Exploring the Jemez River

I had a free day yesterday except for a short dental appointment with my dentist friend Valerie 🙂

So prior to seeing her, I decided to walk along the river at Alameda to let Scarlett run a little.  I was greeted by a singing Bewick’s Wren.  He was saying “Spring is coming!”


Bewick’s Wren

Nearby a Black Phoebe was calling as well.


Black Phoebe

Other than that it was pretty quiet.  Earlier in the week I had hiked in this same area and saw several good birds.


Spotted Towhee



Cinnamon Teal



Ruby-Crowned Kinglet – I love these guys!

After my dental visit (and Scarlett got to see her best friend Mya), I realized I had a whole afternoon free and it was a beautiful day.  So I headed off to hike the East Fork of the Jemez River.  Along the way we passed the beautiful red sandstone cliffs at the Jemez Pueblo along with some other fun sights.


Travertine Soda Dam


Gotta love the miniature pony


Red Sandstone Cliffs at Jemez Pueblo



Church in San Ysidro

Scarlett and I started the hike but quickly realized it was still icy and muddy as the trail is in the deep shade of a canyon.  I let her play in the river a little before heading back to the car.  I needed to drop some in elevation to avoid the remaining snow and ice in the area.


I taught Scarlett how to cross rivers on logs


Miss Scarlett enjoying the river water

So I chose to stop at Battleship Rock trail area.  The rock formation looks a lot like the prow of a giant battleship.


Battleship Rock

I’ve never hiked this trail before.  I was hoping to find the McCauley hot springs.  Sadly I forgot my trail directions and I had no internet in that deep canyon.  So I followed a trail I thought might be the correct trail.  It wasn’t the right trail, but as I came around a bend in the trail, I was happily surprised by a waterfall.  I love waterfalls and there are very few in New Mexico.  So I was thrilled to find it.


Scarlett was curious of the waterfall.  She wanted to play in it but couldn’t get the courage to actually run into it.  Silly girl!


If you look closely at the base of the falls you will see Scarlett looking at the splashing water

I couldn’t resist setting up the camera for a selfie with Scarlett and I.


Kelly and Scarlett

I knew by this point I had missed the trailhead to the springs.  The day was growing short so I decided to head back to the car.  I decided I had just enough daylight left to visit the Gilman Tunnels.  I figured the Guadalupe Rio would be flowing strongly with all the snow melt.  I did see a few birds while hiking.


House Finch in what will probably be a nesting cavity in a tree


Northern Flicker

The drive there is through a scenic valley.  There’s lots of interesting things to photograph. 🙂

DSC_6146DSC_6073DSC_6075The tunnels were constructed in the box canyon in the 1920s for a logging railroad.  The railroad has since been removed and now you can drive this scenic box canyon.


Gilman Tunnels


Rio Guadalupe


Guadalupe Rio Box Canyon


I decided to brave the steep trail down to the water’s edge.  It was so loud with the roaring water.

DSC_6116DSC_6126  Scarlett didn’t like it at all.  I had someone on the trail take our photo.  You can see Scarlett doesn’t like it.


Scarlett had her ears back – she didn’t like that deep rushing water!


There was a concrete wall where I headed down into the canyon.  It had a lot of graffiti on it.  Now I normally hate graffiti, but I have to say this one had a bit of beauty to it.  Almost like a work of art 🙂


As I headed back out of the canyon, I saw the cliffs were lit up nicely by the setting sun.


In Jemez Springs there’s a beautiful statue behind a church.  It stands out because it’s so white.


Lastly I couldn’t resist taking a picture of the old Big Chief sign of an abandoned gas station.  I’ve driven past it many times, but decided to stop today and take a photo.  It’s a landmark! 🙂


Big Chief sign at Zia Pueblo


It was a fun day! And Scarlett and I were pooped!

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Scarlett was one tired puppy.  She was happy to go to bed 🙂

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