Road Trip: Spring WildflowersFrom El Paso to Albuquerque
This season’s rain and snow are leaving behind a bevy of blooms in the desert. Come by Finn’s Discount Auto and buy a comfortable car to take your family on a spring road trip. Heading north from El Paso into New Mexico, there are many options for hiking, enjoying a picnic and marveling at the colorful gifts left by winter rain.
Starting in El Paso, hit the Franklin Mountains State Park at 1331 McKelligon Canyon Road. If your timing is right, a blanket of Mexican gold poppies will be spread out around the base. You may see claret cups in April.
Pack a picnic and head to the Organ Mountains National Monument in Las Cruces. Here you’ll see a smattering of the Mexican gold poppies, along blue lupine. The magnificent Saguaro cactus and the Organ Pipe cactus also bloom in late spring. The Visitor Center has a small garden with signs identifying native wildflowers.
Two and half hours north of El Paso on Highway Interstate 125 is the Bosque del Apache, a marvelous refuge for migrating birds. It’s known for the massive flocks of Snow geese and Sandhill cranes that winter there. The Chupadera Trail is a 9.5 mile loop through an amazing array of desert plants.
Keep heading north another 100 miles, and this will take you to the Petroglyph National Monument. Desert marigolds bloom in mass, while scarlet hedgehog cactus and tulip prickly pear have sprouted up around the rocky formations etched hundreds of years ago.