experience that leaves me looking at the snow in a completely new and more respectful way.