Looking back on this trip brings back some really great memories. Maybe it’s the time of year, but nonetheless, I feel incredibly thankful to have been able to go on these grand adventures. Being in nature really brought into focus how small all of my own problems were (and are), and that was something that I really needed to meditate on, and I think that everyone should try to open themselves up to. I don’t think that this trip could have come at a more opportune time for me, though at the time it didn’t seem like it. As someone who struggles with anxiety a lot in their daily life, these photos and memories bring me peace. I hope that they can do the same for you. All that being said, I strongly encourage everyone to open themselves up to new adventures and experiences, because sometimes a little perspective change is all you need.
Diving back in, after leaving Sunset Crater bright and early, we headed to Wupatki, New Mexico. Luckily it was only about an hour and a half drive, because we ended up with a pretty packed day.
The first of many marvels that we discovered on this day was the Wukoki ruin. Standing quite far away from the main Wupatki ruins, the Wukoki ruin acted as an outpost of sorts for the Puebloan farmers. The ruin itself is massive, and resembles a sort of castle. Three stories high, this ruin has stood the test of time for over 800 years.
If you are someone, like me, who has never heard of the Wupatki National Monument, allow me to enlighten you. Built nearly 900 years ago, the Wupatki Ruins were home to the Puebloan people. Built out of sedimentary sandstone, these ruins are thought to be the remnants of a miraculous civilization built out in the desert. The Puebloan people somehow managed to grow crops and cultivate the land, as well as keep livestock, though historians are unsure exactly how they managed to do so.
Built in a central location, the Wupatki community was thought to be a hot spot for trade and farming. It was thought that the people who lived here, in fact, were the first true farmers of the Southwest.
Interesting fact: the roofs were built flat in these communities in order to collect and store clean rain water.
Of course, as with all of history, there is much debate about what exactly happened at the Wupatki Ruins. There are curious structures with even more curious uses. A circular field, for example, may have been used to play games and sports, or for entertainment, or even for cattle. We cannot know exactly how things were back then, and it’s possible that by uncovering these historic ruins, we have merely uncovered more questions.
I found myself reminiscing of Stonehenge (which I talk more about here), which further supported my hypothesis that uncovering history can sometime uncover more secrets. I find that tirelessly fascinating. To think that we know so much today, and have access to so many things, and still have no way to know what these ‘primitive’ architects were doing when they built these amazing structures is mind-boggling. On top of that, that they had no modern tools and manage to build them in the first place, and that they’ve been standing for hundreds of years. It is reassuring to know that there are still mysteries in the world. Find peace in that,
Until next time,
P.S. Later that day, we traveled to our next destination for a couple of hours so that we could set up camp for the night. Here are some sneak peak photos…