Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

We’ll take the high road

with 14 comments


On October 18th, having spent the morning hours in the mountains above Santa Fe reveling in fall foliage, we drove down into town, freshened up, and set back out again. This time we headed north, up US 84, thinking we’d go to Chimayó and perhaps on to Taos. After 16 miles, in Pojoaque, we turned right on New Mexico Highway 503, which forms a part of the High Road to Taos Scenic Byway, and went east toward Nambé Pueblo. It wasn’t long before we had good views of the snow-covered Sangre de Cristo Mountains. I believe the prominent peak is Santa Fe Baldy, which rises to 12,632 ft (3,850 m). Later we saw a cottonwood tree (Populus deltoides ssp. wislizeni) that had turned bright yellow.



© 2022 Steven Schwartzman





Written by Steve Schwartzman

November 29, 2022 at 4:32 AM

14 Responses

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  1. The layers of mountains is nicely capped by the snow-covered peak. I like the bit of cloud at the top of the frame, suggesting the source of that snow. Your title brought to mind another high road — one I learned about in a song:

    “Ye’ll take the high road and I’ll take the low road,
    And I’ll be in Scotland afore ye;
    But me and my true love
    Will never meet again
    On the bonnie, bonnie banks of Loch Lomond.”

    I can’t say I’ve ever heard someone refer to the low road to Taos, but I suspect it’s as lovely as the high road.


    November 29, 2022 at 8:09 AM

    • You caught my allusion: the post’s title did refer to that Scottish song.

      From what we heard, the snow had come down just a few days earlier, so our timing was as good for the mountain views as for the fall foliage in northern New Mexico (and again Sunday and yesterday for Lost Maples).

      I don’t know if anyone refers to the low road to Taos, but I imagine it would be NM 68 from Española to Taos.

      Steve Schwartzman

      November 29, 2022 at 8:28 AM

    • LOL, the title almost had me bursting into song here. There’s a somewhat less traditional version by Runrig – one of my favourite Scottish bands – which had to be played at all their concerts. 🙂

      Ann Mackay

      December 3, 2022 at 7:11 AM

      • No reason to restrain yourself: burst into song as much as you like.

        Not having heard of Runrig, I listened to a recording of them performing the song. In the version I heard, the middle part was ‘less traditional,’ as you said.

        Steve Schwartzman

        December 3, 2022 at 7:37 AM

  2. Blues, and yellows are the colors I choose came to mind seeing these two images. They’re lovely.


    November 29, 2022 at 8:53 AM

  3. Nice view of the mountains and lovely autumn color. Had I been along there might have been two Santa Fe Baldies in the area.

    Steve Gingold

    November 30, 2022 at 3:58 AM

    • Self-deprecating humor aside, you’d also have found a whole lot to photograph. The German word bald means ‘soon.’

      Steve Schwartzman

      November 30, 2022 at 4:57 AM

  4. I don’t think I had the opportunity to explore the Santa Fe area much. I do fondly recall heading up to Taos where a friend from college lived and going around that area for a while. Such a beautiful state, so much to see.

    Todd Henson

    December 2, 2022 at 5:45 AM

    • Given that you didn’t get to explore Santa Fe much, I recommend that you go back. The area has so much to see.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 2, 2022 at 6:03 AM

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