The missions

Trip Start Feb 07, 2009
Trip End Feb 07, 2009

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Flag of United States  , New Mexico
Saturday, February 21, 2009

So we struck out at about 11 am and reached the first of the missions by early afternoon. We brought the dogs, which are allowed on leash, and some snacks and water.   The sites are spectacular.  The first (Abo)to  was about a 1/2 mile walk to reach the actual site.  The buildings were made of sandstone.  The architecture itself if beautiful with rocks of varying sizes all handset.  You can almost see the work of different builders in different places of the structure.  Some builders meticulously filled in empty spaces with small rocks while others used the hand mixed mortar.    The site is pretty isolated- with only the caretakers living on property and the views of surrounding land and sky are spectacular. 

Next we progressed to the second site. Both Quarai and Grand Quivera are made with sandstone, one gray, one red, and even more remote than Abo.   The drives from site to site are peaceful and serene.  There were fascinating abandoned school houses and old adobe homes that we stopped to photograph along the way.    Near Mountainair you can also see the Tibetan monk's land whose entrance is marked by two towering golden lions on pedestals.  It's striking since they suddenly appear roadside and are in contrast to all of the surrounding ranch entrances.  There are lots of old Spanish family ranches with names hanging elegantly over main drives.   The drive itself was almost as beautiful as the sites.
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