On US-60/AZ-77 in Arizona, on our day-long drive from Tucson, AZ to Santa Fe, NM.
About halfway between Globe and Show Low is the very scenic Salt River Canyon Rest Area. It’s a great place to stretch the legs, descend to the river canyon below, or walk across the 1934 bridge which is now only for pedestrian use. The replacement New Salt River Canyon Bridge (Apache Bridge) opened in 1996. The river and rest area lie on the territorial lands of the San Carlos Apache and the White Mountain Apache peoples. The Salt River flows west and converges downstream with the Gila river in southwest Phoenix.
I made the picture above on 19 October 2018 with a Fujifilm X70 fixed-lens prime and the settings: 1/1000-sec, f/10, ISO1000, and 18.5mm focal length (28mm full-frame equivalent). This post appears on Fotoeins Fotografie at fotoeins DOT com as https://wp.me/p1BIdT-eEz.
On AZ-77 in Arizona, on our day-long drive from Tucson, AZ to Santa Fe, NM.
Located 146 kilometres (91 miles) north from Tucson, AZ is Pinal Pass or El Capitan Pass. The mountain crossing is at elevation 1519 metres (4983 feet) with coordinates 33.263 degrees North latitude and 110.772 degrees West longitude, and is located at the southeast corner of the Tonto National Forest. The view shown faces northeast, and I can’t help but wonder what it might have been like for the indigenous or colonizers to have trekked west from what is now New Mexico through Arizona and onwards to California. The inscription for the historical marker at the roadside stop reads:
This pass was used by Stephen W. Kearny’s Army of the West in a march to California in 1846. Guided by Kit Carson it was described in a journal of the trip as “Carson’s Old Trail”. The pass led around the impassable canyon on the Gila River where Coolidge Dam has been constructed.
I made the picture above on 19 October 2018 with a Fujifilm X70 fixed-lens prime and the settings: 1/1000-sec, f/10, ISO1000, and 18.5mm focal length (28mm full-frame equivalent). This post appears on Fotoeins Fotografie at fotoeins DOT com as https://wp.me/p1BIdT-eEl.
What colourful and interesting sights of light and balloons you might see, whether it’s your first or the umpteenth time at the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. Every year beginning the first weekend in October, hundreds of thousands of visitors descend upon central New Mexico to see several hundred hot-air balloons ascend into the skies over the Duke City.
To kick off our time in the American Southwest, we drove into Albuquerque for our first time in the city and to attend our first Balloon Fiesta. We purchased in advance tickets to day 1’s morning session with park-and-ride, day 2’s evening session with park-and-ride, and day 3’s morning session without park-and-ride.
For opening day, clear skies and crisp conditions waited for us as we struggled mightily out of bed, but headed out into the dark of the early morning with great anticipation. Even with massive crowds and some traffic chaos, the long wait was worth the sight of seeing the balloons as oval dots on the horizon and as shapely giants up close.
I have to mention the breakfast chile relleno burritos which everybody recommended we seek and try on the festival grounds. How about a version consisting of a New Mexico green chile stuffed with cheese and batter fried, enveloped in a scrambled egg and cheese mixture, all wrapped in a soft corn tortilla and lightly grilled? Big balloons and breakfast burritos? “YES, GUY!”
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To begin our journey through the American Southwest, one of our first destinations was the International Balloon Fiesta. The largest balloon festival in North America is held every October in Albuquerque, the most populous city in the American state of New Mexico. Located roughly in the centre of the state and bisected by two major interstate highways I-25 and I-40, Albuquerque has seen its fair share of human activity and history:
- Inland trade road between Meso-America and southern Rocky Mountains, c. 1000 AD/CE.
- El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro established between Mexico City and Santa Fe for the colony of New Spain.
- City founded 1706 AD/CE, in a wooded area along the east bank of the Rio Grande river.
- City named after Viceroy of New Spain who was the 10th Duke of Alburquerque; 1st ‘r’ dropped to ease spelling and pronunciation.
- City population: over 560-thousand, metro area over 910-thousand.
- City elevation, average: 1.6 kilometres (1.0 mile).
- City shaped by Spanish presence, railroad, University of New Mexico, Route 66, Sandia National Laboratories, TV- & film-production.
Having arrived from our respective cities at sea-level, we needed about a day or two to adjust to 20% less atmosphere* at the city’s mile-high elevation. Not only did the balloon festival exceed our expectations, we’re happy to share some of our favourite moments and places in and around “The Duke City”. With a limited number of days in the city, a rental car is the easiest way of getting around the city.
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