Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Having left I-25 South yesterday morning at Socorro, I meandered west until I found myself in the Gila National Forest. I've been missing, I think.

Left valuables in a cabin in Glenwood, then backtracked three miles to Alma, where I traversed a canyon laced with red rock arches and the chipped tombstones of 19th-century soldiers and miners. As dusk descended, I imagined the presence of cougars and Mogollon spirits, so I rock-hopped briskly back to Glenwood.

Awoke this morning at 4, jazzed to be driftless. After browsing through tourist brochures, I motored south to the San Francisco Hot Springs trailhead.

The pre-dawn hike was dreamlike--crystal fossils, spiny plants, and a star-skulled roadrunner lit the path. A mile or so in, I waded pantless in the sandy-bottomed S.F. River, to get to three steaming springs excavated from the bank. In each, boulders and mud held off the river's flow. I sank into deepest and warmest, to my chin.

Surrounded by earth, wind, fire, and hot water, I greeted Madame Sun.

(Two ravens circled. Blissful and devout.)

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Fantastic! Finding yourself ain't bad. Aye?

Love, Dad

Jay said...

There weren't any alien sports cars hovering above you when you were soaking in those hot springs, were there?