Northern New Mexico Classic Cycling Tour assembles in Santa Fe, where we will spend not only our orientation dinner, but have a little extra time to walk among the adobe buildings and learn a bit of history of the area that shares Spanish and Native American traditions. Day 2 will start with a short shuttle to Nambe where we’ll ride to the mystical Santuario and sample some of Leona’s freshly-fired tortillas. From there we enter the High Road and ride to Truchas, gateway to the Carson National Forest. Ojo Sarco, Las Trampas, Chamisal, Penasco—these are the villages that we’ll visit along the High Road—they are the essence of northern New Mexico. We’ll spend the evening in Taos at the Sagebrush Inn with its welcome pool and hot tub and incredible northern New Mexican cuisine.
Early morning of Day 3, we’ll ride beautiful Taos Canyon as it climbs gently along Taos Creek to the crest of Palo Flechado Pass (9,101′) and then descend into the ethereal Merino Valley for a visit to the DAV Vietnam War Memorial at Angel Fire. It’s then up and over Bobcat Pass (9,820′) on the way to Red River for the evening at The River’s Edge and a delicious western meal at Texas Red’s.
We’ll want to benefit from yesterday’s climbing, so on Day 4 we’ll leave Red River to enjoy the downhill along Red River as it plunges toward its confluence with the Rio Grande. In Questa we’ll jump in the van to get across the mostly flat Rio Grand Rift and into the San Luis Basin to reach the San Juan Mountains. From here it is a beautiful and moderate climb up to La Manga Pass (10,230′) and then across to Cumbres Pass (10,022′) before descending into Chama, where we’ll spend the evening at the Branding Iron.
We’re headed to Georgia O’Keefe country on Day 5 as we descend along the Rio Chama to Ghost Ranch and Abiquiu, where we’ll overnight. On Day 6, we’ll return briefly to the Rio Grande Valley and then climb to Los Alamos and a visit to the renowned Bradbury Science Museum.
The brooding Jemez Mountains dominate the skyline to the west as we ride to Bandelier National Monument early morning of Day 7. We’ll tour the Anasazi cliff dwellings in Frijoles Canyon before climbing to the crest of the Jemez. A long descent follows through the vastness of the Grand Valle as we trace the Jemez River in its plunge to Jemez Springs. We’ll conclude this extraordinary day with a soak in the natural hot springs of the Jemez River and spend our final evening in the colorful and picturesque village. Our descent continues into the Rio Grande River Valley on our final day as we return to Albuquerque, where our Northern New Mexico Classic Cycling Tour concludes.