Above: Near Questa, the Rio Grande cuts an 800-foot gorge through volcanic rock. Photograph by Geraint Smith.

At an elevation of 7,461 feet, the mountain enclave of Questa is the gateway to the Río Grande del Norte National Monument and a vast network of trails, including a new 0.6-mile self-guided loop linking downtown Questa with its historic plaza. Take the Questa History and Community Trail for a blast-from-the-past stroll—dare I say quest—through the annals of the village by way of eight stops, each with a signpost describing a historical era. The first one sets the clock back 5,000 years. Others continue forward, covering the Kiowa Trail, the role of acequias, and the building and preservation of San Antonio del Río Colorado church. The final stop tells the story of the village’s long and complex relationship to molybdenum mining. Better get to trekkin’.

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Story Sidebar

The Truth About “Questa”
It’s said that a long-passed and unnamed postmaster misspelled the name of the northern New Mexican village of Questa, employing a Q, rather than the orthographically correct C. The error was never rectified.

While You’re There
Every Saturday evening from June to early August, the Questa History Trail team co-hosts a series of multimedia performances with the Bureau of Land Management on the historical lifeways and culture of Questa at the Río Grande del Norte National Monument amphitheater.

Speaking of Questa, Did You Know …
Questa will gain national renown this Christmas season when a tree from the Questa District of the Carson National Forest will be chopped down and sent to Washington, D.C., as the Capitol Christmas Tree, installed on the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building.