Part One: A Road Into the Guadalupe Range
I have lived in Carlsbad, relatively close to the Guadalupe Mountains, for 3 years now. Until this year, with my wife finally having moved in with me, and her having brought our somewhat newer and higher riding SUV, I finally felt like risking a 12-mile ride on a gravel road to Guadalupe Ridge.
Turns out the road is very good and I could easily have done this ride with my lower-riding 24-year old Honda sedan. But that is OK because it caused me to get to the tops of the Guadalupes by burning calories inside me, instead of burning gasoline. The rise is about 2,000 feet.
This is the ridge we will be riding to the top of (from a 2010 hike up the Tejas Trail of Guadalupe Mountains National Park, just over the Texas border-- where we are going now is still in New Mexico and is the Guadalupe Unit of the Lincoln National Forest). If you think you see trees on top of the ridge to the left of center in this next photo, you are correct, and that is where we are going:
To get there we take State Highway 137 west, past Queen, and make a left turn onto a gravel road labeled Guadalupe Ridge Road. About 15-20 minutes later we turn around and see that road behind us in the far distance:
A few minutes later, there is this view in the same direction:
As soon as we crest the first ridge, there are also vistas to the south of roughly parallel ridges, all reefs laid down in Permian seas, the time before dinosaurs. To read about that time, click here.
The greenery here is simply amazing given what the surrounding desert looks like (see first photo above)
All one needs to do to remind oneself of the desert below is look over the cliff we are now riding along, looking back toward Queen:
And now looking west into Dog Canyon (to the left), from where many hikes on this web site have begun (see Texas home page linked below):
The series of ancient reefs seems to go on a long way, punctuated by the Sacramento Mountain on the far horizon barely visible beneath the clouds:
This vista point also allows a very nice view into Dog Canyon:
Time to go to a second page.
Go to Second Guadalupe Ridge Road Page
Go to Third Guadalupe Ridge Road Page
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