Explore the Valles Caldera National Preserve

with No Comments

Imagine a giant bowl filled with endless grassy fields and thin, ribbon streams. Imagine the bowl is ringed with mountains. And finally, imagine you’re inside this bowl. There is a thin, cool mist surrounding you. You can hear the eerie sound of elk bugling in the distance. This is what it’s like to explore the Valles Caldera National Preserve.

Only a few hours from Santa Fe, this would be a great place for a day trip while visiting the area. We highly recommend one hike that will take you all the way to the top. You’ll get a workout and amazing views of the Caldera. The trailhead is deep within the preserve and requires about a thirty-minute drive down manageable dirt roads. This will give you an excellent chance to enjoy the scenery and maybe view some wildlife along the way!

Cerro de la Garita

This is a difficult hike. You’ll encounter a steady, steep increase in elevation up to the north rim. Just remember, the view is worth every step. It’s approximately 8 miles out and back. At the top, you’ll look down into the caldera. A volcanic eruption occurred here a million years ago. Now, you’ll view beautiful meadows and forests.

Photo Credit: NPS

Hiker Tips:

  • Sunglasses & desert hat.
  • Plenty of water.
  • Protective shoes.
  • Remember LNT. Take away memories & photos only. If you find something, report it.
  • Keep away from wildlife.

To read about other hiking destinations, click here.

Shop for vanmade handicrafts, click here.

To purchase a beautiful photograph, click here.

About Hikerlore

We’re Melony and Travis LaCoss.  Better known on the trail as Stretch and RamboJuice, hikertrash bloggers, photographers, and all-around dirtbags.

A few years ago, we took a giant leap away from our conventional lifestyle to backpack in the United States. After spending 5 months on the Pacific Crest Trail, we started our blog Hikerlore to share stories and provide useful information to backpackers, hikers, and outdoor travelers.

We plan to hike as much as we possibly can.  During that time, we’ll write articles about our experiences and share photographs.  Some of our posts will be narrative in nature, others will review backpacking gear and offer advice to hikers.  Recently, we bought an old service van and converted it into a sweet travel van.

We are adventure seekers who hike national scenic trails, visit national parks, and travel around in a van blogging about outdoor travel.  We have thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail (2,200 miles), Florida Trail (1,100 miles), and half the Pacific Crest Trail (1,400 miles).  Our adventures have led us to over 50 national parks and monuments.

In 2019, we put over 20,000 miles on VANilla (our sweet travel van that we built ourselves).  Above all, Hikerlore’s articles are a service intended to provide good information and inspire our readers to get outside and have fun!

We don’t want our readers to be annoyed to death with banners and pop-ups. As a result, Hikerlore is completely advertisement free.  Instead, we focus on providing quality content.

Also, we sell handicrafts and photographs that we make on the road to support ourselves.  Even more, your patronage will allow us to continue to write useful articles for you about our scenic trails, national parks, and other outdoor travel experiences.  Visit our shop here.  So Happy trails to you!

Please Contribute

It is because of your contribution that we will be able to continue to discover and give you the skinny on the cool places in outdoor adventure.

Please consider what our content means to you.  Even the smallest contribution means that we can continue to produce for our readers.

  • to visit Hikerlore’s SmugMug account, click here.

Our Vision & Mission

To inspire our readers to improve their quality of life through outdoor travel by providing fun stories, and useful insight and experience.

Our Values

Authenticity: We like to keep it real

Minimalism: We live very simply

Conservation: We promote our parks

Quality: We strive for excellence in our work

Passion: We have strong, positive emotion for what we do

Integrity: We have moral uprightness in our work

Respect: We have admiration for others’ abilities and efforts

Community: We cultivate fellowship with others

Courage: We face our fears

Our Readers

Outdoor enthusiasts and any person looking to improve their quality of life through outdoor travel experiences.
Above all, it is our goal to provide inspiring and useful content to our readers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *