There’s something magical about early mornings in Santa Fe. The crispness of the air, the stars fading as the sky starts to lighten, the occasional howl of a coyote. I haven't found a better way to start my day than sitting on my porch, wrapped in a quilt, savoring my first cup of coffee while watching the sunrise. A morning meditation. A gentle nudge to be grateful for all I have and for the journey I’m on no matter how odd that journey seems sometimes. A daily reminder that no matter what’s going on in my life, and in the world, each morning brings another opportunity to start fresh.
Winding through the Sangre de Cristo Mountains between Santa Fe and Taos is the High Road to Taos. This scenic drive takes you through high desert, mountains, forests, small farms, and tiny Spanish Land Grant and Pueblo Indian villages. Some of the finest art in New Mexico can be seen in the galleries and artist studios scattered along the way including potters in Nambé, santeros in Córdova, and weavers in Chimayó. Savor the journey by spending a few hours visiting weaving studios where the Spanish Colonial weaving tradition is still being kept alive today by the Ortega and Trujillo families. Treat yourself to lunch at Rancho de Chimayó before hitting the road again for your final destination, San Francisco de Asis Mission Church in Rancho de Taos. Painted by Georgia O’Keeffe, photographed by Ansel Adams, the church is one of the most iconic and enduring images of the Southwest.
“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.” – Edward Abbey
I’ve always been drawn to the mountains. When I moved to Denver in 1990, my office was on the 30th floor of one of the office towers downtown and my desk faced a wall of windows looking out at the Rocky Mountains. I fell in love that first day when I saw the sun set over the Rockies.
The Sangre de Cristo Mountains speak to my soul in the same way. Some of my fondest memories of living in Santa Fe include road trips to Durango CO in the autumn. The shadows falling across the aspen-covered mountains as the sun set could always take my breath away. I could hear the spirits of the mountains whispering to me. And no matter what was going on in my life, those mountains always gave me hope.