the second day of the Gila River trip – now with special guests! Dale, Beverley, and Shelly live in a completely different section of New Mexico, but when I discovered that they were camping on the western side of the state (only a 630 mile drive from San Diego!) I knew I had to drive out there for the weekend.
I find them at Lake Roberts, and we head up to the end of New Mexico 15 to the Gila Cliff Dwellings, find some hot springs, and generally have a quality time of things.
I took over 1000 pictures on this day – quite a lot of things to be seen!
Shelly, Dale, and Beverley at the entrance to the cliff dwellings. The ladder is a modern touch for modern folks. The original inhabitants, of course, flew from door to door on the power of their awesomeness.
Today’s theme ingredient is: forest fire.
I believe this is a desert spiny lizard (Sceloporus magister). Dale spotted the little critter first and it took me a good several seconds to note what he was pointing at. The camouflage is dang near perfect!
The Gila Cliff Dwellings. They were built around 1280 by the Mogollon people, and were abandoned sometime in the 1300s. Due to the desert climate, they remain very well-preserved; almost exactly how they looked over 700 years ago.
Dale. No further explanation needed.
A lazy evening spent at a hot spring. I took this photo while sitting in the pool. Probably not the smartest idea ever, but hey, the photo came out!