Hiking in New Mexico

Remember when the music brought us all together to stand inside the rain? – Harry Chapin

Ever felt like you need to get out of dodge and just hit the road? Has that feeling ever hit you just as your birthday comes around AND it happens to be Oktoberfest?

There’s only so much concrete, heat and flatness that a soul can take. Knowing this, my husband planned a getaway for us to Taos Ski Valley, New Mexico. If you ever find yourself in need of road trip, here’s a recap of how we spent our weekend there during the off season.

We somehow managed to unintentionally do a lot while there (and while getting there), and I’ll send out a number of posts detailing all sorts of goodies in the days ahead. For now, here’s the rundown of our time actually spent in Taos Ski Valley.

ski-lodge

Part 1: Hiking
treesThere are many different trails throughout the area of Taos Ski Valley. Most are user-friendly and generally walk-able for all fitness levels. Be prepared for steep inclines, though. They don’t name the trails with titles like the ‘Bull of the Woods’ for nothing.

While there, we went on a moonlight hike to William Lake near Wheeler Peak. The weekend we chose to go happened to be the time of a full moon (actually, a supermoon), so our reward for a 2.5 mile uphill hike was a gorgeous moon rise just as the clouds broke overhead. The eerie light cast by the supermoon was brilliant and illuminated the lake, rocky shore and haunting treeline.

My husband and I were meant to go on the moonlight hike with the mayor of Taos, an event held monthly during the summer. We arrived on time after an 11 hour road trip (what!?!?) and stopped at our cabin long enough to drop off our pup and bags before rushing over to the designated meeting spot. When we arrived at the trail head, we soon learned that the hike had been cancelled. Not to be dissuaded, we rallied our spirits, teamed up with another Texan, who had also coincidentally made the drive for the hike with the mayor, and pushed on.

fall

This was definitely an unforgettable experience and well worth the labored breathing from being 11,000 ft above sea level. One thing I learned was to not be so hard on myself when I needed to slow down or rest for a bit. It wasn’t the actual hiking that was challenging, but the rapid change in elevation.

hiking

The change in altitude is no joke and we later learned that having lived in Texas for so long, our bodies have adjusted to life as a flat-lander, a new term that we learned from a Kansanite.

Stay tuned for my blog post on our surprise Oktoberfest experience in New Mexico next week.

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