New Mexico Bucket List – K ~ Blogging Through the Alphabet

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Today, we are going to look at three different K-named sites.

First up –

Kasha- Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument

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This national monument is located a bit north of Albuquerque but south of Santa Fe. It is a natural site that features cone-shaped tent rock formations. These formations are the result of volcanic explosions long ago in the Jemez volcanic field. (Remember the Jemez Springs post last week?) These formations are made up of pumice, ash, and tuff that are protected on the top by boulder caps.

There are two different hiking trails, of differing levels. The tent rock formations are beautiful but so are the slot canyons. The layers of rock are stunning. Take a look at the video to see more.

In addition to the rock formations and hiking, there are bird watching opportunities and unique opportunities for geologic observations and study. There are junior ranger activities available at this site. The BLM site for Kasha-Katuwe has some teacher and student educational materials available, also.

Kneeling Nun 

This is the rock formation that is found above the copper mine coming up next. It is so named because the Apache Indians thought this formation looked like a kneeling nun. There is a local legend that talks about how the rock formation came to be. When Coronado and his men were looking for gold, they had a run-in with native people and many were wounded. The wounded were brought to the monastery that had been built. One of the nuns caring for the wounded fell in love, which was punishable by death. She prayed instead to be turned into stone and that was granted.

Kennecott’s Santa Rita Copper Mine

This one is the complete opposite of the tent rocks we just discussed. This is a large open mine that has been in continuous operation since the 1800s. There used to be the town of Santa Rita where now there is a large open pit. Mining of copper started with shafts and tunnels. Eventually, though, all that could be extracted in those ways had been take out so something had to change. Thus, the open pit mine was started. It is quite the site, as you can see in the video.

Here are a couple of links for you to view more information on the mine.

The Center for Land Use Interpretation

Only In Your State

Hope you are enjoying the stops along the way in New Mexico. I know I am enjoying learning more about my home state because even though we spent lots of time visiting places while I was growing up, and I have taken my girls many places, there are still lots of lovely places I have not been in New Mexico.

Lori, At Home.

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7 thoughts on “New Mexico Bucket List – K ~ Blogging Through the Alphabet

  1. Kristen May 4, 2019 at 8:48 pm Reply

    I would love to visit the mines! So would my Minecraft loving children!

    • 3gigglygirlsathome May 6, 2019 at 9:31 am Reply

      I remember visiting the area when I was much younger, like early elementary, and thinking how large those tires are for those trucks coming in and out of there.

  2. Annette Vellenga (@athomepets) May 7, 2019 at 10:14 pm Reply

    Those tent rocks are so interesting.. Would be fun to see them in real life, and to walk about the mine… I KNOW I KNOW probably dangerous. But wouldn’t that be an interesting field trip.

  3. […] Ice Cave, International Balloon Fiesta J – Jemez Springs, Jemez Mountain Trail K – Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks, Kneeling Nun, Kennecott’s Copper Mine L – Lincoln (Billy The Kid), Loretto Chapel M – Malpais/Valley of Fire, Meow Wolf N […]

  4. Desiree W. June 23, 2021 at 6:01 pm Reply

    I really want to hike at the tent rocks! That is amazing.

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