Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Gila Cliff Dwellings

We did some driving to get to the Gila Cliff Dwellings but this was one that had been on my bucket list for some time and we figured this might be the closest we would get to it so.....we drove the 120 miles to get there.  It was so worth it as you can see!


bridge crossing the Gila River to walk into the canyon

Gila River

7 caves in the cliff wall comprise the dwellings

These caves were occupied by the Mogollon culture from about 1270-1300


the worn depressions indicate a work surface outside cave #1 which only houses a couple of foundations now  

Cave #2 was off limits to us but looks like it was very impressive

Were able to enter via the stairs in Cave #3

view from top of stairs

what a wonderful view they had!







80% of the dwellings are original with only necessary reconstruction done to help preserve/mobilize


looking across from Cave 4 to Cave 5


only identifiable pictograph out of three on the walls of the dwelling





Caves 6 and 7 had no structures in them but Cave 6 had soot from fires on the ceiling

collared lizard showing off on the ledge above my head as we were passing by

heading back down to the Gila River bridge

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Ghost Towns??

I've always thought of ghost towns as no longer inhabited so when we decided to tour some nearby ghost towns we did not expect to find much.  Turns out these NM ghost towns are still inhabited, just merely ghosts of their former days.  So we found small but still active communities with old buildings or ruins of buildings scattered throughout.....with the exception of Chloride which is a tiny tourist attraction with a cafe, gift shop and museum.  It has about 11 full time residents.

San Ignacio church in Monticello first built in 1867



San Lorenzo church in Placita

San Jose church with 1880s building in background.  Town of Cuchillo






1890 school house in Winston

the town of Chloride


Mr. Edmund ,on the right, owns the museum and gave us a personal tour.  Hopefully you can read the storyboard above.









when we saw this sign outside Winston, we had to see what a zeolite mine looked like....


and there it is.  zeolite is a microporous mineral used commercially in laundry detergent among other things....now you know;)