Autumn has arrived in her usual fashion of flashy golds, fading greens and glistening oranges and reds. Angel Fire Resort, located on the famed Enchanted Circle, is the perfect place to view fall colors. Capture the essence of America’s favorite season by taking a day to explore gorgeous Moreno Valley during your Enchanted Circle Fall Drive.
Bring Your Camera
While cruising on the network of highways and scenic byways that make up the Enchanted Circle, you’ll experience the best of New Mexico’s high country. Although the 85-mile loop can be completed in a couple of hours, the point of taking a scenic drive is to stop and take in the view. If you plan to hit the road early in the morning, you’ll likely encounter morning fog that will add a dramatic flair to your photos. The golden aspens that are known to stop tourists and locals in their tracks are sprinkled throughout the Enchanted Circle. But a stop at Angel Fire Resort guarantees foliage views unlike any other. Take a Scenic Chairlift Ride to the summit and enjoy the autumnal goodness from 10,677 ft. The deck at the Summit Haus makes the perfect location for family photos, an engagement photoshoot or even a wedding ceremony.
Much of the local wildlife, including massive herds of elk and deer along with eagles and wild turkeys, can be seen throughout the Enchanted Circle. Angel Fire has many wide-open valleys full of photogenic wildlife. One great location is just south of the village, Valley of the Utes. To reach this spot, turn left on Cabillo Ln. from HWY 434. Or follow the Circle staying on HWY 64 between Angel Fire and Eagle Nest.
Check out our guide to capturing the best photos of fall colors here.
Pack a Picnic
The Enchanted Circle is home to quaint villages and bustling ski towns. We suggest starting the Fall Drive in Angel Fire. But don’t hit the road on an empty stomach. Pack some snacks or get takeout from any of our local eateries. Treat yourself to Taco Tuesday at El Jefe, or a delicious burger and fries from Par & Grill.
With a little picnic packed, stop by the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, the first memorial built to honor the Vietnam Veterans. Not only is this hallowed ground a peaceful place to reflect and educate, but the views from the Visitors’ Center capture the pure beauty of fall in Moreno Valley. Another enchanting spot to stop for a picnic and take in the scenery is the Elliot Barker trail. It begins at the entrance of Taos Canyon on the Angel Fire side. During the fall, the trail is very popular with hikers, horseback riders and mountain bikers alike.
Stay & Play
Circling Wheeler Peak, the highest point in New Mexico, the Enchanted Circle Fall Drive will take you through Angel Fire, Taos, Eagle Nest, Red River and Questa. While enjoying the Enchanted Circle Fall Drive, plan some time to stop in Angel Fire and watch the changing autumn landscapes. Now is the perfect time to plan an entire staycation around the Enchanted Circle Fall Drive. During the fall foliage peak, approximately Sept. 25 – Oct. 10, a round of golf is particularly special. Boasting one of the top courses in New Mexico, tee times are plenty as well as a fleet of newer golf carts for your convenience. One could say September in Angel Fire is the perfect fall getaway.
If experiencing the adrenaline rush of a lift-served downhill bike park is more your speed, fall at Angel Fire Bike Park is a bucket-list destination. Fall is our favorite time of year for a crisp morning ride through golden glades kicking up leaves. Come experience our 2,000+ vertical feet, 60+ miles of purpose-built, lift-served terrain featuring the best skinnies, jump lines, manicured flow and super chunk trails the United States has to offer.
Whatever activity you choose in Angel Fire, you can’t go wrong in the fall.