A Blue Solstice

Just south of us are the local range of the Abajos.  Or, as generations of locals call them for reasons unknown to me: The Blue Mountains.

If the La Sals are the dramatic backdrop of Moab, the Blues are more rounded, sprawling, and gentle mountains.

They remind me a bit of the area of the Lost Creek Wilderness, where I used to hike so much in Colorado.

A place to escape the heat, hike, camp, or backpack with many options for tundra walks to canyon strolls. And a place not far for us to travel.

The summits take in the landscape of our portion of the Colorado Plateau.

We can see Canyonlands, off to Shiprock, Comb Ridge, and the famous Bears Ears framing Navajo Mountain that makes up an essential geological, religious, and prominent landmark.

But our main reason for visiting the Blues is that it is a place for us to hike, relax, enjoy the wildflowers, and chase butterflies.

And often in a literal sense.

The Abajos isn’t a marquee area for most. But that’s why we like them so much—a place to enjoy the simple pleasures of being outdoors.  And based on the generations of arborglyphs, I am sure we are not first people to feel this way by any stretch.

One of many 1930s era arborglyphs. Many from northern New Mexico came here at that time based on the date and place stamps carved in the vicinity.

And though our travels did not have us see any people on our route, we did see some local residents.

By staying local, we are discovering more of these lesser-known places and taking in our world. We can always hit the highlights, but the joys of local exploration mean discovering these local gems more. A place where we walk through meadows full of wildflowers, camp under a sky with no light pollution, and savor thoroughly the area that we call our home.


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