Rio Grande Gorge Bridge.

Rio Grande Gorge Bridge: Pedestrian Thrills

Field review by the editors.

Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico

The Rio Grande Gorge is an unexpected 1,300-foot-wide crack in the flat, empty tablelands of northern New Mexico. US 64, a two-lane blacktop, crosses it on a bridge built in 1965. Its designers included sidewalks -- obviously for tourists, since there's no reason that anyone would just be strolling out here in the middle of nothing -- along with little porches that jut out over the void. There's nothing between you and your camera and a 650-foot drop into the gorge except a chest-high guardrail!

Engineers can't install any additional safety protection without compromising the structural integrity of the bridge, so the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge will remain as it is, an interactive monument to the at-your-own-risk vacations of mid-20th-century America. Watch your step.

Rio Grande Gorge Bridge: Pedestrian Thrills

Address:
US Hwy 64, Ranchos de Taos, NM
Directions:
US Hwy 64, either 19 miles east of US Hwy 285, or 86 miles west of I-25 exit 419. There are small gravel parking lots on either end of the bridge, and pedestrian sidewalks on both sides of the highway.
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In the region:
Old Aztec Mill Museum, Cimarron, NM - 45 mi.

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January 23, 2019

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