Santa Fe is a great city to work and live in. You’ll find every city amenity and modern convenience you can think of. For many people, though, the great climate in Santa Fe is a real draw, and the outdoor activities are just as important as the theaters and restaurants.
A very popular destination for outdoor fun is the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Santa Fe is close to the southernmost subrange of the Rocky Mountains, which spans two states. The range is 225 miles long, starting in Salida, Colorado in the north and ending in Santa Fe.
The Sangre de Cristo Mountains offer year round adventure and outdoor activities. One of the major draws is winter skiing. Ski Santa Fe is only 16 miles northeast of the city! You’ll find some of the best skiing in the Southwest in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, with hills for the smallest snow bunny to challenging slopes for the more adventurous.
The mountains are also excellent for hiking, rock climbing and white water rafting. Naturally, wildlife is everywhere in the mountains. If you’re lucky, you might see elks from the Trinchera elk herd, which is one of the largest in the world. If you’re brave (or foolhardy) you can try leaping over the terrain with the Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep that are found throughout the mountain range.
Other mountain destinations include the city of Chimayó, located in the foothills of the mountain range about 30 minutes north of Santa Fe. Chimayó was founded near the end of the 17th century. Spanish settlers loved their valley home with easy access to the Santa Cruz River, and protection from the surrounding foothills.
Descendants of the Spanish settlers keep the old traditions alive. Today, Chimayó is known for quality weaving, raising horses and sheep, red chiles and fruit orchards. In addition, you’ll find a large art colony that produces Hispanic and Tewa Indian crafts such as wood carvings, sculptures, tin working, embroidery and pottery.
A day trip to Chimayó can be filled with visiting the plentiful art studios and galleries, learning about weaving, and visiting the local museums.
These are just a few of the things you’ll find interesting in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. If you’re a Santa Fe homeowner, you will have the mountains at your doorstep.