Jemez Mountain Trail
Trip Start Jan 21, 2013
54Trip End Ongoing
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Having unloaded the car and the bikes, we set off on the Jemez (pronounced Hemez) Mountain Trail - wow! We entered Bandelier National Monument which protects thousands of archaeological sites scattered across a terrain of rugged canyons. We stopped to see the cliff dwelling in Frijoles Canyon and, unlike Montezuma's wall in Arizona, we were told that wherever we see a ladder we are welcome to climb it
By the time we finished, we were really looking forward to the hottub at the Hotel only to find out that it was broken!!! But, they had some good snacks available!!
The next day we loaded up the old Whiteley truckster again and headed out to see the rest of the Jemez Mountain Trail.. We stopped to look at an amazing expanse of flat grassy land formed by one of the three super volcanoes in the USA. Next sight was Jemez Falls only half a mile from the Jemez Falls campground but the campground was closed so we started walking down a paved road. After about 5 minutes of this, Andy turned to me and said - "We have bikes!!" so back we went to the car, unhooked the bikes and set off again. It was a beautiful ride and we were the only people there - of course, even we were not suppose to be there!
The falls were about a 3 on a scale of 10 but this is New Mexico and water, unlike Ontario, is not very abundant. By the way, Dave, we were cycling at 9000 ft and only got a little puffy on the uphill. After meandering by such sights as Battleship rock and the Soda Dam, dipping our hands in a hot spring, we came to the Gilman Tunnels. The road, if you can call it that, was originally an old railway line that just burrowed through the mountains. (check out the video).
This was a great couple of days and I really love the diversity of this area.