Near Alamosa in Alamosa County, Colorado — The American Mountains (Southwest)
On Sacred Ground
”We are the ‘Dine’ (pronounced dee neh); the Spanish called us the Navajo. We call the mountain that stands before you ‘Sisnaajinii’. This mountain is one of our four sacred peaks in the Navajo Land. You may now know this mountain as Mount Blanca; it was given this name by the first Spanish explorers who came to the San Luis Valley.
“‘Sisnaajinii’, or ‘White Shell Mountain’, is the eastern boundary and the doorway into Navajo Land. We believe that the first beings, ‘First Man’ and ‘First Woman’, came up from the underworld and placed a grain of sand that made these four mountains. We dressed them in four colors and put them at the edge of Navajo Sacred Land.”
The Navajo People
(Upper Left Photo Caption)
The Sangre de Cristo Mountains were given their name by Spanish explorer Francisco Torres. After an encounter with Native Americans, he was lying wounded and looked up at the mountains and cried out “Sangre de Cristo, Sangre de Cristo!” (Blood of Christ).
(Middle Right Drawing
“Dinetah” was homeland to these Athabascan people called the Navajo. Wars between the Utes and other people forced the Navajo to move west.
(Middle Left Drawing Caption)
When you arrive here, you climb 2000 feet into this high mountain desert. You are over half way to the top of Mount Sierra Blanca!
(Lower Left Drawing Caption)
Did you know that you are standing over a giant aquifer?
(Lower Right Photo Caption)
Medano Creek disappears into the earth to replenish the giant aquifer flowing beneath you.
Location. 37° 28.653′ N, 105° 36.125′ W. Marker is near Alamosa, Colorado, in Alamosa County. Marker is on State Highway 150 0.2 miles north of U.S. 160, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Alamosa CO 81101, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 7 other markers are within 11 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. "The Magic Dog" (here, next to this marker); Welcome "Caminante" to ... (here, next to this marker); ... Los Caminos Antiguos Scenic & Historic Byway (here, next to this marker); Lt. Zebulon Pike's Southwestern Expedition (within shouting Fort Garland (approx. 10.1 miles away); Fort Garland / Buffalo Soldiers (approx. 10.1 miles away); Costilla County Veterans Memorial (approx. 10.6 miles away).
More about this marker. Marker is part of an interpretive site on the Los Caminos Antiguos Scenic & Historic Byway.
Categories. • Colonial Era • Exploration • Native Americans •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 19, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page has been viewed 501 times since then and 18 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on February 19, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.
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