The Turquoise TrailThe first part of this trip is taking The Turquoise Trail. This is a fantastic day trip from Albuquerque or Santa Fe (about 150 miles round trip). What drew us 20 years ago was the chance to see the ghost towns of Golden, Madrid and Cerrillos. Well things have really changed in 20 years.
None of the towns are ghost towns anymore, and there are some really interesting places to stop, shop and eat along the way.
Madrid NMMadrid is a former coal mining company town. The mine operated through the 1950's and provided major amounts of coal to Los Alamos and the Manhattan Project. When the mine closed the company tried to sell off the entire town, but was unable to. So the town was abandoned and became a ghost town. In the 1970's the started selling off individual parcels and this led to the rebirth of Madrid.
|Downtown Madrid on a busy Thursday|
Madrid has made a place for itself by becoming home to artists and galleries. The town is full of places to by art, jewelry and pottery by local artists and also native artists. One fine gallery is the Dream Gallery owned by Pamela Ellsworth
|The garden at Dream Gallery|
|recycled iron plates made into beautiful pieces|
|There are several pieces like this, with beautiful stones at their center|
|The Amazing Ms. D spending some time with Pamela Ellsworth|
Here Owner Jesse, is friendly and outgoing. He has wonderful high end pieces, and also jewelery that everyone can afford.
|The Amazing Ms. D Models one of Chumani Galleries pieces|
For lunch we stopped in at Momma Lisa's No Pity Cafe. Lisa is an excellent chef and also an excellent potter. We had a dish she calls zucchini linguine, in which the zucchini is cut into long strips and serves instead of pasta. We also had an Asian strip steak salad. Both were delicious. The best, though, was the home-made pistachio ice cream.
From Madrid we continued north to Cerrillos NM. Of the towns on the Turquoise Trail, Cerrillos is the most unchanged from 20 years ago.
|The other half of Main Street|
In addition to the Trading post is a museum of turquoise and and a petting zoo.
If you are in New Mexico the Turquoise Trail is worth the trip.