Our Chalet Truck Camper

Our Chalet Truck Camper

Thursday, May 22, 2014

May 20 Santa Fe, NM to Bandelier National Monument

May 20 Santa Fe, NM

When we first started traveling one of my goals was to drive as many of the America's Scenic Byways as we could. I thought surely we could get them all. Wrong ! There are a lot of them we'll never get to but a lot we have.  After the journey through Albuquerque on I-40, we switched to the Scenic Byway Route 14 - The Turquoise Trail.

This good two lane road goes up into the Sandia Mountains. Once again, we decided not to drive up Sandia Peak as we've been similar places and the diesel use would be huge. We switched to 301 to country road 57A, a corrugated dirt road which took us through Indian reservation land and huge cattle ranches. Rough ride but the truck and camper did well and once again proved that a Truck Camper is the way to go. Enough bone jarring at times so hit I-25 into Santa Fe rather then continue to a way back woods COE.

One of the best things about traveling in a truck camper is that it essentially a pickup truck. Yes ours is on the upper end in size but still a pickup truck. We found parking in Santa Fe behind the Cathedral. $6.00 bought us as much walking around and lunch time as we wanted.

We had lunch at "The Shed" and we would highly recommend it. Authentic southwest food, not the cheesy glop some places serve. Corn, chili, chicken soup for me, chicken quesedilla for Joe. We easily walked off those calories quickly. I browsed the native Indian craft stalls and we walked through a lot of the historical district to see the architecture and into a couple of art/sculpture galleries.

Off we went to Bandelier National Monument to camp overnight and do some hike/walking. Love that Golden Age National Access pass. $6.00 for a beautiful site in a wooded campground. Got so excited to se what was around us, we did a truly stupid thing. Took off for a short walk with no water. At least we had our sun hats on and good walking boots. Two miles of trail out to a vista point and we were some hurting souls when we finally made it back to the camper. Don't do that!

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