I want to share with you the amazing afternoon I had yesterday. I decided to blow off work and take an adventure, which I do at least once a week now. I did not have to leave the county I live in (Larimer). A 20 mile ride north of Fort Collins is an amazing place that has been a gathering place for humans for over 10 mellinia.
Once called the Lindenmeier Ranch named for the folks that lived there, it then became known as the Lindenmeier Site, an archaeological site run by the Smithsonian Institution, which is now renamed the Soapstone Prairie Natural Area (purchased and preserved by the City of Fort Collins, how smart). This is one of the most important archaeological sites in all of North America! And one of the most sacred sites to Native Americans of many tribes. After going there I feel I better understand why...it is a POWERFUL PLACE.
Looking SE from Soapstone Prairie Natural Area
I traveled there by myself which my friends later discussed over dinner as perhaps not the brightest of ideas, but it is what I wanted. Let me tell you why...when you reach the end of the paved roads...
...where the paved road ends so does Google Maps, and shortly there after so does phone service and you find yourself off-grid and within a far more authentic environment, that gives one a far more realistic perspective of being in relationship to the natural world.
There was not a human being for miles and miles. I didn't even see another vehicle the entire afternoon except when I hit pavement again on the route home. The isolation and openness is magnificent. The sounds...what you can hear without all the man made noises clanging and banging is astonishing. There you feel a sense of the loss of control over the situation somehow. One finds oneself being forced to become flexible with not knowing what will happen next. It is also how I lived years of my life in the past in my late 20's and it feels good down deep to feel this again somehow. It is a juxtaposition of the proximity of space inside and out. Feeling emotionally connected within this huge, open-sky space of the west is important to me. It heightens the senses in an extreme way and arouses the spirit. It is visceral and palpable and very inspirational. It is easy to feel free here.
This site was discovered in 1924 and the bulk of the professional work collecting Folsom points and giant ancient Bison skeletal remains (showing they were over 7 feet tall!) and the very first bead makers were here too! The dig was done by the Smithsonian Institution from 1934-1940. This work carbon dated the site back over 10,000 years!!
Please take a couple of moments and watch this video about this place. You will get a much better feeling and sense of sacredness at this special site. It also explains much of why it is so important. Thank you Brenda for your work on this video produced by the Fort Collins Museum & Discovery Science Center, with help from many people including my new friend Dr Brenda Martin.
I am trying to remove my biases, but I find it difficult because Colorado is so much more genuine, so much more laid back, so much more connected to our history and hopefully our future than are the cities of the east. I have been here in NOCO now for almost 2 months and have literally only seen 2 men in starched white shirts and ties. I have not seen any high heels since the airport. I have only seen a handful of people smoking cigarettes. I am still blown away by this.
But more so by the magnitude of grand BEAUTY all around me here.
Unbelievable beauty is very healing and fills your psyche with new color palettes. This was one of the many reservoirs I passed on my way home. The magnificent little Aspen front and center. This is my favorite photo from the day. I stayed here a long time just to take in and feel the color.
Then there was this guy...a very large Red Tail Hawk. With the reddest tail I have ever seen.