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  1. #1

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    New Mexico Trip Suggestions?

    I'm heading to NM next month and have a rough idea of my itinerary, but I figured I'd ask here anyway. I plan on beginning in SF. From there I could go to Bandelier and Tent Rocks. I also plan to head to AZ for a day or two in Canyon de Chelly. My primary interests are some places for 2-3 hour hikes, good photos, and then back to town in the evening for dinner and drinks. Any other areas near SF (i.e. within a an hour or two) that would be better/more interesting than Bandelier or Tent Rocks? Also, has anyone used a guide in Canyon de Chelly (and was it worth it)? Lastly, any food/drink recommendations for SF? Last time I was there, it seemed like the town closed very early. Was I just missing something? Thanks.

  2. #2
    chriscrawfordphoto's Avatar
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    Santa Fe is a small town and yes it closes up early. I lived there for a couple of years and when I went out to eat, I usually drove to Albuquerque because there is not much in Santa Fe except fast food (YUCK) and ultra expensive places where lunch costs $50 a person (couldn't afford that...was cheaper to buy gas to go to ABQ and eat at middle-class oriented places).
    Chris Crawford
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  3. #3

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    Depends on the guide. Be specific about what you want. I grew up near Canyon de Chelly. One of my most favorite places. While you are out there you have to catch a sunset at the Chuska mountain range. Head east from the canyon to Tsaile(sp) and maybe north to Lukachukai on you way back to New Mexico. If it is passable drive over buffalo pass for amazing vistas into the Bisti. If it is not passable drive south to the turn off to Crystal. Then hang a left and go over Narbona pass.

    In Santa fe head to Chimayo, espanola, truchus(sp) and Taos. Lots to see and do.
    Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. Pope Paul VI

    So, I think the "greats" were true to their visions, once their visions no longer sucked. Ralph Barker 12/2004

  4. #4
    Don12x20's Avatar
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    Lukachuki Pass is outstanding -- from Shiprock to Lukachuki.
    Not sure if the local Chapter is still giving passes to be on this section of tribal land - Mark do you know?

  5. #5
    drkhalsa's Avatar
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    You may like to check out the Pecos Wilderness Area east out of Santa Fe up I-25 to the town of Pecos. I searched online and there are closer access points to the Pecos Wilderness from Santa Fe with some nice possibilities for day hikes. I have only entered from Pecos Canyon.
    The Santa Fe Ski Basin may be a possibility for some hiking.
    As far as restaurants, I don't know the ones in Santa Fe very well but if you go north toward Española I like Gabriel's about 10 or so miles out before you get to Pojoaque. And, Española being closer than Albuquerque may be an option for less expensive restaurants. The ones I'm familiar with are La Cocina, Matilda's, Jo Ann's, just some options.
    Taos Ski area has some trails to hike, too.
    Last edited by drkhalsa; 04-15-2010 at 01:54 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  6. #6
    Rick A's Avatar
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    Since you'll be close, I recommend you stop at Los Alamos, and visit the museum. Its a real eye opener to the "Atomic Age" and why the town exists. I grew up there and still find out more that I didn't know about. The town still had armed gun towers when we moved there, and everyone lived at the same PO box number in Santa Fe. Anyway, beautiful city, then leave town headed north and visit the Valle Grande. Its an extinct volcano crater thats the heart of the Jemez Mountains. Continue through to Jemez Pueblo and on north to Ship Rock and Four Corners. The drive is magnificant and many places for short hikes, and to burn copious amounts of film.
    Rick A
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  7. #7

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    Take the tram to the top of the Sandia Mountains. Breathtaking views of four states!
    "What drives man to create is the compulsion to, just once in his life, comprehend and record the pure, unadorned, unvarnished truth. Not some of it; all of it."

    - Fred Picker

  8. #8

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    I don't know if others find this cheesy, but I quite liked the little "ghost town" trail (Turquoise Trail). I stopped in Madrid and Cerrillos, meant to stop in Golden but it appeared so quickly that I missed it and there were no places to turn around for some reason.

    Along the road to Cerrillos:


    Taos Pueblo is nice as well, people are pretty friendly. If I remember correctly it doesn't open to visitors until 8:30 or 9:00 and might close around 4 so the lighting isn't perfect, but it's still an interesting place to see.


    Also, La Choza in Santa Fe has pretty good food. Blue Corn Cafe is OK, not amazing, but other people seem to really like it so it probably depends on what you order.

  9. #9

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    I never heard of needing passes to go over Buffalo pass. On the Navajo Reservation you technically need a back country permit to travel off a paved road. Some people do not get upset, really, until you start hiking around unescorted. But these people are very few and far between. It is not like the Hopi or Zuni Reservations where photography is restricted and so is hiking. I have not been over buffalo pass is years but they were getting it ready to pave it then. Photography is not restrict on the Navajo Reservation if it is for personal display and use. Commercial photography is another story. If you have questions call the Navajo Nation Parks and Recreation office.

    Oh Yeah, be careful in the Canyon De Chelly parking lots. Lots and Lots of cars get broken into. Especially the White House Ruin Trail and Spider Rock parking lots. If it looks expensive and it can be seen there is a good chance you will be broken into.
    Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. Pope Paul VI

    So, I think the "greats" were true to their visions, once their visions no longer sucked. Ralph Barker 12/2004

  10. #10

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    Agree with the Turquoise trail. My only photo with multiple sales was taken in Cerrillos, so its a favorite. Good wikepedia history on Cerrillos. Also liked Chimayo, and several places along the Rio Grande! Madrid-not so much, and I missed Ruidoso which some folks like.

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