Saturday, May 12, 2012
Pecos National Historical Park
Hi everyone! During my last few days in New Mexico, my family mostly spent time together visiting cousins and aunties. Still, we had time to make it up into the mountains to visit Pecos National Historical Park. I really wanted to visit this park, because they award Junior Ranger badges in Spanish! My moms and I drove through the hills, past a truck selling chile powder, and finally arrived at Pecos.
The hike at Pecos is pretty short- it only took about 30 minutes. As we headed out from the Visitor Center, we saw this sign. Yikes! I thought it would be awesome to see a rattlesnake, but we didn't. I guess that's probably for the best.
Pecos Pueblo was one of the many Pueblos in New Mexico, but about 100 years ago, their numbers grew too small, so they left and joined other Pueblos. The village is still there and it's fun to explore a bit! I imagined what it would have been like to be a girl living at Pecos a hundred years ago. Next to the Pueblo was a large Spanish mission, so there were many Hispanic families living at Pecos as well.
Even though the hike was short, my family got to see the beautiful landscape surround Pecos Pueblo. Some of my friends have told me that they imagine New Mexico as being brown, but in many places, it's very green. The weather is a little crazy though- even though it was mid-April, it started snowing pretty hard on our drive back down into Santa Fe!
Here I am with the Pecos Mission behind me. Hundreds of years ago, Spanish priests came to settle this part of New Mexico. They built a large church, but it was destroyed during the Pueblo Revolt in 1680. The Pueblo peoples rose up against the Spanish and kept them out of New Mexico, but they came back after 12 years. This church is the second church. It was abandoned when everyone left Pecos.
When we finished the hike, I still had a few more questions to answer in my Junior Ranger book. The Visitor Center has a really nice museum that tells about the Pueblo and Hispanic people who lived at Pecos. When I finished the booklet, this retired ranger swore me in. Even though Pecos is one of the smaller park sites in New Mexico, I was the third Junior Ranger that afternoon! Two boys from France finished just before me. The retired ranger let me choose if I wanted an English-language or Spanish-language badge, so I chose Spanish!
If you're ever in Santa Fe, this is a fun little park to visit. You can check out their website at this link: www.nps.gov/peco.
This is my last New Mexico post. A few days after we visited Pecos, my moms and I flew back to New York City. Even though I'm homeschooled, we only had a week off because of my parents' work and my ballet lessons.
Have you ever been to a place where different cultures lived at the same time? What was it like?