Saturday, June 6, 2015

Abiquiu, New Mexico

We spent the winter in Southwestern New Mexico again, mostly staying in the Monticello Point campground at Elephant Butte Lake State Park. It was a fairly mild Winter and a beautiful Spring. We left about a month ago when it started getting hot and headed to the northwest corner of New Mexico. Our first stop was in Abiquiu at the Riana Campground at Abiquiu Lake.

We had been to Abiquiu before but it was on one of our fast cross-country trips before we were fulltimers. Abiquiu was where Georgia O'Keefe lived for many years and it's easy to see why she fell so in love with the area. It's definitely one of my favorite places we've been in our travels.

This is Cerro Pedernal. Georgia O'Keefe painted this many times. She said that she thought if she painted it enough times, God would give it to her. When she died, her ashes were spread at the top. This is one of her many Pedernal paintings...
...and a few more photos from around the campground...

 We drove into the little village of Abiquiu one day and met a fascinating man named Napoleon Garcia. He had worked for Georgia O'Keefe when he was a young man and told us some really great stories about her. He is an artist and Genizaro elder. The Genizaro are descendants of both the Colonial Spanish settlers and Native American Indian tribes of the area. You definitely see the Spanish and Native American influences as you walk around the village of Abiquiu.

The scenery around Abiquiu is beautiful. I had forgotten that this is sandstone and red rock country. We had somewhat stormy weather throughout our stay but when it cleared, we took the Jeep and drove around just looking at all the pretty scenery.

Near Abiquiu there is a natural amphitheater called Echo Amphitheater. There is a short hike back to the ampitheater through sandstone cliffs.

When we got back to the amphitheater it was so beautiful and peaceful. It was at least 10 degrees cooler and felt like being in a cathedral. We were the only people there so we did shout our names a few times to hear the echo.

 It's really hard to capture this place in pictures. The sun was not at a good angle so a lot of the pictures didn't come out very good. I found this one online that captures it a little better.

We left Abiquiu before Memorial Day and headed to Cochiti Lake. Cochiti is about 30 miles from Santa Fe so it's a great place to stay if you want to avoid the crowded Santa Fe campgrounds.  There are two Corps of Engineer Parks on Cochiti Lake but one of them, Tetilla Peak, is not very well known. We stayed at the main one at first and then moved over to Tetilla Peak this week. This was definitely a great find. Today is Friday and this park is about 80% empty.  This morning we were the only people here. That's my favorite kind of campground.

We might go into Santa Fe tomorrow and walk around town a bit. We've been there several times before  and it is one of my favorite cities but this trip we've only gone into town for groceries and errands. We hope to remedy that tomorrow.

Thanks for visiting.  I'll try not to take six months before posting my next blog post.


  1. Beautiful area, great photos. I've seen that amphitheater, but when I was there, I wasn't alone, so I didn't yell my name. LOL