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The Ghost of Llano Estacado
The Spanish name Llano Estacado, meaning Staked Plain, is part of the high plains of the United States, located west of today`s Lubbock, Texas. It covers an area of about 30,000 square miles, extending to the state of New Mexico. It is a strikingly flat and monotonous area at an elevation of between 3,000-4,000 feet. Local water-retaining depressions and washes that, due to the meager rainfall, rarely hold water occasionally break this semiarid plain. Sandstorms can cut down vision in the midst of day and scour the unwary with tiny bullets of sand. It is said that even Indians hesitated to cross this wasteland. Myth holds that the Coronado expedition planted stakes as guideposts for the return trip when it first crossed the plain westward, giving the area its name. Karl May has used the myth of the stakes as a backdrop for his story of `The Ghost of Llano Estacado`. Again, he assembles many of his Western heroes for new adventures and the performance of good deeds, in the process adding a few new characters.