New Mexico Adventure

Hiking in Jemez (July 4, 2019)

To celebrate Independence Day, myself and Sara decided to go to the Jemez/Valles Caldera area in New Mexico to get a hike in.

We hiked this trail back in the winter when it was completely snow packed, and we both wanted to come back in the summer to see how it compared.

Pro tip: hiking in snow is WAY harder than hiking on a dirt trail.

Pro tip 2: hiking at a high altitude when you are fully acclimated is way easier than when you are not.

This hike was a fabulous way to spend Independence Day.

The Caldera/Jemez area is beautiful. In my humble opinion, it’s probably the most beautiful place in the state. I’m dreaming of shooting monsoon storms here sometime this summer. On this day though, dewpoints were much too low so only fair weather cumulus were observed.
The trail we hiked follows a small stream amidst sheer rocky cliffs that are 100+ feet high in places. It’s truly out of a storybook.
The sunlight in New Mexico has a special type of glow that I’m still getting used to. I’m not sure why, but it truly makes the landscape come alive.
Wildflowers are plentiful throughout the state this year. A hearty winter of snowfall has really allowed many areas to green up unlike previous years (at least I’m told, still a newbie here).
Pretty moss covered tree branch in the forest surrounding the canyon/valley we hiked in.
Final picture. This place is straight out of a storybook, really. I won’t lie that I was swooning with Sara as we walked amongst the grass with butterflies surrounding us and the gentle sounds of the stream providing a backdrop. You need to get outdoors and away from social media more — trust me.

By Raychel Sanner

I'm a trans photographer and filmmaker based in New Mexico. I love adventure and travel and exploring my state. I chase down incredible storms and skies. I advocate for good mental health and for my trans siblings.

4 replies on “Hiking in Jemez (July 4, 2019)”

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