Several weeks ago, Mike and I took an excursion West to El Malpais National Monument, just outside of Grants, New Mexico. El Malpais, otherwise known as "The Badlands" is an expansive landscape of beautifully carved sandstone, jagged fields and tubes of lava, and captivating ice caves. On this particular trip we traveled to the Natural Arch and the sandstone bluffs, overlooking basalt lava fields that stretch out as far as the eye can see. It was a beautiful day to visit, albeit a bit windy for my taste being so high on the bluffs. Regardless of its forbidding moniker, El Malpais is a powerful and stunning place, and a ceaseless reminder of the beauty to be found in New Mexico.