Wednesday, October 21, 2009

VLA and the Quebradas Backcountry Byway

Continuing the weekend outing from Monticello Canyon, I headed north on NM 52 towards my next destination and a evening of camping out under the stars. After travelling 30 or so miles I reached the VLA, time was running short, so I just stopped for a couple of quick pictures and decided to save a more detailed tour for another day.
The VLA is a series of large radio antenna in the NM backcountry, you may remember them from the movie Contact.

It was very interesting seeing the giants all pointing toward the heavens, so after a few minute visit it was off toward Socorro, NM and the Quebradas Backcounry byway.

As evening set in, I found a nice camping spot just off the Byway, which turned out much nicer than expected as this was my morning view. What a way to spend sipping coffee and eating a hearty breakfast. After packing up, it was off to travel the Byway.

I started at the Socorro (northern) end, the Byway travels for approx 25 miles east and south toward Hwy 380 through the arid NM desert, traversing high cliffs, canyons and arroyos.

Directions to the trail head from the BLM are kind of vauge, but they give you the general idea on how to get there. The byway is well signed and easy to navagate, however a high clearance vehicle is highly recommended as the arroyos can have some drop offs in and out of them.

Once into the Byway the scenery become spectacular and remains that way throughout.

The Byway is well graded, wide in places and narrow in others as is windes it's way through the countryside.

Toward the middle, you are atop a high plain with excellent views of the mountains to the west.

The byway continues on as before and out to the hwy.
This is a great trip and well worth the trip. you can travel the road at various speeds and be through it in an hour or less. However my suggestion is to take your time, 25mph or less, enjoy the views and stop freqently to soak it all in. As in most places photos just cannot capture the vast open range that you experience in person, only give you small window to imagine the rest.
From here, it was eastward and home stopping along the way to check out a couple of othe sites, but well save those for another day.
Take care, and love your live as much as you can, it's the only one you have!!!

1 comment:

Crooked Beak said...

Thanks for the photos of Quebradas. I hope to visit sometime this month and was just checking on the area and scenery before I go.

Best regards, ...