All Seasons: Cerrillos, New Mexico

I go for a hike almost every day and cover a lot of the same ground, over and over, in all weather and in all seasons. Exploring new terrain is always exciting, but there is something deeply satisfying about getting to know a trail and the landscape on foot. When I hike, my camera is almost always around my neck and I’ve come to notice that along well-known trails I often stop to take photos from nearly the exact same spots. By following my artist’s eye for lining up a balanced shot, I’ve amassed a collection of photos of the same scenes, taken from the same spots, at different times of the year, all over the country. I call this series “All Seasons”.

To the untrained eye, there are only two seasons in the desert: hot and cold. Spring and fall are more subtle here than elsewhere, with few pops of color in spring and only the cottonwoods turning in fall. Having now spent all four season here, I can say for sure that the desert changes year round. Flowers appear, few and far between, and all the more precious. And now with fall descending the days are crisper and the last of the flowers are fading into the hard scrabble dirt. Winter is coming and I’m readying my woodpile.

Backyard Cliffs, Grey Day

Backyard Cliffs, Snow Day

The Long Road To Town, Blue Day

The Long Road To Town, Snow Day

My Driveway, Early Spring Mud

My Driveway, Snow Day

About theblondecoyote

Mary Caperton Morton is a freelance science and travel writer with degrees in biology and geology and a master’s in science writing. A regular contributor to EARTH magazine, where her favorite beat is the Travels in Geology column, she has also written for the anthologies Best Women's Travel Writing 2010 and Best Travel Writing 2011. Mary is currently based in western Colorado. When she’s not at the computer she can usually be found outside -- hiking, skiing, climbing mountains and taking photographs. Visit her website at
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5 Responses to All Seasons: Cerrillos, New Mexico

  1. Ian says:

    Pretty great post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wished to say that I’ve really enjoyed browsing your weblog posts. In any case I will be subscribing on your rss feed and I am hoping you write again soon!

  2. seekraz says:

    Beautiful! I recently moved from the deserts of Arizona to the mountains of Utah and can’t help but love the snowy pictures more. You have an excellent eye for capturing the beauty of the desert, but I so much prefer it with the snow covering. Again, beautiful photos, all…thank you. 🙂

    • A lot of people are surprised we get snow in the desert, but at an elevation of 6,000 feet, we sure do! Glad you enjoyed the photos!

      • seekraz says:

        Yes, I used to visit family in Albuquerque years ago, so I was able to experience your New Mexico snow…I always thought, and still do, that snowfall in the desert is rather mystical, somehow, other-worldly…. And yes, I do so enjoy your photos…thank you again.

  3. What a lovely part of the world you live in. I am fortunate enough to live in the Yorkshire Dales in England which is also beautiful

    Bruno Blackstone

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