Given my recent hiking experience I’d have to say the solitude at the top of New Mexico’s “white cliffs” was a breath of fresh air (literally). And while our destination offered a stunning view of the geological mysteries of the last six million years undulating across the plains as far as the eye could see, it should come as no surprise that the real story was in the journey rather than the destination.
The Bottom Line on New Mexico’s Kashe-Katuwe Tent Rocks Monument
Verdict: And all this time I thought Santa Fe was breathtaking! Even if you’re not up for rigorous hiking, there’s always the easier Cave Trail minus, of course, the spectacular ‘welcome home.’
How to Get There: The national monument is somewhat isolated but well signposted, starting from exits 259 (NM 22) or 264 (NM 16) of interstate 25 between Albuquerque and Santa Fe. Both roads are relatively busy, and converge at Pena Blanca after which NM 22 narrows, passing through several sleepy settlements.
Insider Information: No dogs are allowed, except identifiable service animals, and there is no camping in the area. Winter (November 1 to March 10) hours are 8 am to 5 pm; gates close to arriving visitors at 4 pm. The remainder of the year the park is open from 7 am to 7 pm, with gates closing for arriving visitors at 6 pm. The $5 fee per vehicle is returned to the park for monitoring, maintenance, and improvements. Fees for group sizes numbering up to 25 is $25. Groups numbering between 25 to 100 will be charged a fee of $100. A small number of picnic tables, some shaded, were available adjacent to the park lot. Basic facilities were also provided.
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