un jour / 60 miles / 2 heures
Believed to be an ancient path, Turquoise Trail travels between Albuquerque and Santa Fe. The natural geological formations found here are like nowhere else on Earth. See nature up-close in the Cibola National Forest and Sandia Mountain Wilderness Area. Appreciate the distinctive, artistic communities of Madrid and Los Cerrillos.
9:00 - 1.0 miles / une minute - 9:01
The view from the Sandia Crest, the "Highest Point on the Turquoise Trail," is awe-inspiring.
9:01 - 10.5 miles / 21 minutes - 9:23
It took one man 40 years to create the whimsical, 22-room Tinkertown Museum. The outside of the museum was formed with over 50,000 glass bottles, and inside, magical carvings and figures are displayed in miniature scenes from a circus to Star Wars.
Antiques and hand-carved pieces line the museum walls - from Esmeralda the Fortune Teller who will tell your fortune for a quarter, to Otto the one-man-band, who will play a song for the same price.
Just 20 minutes north of Albuquerque, the museum attracts young and old.
10:23 - 31.3 miles / une heure 2 minutes - 11:25
The Cerrillos mining district is one of the oldest and most marked of the Old Spanish Mineral Developments in the Southwest. Still a thriving city, Cerrillos now serves as a reminder of the old west, complete with dirt streets and Southwestern charm.
12:55 - 2.7 miles / 5 minutes - 13:00
A visit to the Cerrillos Turquoise Mining Museum brings you to a private collection and display of tools, equipment, objects, and artifacts used in daily life during the mining era of Los Cerrillos.
The museum is on the site of the old Palace Hotel where Thomas Edison stayed while working on gold experiments in the nearby mining district of old placers, and New Mexico territorial governor Lew Wallace drafted his book Ben Hur. Rough riders were recruited here to fight in Cuba, following Teddy Roosevelt up San Juan hill.
Centuries ago, Native Americans mined this area for turquoise to use in trade and to make jewelry, some of which has been dated back to the 1200s. They also mined lead that was ground for paint and pottery glaze. Spanish explorers discovered these ancient diggings and worked the mines during the 17th and 18th centuries. Anglo miners toiled until early 1900s, when the mines became exhausted and played out.
The equipment and artifacts found here include prehistoric tools, photographs, maps, rocks, mineral samples, dry washers, gold pans, miners' lamps, and drills. The museum's windows are a colorful and intriguing collection of old medicine bottles and telegraph insulators.
13:45 - 14.8 miles / 29 minutes - 14:15