Over the years, Bill and I have traveled with our collectors across America, capturing video and wonderful memories along the way. Each year, we seem to get a little (or maybe a LOT) busier and, yes, a little older too. The summer just seems to get away from us without making time for another great American vacation. So while a little bit of summer remains, Bill and I have decided to make the most of the beauty in our own backyard.
We live right off of one of America’s Scenic Byways, Highway 14, affectionately known as The Turquoise Trail. It’s so great to begin and end each day among horses, goats, cows, and new to the neighborhood, alpacas, all set against the beauty and peacefulness of the Sandia and Ortiz mountains. If we head north on the Turquoise Trail, we wind through the historic and quirky, coal, silver, and turquoise mining towns of Madrid and Cerrillos, and onward to Santa Fe. From certain points along the road, we stop to watch the weather patterns change during this monsoon season in New Mexico. There is no man-made show as mesmerizing and brilliant as that which Mother Nature treats us to each early evening, and it’s always something new! Bill and I were so determined to enjoy one of our favorite Turquoise Trail adventures that we made three attempts in one week, due to Mother Nature’s alternate plans.
Horses do not like lightening, and no one looks out for his 24 Tennessee Walkers and Missouri Fox Trotters more devotedly than Harold at Broken Saddle Riding Company in Cerrillos! Harold knew how much we looked forward to a sunset ride, but finally talked us into a morning ride due to the weather patterns. Bill and I take all of our visitors to Broken Saddle. Harold and his crew make sure you get a true New Mexico experience as you climb and drop among the cacti and trees in Cerrillos Hills State Park. His guides treat us to legends and fun facts about the area, too may for me to share, you really need to experience it! At one point, as you reach a ridge, you can actually see four mountain ranges, Sandia, Ortiz, Jemez, and Sangre de Cristo. No matter your skill level, at this point, you feel like you’re in a remake of the TV show Bonanza! Yes, I do burst out into the theme song here.
A wonderful experience in our own backyard can be just as rejuvenating and inspiring as a lengthy trip across the country! I hope you are enjoying your neighborhood treasures. I know I have fond memories of the lakes within a short drive from my childhood home in Minnesota. I’ll be sharing some of those memories and photos coming up. I would love for you to share your summer joys, current and past!