View Full Version : New Mexico Landscape

11-16-2012, 09:11 PM
I'm working on a story with a scene where the three main characters walk from the Rio Grande to Santa Fe. I've look at maps and Google image, but I still don't have a very good idea of what the landscape would look like between the two places.

Anyone who has been down to Santa Fe, might you be able to lend your expertise?

Map for you convinence (http://www.lib.utexas.edu/maps/us_2001/new_mexico_ref_2001.jpg)

King Neptune
11-16-2012, 10:04 PM
I strongly suggest that you use google maps and go to the highest scale or to street view. You will seee aerial of street level photos of the area. You could look at every inch of the walk.

11-16-2012, 11:47 PM
New Mexico is a big state, lots of variation in scenery, and it's a long way from the Rio Grande to Santa Fé. Be a little more creative in your searching than just going to Google Maps. You'd pass through regions near Las Cruces, Socorro, and Albuquerque along the way, and you can easily pull up photos of the areas around those places, as well as El Paso, TX (where you'd start) and Santa Fé (where you'd finish).

A better way, of course, would be to go to El Paso and drive north to SF. I realize that may be impractical for you, but it's a great drive.


Siri Kirpal
11-16-2012, 11:55 PM
Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

The sky is huge. Clouds are either nonexistent or huge and puffy and turn into thunderheads in the afternoon (typically). Vegetation is sparse, except around the rivers where cottonwoods and catalpas abound. Pinons (tilde on the middle "n") and junipers abound in the mountains near Santa Fe. Cactus elsewhere. Colorful, wind sculpted hills. Dust, lots of dust.


Siri Kirpal

11-16-2012, 11:59 PM
Have you seen Breaking Bad...?

11-17-2012, 12:02 AM
Where on the Rio Grande? Could look like lush farmland, rocky wasteland or the median on the interstate. Plus it could be hard to find a way to walk that didn't lead right through other cities and towns.


Richard Paolinelli
11-17-2012, 12:05 AM
Not to be contrary, because I tend to be too often, but the Rio Grande actually starts in Colorado and passes fairly close to Santa Fe. So I guess the assumption is that you mean they start walking near El Paso as opposed to staying on the river, say in a powered boat, which would be easier.

That being said. I lived in New Mexico for several years and traveled to just about every city and town in the state. You will see a lot of this between El Paso and SF:

In the north nearer SF: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-cmNMaHYnchw/ThetbNRmZwI/AAAAAAAAAIY/HUCdwp9BFsw/s1600/highAltitude_mtn_road.jpg

And a lot of this in the southern half nearer Las Cruces:


You will also see some strange rock formations, such as Camel Rock just west of Santa Fe:


It is beautiful country and we'd probably still be there or in Colorado if we had not decided to move back to California to be closer to our first grandchild.

Good luck with the story.

11-17-2012, 09:07 PM
I'm sorry. I should have been more specific. Initially, they travel by river, but then have to walk the rest of the way. They get off the river exactly to the left of the city (the shortest distance between Point A and Point B is a straight line). I tried to look up on maps to see if there are any towns between, but not a lot of luck.

I hope this offers a little more insight.

11-17-2012, 11:23 PM
They get off the river exactly to the left...
If you mean West, Google Sage Brush Flats and the Santa Fe forest. Nice four-wheeling country and lots of pictures available. Might be a 10 mile hike or so, fairly easy walking.


11-18-2012, 05:29 AM
Awsome! The Sagebush Flats, just the visual I needed!

Now maybe everyone can help me with one more thing. Before making their way to Santa Fe, their first journey is from the Tusas Mountains to the Rio Chama. What I'm almost having the most trouble with is figuring out the distance, even in the most vague sense (and I will settle for a very vague answer).

Might anyone be able to tell me the answer?

I'd also love to know about the landscape along the way too.