Going Back in Time
We've been on the road for 15 days. We've geocached in 38 states. We've dropped travel bugs in each ranging from the Springer Opera House to the National Infantry Museum. Each tells a brief history of that Columbus (GA) attraction. Each has a goal to return home to the cache in the downtown Columbus Visitors Center. At least 6 have been picked up and are moving. This should be fun.
The drive up the mountain in Mesa Verde National Park to the cliff dwellings was like getting into a time machine. The forest had been destroyed by wildfire; against the blue Colorado sky, the trees left standing looked like silver boney fingers writhing in a silent agony caused by the fire . This barren and eerie spectacle went on for miles.
Once we arrived at the interpretative center, we made the quarter mile hike to the Spruce Tree House. This is the third largest cliff dwelling constructed between A.D. 1211 and 1278 by the ancestors of the Puebloan peoples of the Southwest. The dwelling contains about 130 rooms and 8 kivas, or ceremonial chambers, built into a natural alcove measuring 216 feet at greatest width and 89 feet at its greatest depth. It is thought to have been home for about 60 to 80 people.
It was amazing that it was almost cold when we stepped into the shade of the cliff. The ceiling was black from ancient fires that cooked and provided warmth and light in the darkness. We listened to the nearby ranger explain some of the purposes of the various buildings and how these people may have once lived. No one knows why these places were abandoned (aliens).
Spending the night in Durango, OR. A very cool place. The downtown could be a model for any downtown renewal project. Restaurants, boutiques, outfitters, art galleries, and much more lined almost six blocks. And the sidewalks and shops were crowded on this Thursday night. Way cool! There's a men's grillin' cook-off this Saturday. Way more cool!
Tomorrow we head east to Oklahoma. It will be a long drive to the first geocache. I "think" we're both looking forward to getting home or least not being in a car for hours on end.
For more family fun geocaching adventure check out the RiverWalk GeoTour in Columbus GA
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