Shiprock in New Mexico is Something to Behold

XplorMor Team, Bryan and I, were on a road trip across the United States last year. On this particular day, we were driving along US Route 160 from Four Corners Monument in Teec Nos Pos, Arizona to Valley of the Gods in Utah when in the distance the peak of what looked to be a ginormous rocky outcrop appeared. I googled for what it could be, and found a vague write-up on something called Shiprock in New Mexico. So, we decided to take a detour as it was early enough in the day, and turned off on Highway 64. As we drove closer, the size became more and more unbelievable. It’s jagged details coming into focus, looked as though we were headed straight into J.R.R. Tolkien’s Mordor. We’ve both traveled around the world but never seen such a solitary massive formation jutting high out of low-lying plains.       

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Shiprock, also known as Tse’ Bid’ ai’, is located in northern New Mexico, USA

Shiprock pierces the flat plateau, looming an incredible 1700 feet over the sparse desert lands of northern New Mexico. This magnificent rock formation, left from an ancient volcanic plume, is sacred to the Navajo Nation. It is known to the tribal people as Tse’ Bit’ ai’, or translated into English, The Winged Rock/Rock with Wings. The Navajo name comes from an ancient myth which tells how the rock was once a giant bird that transported the ancestral people of the Navajo Nation to their lands in the American Southwest.

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Looking out to Shiprock in New Mexico, USA

The Navajo ancestors fleeing a war-tribe crossed a narrow ocean far to the remote north but could not outrun their enemy. Their tribal shamans prayed to the Great Spirit for help. Then in answer to their call, the ground rose beneath them and formed into an enormous bird. The myth says that for an entire day and night the ancestral people flew south on the bird. Finally, at sundown the bird landed at the sight of where Shiprock now stands.

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Shiprock, also known as Tse’ Bid’ ai’, is located in northern New Mexico, USA

From ancient times, Tse’ Bit’ ai’ has been a pilgrimage place of major importance to the tribal Peoples. When the rock was climbed in 1939, it was taken as a disrespect of the site’s holiness. Finally in 1970 the rock formations were designated as off limits to climbers, and once again accorded the respect due a sacred place.

Shiprock in New Mexico is something to behold, and if you have time, we’d recommend the detour. But be warned that signage and roads to the site are poorly monitored and not maintained. If you go, we’d love for you to share your photos and experience with us!   

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Further views from the area around Shiprock in northern New Mexico, USA

National Parks Fee Free Day This Monday!

National Parks Fee Free Day! On Monday, January 16, 2017, all 400+ U.S. National Parklands are providing free admission in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. So if you have the day off, why not spend it in a National Park or at a National Monument or Historic Site? Find a park to visit at FindYourPark.com.

The National Parks are yours to enjoy and appreciate. A visit to one of these national treasures is the perfect way to celebrate the beauty and heritage of the United States. So this Monday, bring a friend and get out there to enjoy America’s National Parks… and share your photos!

First Light Illuminates Badwater XplorMor IncCopyright © XplorMor Inc [Beach;Bocas;Bocas del Toro;Ocean;Panama;Zapatillos;sea;snorkeling;white sand]

Badwater Basin, Death Valley National Park, California, USA

A bit of history…  On March 1, 1872, Congress passed an act that officially established Yellowstone National Park “as a public park or pleasuring-ground for the benefit and enjoyment of the people.” This event started a worldwide movement. And, today our planet houses more than 1200 national parks or equivalent preserves.

Furthering efforts to support and protect our park system, President Woodrow Wilson signed an act on August 25, 1916, creating the National Park Service, a federal bureau in the Department of the Interior. This “Organic Act” states that “the Service thus established shall promote and regulate the use of the Federal areas known as national parks, monuments and reservations . . . by such means and measures as conform to the fundamental purpose of the said parks, monuments and reservations, which purpose is to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.”

Everglades National Park XplorMor Inc

Hiking in Everglades National Park, California, USA

The U.S. National Park System now comprises more than 400 designated areas covering more than 84 million acres in 49 States, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, Saipan, and the Virgin Islands. These areas have been deemed to hold national significance, and therefore protection in accordance with various acts of Congress.

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Panum Crater Hike, Inyo National Forest, California, USA

More than 20,000 National Park Service employees now care for America’s national parks and “work with communities across the nation to help keep local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities.” Learn more and get involved at www.nps.gov

Help Bring Solar Power to a Children’s School in Cambodia

Something truly exciting is happening! This is the launch of the first project, and fundraiser, from newly founded non-profit: XplorMor International Inc, a recognized 501(c)3. Funds raised will be used for our Solar Power Project at the school in Run TA-Ek Eco Village situated outside Siem Reap, Cambodia in Southeast Asia. The Eco Village is one of the first all solar homestay projects coordinated with the government in Cambodia. Give Now.

Run Ta-Ek Eco Village, Siem Reap, Cambodia, Julia Thomsen XplorMor Inc.

In the classroom

Run Ta-Ek Eco Village

Run Ta-Ek is a partnership between the APSARA National Authority (Cambodia’s Authority for the Protection of the Site and Management of the Region of Angkor) and the Khmer people living around and inside Cambodia’s Angkor Archaeological Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The focus is on eco-tourism, creating jobs, education and a sustainable future for villagers who move out of Angkor to Run Ta-Ek.

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Children playing in front of Julia’s camera

Currently over 100 families have been given homes and lands by the APSARA Authority. These families have children in need of education. A school was built within the 1,000 hectare community grounds to meet this important need. However, it lacks certain necessities such as electrical power. This campaign aims to raise the funding required for installation of solar power panels, lighting, and fans. The goal is to make the school sustainable, comfortable and productive for the children’s education development. And, to pave the way for future advancements like computers.

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Smiling Peace along the lake shore

XplorMor International Incorporated is a recognized United States 501(c)3 non-profit. XplorMor is focused on projects with a societal benefit and outstanding universal value. Your donation may be a tax deduction.

Thank you for your support! Let’s come together and light up the lives of school children in Cambodia! GIVE NOW