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DPChallenge Forums >> Out and About >> New Mexico Plans - am I crazy?
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01/28/2008 08:10:57 PM · #1

I am planning to go to New Mexico for 5 days.
I was thinking of trying this route.
Am I crazy? There seems to be so much to see. What should I definitely not miss?
01/28/2008 08:12:13 PM · #2
In 5 days? Thats alot of driving.
01/28/2008 08:14:30 PM · #3
Ugh - it looked like that. I'm having trouble deciding the best way to spend my time there.
01/28/2008 08:18:46 PM · #4
I am in agreement with Jamie....that is a lot of driving, given how much your would probably stop. I went from Roswell to Silver City last year and it took me two days to see everything I had planned. Los Cruces is interesting, but could be cut from your trip. The mountains north of your starting point and up into Santa Fe are amazing. If I was you I would cut out the southern portion of the trip.
01/28/2008 08:23:06 PM · #5
It is only really the White Sands National Park that is drawing me South. Perhaps I can make do without.
01/28/2008 08:23:44 PM · #6
Holy crap that's a lot of driving for five days!!

NM has a LOT to offer, it all depends on what you're interested in. Art, history, geology (lots of geology), mines, the Rio Grande Rift, white sands, UFOs, shiprock, and so much more!

Either way, when you go through Socorro make sure it's lunch or dinner time - go to San Antonio (a few miles south of Socorro) and go to the Owl Bar - best green chile cheeseburgers in the world. mmmmmmmmmmmm

Owl Bar Review
Owl Bar Info

or Manny's
mmmmm

(Did my undergrad at NM Tech from way back when!)

Message edited by author 2008-01-28 20:32:42.
01/28/2008 08:27:08 PM · #7
That's a very long trip, but it makes a neat looking butterfly.
01/28/2008 09:02:29 PM · #8
I've roadtripped those very roads - stayed in Espanola for the night (allegedly the low rider capital of the world). There's some unbelievably beautiful scenery around there....if you like mesas that is. Also lovely adobe buildings everywhere.

Covering 1000 miles in 5 days when you're in photo mode isn't that bad at all. Sure, you'll be in the car for a lot of it but there's still plenty of time to jump out and shoot when something catches your eye.

To give you some kind of perspective:

I recently did a NE US trip with my wife. We covered 1500 miles in 6 days, from NYC->VT->NH->MA->RI->CT->NYC. It wasn't all 100mph haring up the interstates and it wasn't all day in the saddle either (it passed the wife test and I had plenty of opportunity to stop and shoot wherever I wanted).

When I did NM it was part of a 6300 trip in 3 weeks, from CA->NV->WY->CO->NM->AZ->NV->CA. That was a different story though... a lot more driving but a lot more off the interstates and in the middle of nowhere (where the shots are at).

My best advice is stay off the interstates wherever possible and you win (only use interstates to catch up if you need).

N

p.s. Roswell isn't worth the extra effort at all - I think it took me half a day to get there and back and the photo opportunities were slim (unless there happens to be an ET convention in town!).

Message edited by author 2008-01-28 21:04:03.
01/28/2008 09:03:29 PM · #9
From this site, it looks like I need a good couple of weeks to do what I was planning. Guess it will be just the northern loop this time and I'll have to come back again in the future.
01/28/2008 09:06:13 PM · #10
i live in albuquerque. depending on when you get here and how much time you want to spend here, i'll meet up with you and take you up to the peak on the tram. just let me know.
01/28/2008 10:51:25 PM · #11
I really enjoyed Taos and the moutains. Also Santa Fe is pretty unique. :)
01/28/2008 11:00:35 PM · #12
Originally posted by JaimeVinas:

I really enjoyed Taos and the moutains. Also Santa Fe is pretty unique. :)


Second that. With five days, find a cool spot to hang in Santa Fe, then day trip around there and up to Taos and you'll still run out of time to see and do everything you want.
01/28/2008 11:00:55 PM · #13
I agree--the southern route could be dropped in favor of Northern NM. Be sure to hit the tram in ABQ, and if you add Taos you probably won't regret it.
01/28/2008 11:15:11 PM · #14
Originally posted by Quasimojo:

I've roadtripped those very roads - stayed in Espanola for the night (allegedly the low rider capital of the world). There's some unbelievably beautiful scenery around there....if you like mesas that is. Also lovely adobe buildings everywhere.


This is true. Also, do not drive it on a weekend unless you like driving slow and low. Took me over an hour to drive through there on a Sunday afternoon. They just bounce those low-riders up and down the main street/highway tail bumper to bumper. 100s of them. ::::))))
01/28/2008 11:22:47 PM · #15
Egads, I thought that 1,100 miles in a 5 days was ample time, personally. Especially considering that this is what I'm planning to do on a 10-day trip this summer:

639537.jpg

(On two occasions last year alone, I drove 1,100 miles in a single day -- and also traveled 2,500 miles from Seattle to Pittsburgh in just under 3 days -- so perhaps I'm a little insane when it comes to long drives in the first place...)

Message edited by author 2008-01-28 23:24:03.
01/28/2008 11:30:55 PM · #16
Not sure what time of the year you are planning this but if it is soon and if you enjoy shooting birds you might want to take a pass through the Bosque Del Apache. It is just south of Soccoro.

Friends opf the Bosque

Official Site

Winter sees quite a few birds there.
01/29/2008 12:33:35 AM · #17
You could probably drive your route in 5 days with no problems - vast stretches of it will have nothing to see except sage brush. Then you can slow down and take pictures when you get to scenic areas.

I live right on the border of New Mexico/Colorado close to Taos. All around the Taos area is very scenic but that isn't on your route. I think Espanola is not very nice - the drive between Espanola and Santa Fe is really built over with junk. I found the spot near Espanola where A. Adams did his Moonrise Hernandez - it is just a sea of modular homes now.

Glorieta, near Santa Fe is a pretty spot. It is also an historic spot - a civil war battle ground. It is the most western civil war battle.

Los Alamos is nice - they have a very interesting museum with replicas of the two first atom bombs. There will be quite a bit of snow there right now.

If you do decide to drive to Taos be sure to visit the Taos Pueblo - it looks beautiful in the winter. The Taos Gorge Bridge is spectacular. Also, it is fun to visit the ski area at Taos - they don't mind if you get right up to the slopes to take pictures. They have the weirdest things that you can rent that look like bikes on skis to ski down the mountain.

The drive around the "Enchanted Circle" - Taos, Questa, Red River, Eagle Nest, Angel Fire and back to Taos is lovely, very snowy right now though.

Message edited by author 2008-01-29 00:40:30.
01/29/2008 12:53:27 AM · #18
We did roughly the same trip in 10 days. The section between Gallup and Shiprock the kids called the trip to hell -- very hot, dry and nothing to look at.

The Santa Fe and Taos area is beautiful. You could spend 5 days there and not see everything. I'd go back to Santa Fe in a heart beat
01/30/2008 10:05:08 AM · #19
Everyone, thank you so much for your comments! I thinking then of adding Taos and dropping the southern loop.
Shannon, if we get stuck out there, I'll certainly give you a shout!
We're heading out there mid-February for the long weekend. I just hope not too many people have had the same idea. And I hope the place doesn't get hit with a snow storm while we're there.

01/30/2008 11:21:49 AM · #20
There's a neat little chapel in Chimayo, just north of Santa Fe. Nice old adobe church. Looks like you'll be right near it on your trip. Taos is beautiful, I liked it much better than Santa Fe. The Pueblo was sadly closed for Lent when we were there (darnit), but there's also a very nice adobe church in Taos called St. Francis of Assisi. Ansel shot this one as well. The Rio Grande Gorge bridge is a neat experience, not too far from Taos. In Santa Fe, the Loretto Chapel with its Miraculous Staircase is neat, a bit touristy, but neat. White Sands was absolutely breathtaking, my favorite stop in our short NM trip, but, it's about 5 hours south of SF with not a lot of other offerings around there (unless you like rockets/missiles). But with all that you're doing up north, your time might be better spread out up there. I have some photos scattered about in my portfolio, don't want to take up too much space here. Have fun!
02/27/2008 11:58:58 AM · #21
Hello. So thank you all for your recommendations. It was a great trip.

The pictures are online here. I would have posted this sooner, but my Peace of Blue was in the Leading Lines challenge, so didn't want to give it away that it was me. It came 13th, so pretty happy with that.

In the end we drove 1606 miles (route map here)! You are right, there's almost nothing in the South but White Sands was the highlight of the whole trip, so it was worth it.


02/27/2008 12:38:39 PM · #22
When I was voting I recognized your shot as being White Sands and wondered who took it! Our pictures ended up right next to each other in the results.
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