The latest of travel is always the hardest. While I was excited to get back into the swing of our routine, I was definitely sad to leave magical New Mexico, especially after everything we saw and experienced in such a short amount of time.
For our last day, we ventured to Origin New Mexico for a tour of a hand-carved cave. Located near Ojo Caliente, this cave is the work of artist Ra Paulette.
Like the other hikes on this trip, I also found this one challenging because I was holding my toddler. Overall, I think a healthy adult wouldn’t find it particularly rigorous or that long, especially if you don’t have a 30-pound toddler nestled at your hip. You’ll definitely need sneakers and lots of water as you make your way up towards the cave.
During the tour, our guide stopped at certain points to tell us the story of Ra Paulette, who remarkably didn’t start this work until he was 40 years old. Once we finally made our way up the mini mountain, we had the option to take our shoes off and experience the space and the sand in-between our toes. The kids even had the option to play with sand tools that were located in the space.
Walking into the space, I was amazed by what he had created. This modern-day cave digger carved and created an incredible work of art through sandstone that was awe-inspiring and simply incredible. It was truly remarkable to see his hand-carved work that included ridges, shelfs, windows and rocks that were carefully placed inside the cave.
After walking around the space, we took a moment to sit. You can also mediate, chant or just linger around the cave. It was the perfect environment for my two-year-old who plopped down and started touching and playing with the sand. There were tons of little nooks and sits around the space to relax and soak in the wonder as well as a guest book to sign if you wanted to.
Not only in awe of the space, I was amazed at how Ra did this work all alone (except for the company of his dog) and even more so that he wasn’t a trained artist. Our guide later told us that he isn’t a trained artist nor does he consider himself one! One look at the cave and you’ll find that hard to believe.
We were then free to walk around the cave, soaking even more of the beauty that was all around us. Surrounded by all of the mountains and trees, and filled with wonder, it was a fitting (but still sad) end to our beautiful trip.
For more info, please visit: https://originnewmexico.com/sandstone-art-caves-origin-new-mexico/