Tag Archives: Great Salt Plains

Summer Lovin’.

It has been ages since I’ve updated my blog. I have been busy and unfortunately writing is always what gets pushed aside til later. So much for wanting to be a writer, eh? I should probably sit down and make a more conscious effort to be consistent. However, this summer I managed to do many things that one could only imagine. I will list them here, with pictures of course, but then each will get it’s own post. At least that’s the plan.

One of my best friends was married – way back in May.

The happy couple (photo taken by Rachael Chung Ceballos).

June was relatively uneventful, unless you count my little one getting pneumonia. We made sure to stay out of the pool which made out hot summer even hotter. He’s doing much better now and we’ve spent the last couple of weeks pretending to be fish. I finished physical therapy for my knee, funny story there – another time though. I agreed to be a Cub Scout Den Leader. I finished having my wisdom teeth pulled and agreed to be VBS director for my church. Okay, so June was more eventful than I originally thought. :)

July was just as eventful, more so maybe, as I was travelling out of state with a group of high-school students and recent graduates. I am nearly finished with my degree (May 2013!) but was lacking a physical science so I opted to take Geology over the summer. The class actually turned out to be a ten day trip through parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Colorado. I would say this is the absolute best way to learn Geology, or maybe any course if the trip is planned accordingly.  Of course I was also in the midst of planning VBS. Note to future VBS Directors, do not travel out of town for two weeks the week before VBS begins unless you have someone acting as your second brain. Here are some places we visited.

The Great Salt Plains near Jet, Oklahoma.

When driving to the Salt Plains it looks as though an ocean has formed right in the middle of Western Oklahoma.

Dinosaur tracks found at Clayton Lake, New Mexico.

Aside from what the museums hold, this was my first encounter with dinosaur tracks. Definitely a place I want to take the boys before they outgrow their love of dinosaurs.

Capulin Volcano about 50 miles north of Clayton Lake, New Mexico.

This was taken from inside the Capulin Volcano. This is another very cool place to take my boys.

Westcliffe City Park, Westcliffe, Colorado

The City Park in Westcliffe, Colorado was a great place to stop for lunch and let the kids high school students run off some energy.

Local Residence, Westcliffe, Colorado

While waiting for our rooms at the lodge to be readied, we made a necessary pit stop at a friend’s home in Westcliffe, Colorado. where we watched a storm roll in over the San Isabel Mountains.

Hermit Basin Lodge, Westcliffe, Colorado.

Hermit Basin is Colorado’s best kept secret. This is the view from the bottom of the ski slope. That building is where we ate our meals and held class.

Indian Sunshine from the Rhyolite Quarry just outside of Westcliffe, Colorado

This was the first quarry we visited after arriving in Colorado. We found a plethora of Indian Sunshine as well as Opal.

Obsidian Quarry outside of Westcliffe, Colorado.

The white nodules are made of Rhyolite and the black is the Obsidian. It is a very sharp rock and we were cautioned against trying to climb the sides.

Canon City, Colorado.

Everyday we were in Colorado it rained. Canon City is about an hour from Hermit Basin so the goal on this particular day was to make it back to the lodge before this storm came in. We were mostly successful.

Phantom Canyon Road.

Phantom Canyon Road. Words cannot express the sheer terror we felt at meeting other cars while driving this road, if it can be called a road. There are places where the drop off the shoulder is a mere 2,000 feet.

Cripple Creek, Colorado.

Cripple Creek, Colorado is the quaint little town at the top of Phantom Canyon Road, roughly 10,000 feet elevation.

Molly Kathleen Gold Mine, Cripple Creek, Colorado.

We rode the lift to 1,000 feet underground in order to tour a previously active gold mine. There are stretches of the mine that are still active and the story behind it is very interesting.

Whitewater Rafting on the mighty Arkansas River.

I don’t recall ever seeing the Oklahoma portion of the Arkansas River with this much water in it. Yet, we were able to raft down nine miles of the Colorado section, a well earned day of fun before heading home.

As you can see summer has been a blast so far and I haven’t even touched VBS. Vacation Bible School was pretty amazing. Normally a VBS director will have six to nine months in order to plan, pay for, and decorate the necessary items for VBS. I had six weeks. All in all it worked out just fine. There were roughly thirty children in attendance throughout the four days and five of those accepted Jesus into their hearts. That’s what it’s all about, spreading the undiluted message of Christ to the next generation. I’m ready for next year!

Amazing Wonders Aviation VBS Cake

Probably the best part of taking the Geology trip just before VBS is that the trip matched the VBS curriculum. During VBS we shared about the Paracutin Volcano in Mexico. Well, the Capulin Volcano that I visited is a nearly perfect cinder cone volcano and nearly identical to the Paracutin. This is just one example but there were many times during my trip that I was reminded of God’s awesome power.


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