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The main point of this adventure is to see the Autumn Equinox at the Chaco Culture National Monument. I had tried to see it last year, but instead had a mishap on the way. Also, I found that the campground was full and I would not have been able to stay there in any case. So this year I am going earlier to assure of a spot in the campground. It has been many years since I have been tent camping, so I expect this to be a learning experience. I just hope I did not forget to bring something important.
As usual, it takes longer to get going than expected. Once started, the trip is uneventful. The campground is reached by 4:30, and even by that time the choice tent sites were taken. There are few empty spots by evening. I’m glad I came Monday for the Equinox which is on Friday morning.
Setting up the tent is a small struggle. I have a little scare when I can not find the tent poles at first, but they showed up. I am setting up the stove when I find I had forgotten to bring the 20-gallon propane tank. All is not lost, because I had bought two small propane bottles just this morning. It was a spur of the moment purchase. I did not think I needed these bottles because the stove and lantern could both be run off the large tank. Now I’m happy I made that impulsive purchase. I won’t have to eat cold food all week.
About sunset I wander to the campfire circle. The camp host gives a campfire talk on the subject of ravens. Did you know that ravens have the largest range of vocalization, second only to humans? A coyote wanders by during the talk, probably attracted by the recorded raven calls the speaker was playing. The whole audience stands to try to see the beast. A bat flutters overhead. All this against a most beautiful sunset behind Fajada Butte.