Wednesday, January 22, 2014

A Weekend Outdoors (With Donuts)

As everyone hopefully knows, we love having visitors - we think Santa Fe is an amazing place (enchanting, even), and we relish the opportunity to show it off. Eric's parents visited Santa Fe over the holiday weekend, and we got to visit some of our favorite haunts while exploring some new-to-us places.

The tried-and-true activities we did included:
  • Visiting the State Capitol building
  • Perusing the plaza
  • Pizza night with friends
  • A walk through Railyard Park
  • Multiple stops at our favorite donut shop
An assortment of Whoos Dounuts
And of course, eating lots of incredible not-doughnut food. (Someone recently asked us what kind of things we like to do in Santa Fe, and my automatic response was, "Eat." What can I say, the food here is good.)

But probably the highlight of their trip (aside from spending quality time with them, of course) was our visit to Bandelier National Monument.

Photos by Dea Brayden
Bandelier is really big, so it's hard to describe succinctly - we walked over mesas, through canyons, and over rivers; we saw petroglyphs, cliff dwellings, kivas, and lots of trees. We also climbed up and down a good number of ladders - I think I can safely say that it was the most ladders I have ever climbed in one day.

A sampling of the ladders we climbed.
 It was a beautiful day, and throughout our visit we had a stunningly clear view of the Sangre de Cristo and Jemez mountains. We also learned a lot about the history of the area from their informative trail booklets and helpful park rangers. (A day that is both beautiful and educational? Dream come true, right?) (I know that sounds nerdy, but New Mexico has a lot of history and it is fascinating.)

Bandelier is only an hour outside of Santa Fe, and while Eric & I knew it was close-ish to us, we didn't expect it to be such a fun and interesting place to visit. So if you are reading this, and you find yourself in Northern New Mexico with a free afternoon, take our advice and visit Bandelier. You will not be disappointed.

Bob and Dea left on Sunday, and when Monday rolled around, Eric & I decided we hadn't had enough donuts, so... we went back to Whoos Donuts on Monday morning.What can we say - they're delicious! And inspired by the beauty of Bandelier, we set out to hike Atalaya Mountain, a mountain that is practically in our backyard.

A very helpful sign on the trail
It was another beautiful day, and we had great view of Santa Fe and its surrounding mountains the whole way up. Not a bad way to start the week, if I do say so myself.

It was a great weekend, as three-day weekends usually are - why can't we all have them all the time?

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