We finally did the loop hike through Canyon Sin Nombre (GPS log) yesterday – it’s such a wonderful place! To begin with, here are three verticals of the hardy and undefeated plants that made the harsh rock walls and the dry muddy soil their home.
Just as we had climbed out of the canyon and were standing on the ridge above it, we saw rain approaching in the distance. Soon it began to drizzle, and then the drizzle turned into a good rainfall and we got pretty soaked. It was great, nevertheless. I had the feeling the plants immediately turned a notch greener in the rain, and a heightened sensation of being alive, in this rather desolate place.
There’s a monument at the nearby the Border Patrol checkpoint, created by local artist Nina Karavasiles and it contains a quote. It came to my mind once more as we hiked:
“This is the Desert. There’s Nothing Out Here. Nothing.”
I don’t know whose words these are (maybe originally from Lawrence of Arabia?) but I’m beginning to disagree with them more and more. Granted, there is not much human and man-made out there (though traces of civilization attempts do exist, some quite terrifying, like in the nearby Carrizo Impact Area), but the Earth and nature are so raw and pure in this place, it’s hard to attribute “nothing” to that for me. I think that our pretty suburbs and cities with all their concrete and artificial (non-native) greenery are “full of nothing” by comparison.