4/18/2016 - GUMO
I've been here now for three days into a month long artist residency at the Guadalupe Mountains National Park (GUMO). The second day, I walked for seven hours up to "the notch" in McKittrick Canyon. I'm not sure what the elevation change was but it was likely 1500 ft or more. I took all my painting gear but could not paint due to the wind, the fact that I had to exit the canyon by 6pm and that I got a late start. Two days later, my legs are still aching from the climb.
I managed to take a few photos and a quick drawing of the back side of the canyon. It is quite spectacular here. This morning I arose to El Capitan shrouded in clouds. I'm staying in a flat at the park in a compound that has a communal feel.
The staff at GUMO are wonderful. There are those who move around from park to park and those who are permanently stationed here. The first night there was a farewell party for Eli, a young chap who is a park ranger/cop. He is headed to Yellowstone to work the back country on a horse. How exciting! I found him and all the others I met that night to be intellectual, helpful and inviting. I think I could stay here forever.