I have been wanting to do Tent Rocks on My World for a long time, but I have never been there with photographing for a blog in my mind before, so I could never really pull together the right photos.

Last week we went, so I left people faces out of a lot of pictures, and I will share my favorite hiking spot, Tent Rocks, with you.

This is the beginning of the trail. (click photo to enlarge)

This is the beginning of the trail. Notice the tent shaped (teepee-shaped) formations in the foreground. (click photo to enlarge)

Tent Rocks is located between Santa Fe and Albuquerque, New Mexico, and I do not think one really arrives there by accident. There is not a sign on the highway for it, but if you know which exit to take, there are immediately signs telling how to get there. We went with some friends not long after moving here and have been once or twice a year since. We often take our visitors hiking at Tent Rocks.

Bottom trail--my husbnad is at the bottom right for some perspective.

Bottom trail--my husbnad is at the bottom right for some perspective.

There are two trails, and I am showing you the longer one that goes to the top of the National Monument. I have been on the shorter, Cave Loop, one time. It is very pretty, but again, no blog-worthy pictures for that. Maybe another day.  The trail I am showing is 1.3 miles one-way. There is a lot of climbing, but our kids started doing it on their own when they were both four. (Before that Prince Charming had them in a backpack.)  But I would not recommend it for anyone with serious physical problems. (And it always feels like we have walked way farther than 2.6 miles when we get back to the picnic area to each our lunch!)

Take water (Last week we met some people at the top that really did not know what kind of trail it was going to be, and they did not have water. We gave them some of ours because it is not a stroll) and probably dress in layers. The top is about 7,000 feet elevation (I think), and it can be really windy there. But the walk in the bottom goes through some sunny canyons and can be quite warm in any season.

Tree with above-ground roots. This is always a trail landmark. The roots of this tree are above ground to the height of an adult. Kids LOVE to stop and play here among the roots.

Tree with above-ground roots. This is always a trail landmark. The roots of this tree are above ground to the height of an adult. Kids LOVE to stop and play here among the roots.

I was grateful this time that my brother, a photographer, had been visiting and helped me figure out how to use the manual settings on my camera. The sun is bright and the stones are light, so it is easy to get washed-out photos. But no matter what the canyon walls and rock formations look like, you will always see some of the most intense blue skies of your life.  And if you are into letterboxing, there are two hidden here, though our family has only found one (even after multiple attempts to find the other.)

This post covers about the first half-to-two-thirds of the bottom trail through the canyon.  Come back next week for more!

There are several areas where the trail is very narrow, where width of the trail is smaller than one footprint. This is where the little kids always fall and scrape off some skin.

There are several areas where the trail is very narrow, where width of the trail is smaller than one footprint. This is where the little kids always fall and scrape off some skin.

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