|The State Pen Porter was delicious!|
Santa Fe has a variety of local trails to hike, beautiful neighborhoods to walk, and many cultural and historical sights to see. You can read my wrap up post from our last stay here.
We had a fun lunchtime meetup with Rick and JoAnne at The Pantry, where the food was delicious and the conversation flowed...and we look forward to another meetup with these two and others in May! Afterwards we took a walk through some of the lovely residential streets near the Santa Fe Plaza.
|A welcoming Santa Fe style courtyard.|
Santa Fe has done a great job of creating several networks of trails for their active community, and we were able to pick up a trail map for the Dale Ball and La Tierra trails at our RV park, this site has map links. During both of our visits we have hiked many miles of these trails.
The La Tierra trails are mostly smooth flowing dirt trails over rolling hills among pinion pine and juniper, excellent for mountain biking or trail running.
The Dale Ball trails are also dirt/rock trail through juniper and pinion forests, but tend to be steeper and have more views and more shade. Our last full day we did an awesome 5 mile loop that took us to the top of Picacho Peak; at 8,577 feet the views expand well beyond Santa Fe. Ponderosa pine, cacti, yucca and granite outcroppings are the reward for climbing to higher elevations, worth every bit of effort.
|Seen in a wash at La Tierra on a cloudy day.|
|Pincushion with offspring on the way to Picacho Peak.|
|Looking North from Picacho Peak.|
Another excellent hike in Santa Fe is the Sun Mountain trail. Less than two miles out-and-back, this trail gains about 800 feet of elevation and offers up 360 degree views of Santa Fe and the foothills East of town. We were pleasantly surprised to be scrambling over rose granite boulders cut with veins of rose quartz and claret cup cacti and yucca just beginning to bloom. Parking is extremely limited at the trail head.
|Sun Mountain looms above the trail head.|
|The trail gets steeper and rockier the higher you go.|
It was a bit slippery coming down later.
|Expansive views in all directions from the top of Sun Mountain.|
|Yucca and claret cup buds.|
After the short but satisfying hike up Sun Mountain we drove a few miles to the Randall Davey Audubon Center and did another short hike in this surprisingly riparian canyon just East of the Plaza in Santa Fe. Here's my post from our longer hike in this area in 2013.
|The Santa Fe River emerges from this canyon just East of downtown Santa Fe.|
One afternoon we drove about 15 miles South to the artist community of Madrid. We met up with friends Glen and Eliane who live in this vibrant town, and along with a few of their friends, had a fantastic dinner at The Hollar (highly recommended) and attended the very unique Free Box Fashion Show. Locals donated and performed dance numbers in clothing that was then auctioned off to much hilarity and audience participation AND benefited the community. What a fun night!
|Very good Southern style food at The Hollar.|
Excellent company too on this night!
|Madrid's Free Box Fashion Show is a blast!|
We visited Santa Fe, NM in the spring of 2013 and stayed in town (our RV park review is here). This time we chose to stay on the edge of town at Santa Fe Skies RV Park.
Santa Fe Skies was a terrific place to stay, especially since we had site 19 in the southeast section of the park. The northwest part of the park has sites in rows that are pretty close together. The southeast side has more randomly placed sites, and some of those along the East edge are spectacular...in particular, sites 17, 18 and 19.
The main road into the park is paved, all other roads and the sites are gravel. Each site has a cement patio with a picnic table. Site #19 was a large curved pull through with a wide open view to the East. There is .75 mile walking loop around the perimeter of the park, easily accessible from our site, though you have to watch out for goatheads off the trail.
Another great thing about staying at Santa Fe Skies instead of Trailer Ranch is the quiet. It's very peaceful at night. The Verizon signal is excellent. Also, being at the West end of town you are strategically located with a couple of options to bypass the center of town and its stop and go traffic. We'd definitely stay here again.
|View of our site from the walking trail.|
|The view from site 19.|
We LOVED watching the clouds change from our patio.
|The view morphed constantly, enchantingly!|
Day Two of the Black and White Photo Challenge:
It always makes me happy to photograph Rosie, in color or not. Her snow white belly really works well in B&W! This shot was taken at Picacho Peak State Park in AZ. Rosie loved that park and so did we!
|Rosie is a happy kitty when she can stretch out in the sun and fresh air!|
We're moving on tomorrow...Las Vegas here we come!