so this past friday was a day of driving. i wrapped up my time at the grand canyon friday morning, and got on the road - headed toward central texas. waco to be exact. while a lot of driving, it ended up being a pretty fun day. i needed to get through arizona and new mexico, and i wanted to at least get INto texas before i stopped for the night.
as Petrified Forest National Park was right on route 40, i figured i'd drive through. i was a bit intrigued with what exactly a petrified tree looked like and how they came to be. i stopped off at the first viewpoint with a small loop trail called 'giant logs'. i took a quick loop around and literally there are fragments and sections of whole trees that are literally fossilized, laying scattered all over the ground. it's so cool. the look just like trees, but they're rock.
here's the park brochures description of how petrified trees came to be:
"in the distant past, after trees fell over from natural causes such as old age, flooding, or lightning, they were carried downriver, settling on sand bars and creating log jams. the trees were buried under deposits of sediment, slowing down the process of decay due to the scarcity of oxygen. silica-rich ash spewed from distant volcanoes, was mixed into the sediment. the silica dissolved into groundwater and the solution seeped into the cells of the buried trees. crystals formed within spaces in the logs, including hollows, cracks and the interior of the cells. the wood tissue degraded, partially of fully replaced by minerals, leaving behind beautiful fossils."
there were also some remains of a puebloan village from somewhere between 1200 and 1400. on some of the boulders nearby, there still exist petroglyphs - ancient drawings and images that these people made. i have always been fascinated by petroglyphs - and this was my FIRST EVER opportunity to see real, original untouched ones. (this was also the first time i got to use my new 300mm telephoto lens (!!!), since the glyphs were pretty far away for a normal lens)
i especially love this last one with the bird-ish creature with the human in it's mouth. not sure what that's about, but there sure are some days i feel like that.
the wind was REALLLLLY whipping through the park for some reason - it was relatively flat and all. but HOLY crap. with the forces it was putting on my roof rack (see bryce post for how much stuff is strapped on my roof) - it actually ripped one of my thule feet off. so i had to do some minor roofrack surgery there in the park, and all seems to be well - i had to use a couple hoseclamps to secure the rack back down onto the roof since the one foot wouldn't latch anymore. i'm keeping a close eye on it at the moment - but it made it through new mexico and texas so far!
i stopped off in albuquerque friday night to (FINALLY) post all my canyon adventures for y'all. kind of a cool town. then i pushed on a few more hours and got about 80 miles into texas before i PASSED out. the next morning (saturday), i started the day with a dirty breakfast at a waffle house (my first time ever!) and took a sweet backroad highway all the way to fort worth, and then a quick jump down to waco from there.
had a nice long day in the car friday - and mostly just loved being with my thoughts and with my music. so here i offer you my top 15 songs from the day - songs that truly made the drive a blissful time (in no particular order of course...)
Gavin DeGraw - Crush
Mike Doughty - Looking at the World From the Bottom of a Well
DMB - Bartender
Big Head Todd and the Monsters - Broken Hearted Savior
Paul Simon - How Can You Live in the Northeast
Fair - Carelessness
Audioslave - Show Me How To Live
King Crimson - Three of a Perfect Pair
Amos Lee - Shout Out Loud
Live - Meltdown
Galactic - All Behind You Now
Jason Mraz - Did I Fool Ya (live at java joe's version)
ALO - Maria
Indigo Girls - Ozilline
Patty Griffin - Long Ride Home
so there you go. next post on my time in texas. hope you all are well - thanks for following along with me :)