SchoolArts Room

Tent Rocks: Kasha-Katuwe National Monument

By Nancy Walkup, posted on Aug 28, 2016

In honor of the hundred anniversary of the national parks, we visited a second national monument this weekend: the Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument near Cochiti Pueblo in northern New Mexico.



Tent Rocks is named for its cone-shaped rock formations, the products of volcanic eruptions that occurred 6 to 7 million years ago that left pumice, ash, and tuff deposits over 1000 feet thick.








The New Mexico sky is really this color. I've never seen a bluer sky.






Part of the trail is through narrow slot canyons.





You wouldn't want to be in here during a rainstorm.





 It does help to have walking sticks.








Another truly blue sky.





 These distinctive rock formations are called hoodoos. They range from a few feet to 90 feet tall.





Out of the slot canyons the trail goes up.





Here you can see the hoodoos we walked through on our way up the trail. 





And an overlook of the entire area.


As an art teacher, even though I don't have a classroom anymore,  I still see everything through that lens and I can't help thinking of how I would share this experience with my students. Nature, science, geology, Pueblo Indian history and culture, photography, and color theory all come together here. Today it was also very reassuring that so many families with children were on these trails, too, sharing these experiences. (Though we were annoyed by the one person who just had to talk on her phone at the very top of the trail, she was the only person we encountered doing that.)