We enjoyed a long holiday weekend in Las Cruces, New Mexico. A few of our fellow Care-a-vanners are avid hikers and told us about some spectacular trails in the area. (Check out one of Meghan's beautiful narratives here.) While the locals were lamenting the "cool" temps, we took advantage of some wonderful hiking conditions ... and discovered that ...
Hiking is a Bit Like Life
The journey only requires you to put one foot in front of the other ... again and again and again. And if you allow yourself the opportunity to be present throughout the entirety of the trek, you will witness beauty every step of the way, not just at the summit.
The Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument, located ten miles east of us, provides many hiking opportunities. Instead of joining the Black Friday craziness, we headed to the hills ... Aguirre Springs to be exact to hike the Pine Tree Trail that Meghan recommended.
This four mile loop took us around rocks,
and under towering pines.
Yes, we enjoyed views of the Organ Mountains,
but it was a side trip to a mountain waterfall that impressed me most. Unfortunately, Doug didn't realize that I took the side stop ... and he walked past me. It took two phone calls (thank God for cell phone coverage) and a few minutes to figure out which way to go, but we managed to meet back up. Yes, he is still stuck with me!
Saturday morning we took an urban hike to the Las Cruces Farmers Market. It's amazing to be in an area that still has homegrown tomatoes for sale. We enjoyed the variety of talented musicians along the way.
When we got back, our neighbors told us that they had spotted quite a few tarantulas along the path at Dripping Springs. While Doug is deathly afraid of spiders, he is very intrigued with the thought of seeing a tarantula in the wild.
So off we went to Dripping Springs in search of tarantulas. The spider hunt was unsuccessful, but we enjoyed the three mile loop around the park to La Cueva. And this time I managed to keep Doug with me as we discovered another beautiful mountain waterfall.
Sunday was cool, overcast, and windy. Doug insisted that it was too cool for tarantulas to be hanging out, but perfect hiking conditions for us former "Minnesotans". So we headed to Soledad Canyon, another beautiful area in the shadow of the Organ Mountains.
We enjoyed the tall ...
and the tiny ...
And another serene mountain waterfall.
And much to Doug's delight ...
Mr. Tarantula came out to greet us! (OK, just between you and us, we are not certain whether this is the real deal or just a brown wolf spider. What do you think??) Regardless, we are happy to witness ...
Of the way.
Until next time ... be present throughout the entirety of the trek ... and enjoy the adventures in your life!