In Spanish Sandia means watermelon. The mountains were given their name by Spanish explorers because of the pink cast of the granite cliffs at sunset. On Monday we took the tram up the west face of the escarpment. It was a 15 minute ascent of 10,678 feet. During that ride we had a great view of 4 different life zones which were pointed out to us by the tram guide. On the desert floor there are pinon and juniper trees, in the canyons we saw ponderosa pine followed by mixed conifer, and at the top were spruce and fir trees. Our guide said that in her many rides over the slope of the mountain she has seen mule deer and bobcats. Last week someone else saw a black bear at the peak. On the ride up I was able to get a picture of another tram on its way down as it passed us. During the winter the tram is used to transport skiers to the top.