Whether you’re looking for an athletic challenge to get your adrenaline flowing, or you’re planning your vacation around cooler temperatures and a landscape beautiful enough to lose yourself in, chances are you’ll find something to love about autumn in Santa Fe. Nestled in the southern foothills of the Rocky Mountains, Santa Fe is the perfect place to find leisurely walks, and hiking trails, as well as more active events like the annual Buffalo Thunder Half Marathon and the International Mountain Bicycling Association’s World Summit. Athletes have always loved the challenge offered by trails like the 22.2 mile Dale Ball system, and the expansive La Tierra system. And, at an elevation of 7,000 feet above sea level even power shopping on the Plaza can qualify as a sport.
No matter how you decide to spend your time in Santa Fe, you’ll be surrounded by some of the most vibrant fall colors in the southwest thanks to the pristine 1.6 million acre Santa Fe National Forest. We always get a kick out of sharing our mountain vistas, hiking trails, and scenic country roads with visitors. But, we want your first taste of the cleanest air in the country to be as refreshing as possible, so you can fall head-over-heels in love with Santa Fe the way visitors have for hundreds of years. So, here are a few useful tips to get you prepared for your change of altitude.
Lots of water seems to help with just about everything, and elevation is no exception. So drink up. Sure, bathroom breaks might add a little time to your road trip, but you’ll be ready to hit the trail or hit the town as soon as your bags hit the hotel floor. And trust us, you’ll want to experience as much as possible.
Break your diet and go for those carbohydrates (we recommend the locally loved sopapillas with honey). Seriously. Carbs give your body the immediate energy it needs to let you play hard hiking, biking, or checking out all of Santa Fe’s art markets.
We don’t want to brag, but Santa Fe was just nominated Best Food Town in America by USA Today and Rand Mcnally's 'Best of the Road.' So come hungry. We also have a top ranked local farmer’s market which can provide a bounty of fresh, seasonal gastronomic surprises. Remember, this is for your health.
Even if you don’t happen to be running in the Buffalo Thunder half marathon, this is still good advice. Don’t try to see and do everything Santa Fe offers that first night here. Even locals can’t fit all Santa Fe’s great music, cuisine, shopping and hiking trails in one weekend. And we live here. Go ahead and take that extra day or two off work and give yourself the time to relax. And, don’t forget to include a few hours at one of our great spas in your schedule. Remember, vacations are supposed to be relaxing.
Athletic events to get you going: