Bandelier National Monument
Trip Start Sep 20, 2010
39Trip End Oct 26, 2010
Leaving Taos we followed the Rio Grande River for a bit, traveling south and then east into the beautiful Jemez Mountains, more densely forested than we expected and displaying subtle hues of greens and yellow against pink rock.
Our destination is Bandelier National Monument that lies in close proximity to Los Alamos.
Further along the canyon floor is Alcove House, a large shelter cave some 300 feet above the canyon floor. The large cave was inhabited by as many as 23 families between 250 A.D. and 1600 A.D.. A large kiva sits at one end of the cave. A series of sturdy wooden ladders bolted into the lava rock connect the cave to the valley floor. It offers wonderful views of the canyon; George scurried up the 140 vertical feet of ladders and walkways capture the view. Bandelier is quite impressive and the walk back from Alcove house was most pleasant as it followed the river with shade provided by the cottonwood trees.
We drove back to White Rock for the night.