Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Apache Lake Lowered Fifty Feet


We took these photos in November 2006 after the water level in Apache Lake was lowered by fifty feet to enable crews to perform maintenance on Horse Mesa Dam. We wandered the shores while the lake was lowered finding artifacts, boat anchors, lots of fishing lures and even spotting some once submerged railroad tracks that  were used to transport materials to Roosevelt Dam during its construction in 1906.

Apache Lake has always been a favorite place for us. It's located below Roosevelt Lake along the Apache Trail. The scenic views from Apache Lake are some of the prettiest in Arizona. Great camping and fishing! When boating on Apache Lake you pass canyon walls rising hundreds of feet above the lake, rivaled only by the submerged canyons below.

Driving the Apache Trail and coming upon Apache Lake is always an impressive sight, it's a "must see" when visiting Arizona.
                                                 The Apache Trail

Lore and legend cloak canyon walls with an air of mystery
Sheer cliffs of stark grandeur careen toward peaceful rivers
Silent breezes are accented by cries from soaring hawks
We envy their freedom to view this world from a unique vantage
Boulders balanced upon tenuous perches
as though placed there by playful hands
Spires and minarets of sandstone by no accident call to mind holy places
Lakes of unfathomed depth keep secret the hidden vista below
Each mile is given to us as a gift revealed as we venture on
Dizzying heights give way to peaceful meadows,
our senses are assailed by what unfolds before us
Layers of time are seen in ageless formations
Cactus basks beneath the broiling sun luxuriating in the nourishing heat
Storm clouds sneak in unnoticed by enthralled travelers
The sky darkens to rich gray hues, a deep growl of thunder echoes
followed by unleashed streaks of lightening splitting the boiling clouds
The hawk dives for cover sensing what is to come
Monsoon rains fall fast and hard upon the arid landscape
The sand drinks 'til sated then rejects the leftovers
filling once dry washes and gullies as waters stampede
to lower points
Rocks with eons old addresses move with the torrential onslaught
seeking relocation
As quickly as the storm enters, it vanishes
as the clouds are tossed aside by the jealous sun, eager to retake his domain
The hawk shakes and preens droplets from his feathers,
then leaps joyously forth to survey the changes
Catching a current, he ascends smoothly,
dipping and gliding his dance beneath the sun
Reaching a rise, we pause to survey the panoramic wonder spread before us
Our eyes try to reject the reality of such contradiction
Green, brown, blue and purple assault our senses in a riotous ballet of colors
Moving on, we see scorched ground which bespeaks a bygone day
when hellish blazes charred the already arid earth
Tiny shoots of infant cacti pierce the sand refusing to concede defeat
Weary and dusty we come upon man's imposition on the land
Rising from the depth of a canyon, steel and concrete seems alien in these
surroundings, daring to ration water to the valleys below.
Exhilaration is felt as we reach trails end,
yet the lore and legend beckons our return
Our spirits are lifted, our souls have been nourished
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©1999-2007 Laura Aden