Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Sights That Captured Me Along FR181

The contrast between the charcoal trunks of the dead oak and the live, green oak sprouts is startling.   I like how the dead shrubs are so twisted.

I always wonder why these rocks, perched above the road, look layered like slate.

View toward eastern arm of Cerro Grande from along eastern end of FR181.  The young aspens that have not leafed out are probably victims of last year's wildfire on the Pajarito Plateau.  The landscape burns, then burns again but the beauty remains.

Big Green Puddle on FR181/American Spring Road

Monday, July 30, 2012

One Sign Does Not a Closure Make

This sign is at the eastern terminus of FR181 where it intersects West Jemez Road, near the twin water tanks.   The "fine print" verbiage below Area Closed is not easily visible to my aging eyes.  I did a double-take to be sure I wasn't breaking the law by hiking here.

I didn't see another sign like this further uphill forbidding motorized travel downhill but I only walked part of the road.  FR181, also known as American Spring Road, begins just up the escarpment into the Jemez, off NM4, and winds it way down to West Jemez Road.  It gets really rough on the descent; but even so, I've seen vehicles attempting it!