Angel Fire Park


Date of Statehood:
Capital: Santa Fe
Population: 2,059,179 (2010)
Size: 121,590 sq miles


Land of Enchantment
Motto: Crescit Eundo "It
Grows as it Goes"
Tree:Pinon Pine
Flower: Yucca
Bird: Greater Roadrunner


  New Mexico Vacation




Note from Clay


Taos Mountain Stream

Taos Mountain is part of the Sangre de Christo Range of the the southern Rocky Mountains and is known locally as Pueblo Peak. Spanish residents refer to it as "la Sierra de los Indios" and tourists tend to call it "Skull Mountain" for the curious skull shape seen on its southeastern slope after a good snow fall.

Local belief and lore attributes power to the Mountain. Many people who have come to settle in Taos and have had successful businesses or relationships here claim that it happened because "the Mountain allowed it."

Rio Grande Gorge

The Rio Grande River was not responsible for the creation of the gorge that slices through New Mexico. The gorge represents a rift in the earth's crust where either side is slowly being pulled away from the other.

The rift began forming over 30 million years ago between two fault lines. Around northern New Mexico, the thin sliver of the earth's crust between the two faults slipped downward. The gorge is also the site of many ancient petroglyphs. At the bottom of the gorge, the Rio Grande is flanked by hidden hot springs and many ruins.

Clay's New Mexico Vacation

The Jemez Mountain Trail twists through time and terrain. Bubbling hot springs, vermillion desert cliffs, and snowy alpine peaks surround visitors driving from a million-year-old volcano caldera to 13th century Native dwellings to a museum showcasing the birth of the atomic age.

The Gilman tunnels were originally blasted out of rock in the 1920s for a narrow-gauge logging railroad that used to haul timber out of the Jemez. At some point they enlarged the tunnels so that logging trucks would fit.



A pow wow is a gathering of Indian Nations in a common circle of friendship.

Indian Country is made up of many tribal nations, bands, villages, and pueblos, each with their own traditional tribal beliefs and practices. A pow wow is the common fiber which draws Indian people together. It is a time for sharing with old friends and making new friends; a time for singing and dancing. It is a time for trading; trading craft goods and trading songs.

Most pow wows today offer prize money starting at hundreds of dollars up to as high as one million dollars. Although the latter is the exception, a combined prize purse can be anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000 at any given celebration. The total prize money is divided by the winners of each category, so a first place prize in any one category can be in the thousands of dollars. Prize money is an attractive incentive for many dancers to go to pow wows. A good dancer that wins prize money in his/her category can create new dance clothes or simply help pay for travel. The video is 21 seconds.

Powwow Kids Powwow Guy

The term pow wow originally meant "a gathering of spiritual leaders." Now it is used to signify a celebration.

Ancestral Pueblo peoples are the ancestors of the people living in the 19 modern New Mexico Pueblos and at Hopi in northeastern Arizona. Many of the petroglyphs at Petroglyph National Monument are believed to have been created by these ancestral people. In North America and Mexico, some rock images may be as much as 10,000 to 12,000 years old.

In addition to the Ancestral Puebloan associated images, other rock carvings may have been created by the ancestors of the Navajo and Apache, whose descendants also still reside in New Mexico and Arizona.

Petroglyphs are images and designs made by engraving, carving or scratching away the dark layer of rock varnish on a rock's surface to reveal the lighter rock underneath. Images can be of varying depths and thicknesses. Images can be pecked, carved, incised, scratched, or abraded.

We do not know the exact method used to make the petroglyphs at Petroglyph National Monument. There are several possible techniques that could have been used. In general, archeologists believe that stone hammers and other stone tools were used to create the petroglyphs. A stone hammer could have been used directly on the boulders, or it may have been that two tools were used like stone versions of a hammer and chisel. Archeologists refer to these methods of production as direct and indirect percussion.

It is estimated that there are nearly 20,000 petroglyphs within Petroglyph National Monument.

Information from