We drove to Ghost Ranch on a whim the afternoon after our lunch in Abiquiu. Even the car ride was spectacular!
|Highway 84 north of Abiquiu.|
|Both of the pictures (above and below) are of the same rock formation. |
It is easily seen from Highway 84 between Abiqui Lake and Ghost Ranch.
I don't know if it has a name.
|Another beautiful rocky cliff on Highway 84|
|I expected to see more signs for Ghost Ranch so I wasn't concerned that this picture was not real good.|
Turned out there were no other signs -- but you get the idea.
The 21,000 acres that comprise Ghost Ranch were part of a land grant from the King of Spain in 1766. The grant was called Piedra Lumbre (shining rock).
|This gorgeous hunk of rock is one of the first seen as we approached Ghost Ranch.|
|Scenery along the dirt road to Ghost Ranch|
Ghost Ranch was given by Arthur and Pheobe Pack to the Presbyterian Church in 1955. I never learned under what circumstances the Packs came to own the property.
Then without warning or explanation, we happened upon this abandoned log house. No one was around. We stopped to snap a few pictures.
|Unexplained log house near Ghost Ranch|
|Wayne looked inside and said simply, "it stinks in here". |
I did not check to confirm his findings.
|The log house location turned out to provide some pretty good dog walking -- except for those giant ants.|
|Hurry Pop! Take the picture. Momma's squeezing me!|
|Still watching for those big ole ants.|
|Yep. There are little dogs at the end of those leashes.|
|This is the original house where one of the outlaws shot (and killed) the other.|
|Inside the Ghost House|
|The house was renovated! Horrors. |
This shows the original interior -- wood and mud made the adobe.
The house was probably originally built in the 1880's or 1890's (according to the plaque beside the display).
The Ghost Ranch complex is huge and quite informal. Roads are dirt -- the same color as the buildings. Several huge shade trees (cottonwood maybe) provide shade.
After making an inquiry about the short hike to Chimney Rock (the most famous of the hikes at Ghost Ranch), I left Lexie and Ozzie in the capable care of Pop, grabbed some extra camera batteries, a bottle of water and made my way to the trailhead. The hike is relatively easy, even for an overweight, out-of-condition, old geezer like myself. The walk begins steep and then plateaus for several hundred yards. The "steep-then-flat" routine repeats itself all they way to the base of Chimney Rock.
|From the first plateau on my hike to Chimney Rock|
|Looking down onto part of Ghost Ranch from my hike to Chimney Rock. |
That's an alfalfa field in the clearing.
|From my walk to Chimney Rock, I can see Pedernal Mountain and Abiquiu Lake|
|Abiquiu Lake and Pedernal Mountain from the next higher plateau.|
A little more than half-way up, I met a man and woman who agreed to look for Wayne below and tell him that my hike was taking longer than planned so he wouldn't worry about me. After all, I told him I was only going to go a short distance up the path -- I didn't dream I'd really want to walk all the way --
Finally I did make my way down and "no" I didn't go all the way to the base of Chimney Rock. I'll probably always regret my decision to turn around before reaching the end, but I was worried about leaving Wayne with the dogs in the warm temperatures, knowing he would worry about my safety.
|Chimney Rock -- from a greater distance than I wanted. I compromised.|
When we got back to the coach, I kicked off my shoes and clothes and streached out on the bed. It was just at that moment I noticed the great view from the bed.
|My feet, the bedroom window and Pedernal Mountain|
|More beautiful scenery.... I never get enough....|