Historic adobe church and soaring gorge bridge near Taos

2 months ago 45
October 03, 2022

Even if you haven’t visited the aged adobe ngo successful Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico, you’ll apt admit it. Ansel Adams photographed the church successful 1929, and Georgia O’Keeffe painted it successful 1930, making it celebrated to this day.

Ranchos Church, New Mexico by Georgia O’Keeffe. Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas

San Francisco de Asís church

San Francisco de Asís was built successful the aboriginal 1800s. “Constructed of mud and straw sun-dried adobe bricks, this religion inactive stands arsenic 1 of the fewer archetypal buildings successful Taos,” according to its website, and it continues to clasp services.

O’Keeffe painted the rear of the religion by rendering its blocky signifier into geometric shapes. When I visited astatine the extremity of August, monsoon-watered grasses were stubbling the earthen aboveground of its buttresses.

Along a broadside wall, orangish globe mallow was flowering.

The beforehand of the religion is softly molded too, with 2 doorbell towers rising supra a cardinal arched door.

Sloping buttresses

Inside, the religion feels amazingly airy, adjacent with the aged vigas — hand-carved beams — stretching overhead.

Looking backmost to the entrance

Behind the altar hangs a colorfully painted reredos, oregon altar screen.

Another surface hangs connected an adjacent wall.

Afternoon light

The beforehand plaza of the church…

…contains a statue of its namesake, St. Francis of Assisi. Beyond a rose-lined wall…

…sits an adobe location oregon store with entity bluish doors and windows. Sunflowers and painted hollyhocks adhd a spot of garden.

Rio Grande Gorge Bridge

Approximately 10 miles northwest of Taos, a spiderwebby alloy span arches crossed a heavy gorge carved into the Taos Plateau. At its deepest, the gorge plunges 800 feet to the snaking Rio Grande River below. But present the span soars astir 600 feet supra the river. Strangely, determination isn’t a statement connected the bridge’s height. It’s the 5th, 7th, oregon 10th highest span successful the U.S., depending connected the source. No matter. It’s high.

The span sneaks up connected you arsenic you cruise crossed the plain. Suddenly you’re flying crossed a stomach-flipping abyss, with thing but bare aerial each astir you.

We parked connected the westbound broadside of the gorge successful a visitant batch with picnic tables and restrooms and walked implicit to the bridge. Cars and trucks zipped crossed the narrow, two-lane span. Note the cantilevered viewing platforms poking retired from the span rail. I lone made it to the archetypal one.

An elevated sidewalk runs on some sides of the bridge, and we joined different scattered visitors venturing retired for the epic view.

Pictures can’t convey however semi-terrifying it was to thin retired implicit the railing and peek astatine the miniaturized stream below.

That presumption though. I took it each successful connected 1 broadside of the bridge, my knees shaking arsenic cars whooshed down me.

During a lull, I crossed to the different broadside to respect the gorge with late-afternoon airy cutting crossed it. And past I hightailed it backmost to coagulated earth.

If you bask a thrill, oregon a glimpse of eons of geologic time, this is an attraction for you.

Sunflowers and mountains adjacent the Gorge Bridge.

Up next: Santa Fe’s Railyard Park built connected aged bid tracks and the colorful farmers’ market. For a look backmost astatine my circuit of Georgia O’Keeffe’s Abiquiú home, click here.

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