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Open Roads Forum  >  Roads and Routes

 > What to see between Santa Fe and Las Vegas, NV?

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RVerDiane

Madison, Wisconsin

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Posted: 10/07/11 08:52am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks all for your wonderful suggestions. I ordered the book recommended. I hope I can find dump stations somewhere too.


Diane
Madison, WI
'94 Horizon 21 1/2'
towing '04 Honda CRV


DesertHawk

Las Cruces, New Mexico

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Posted: 10/07/11 04:30pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

These might help:
RV Dumps Sites

Dump Stations

[emoticon] Free or Almost Free Campgrounds for RVs often mention if they have dump stations.

Another possible route & things to check out, on leaving Santa Fe, instead of using I-25 to Albuquerque & taking I-40 West, head to Taos then take US 64 W to Tierra Amarilla & Heron Lake and the Chama Area.

Heron Lake State Park has a nice lake and hiking trails and creek fishing. The state park is about 20 miles from Chama, about 30 minutes. Heron Lake is an anglers delight, stocked with Rainbow Trout and Kokanee Salmon.

We have spent a bit of time at Heron Lake State Park near Chama, NM going back several years in the summers. But have not been there in some time. We did have a canoe and enjoyed canoeing on it. Chama is a neat place with a very nice steam train ride up into Colorado. The Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad. They fish the Chama River as well as the creek leading from Heron Lake to El Vado Lake.

If time allows check out the wool weavers workshop Tierra Wools in Los Ojos near the turn off to Heron Lake SP. Clicky

Two neat stops or side trips south of Heron Lake, north of Abiquiu, worth a see would be the Echo Amphitheater, a Natural rock formation, and the Ghost Ranch Piedra Lumbre Education and Visitor Center, located on U.S. Highway 84 just one mile north of the main Ghost Ranch entrance, has exhibits and a gift shop. A very nice museum in "O┬┤Keefe Country." The Echo Amphitheater is past the visitor center some miles.

A side trip out of Chama to the Cumbres Pass area at 10,022' in to Colorado would be worth your while. May get to see a train steaming by the area as well, neat to see and to hear it up there. It is real treat to see and hear the train pulling up or going down as well as seeing it crossing meadows up it the high country. Offers nice photo opts. They do a stop & fill the train with water up in the area as well.

The Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad was originally constructed in 1880 as part of the Rio Grande's San Juan Extension, which served the silver mining district of the San Juan mountains in southwestern Colorado. Like all of the Rio Grande at the time, it was built to a gauge of 3 feet between the rails, instead of the more common 4 feet, 8-1/2 inches that became standard in the United States. The inability to interchange cars with other railroads led the Rio Grande to begin converting its tracks to standard gauge in 1890.

There's a lots to see in and around Taos, such as art galleries, Kit Carson's Home & Museum, Taos Pueblo, take a trip to Eagle Nest/Angle Fire, Cimarron Canyon, Red River and the Rio Grande Gorge. Also http://taosvacationguide.com/.

Vietnam Veterans Memorial State Park was a very moving place when we visited, by Eagle Nest/Angle Fire.

Eagle Nest is a neat area with a very nice natural lake with a small State Park Campground as well. Cimarron Canyon State Park is three miles east of Eagle Nest along US 64. Not far from Red River area and Taos.

Fenton Lake State Park is a small out to the way Park surrounded by beautiful ponderosa pine forests. Not really close to these others, but though I'd mention it.

From Chama, one could head West to the Navajo Lake/Farmington Area ( http://www.farmingtonnm.org/pages/nm-whattosee.html ). State Park on Navajo Lake

Years ago, we stopped at Aztec Ruins National Monument in the City of Aztec, which is near Bloomfield. Both East of Farmington.

The Salmon Ruins & Heritage Park by Bloomfield is one of the largest outlying colonies built in the Chacoan style during the 11th century. 10 miles east of Farmington on Hwy. 64. We have not been there. Might be neat to see.

[emoticon] Chaco Culture National Historical Park is south of Bloomfield/Farmington off US 550, but can be a bugger to get to in an RV. Very neat if you can make it, however. http://www.farmingtonnm.org/pages/chaco.html

http://www.nps.gov/chcu/index.htm

Or go on over to the Shiprock Area & over into Arizona, Canyon de Chelly Nat'l Mon't by Chinle is great with a free campground. And/or to the Navajo National Monument, located at the end of State Highway 564 off of US Highway 160. We have not been to this one, but sounds very interesting. Two campgrounds, one open all year, somewhat isolated but no fees are charged.

Monument Valley is not far away in this area. But I have not been there in a long, long time....Not so good now, it seems.

Make your way over to the Flagstaff area: Not far from Flagstaff, Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument and on the same looping hwy, Wupatki National Monument, a neat drive. From Flagstaff, take U.S 89 north for 12 miles (19km), turn right on the Sunset Crater - Wupatki Loop road and continue 2 miles (3km) to the visitor center. Area Map ~ I have never been to Walnut Canyon National Monument, it should be neat as well.
Sunset Crater & Wupatki

We have used the Bonito Coconino Natl Forest Campground as a place to overnight in the Flagstaff area. It is near Sunset Crater. Be sure to have water tanks filled before getting there. They have water (not sure in winter if it is ever open - maybe not) but not easy to get to RV. Nice place in Summer, Fall, Spring. Yep. Open: Generally early May through mid-October.

Of course there is the Grand Canyon. We have never been able to camp in the park, but in Nov. should be easier to find a spot. Camping South Rim But North Rim will not be open.

Never ridden the train, (but NO, it does not go down into the canyon). You have a choice, hike down or take a mule ride down. It is a very deep ditch. The train might be a neat thing to do, but a mule ride would seem even better.

Grand Canyon Railway

There is a section of Route 66 out from Williams which might be neat to check out. Seligma to Kingman

* This post was last edited 10/07/11 09:57pm by DesertHawk *   View edit history


">DesertHawk- Las Cruces, NM USA
*2015 Lance 1985~Casita de Campo~23' 4" Tongue to Bumper, Dinette Slide
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RVerDiane

Madison, Wisconsin

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Posted: 10/08/11 08:32am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

DesertHawk,

Would I encounter snow in Taos and those northern places you mention. Do state parks have camping year round? Heron Lake didn't mention it.

Thanks for all your information!!

Diane

trailertraveler

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Posted: 10/09/11 05:35pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

RVerDiane wrote:

DesertHawk,

Would I encounter snow in Taos and those northern places you mention. Do state parks have camping year round? Heron Lake didn't mention it.

Thanks for all your information!!

Diane


There was snow in the higher elevations around Santa Fe, Pecos and Taos the past two nights and temperatures dropped to about freezing. Some of the State Parks like Lyman Lake that have been mentioned will be closed by November. Some of the commercial RV parks close for the winter, some stay open. The National Park areas at higher elevations like the North Rim of the Grand Canyon also close around the middle to the end of October.

The Sedona, Cottowood, Camp Verde area South of Flagstaff will likely be warmer. There are lots of places to see and things to do in the area like: Honanki and Palatki Ruins, V-Bar-V Ranch Heritage Site, Montezuma Well National Monument, Montezuma Castle National Monument, Tuzigoot National Monument, Jerome State Historic Park, and the Verde Canyon Railroad.

You will have to watch the weather and research/contact the specific areas you plan to visit.

* This post was edited 10/09/11 05:53pm by trailertraveler *


Safe travels!
Trailertraveler


timandsusan

San Antonio, Texas

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Posted: 10/10/11 06:33am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gallup, NM is a great place to visit the outdoor sites in the area. Include El Morro Natl. Mon., El Malpias Natl. Mon; Acoma Pueblo; Canyon De Chelly Natl Mon; Hubble Trading Post--Great Indian Blankets.
Flagstaff--but RV parks maybe closed.

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