Winter 2019

We had just over 15 feet of snow this winter so we are very glad to see spring coming.  Snow is rapidly melting and water is moving all around.

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Solar Eclipse

Rollie and I took time to enjoy the eclipse.  Yes, we did not look at the eclipse.  Rollie quickly put together the pin-hole shoebox.  It was fun to sit out in the meadow with our backs to the sun peering through the hole in the side of the box at the reflection coming through the pin-hole.

Last total eclipse I remember was when I was a child.  My Mom fixed up the way to look indirectly at it back then with photograph negatives.

It’s so good to accept what nature gives us and just take it in – be there with it.  Nature being gentle and ever so slow this time.  Patience and contentment with the slow-down.

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Springtime at La Plata Mountains Cabin

Spring at the cabin – first were the  shiny yellow cinquefoils, then came the service berry bushes and now so many blossoms it’s hard to count.  It’s such a beautiful time of year at the cabin.

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Ute Mountain Tribal Park

Just another reason to stay at La Plata Mountains Cabin – For an “off-the-beaten-track” experience, take a tour of the Ute Mountain Tribal Park.  The Park is located near Towaoc south of Cortez and is an easy day’s drive from La Plata Mountains Cabin. The Ute Mountain Utes have preserved Ancestral Puebloan architecture and rock art on their land that borders the south boundary of Mesa Verde National Park.   The Tribal Park was selected by National Geographic Traveler as one of the 80 world destinations for Travel Adventure in the 21st Century.

The Ute Mountain Tribal Park  recently published their 2012 special calendar of events.

  • May 26 – “12th Annual Open House”; Porcupine House Tour: Anasazi Sun Calendar & Petroglyph Tour; and Native American Flute Music.
  • July 7 – “Nordenskiold Cliff Dwellings Tour in Pool Canyon”
  • July 21 –  “Inaccessible, Casa Colorado, & Casa Blanca House Cliff Dwelling Tour”
  • September 21 – “Turning Red Tail Hawk Tour to Morris Three Cliff Dwelling in Johnson Canyon”
  • April through October the Ute Mountain Utes are offering on-going full day, half day tours as well as remote and private tours.
Contact them about a tour:  (970) 565-9653, 1-800-847-5485, (970) 565-3751 x330; email or

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La Plata Mountain Lights

This morning looking out my north window at our meadow I took time to enjoy the beauty.  Actually I was awestruck as the early morning sunlight on the snow cast shades of blue to purple shadows bordered and dappled with clear sparkling diamonds on the white snow.  I hear they are having spectacular Northern Lights up north.  Here we are having La Plata Lights.  I love it and so appreciate.  Each time of day has its own pleasures.

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We went on a day trip to Hovenweep National Monument.  It’s basically a little northwest of Cortez on a portion of the Great Sage Plain known as Cajon Mesa and borders the larger Canyons of the Ancients.  The standing architecture of Hovenweep was built by ancestors of today’s Pueblo people.  There are 5 prehistoric canyon head villages located along a 16 mile stretch of land.  The canyon head locations were desirable because there were  springs of precious water there.

On the Mesa Top Hovenweep

Square Tower Unit

It’s a quiet out of the way experience and though it was January it was a beautiful day for a walk in the sunshine.  The hike allows one to see the structures close-up so that you can appreciate the masonry that has not only held up over the many years but was  also beautifully and artistically designed.  Walking on then leads you to view the structures from a distance as you move around through the canyon and and then back to the mesa top.  The peace and quiet allow one to reflect and imagine what it must have been like for the people who lived there.  One can almost hear the voices calling out from so long ago.

Last stop before leaving the monument was the Cajon Unit. Following a dirt track we found the site and we were the only ones there.  I was so struck by the fact that the Basketmaker and Pueblo periods spanned from 200 A.D. to about 1300 but long before that in the Paleo-Indian (Folsom and Clovis) and Archaic times people used the site to camp and hunt.  That was as far back as 15,000, yes 15,000 B.C.  We stopped to take in the vista and talked about how it was perfect for viewing any game that may have been moving in the valley below.  What an incredible place they chose to camp with both water and a view.  I allowed myself to wonder about what a woman may have had on her mind on a sunny winter afternoon 17,000 years ago on that very spot where I sat.

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LaPlata Mountains Vacation Rental Cabin

This cozy 2-bedroom log cabin is nestled within three acres of wooded Ponderosa Pine forest in Echo Basin and is perfect for your next Southwestern Colorado vacation. Here you will find restful solace as you view deer and birds from the covered shade porch. You can also enjoy the fun and adventure of the San Juan National Forest just a little over a mile away. There’s plenty of sight-seeing and outdoor recreation in the forested high mountains or the southwestern desert canyons.

This time of year the cross-country skiing is perfect.  I have been ski-joring with my dog on the tracks made by snowmobiles in the National Forest just a mile away.  Last Sunday we met a man up there that had used his snow groomer to make a nice track all the way up to Coyote Park.

Saturday Rollin, my dog Willow and I followed some cross-country tracks into the lower Ramparts Road and had a glorious ski.  It’s closed to motorized snow travelers because it’s an elk protection area.  The sun was shining and the snow was perfect for gliding.  We could have kept going forever but knew we better turn around after a picnic lunch sitting on our skiis.

We made fresh ski tracks into the cabin.

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