Thursday, October 5, 2017

Trip Memories....

Traveling thru Texas on the way to Santa Fe, NM

A trip to Colorado to photograph the aspens in the Fall led by my friend and mentor Lou Nettlehorst, good golly yes, I'm in. That plan began much earlier this year with my blogging/photographer buddy, Jeanne Stone. We have made 2 trips together, one to Charleston, SC and another to photograph the Hill Country in Texas during bluebonnet season. We are compatible companions, even with my snoring and enjoy the beauty of the outdoors and nature. We get it when we take 30 minutes to photograph a wildflower, unlike those who do not see how we photographer's see. You guys out there know what I'm talking about.  Jeanne has breathing issues in high altitudes and her doctor advised her to drive to Colorado instead of flying to help her lungs gradually get used to the difference. OK, instead of flying to Colorado as originally planned I flew to Dallas (where Jeanne lives). A wee bit off track but not only did we plan on joining Lou in Gunnison, Colorado on Saturday, Sept 16th we decided to extend our trip by driving from Dallas to Santa Fe, NM...

staying 2 nights in Santa Fe (which was not nearly enough), then drive to Ghost Ranch near Abiquiu, New Mexico, the land of Georgia O'Keefe spending one night there (again not nearly enough) and then on to Gunnison, CO to meetup with our group for dinner and a get-together before outings began early the next morning. And what I mean by early is setting my alarm for 3:30 AM, holy mackerel who gets up at 3:30 except maybe to go pee. Lou has a habit of choosing places that are a bit of a drive for those early morning sessions, but it's all worth it for the end results. 

The night we arrived in Santa Fe we ate at a restaurant known for their tasty margaritas. Now I'm a frozen fruity margarita fan so that was a choice I decidedly agreed upon. Jeanne could only take a few sips, while I enjoyed every last drop and didn't feel a thing. While in Santa Fe, we wandered thru the streets, popping into churches to admire their beauty, touring the Georgia O'Keefe Museum and stopping at the rail station where the rail runner still had regular scheduled departures. Notice the rainbow in the scene....I took this as a positive sign that our trip would be filled with good times. It was until the phone call from my daughter came on Sunday evening. 

After leaving Santa Fe we headed to Ghost Ranch, the iconic place where Georgia O'Keefe created some of her finest work. The ranch itself is over 22,000 acres, but to my surprise, Georgia only owned about 7 acres of this grand space. Apparently she tried with earnest to buy the whole 22,000 acres, but in the end the owner, Arthur Pack left everything, except the 7 acres to the Presbyterian Church. It now resides as a retreat and education center with over 300 classes taught there each year. In fact, our humble abode (and they are rather humble, with no AC and concrete floors) was right next to a large group of oil paint artists that were in the midst of their last creation before packing up and leaving the next day. What a panorama for a subject. 

Yeah, that's me on the back of the horse, not the good looking cowgirl in front leading, me on the back of blonde horse, clinging (not really) to the reins and trying desperately to take photos with my big girl camera as we rode around Ghost Ranch for 1 1/2 hours. Please don't inquire as to my butt condition after that ride. Let's just say, I didn't fall off and the scenery was amazing. 

Our two wranglers, very kind to us oldies....

That evening we wandered down to the entrance to Ghost Ranch to capture the sunset. You can see from the wagon that the golden hour was indeed golden.  Wonder if riding in the wagon would be any more comfortable than the back of the horse...probably not. And that sweet little cabin is the one (so I have been told) that was featured in the movie, "City Slickers" with Billy Crystal.  In the visitors center there are a whole slew of movie posters featuring movies that were filmed at Ghost Ranch. 

Next stop (except for a few minor pull off the road I need to get that shot episodes) Gunnison, CO. 

PS - Thank you all for leaving such kind comments on my last post. I so appreciate your prayers and love that you have expressed. From the bottom of my heart, thank you!! 

Until next time.....


  1. Dreamy shots, Deanna. Keep posting.

  2. Hot diggity! Two days in a row! This does my heart good, Deanna, to see you here. And your photos, well, let's just say I'm drooling all over my keyboard.


  3. Love your post and shots!! Laughed at your snoring comment!! Pretty soon you will have lots more adventure to post about. Keep it up!!

  4. I just love this....and this is why I love blogging Relaxing....a good read, great photos.. Enjoyed going along on this trip and my backside didn’t have to be saddle sore.

  5. Wonderful shots of your travels and I love that rainbow shot with the colourful train wagons. You certainly got to visit some lovely and really interesting places. I smiled at the comments of you on that handsome blond horse!

  6. Gorgeous Deanna, we visited Santa Fe from the UK a few years and I have happy memories of riding the rail runner from Santa Fe to Albuquerque I would love to return.

  7. Gorgeous views, photos . . .
    A part of the country I have not traveled . . . except for Colorado . . .
    I had not read much about Georgia O’Keefe . . . surprised I guess that she was from the west
    and the vast 22,000 acres. I think of her more in bright colors than golden, sand tones.
    You have enjoyed some wonderful photographic excursions . . . I hope you have more planned.
    I/we get to enjoy your style and talent . . . without a horse back ride.

  8. Well, I declare you must take a "do-over" on this trip! But what you did capture in your short time is, as always, stunning!

  9. Glad you enjoyed your Ghost Ranch time. You have some wonderful photos taken with your big girl camera, no doubt. Please consider supporting Ghost Ranch by entering your favorites in our Photo Calendar contest.

    Safe travels.

    Anna Maria

  10. What I like about the southwest is all the open space, what I don't like about the southwest is the lack of bodies of water. Ghost Ranch does sound delightful though.

  11. I like your sense of adventure! Your visit brought you almost to my back door. I like seeing the scenery through your lens.

  12. I am so glad that you enjoyed your time here, Deanna.
    The scenery is just gorgeous, and you captured it so beautifully.

  13. I just finished reading the post below this one. It was very touching and heartfelt. Again I am so sorry that you lost your husband but I know you are at peace because he is no longer suffering. - Now on to this post. So very beautiful. You are so fortunate to be able to travel and have companions to travel with who share the same joy of photography that you have. - Your photos are such a delight to view. My favorite here today was the train with the rainbow. - Of course they were all just wonderful. So glad to see you back on the blog. I agree with your thoughts about FB. The world needs more joy and less anger.

  14. Beautiful memories kept in your photographs, Deanna, so interesting to read about them.

  15. I love reading your narrative as well as seeing your beautiful photographs. It sounds like a dream trip, even with the horse back riding, and I am sure you and Jeanne kept each other in stitches.....


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