Garden of the Gods – National Natural Landmark, Colorado Springs

Ten miles west of Colorado Springs there exists 3,300 acres of land featuring incredible geologic formations, the result of ancient sedimentary beds of red, white, blue, and purple sandstones, limestone and conglomerates.

Garden of the GodsThe area was named “Garden of the Gods” by Rufus Cable in August 1859 and became a free access park in 1909 at the wish of Charles Elliott Perkins, whose children donated the land to the city of Colorado Springs.

Garden of the GodsThe park boosts over 15 miles of trails and is a popular destination for walking, hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. The steep incline of the rocks are also an attraction for mountain climbers who may scale the various peaks once they have obtained an annual permit.

Garden of the GodsThe trip from which these images were captured occured in late March 2013, following a weekend snowfall that had melted in most places but still coated the higher elevation mountains.

Garden of the GodsUnfortunately, time constraints only allowed a 30-minute visit, when one should really plan to spend an entire day to capture the beauty contained therein. Thus, the more than quick tour resulted in shots being taken while entering the park (from the car) and during a rather fast and hasty less than half-mile walk in to view the closer rocks.

Garden of the GodsFossils from the dinosaur species Theiophytalia kerri were discovered in 1878 and there are, evidently, more dinosaur fossils available to be seen, as well as marine forms and plant fossils. For bird lovers, Garden of the Gods is the home to more than 130 species, among them are canyon wrens, swallows and white-throated swifts.

Garden of the GodsOnly an hour’s drive south of Denver this park is an absolute must-see for any nature lover. A full day is recommended to fully appreciate all that that Garden of the Gods has to offer, as a half-hour jaunt through the area only makes one want to go back.

Garden of the GodsOver For Now.

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La Tour Eiffel – The Eiffel Tower

The idea of what would become La Tour Eiffel, the Eiffel Tower, was first envisioned in 1884 and completed as the entry arch and as a suitable centerpiece for the proposed 1889 Exposition Universelle, a World’s Fair which would mark the centennial of the French Revolution.
Le Tour Eiffel
Standing 320 metres (1,050 feet) tall, Tour Eiffel held the title of the tallest man-made structure in the world for 41 years, until the Chrysler Building in New York City grabbed the crown in 1930.

The tower, located on the Champ de Mars in Paris, is the most-visited paid monument in the world, with over 250 million people having made the ascent to the observatory’s upper platform. One could only hazzard a wild guess how many more millions of people have made the trek to view Tour Eiffel in person, but did not pay to make the trip into the lower troposphere.

As one of the most recognizable structures on Earth, and one more of mankind’s engineering marvels, one cannot truly say that have visited Paris without, minimally, walking up to and touching the tower. The far better option, of course, is to view the beauty of Paris (and miles of France, as well) from the upper deck.

Over For Now.

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