Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Taos, New Mexico: Visting the off-the-grid Earthships

Travel Date: Monday, Oct 20 2014

Got up in the morning and drove to Taos. My friend Justin had suggested that I visit the Earthships there - and usually he is spot on with things I would like.

The drive there was beautiful with the changing colors of the trees. The one thing I noticed though is that New Mexico drivers are horrible. 

Got into Taos and started noticing some of the historic architecture.

Drove past the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge and made a mental note to revisit it on the drive back. I arrived outside the Earthship community.

Drove through and parked and noticed the Visitors Center.

Looking at the structures around me.

Walked into the Visitors Center and began to learn more about the place. They are completely off the water and electricity grid. Meaning they don't pay utility bills. The water is collected from rain and electricity is collected from solar and wind.

The entrance.

On the outside but within the walls of the house.

The first room I walk into that has a TV feeding off the stored electricity from solar and wind.

The sheets that I was given for the self guided tour.

Where the power is controlled.

Banners and information about the Earthships.

I love this poster.

I walk outside and take pictures of the other earthships being constructed.

After a tour of the Earthships, I decide to park near the Rio Grand Gorge Bridge and take a peek.

And then drive back through the beautiful streets and scenery of Taos towards Santa Fe.


The drive to Taos from Albuquerque was quite long. But the scenery with the changing colors was quite beautiful. I found the idea of a sustainable home made from recyclable materials such as tires, aluminum cans and bottles amazing. It is unbelievable that they aren't on the water or electric grids - and so they don't pay water or electric bills. The rooms stay relatively cool despite the weather outside. The Rio Grand Gorge was neat to see for some time. Lots of vendors around the gorge selling stuff though. Great suggestion Justin!

The drive from Taos back to Santa Fe was dreadful because it was one lane for most of the way and there was a funeral car procession keeping traffic back for miles. They were going 10-15 miles under the speed limit until we hit the two lane highway about 30 minutes later. Painful I tell you!! I know, I know my impatience is showing.

Expenses: $38.00
Gas: $31.00
Earthship Museum: $7.00

Monday, November 17, 2014

Albuquerque, New Mexico: The long drive and the third best burger I've eaten

Travel Date: Sunday, Oct 19 2014

Got up early as I could and started the drive to Albuquerque. Along the way I saw this beautiful view and mountain and had to pull over and take a picture.

And then it started to rain. I passed the Petrified Forest National Park and was considering making a visit but fortunately the rain resolved that debate quickly.

And after the rain the scenery gets beautiful.


And a rainbow.

Getting dusky.

I finally get to Charla's house. I was looking for a place to stay in New Mexico, and my friend Chad who lives in Los Angeles knew someone he advised from Roanoke College and hooked me up with her and place to stay. Unfortunately Charla was in the middle of studying for grad school so I quickly said hello to her and talked for a while and then headed out to get some dinner at a place she recommended.

I get to B2B Bistronomy which Charles recommended for great burgers.

This restaurant has Giving Back Sundays where 20% of local sales is donated to an organization. On this particular day they are donating to the Junior League of Albuquerque.

The place is busy.

And get a black burger with the red chili which was really good. Third best burger I've tasted in the US. Great recommendation Charla. Now I just have to try something with the green chili since New Mexico is known for its red and green chilis.

Then I get back to the house and watch some TV. Feeling too lazy to blog.


Today was a long drive and was a little exhausting. I was struggling with some thoughts regarding the journey but in the end it worked out.

The highlight of the day was meeting Charla through Chad. I am in complete gratitude for both of them. I really needed a place to stay in Albuquerque and Santa Fe and I could not find any through couchsurfing, and then Chad came through strong for me. Thank you Chad and thank you Charla!!!

So I have decided to explore Santa Fe tomorrow. I plan to also make a visit to Taos since my friend Justin mentioned the Earthships which should very intriguing. And I have some places to check out in Santa Fe that another friend Patricia recommended.

Expenses: $56.68
Gas: $26.75
Coffee: $2.52 (Starbucks)
Car Supplies/Maintenance: $9.72 (Walmart)
Dinner: $17.67 (B2B Bistronomy)