Monthly Archives: September 2017

08-21-17 – Carhenge


Carhenge is a replica of England’s Stonehenge located near the city of Alliance, Nebraska, in the High Plains region of the United States. Instead of being built with large standing stones, as is the case with the original Stonehenge, Carhenge is formed from vintage American automobiles, all covered with gray spray paint. Built by Jim Reinders, it was dedicated at the June 1987 summer solstice. In 2006, a visitor center was constructed to serve the site.

08-20-17 – Garden of the Gods


Garden of the Gods is a public park located in Colorado Springs, Colorado, US. It was designated a National Natural Landmark in 1971.

The area now known as Garden of the Gods was first called Red Rock Corral by the Europeans. Then, in August 1859, two surveyors who helped to set up Colorado City explored the site. One of the surveyors, M. S. Beach, suggested that it would be a “capital place for a beer garden”. His companion, the young Rufus Cable, awestruck by the impressive rock formations, exclaimed, “Beer Garden! Why it is a fit place for the gods to assemble. We will call it the Garden of the Gods.”

The name “Garden of the Gods” was also later given to a section of the Iverson Movie Ranch in Chatsworth, Calif., filled with large sandstone rock formations, because of the area’s resemblance to Colorado’s Garden of the Gods. The story goes that back in the early days of Hollywood, a movie producer seeking a rocky filming location made a comment to the effect of, “Who needs to go all the way to Colorado — we have our own ‘Garden of the Gods’ here!” The Iverson family took the comment to heart and began calling their own collection of rock formations the “Garden of the Gods,” and the name stuck. Today the main section of Chatsworth’s Garden of the Gods has also been preserved as a park.

08-20-17 – Florissant Fossil Beds National Park


Beneath a grassy mountain valley in central Colorado lies one of the richest and most diverse fossil deposits in the world. Petrified redwood stumps up to 14 feet wide and thousands of detailed fossils of insects and plants reveal the story of a very different, prehistoric Colorado.

08-19-17 – Rocky Mountain National Park


Rocky Mountain National Park in northern Colorado spans the Continental Divide and encompasses protected mountains, forests and alpine tundra. It’s known for the Trail Ridge Road and the Old Fall River Road, drives that pass aspen trees and rivers. The Keyhole Route, a climb crossing vertical rock faces, leads up Longs Peak, the parks tallest mountain. A trail surrounding Bear Lake offers views of the peaks.

07-08-17 – Cueva Valdez, Santa Cruz Island


Cueva Valdez, Santa Cruz Island (Valdez Cave, Quava Valdez, Tres Bocas, Valdez Anchorage, Valdez Harbor) is located on the north side of the island, well to the west of Ladys Harbor. The place name C. Valdaze appears on the June 1882 U.S. Coast Survey map Pacific Coast from Santa Monica to Point Conception, including the Santa Barbara Channel, California, J.E. Hilgard, Superintendent. Cueva Valdez was a favorite anchorage and camping location during the first few decades of the 20th century, and several artists, including Edward Borein, Lockwood deForest and Alexander Harmer camped and painted here. Its main attraction is its large, three-entranced cave which can be entered from both the beach as well as from the water. During the formative years of the film industry, movie companies found this location ideal for filming.

05-13-17 – Santa Cruz Island, Channel Islands National Park


According to legend, Santa Cruz Island was named for a priest’s staff accidentally left on the island during the Portola expedition of 1769. A Chumash Indian found the cross-tipped stave and returned it to the priest. The Spaniards were so impressed that they called this island of friendly people “La Isla de Santa Cruz,” the Island of the Sacred Cross. In its vastness and variety of flora, fauna, and geology, Santa Cruz Island resembles a miniature California. At over 96 square miles in size and the largest island in California, Santa Cruz contains two rugged mountain ranges; the highest peaks on the islands (rising above 2,000 feet); a large central valley/fault system; deep canyons with year-round springs and streams; and 77 miles of craggy coastline cliffs, giant sea caves, pristine tidepools, and expansive beaches. One of the largest and deepest sea caves in the world, Painted Cave, is found on the northwest coastline of Santa Cruz. Named because of its colorful rock types, lichens, and algae, Painted Cave is nearly a quarter mile long and 100 feet wide, with an entrance ceiling of 160 feet and a waterfall over the entrance in the spring.

05-06-17 – Rainbow Basin


Northwest of Barstow, California, lies one of the most beautiful and mysterious locations in the Mojave Desert: Rainbow Basin. Its a mishmash of shapes, colors and fantastic formations, a place where water and wind have worked magic, sculpting layers of sandstone and sediment to expose brilliantly colored formations. It changes moment by moment with the passing day, with shadows falling deep into canyons and cuts.

05-06-17 – Amboy Crater


Amboy Crater is an extinct North American cinder cone type of volcano that rises above a 27 square mile lava field in southern California. It is a National Natural Landmark located in the Eastern Mojave Desert and within Mojave Trails National Monument, in San Bernardino County, California.

03-12-17 – North Coyote Buttes, The Wave


The Wave is a sandstone rock formation located in Arizona, United States near its northern border with Utah. The formation is situated on the slopes of the Coyote Buttes in the Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness of the Colorado Plateau. The area is administered by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) at the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument visitor center in Kanab, Utah

03-11-17 – White Pocket


White Pocket, a group of domes and ridges covering an area of one square mile, below a larger mesa lined by similar rocks. A pocket, in this sense, refers to a relatively small area of land markedly different to its surroundings, which here, like most of the plateau, are sandy plains sparsely covered by bushes and small trees. White, or light grey is the dominant rock color, in contrast to the red of the Coyote Buttes, but the general features are similar – swirling, thin-layered strata, adjacent layers of contrasting color, and curious erosive features.