It’s so difficult to describe Chiricahua National Monument. I was sure we had left planet Earth and travelled out somewhere far, far away in another galaxy.
The Park sits in Cochise County in the South-East corner of Arizona. The diversity is unmatchable. To get there, you travel along a valley floor through fairly desolate prairie lands (especially this time of year) to the gateway of the Chiricahua Mountains.
The Faraway Ranch sits between the Gate and the Visitor Center and is worth a look-around to understand how this area developed and then became a tourist destination.
Beyond the Center, Bonita Canyon winds through all sorts of rock formations. They call the park the Wonderland of Rocks and as you travel along, you can understand where that name came from.
Columns and pinnacles of rock rise skyward out from the vegetation.
These huge, vertical structures were (and continue to be)created from erosion penetrating joints in the soft volcanic rocks.
Travelling further into the park, the view expands and widened and you get a different picture of the extraordinary power and beauty of Nature.
Chiricahua was certainly one of the highlights of our 2011-2012 Winter.