Birthday Hike

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Today I’d like to invite you to a nice little hike celebrating my birthday.

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In the morning, before the monsoon clouds become enormous mountains, we hike along the edge of one of the world’s great supervolcanoes — in the Jemez mountains of New Mexico.

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We start out on a narrow path along a river,

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making a slow climb up a steep canyon.

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We move past huge fallen timber,

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house-sized boulders, and…

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volcanic rocks that flew miles through the air during a great explosion two million years ago.

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After two hours we arrive at our destination, a natural hot springs,

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the water blocked by dams and moving slowly through several small pools.

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Some special plant-beings grow close by in the forest, including

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a curious rust-colored plant, without chlorophyll, that blooms in the shade,

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and ponderosa pines, whose bark has the scent of vanilla.

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The trees break at some point and become nutrition for many other beings.

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After a nice bath and a delicious picnic, we dawdled our way back down.

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This is New Mexico, so along the way we find strong cactus asserting themselves…

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as well as amazing spiraling wooden logs…

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and early fruits of the late summer.

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Photo Tony Sager

Down at the bottom of the canyon, the clouds have darkened and built up into mountains. We arrive at a cafe for a chai only shortly before the first heavy rain comes down.

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Photo Tony Sager

But there we are warm and dry, having already enjoyed a bath hours earlier, in the midst of volcanic rocks and pines and natural wilderness high up in the mountains.

Thanks for joining,

Love,

Anka

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