El Malpais National Monument
Off for more hikes. Yea, I know gluttons for punishment, but we like to hike and there are some neat things to see near here.
We drove to El Malpais National Monument and decided to continue through the park to the last trail first and come back toward the visitor center as we stopped for each area.
Lava Falls was a 1.1 mile hike on the lava flow. So cool! The markers for the trail were cairns (2 foot or taller stacks of lava rocks) from the first few feet of the trail to the end, we followed them to hiked over the lava field. Much of the way, we were stepping over huge cracks that extended 100’s of feet long, 20 or more feet deep, but only a short hop across. All were under 2 feet wide. We are both very glad we bought good boots to protect our feet. The lava was sharp in some places. Hawaiians call that A’a. Maybe from the sound people would make it they walked on it. Ah Ah ah ah… Maybe it should have been called Ow Ow ow ow… ?
The plants struggle to live on the lava.There are really pretty flowers blooming.
The lava tube openings were everywhere.
After the lava trail, we drove on to our next hike. The valley we passed through had acres of yellow wild flowers. The pictures do not do it justice.
We also got a picture of the rim we were about to hike up.
The Narrows Rim Trail is over 4.1 miles in total length. We hiked the first mile and were satisfied with the views we got.
So our total hike on that trail was 2.1 miles and an elevation gain of 220 feet. (The Alltrails app is great). It took us 1 hour and 24 minutes. The main reason we stopped short was the weather. We could see rain coming and did not want to miss the last hike we had planned.
Next was the La Ventana Natural Arch.
The Sandstone bluffs was our last stop. We drove up to the top and were able walk out to look over the valley below. This was a huge lava field.
When we got back to the campground, I decided to stop and take a picture of the Electric Vehicle charging stations. Jonathan, they even have them here at Bluewater Lake State Park.
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We are a couple who have started on a new adventure...