Palo Duro Canyon

We’re camped in the mountains of New Mexico. It has been some lovely walking out here. No cell reception can be found, the rest of the world will have to wait. But we are surrounded by the influx of hunters at our campsite. We’re leaving today.
Before sunrise, a generator comes on. It is just 75 feet away. It wakes me.  I lay here realizing that I can’t pack in the dark.  A blanket over my head helps and I get another hour of sleep.
The guy leaves without turning the generator off! This place would be so very calm and peaceful when hunting season ends. It would be excellent on any week day.
We pack as quickly as we can. It’s been awhile since we have been out on the road and we haven’t gotten the rhythm of packing up, quite yet. After breakfast and two hours in a beautiful day, we pull away.
We’re on our way to a place in Oklahoma, but we need a place to stop and breakup the long drive. We have chosen Palo Duro Canyon near Amarillo. This affords us an afternoon hiking and exploring and then a longer afternoon at the next stopover, during the coming Labor Day Weekend.
I don’t know much about this “natural wonder.” It is declared the second largest canyon in the United States, but I’m questioning that.
I have surveyed the Palo Duro terrain and hiking trails using the Google map satellite feature and trail maps. It appears that most of the trails are pretty busy and not suitable for nude use. It is limited and not Federal Land.
I found a canyon off of a trail and near a trailhead. We may be able to walk that. It meanders and has concealing walls from erosion.
There is an equestrian trail that goes quite away from the trailhead and the facilities. It may be a good walk and equestrians are easier to see and hear coming. There are usually few trotters, just lumbering riders on western saddles.
We look forward to an afternoon’s exploration.

Out on the road, it is very New Mexico out here.   A long strait asphalt road slices through the countryside of pinion pine.  It passes through cute little New Mexico towns. That unique adobe construction has a charm. It is authentic, but some of the tiny hamlets are sadly depressed. “Friendly Place to Eat” greets us and then a boarded up village, which is nearly a ghost town.
We stop in Santa Rosa for ice and gas, just before the interstate. Its pace feels busy after three days miles from nowhere. We choose a city park for a quick lunch. There we find a statue of a local writer.
Quotes in bronze are on the ground, like fallen loose sheets of paper. I read a good quote or two.
As town statuary goes, I was impressed by Santa Rosa. It is a good strong image for a town. Literary greatness, the importance of the written word and its respect and value, would be a message that I’d want a child to be t …

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