We are wildlife photographers but we are interested in the world at large and have, over time, had that interest manifest itself in the desire to learn more about and photograph Ancestral Puebloan (Anasazi) ruins and rock art. It has been through this quest that we have come to a profound realization of just how populated our country was. Imagine this….although it is still debated, there were an estimated 18 – 20 million Native Americans living north of Mexico in the United States when many of our European ancestors first set foot on our shores.
Colorado National Monument is positioned in the north-east part of the Colorado Plateau, that big chunk of canyon country that Ed Abbey so eloquently wrote the praises of. It sits west of Grand Junction, Colorado and north-east of Moab, Utah, its dry country, bisected by some great gulch topography, vertical sandstone walls, hot in summer and cold in winter. Spring is pretty close to perfect, especially if you come from country not yet released from winters drab cold. We arrived in late afternoon with warm light on the rock walls, red, buff, salmon and all gradations between. A few electric blue Penstemons were blooming under the ridge of a rocky hogback, along with radiant carmine Paintbrush, next to a beautiful purple Milk Vetch.