Albuquerque's only guided city tour follows an 18-mile course, and the 66 minutes of fun begin at the Plaza Don Luis in Old Town. The journey, which allows sightseers to sit back and take in the view (as opposed to "hop on, hop off" tours) blazes a path past Museum Row and through Downtown, before cruising on course to the city's competitive baseball, basketball, and jousting stadiums. With witty and historical commentary, the burqueños entertain and inform locals and visitor alike as they ferry past the Rio Grande Zoo, Albuquerque Aquarium, and Botanic Gardens, among other essential Albuquerque hot spots. The tour concludes where it began in Old Town, where the knowledgeable guides bid farewell to guests and point them toward a good place to lunch, shop, or patent their most recent invention.
The San Juan River winds through New Mexico's high desert country surrounded by cool, dry air in the summer and warm sunshine in the winter, providing year-round fishing opportunities for Mark Nesbit and his Blue Sky Fly Fishing Co. crew. They take everyone from beginners to advanced anglers out on wade, float, and reservoir trips, teaching the skills necessary to catch hard-fighting trout after determining where the fish have been congregating and which flies have been producing. While leading anglers into waist-deep water or overseeing them on drift boats, the guides also share advice on lure selection, which they have acquired over several decades of fishing in the San Juan River, Navajo Reservoir, and aquariums.
Big River Raft Trips owner Billy Miller, who has more than 10,000 river miles logged on his personal odometer, leads a team of expert guides that steers full- and half-day rafting trips along the Rio Grande. Big River Raft Trips categorizes each tour by its difficulty, delivering aquatic thrills to paddlers of all skill levels through placid, sightseeing rides for beginners as well as heart-racing treks through Class IV+ rapids for experts and human-dinghy hybrids. All rafting equipment is included for all trip.
Although the views of the Sacramento Mountains are imposing and majestic at ground level, nothing can compete with approaching them from 10,000 feet above. That’s why the staff at Skydive White Sands offers a range of jumps and classes that let guests get a bird’s-eye view of the mountain peaks, smooth white sands, and roller-skating clouds while feeling the rush of an adrenaline-pumping free fall. Staff members send jumpers into the air in a Cessna 206, then strap themselves to students for a tandem jump or teach them how to man their own parachute during the seven-level skydiving-licensing program. While in flight, clients can choose to record their experience with a handheld camera that documents their free fall and peaceful descent to the ground.
Bead Fest Santa Fe unites do-it-yourselfers and arts-and-crafters during a four-day celebration of beads, jewelry—and for good measure—some more beads. More than 150 booths and tables set up shop for the event, each ready to restock repertoires with gems, stones, and a hodgepodge of other supplies.
In between exploring the sea of exhibitors, attendees learn about the latest techniques, tricks, and tools at nearly 100 all-inclusive workshops (not included with the price of admission). There, artists from around the country provide education on specific topics in classes such as Intro to Metalsmithing and Wire Weaving, where guests learn the craftiest way to escape prison. Free demonstrations, book signings, and other attractions round out the fest's collection of creative attractions.
Unlike mud runs before it, the 5K course of the Recon Run is adorned with boot-camp-style obstacles such as piles of tires, muddy trenches, and walls that runners must jump, scramble, and pull themselves over. The military theme comes as no surprise; after all, proceeds from this charity race support the Semper Fi Fund, a nonprofit organization that provides financial support to injured and ill members of the US Armed Forces and their families. Upon completing the course, successful recruits earn T-shirts, dog tags, and beer that they can enjoy with fellow racers at the finish line.