We got up early to finish packing up the FMC and head out of Chaco before the serious heat hit. The thirteen miles of washboard road didn't seem so bad on the way out -- we didn't see many other vehicles much less have the opportunity to run any of them off the road. Still, hitting REAL pavement felt good!
We were proud of #708 though -- it held up to the killer dirt road with great grace!
We stopped at Aztec National Monument -- can't get enough of the Ancient Pueblo People Ruins. Aztec is one of the places, along with Mesa Verde, that the ancients went when they left Chaco. The cool thing about this site is that there is a restored Great Kiva that you can go into and experience. It gives a much better feel for what these spaces were like than my imagination can provide. (Photos from Aztec are on Greg's camera and will be uploaded shortly!)
After Aztec, we stopped at an old-fashioned A&W for lunch. We couldn't pull the FMC up to the drive-in spots so we went inside. The kids were very impressed by the order over the phone technology! It was a good lunch!
The switch from New Mexico to Colorado is an amazing one. The topography and temperature change are dramatic as you start climbing into the San Juan Mountains. The Animas River Valley is absolutely beautiful and if you get a chance to visit, you definitely should. We stayed at a little campground up Hwy 160 called Lightner Creek Campground. Very nice park . . . very nice people.
Ruthie and I went into to town to get groceries and to replace her flip-flops. There was a fantastic (albeit short) thunderstorm with great claps of thunder and huge, cooling drops of rain. It didn't last long but we loved it! So refreshing!
And, oh my goodness, after 3 days in Chaco, nothing felt better than the hot shower at the campground!