New Mexico visit
June 29, 2019
After briefly visiting Taos & Angel Fire NM we were confronted with freezing temps, cold rain & wet snow while camping at Cimarron National Forest. So we meandered south towards Las Vegas NM at Store is Lake SP and checking out the Dawn Light Sanctuary.
A building designed with prisms reflecting sunlight in an array of rainbow colors throughout a sunny day. Spending time in Santa Fe camping at Hyde Memorial SP up near their ski range.
Our stop in Las Vegas, NM allowed us to enjoy an excursion to Sante Fe to Georgia O’Keefe Museum and seeing downtown historic buildings and history of the artsy community. She was a self-taught artist. Her well-known husband provide some insight and a studio in NYC.
After the museum we did our laundry while chatting with other travelers which they suggested future places.
From there we made our way north to another treasured American historic site. Last year we toured the Atomic reactor in Hanford WA which made the plutonium delivered on Nagasaki Japan. So it was fitting to explore the secretive city & county of Los Alamos this year. ( https://www.lanl.gov/about/history-innovation/history-images/index.php )
It’s early settlers & ranch school fell to eminent domain for USA’s WWII war effort as deemed necessary to win over Japan. Then an only road (trail) access in or out and as with Hanford WA surrounded by mountains made for an excellent secluded operation. Lead scientist Oppenheimer knew this from attending school there in his youth. Without prior experience or OSHA, or federal oversite, the research & construction proceeded under General Leslie Groves’ close budget scrutiny. It was here the two bombs were crafted to be dropped on Hiroshima & Nagasaki ending WWII. Afterwards, nuclear science switched to other humanitarian causes. Treating cancer. Activative sensor for smoke detectors. Illuminating wrist watches. Among other uses, it was determined a national security issue to maintain staff and upgrade the research facility as the Cold War raged on to protect our worldwide nuclear dominance even to this day.
Just to the south of Los Alamos is an excellent national monument preserving over 10,000 years of Native American history. The earliest know settlers took up seasonal residence among the cliffs in Frijoles Canyon consisting of volcanic ash in a sort of primitive ‘condo’ type dwelling using the narrow access to protect themselves from other tribes. About 4,000 years ago, as populations grew, corn was brought up from Mexico. They relied on agriculture for corn and beans and hunting local game. Once discovered by the Spaniards in early 1600’s, natives were removed. In 1932 the Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) built up better roads, viewing access along dwellings, and a lodge. By 1941, President Woodrow Wilson designated the 22,400 acre site as a National Monument. All the picutes are uploaded to our computer in storage. We’ll have to update this segment later to share some images.