Monday, July 18, 2016

Rio Grande Gorge Bridge, Taos, New Mexico

While we were in Angel Fire, we took a trip to Taos along US 64 through the mountains.  Even though it was only 24 miles, with all the twists and turns, it took us around 45 minutes to navigate.  Taos is an artsy fartsy city - not what we look for when visiting a city.  There are too many art and clothing stores, so we did not spend much time there. Our main purpose was to go grocery shopping, but we stopped at the Kit Carson Museum and Rio Grande Gorge Bridge before shopping and heading back to Angel Fire.

The Rio Grande Gorge Bridge was opened to travelers in September of 1965.  It spans 1,280 feet and stands 565 feet above the river.  It is the 7th highest bridge in the United States and 82nd highest bridge in the world. It is located 10 miles northwest of Taos, New Mexico along US 64.  The bridge keeps US 64 going from Raton, New Mexico through the mountains of northern New Mexico to the border of Arizona.

On the west side of the bridge the Rio Grande Gorge  Rest Area is located. You can park there, or along the road and then walk out onto the bridge.  There are sidewalks on both sides of the bridge for people to walk out over the gorge. The bridge has been the site of numerous suicides, and there are Help Hotline machines by the bridge for people to call if they require help.

In 1966 the American Institute of Steel Construction awarded the bridge "Most Beautiful Steel Bridge."

These pictures do not do justice to the gorge.  It is really deep and we saw mountain goats down near the bottom.  It spans the Rio Grande River, which hosts rafting trips on the river.

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