So of course we changed plans and headed to Santa Fe a few days early!
|The story continues......|
The day we arrive we want to find the place where we'd enjoyed delicious sopaipillas three years ago, but have no idea what the name is. Still, driving down the main road there it is! We don't recognize the name, and the parking lot is much fuller than before, but somehow the front is very familiar.
|Just like we remembered - superb!|
The drive to Taos north on Hwy 64 passes through the Rio Grande Gorge and parallels the Rio Grande River for several miles. It's amazing and difficult to catch a decent photo.
As the road turns east, away from the river, we can see the huge gorge cutting through the flat plains to the west. It is absolutely incredible! We laugh when we both say "Wow!" As we often do in these places, we talk about coming across that deep canyon as pioneers in wagons - what did they think? - how long did it take to find a crossing?
The Taos Pueblo is both what I'm expecting, and very different. I'm happy to pay the $16/person fee to wander the settlement, and yet a bit uncomfortable knowing that I'm photographing people's homes. Not a large number of natives still live here, but some do. The structures are incredible - multiple stories that have lasted over 1000 years. Big Wow!
Dogs are allowed on leash, but it is a bad idea. "Res dogs" run loose everywhere. Tessa makes friends with the first little pit bull who greets us at the car, but the seven larger ones heading our way are just too much so we leave her in the car. She lets us know periodically that we are horrible humans.
|The original church was destroyed in 1690 by the local natives|
|The location is lovely|
|In addition to residences, some rooms are small businesses|
|The buildings are beautiful|
|The new church, built in the 1800's, still holds mass every Sunday - no photos inside|
|On weekends, many native vendors sell their wares in the courtyard, this day there are only three|
Not far out of Taos we begin to see more than just an occasional small patch of snow in the shadows. By the time we reach 8000 feet, the snow is deep under the tall pines. We were just in the flat, brown plains. Wow!
|Tessa checks out the cold, crunchy surface|
|Soon she's embracing her inner ski bunny|
|Angel Fire Ski Run|
|Frozen Monte Verde Lake|
Instead of retracing our route, Bill navigates us to the High Road to Taos (in this case it's from Taos) for the drive home.
The pine forest goes on forever.
|Carson National Forest|
There are so many wows this trip that it is almost overwhelming. For the grand finale, the sun sinks behind three bands of clouds, the rays shooting up from the top one, while the bottom one is seemingly on fire. Photos still don't do the Wow justice.
We're loving our time in Santa Fe - I think we'll extend our stay :-))))