June 13, 2016 Heron Lake State Park, New Mexico

Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country

Down Route 84 to Georgia O’Keefe Country

Mom Mulie and Yearling Twins
Mom Mulie and Yearling Twins

Ran into these guys along the road out of the campground on my way back out to Route 84 and a quick trip 30 miles south to the land of Georgia O’Keefe.

Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country

Unfortunately, I chose a poor afternoon to make this trip, as the blue skies clouded up almost as soon as I reached my destination, and then I battled white skies and rain showers, but without the dramatic dark clouds of the usual afternoon thunderstorms.

Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country

Still, these rock formations are beautiful under any conditions.

Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country

I have been in this area a couple of times in the past, but only passing through or on a day trip up from Santa Fe. I drove down here today to check out a couple of local campground options for a longer stay here to really explore the area someday in the near future.

Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country
Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country

Just south of the Echo Amphitheater park, I noticed there was a 13 mile long gravel road ( Route 151 ) running parallel to the Rio Chama, that takes you out to the Christ of the Desert Monastery. Several of the images were shot along that narrow, washboarded, and very dusty road. The monastery closes to visitors just a little before I reached the end of the road, giving me a good excuse to do this drive again someday.

Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country
Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country

With the very poor light conditions, I didn’t take a lot of shots, but from what I did shoot, one can just imagine what this place looks like on a nice day.

Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country
Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country

The image above has actually inspired me to get out my watercolors and start a painting for the first time in over five years!

Georgia O'Keefe Country
Georgia O’Keefe Country

Area Campgrounds

There is a campground, National Forest, I believe, about 10 miles out this road to the monastery. There actually were a couple sites that I could probably squeeze into and the campground is very secluded and has a nice feel to it, but I am just not sure about subjecting the motorhome to 10 miles of bouncing along this very narrow road, and I have no idea what would happen if I ran into another vehicle coming in the opposite direction, there are not a lot of places wide enough for anything to get by a wide rig.

There is a COE campground about 10 miles farther south on Abiquiu Reservoir and there are several sites there that work for large rigs, but after taking a run through the campground and finding it just about completely full on a Monday, one would have to make reservations to get in there this time of year.

The Echo Amphitheater Park, located right on Route 84, has a small campground loop with three sites that would handle a midsize rig like mine and it was empty when I drove through, so that may be a possibility.

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