The morning started out cool but I could tell it was going to get hot, so that was a great reason to head a bit north to Bosque del Apache wildlife refuge. (It’s cooler the more north you go.)
The road there is long and the scenery is great!
We stopped at a rest area just to look at how BIG the desert is in New Mexico.
Before we get to our destination, let’s learn what the title Bosque del Apache means.
A bosque is the Spanish word for woodlands, and makes sense when you know that much of the land here was settled by Spanish-speaking people coming up from Mexico. A bosque is a gallery forest, found only the southwestern United States.
What’s a gallery forest? That’s a narrow strip of woods along the banks of a waterway flowing through plains or desert. The Rio Grande river flows through this area, providing the water.
The del Apache phrase indicates that a long time ago, this was a forest camping place for the Apache tribe.
Now you know two things about the Bosque del Apache that make it different from the desert that surrounds it: it has water and…
It has trees!
And because it has trees and water in the middle of a desert, it has birds!
The Bosque del Apache is a very important flyway for birds migrating south in the winter to stay warm and for those same birds heading north when spring comes.
The only problem we had during our visit was that the digital version of Flat Eliza doesn’t take very good pictures outside because it was too sunny. So we went to the visitor center and we found a great book while we were looking for places to pose!
We really liked the Bosque del Apache because everywhere you look, there is a beautiful view.
This was our favorite place because it was so pretty and so quiet that all we could hear was the wind blowing through the grass.