Great American Road Trip – Day 3

Our Lady of Guadalupe, Santa Fe.

Route: Santa Fe, New Mexico to Durango, Colorado
Miles Driven: 210
Lodging: The Rochester Hotel, Durango, Colorado
Best Eats: Kakawa Chocolate House (Santa Fe); Steamworks Brewing Company (Durango)
Heard on the Radio: Audiobook – Hatchet, by Gary Paulsen (M.’s request)
Miles Run: 3.5 (Santa Fe, New Mexico)

Like most mornings, we were awakened with a wet little nose in our faces. Time to run! Today’s run was cool enough for a long-sleeved T-shirt… unheard of at this time in Matamoros. We took our time and used the opportunity to explore Santa Fe’s Old Town a little bit more. We both felt a bit tired, not sure if that was owing to the stress of the move and long driving days catching up to us, or the high altitude of Santa Fe (6,500 feet), but we didn’t mind. We stopped occasionally to take some photos.

Our Lady of Guadalupe, Santa Fe.

Seen on our run: Our Lady of Guadalupe, Santa Fe.

Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi, downtown Sante Fe.

Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi, downtown Sante Fe.

After our run, we got cleaned up and enjoyed breakfast on the patio of our bed and breakfast. It was a beautiful morning, despite it being monsoon season in this part of the country. The sky was clear, the sun shining, and the weather just about perfect.

We went for a walk after breakfast to explore the city a little bit more, visiting the outdoor market and window shopping among the many art shops that line the streets. We took in the scene, including the unique stucco adobe-style architecture of nearly every building, and the similarly unique population, which appeared to consist primarily of Native Americans, retirees, and artsy types. Indeed, Santa Fe is a mecca for artsy types, with its many museums and galleries just about everywhere.

One of many colorful outdoor craft markets in Old Town Santa Fe.

Historic Route 66.

Historic Route 66.

While we agreed that Santa Fe is beautiful, it seemed to us to be more of a tourist destination… “a nice place to visit”, as my friend had put it the night before, very much the same way I feel about Washington, DC. I had been to Santa Fe once before, but this was M.’s first time.
We completed our tour of Santa Fe with a stop at the Kakawa Chocolate House, which had been highly recommended by a friend. With its homemade truffles and famous hot chocolate elixir, Kakawa was indeed a treat. We bought a few truffles to take with us, including a mezcal lime truffle and another made with Bulgarian rose oil, to remind us of some of our favorite places in the world.

Mmmm… who doesn’t like a chocolate house?


Truffles made with Bulgarian rose oil… who knew, in Santa Fe, New Mexico?

After a quick stop at Trader Joe’s to pick up some groceries, we got back on the road and drove north toward our next destination: Durango, Colorado. We passed through some beautiful scenery on the way, including the town of Pagosa Springs, purportedly the world’s deepest hot springs. Though we didn’t try them for ourselves, Pagosa Springs made for a nice place to stop and stretch our legs.

We arrived in Durango at around 5:00 pm and checked into our room at the historic and classy Rochester Hotel. Our room was cozy and included a beautiful, soft dog bed for Frieda. She took to it almost immediately.
M. found an off-leash dog area on the edge of downtown Durango, which was not fenced in; rather, it had natural borders, which included a mountain and a river. The park itself must have been several dozen acres, and Frieda had the time of her life running, sniffing, and playing with other local dogs for well over an hour.
Dinner in Durango was at the Steamworks Brewing Company, a local place with two dozen or so homemade beers. We enjoyed our meal, exhausted from the long but fun day. We returned to our room, upon which Frieda cozied up in her dog bed and we relaxed before falling asleep.

Frieda relaxes after a long day in her hotel-provided dog bed.

Thank you for reading!

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