return to the land of enchantment

We have now returned to the land of enchantment at long last. We drove straight to campus just in time for me to register and work an hour in the computer lab. I hadn’t been expecting that, especially after 32 hours of driving over three days, so I’m sure I came off as an imbecile, what with my mushy brain and all.

The views are as lovely as ever and I got to take in a Santa Fe sunset at the meet and greet tonight. This is my first experience without my crew from our first time in Santa Fe, so it felt weird to be here without getting hugs from long-missed friends and getting razzed by Keith. I remember the meet and greet that year well. I knew as soon as I met those folks that I’d found my people. I have no doubt that the people here will be amazing and I’m looking forward to seeing some folks I noticed will be with us from Vermont last year.

When Bryan got to the park (as I met and greeted), our site was taken. Bummer. So, he snagged another spot (only two left!) and came back in to retrieve me. When we got up there, we had a celebratory beer and hit the hay.

Chilly but happy to be back at Hyde, I rolled out of my sleeping bag, got the Jetboil going, made some coffee, and dug around for oatmeal packets. It was doing that ritual under towering pines that brought a big grin to my face: we were really back. We’ve spent a lot of hours reminiscing about Santa Fe and Hyde State Park in the nearly two years since we left.

We hit the trail to do our usual morning hike at Hyde. Having not adjusted AT ALL to the altitude, we huffed and puffed our way up the Hyde Park Loop, which goes from 8500 (campground) to 9440 feet in a couple miles. We didn’t lug the camera, but the views from that trail are breathtaking. On one side, mountains all around, just across the canyon. You can see Big Tesuque, where Bryan saw Big Horn sheep grazing at the top. On the other, it opens up and you can see all of Santa Fe and all the mountains in the distance. Considering the altitude, I was actually pleased with how I felt. I still think the first bike ride to campus is going to be brutal, but I’ll make it.

After that, we sought out the rangers to make a plan for getting our campsite back. The guy was on a two-week permit, ending today. Just as we were getting ready to leave to bring me in to town to work, he took off. We claimed our spot and now I’m working. Apologies for not having photos, but I forgot the little chip. Tonight is the opening reception dinner, which I’m looking forward to and then classes start tomorrow. Bryan is coming in at some point to fill out the obligatory application for a ranger job (a second job came up after the state said they had to hire someone to start in May or they’d take the funding). I’m anxious to find out how much he’ll be working and how that will coincide with our duties as campground hosts since I have to work 20 hours in the computer lab too…

No, the yurt is not up. Yes, we’re tenting it and everything is still in the car and trailer. Sigh. We’ll get there, despite my having class and then work until 5 tomorrow and Wednesday. Hopefully we can get it put up Tuesday before my class at two? It sure was nice having a week or two between school and Bread Loaf so we could get here early enough to get settled before classes start! Nonetheless, we’re thrilled to be back! Photos to come!

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