Indian School is an east- west Albuquerque boulevard that ends at the Embudo Canyon Open Space at the far east side of the city..
The parking lot, at the roads end, is the beginning of a city Open Space area that moves into the Cibola National Forest Wilderness. The nature walks and trails, at the cities edge, open at seven each morning and close at seven each evening. If you are bold, you can hike back as far as you want into the wilderness and camp out all night under the stars.
Along our twice a week scenic exercise hike, Alex and I pass numerous Apache Plumes, cactus, mesquite, juniper trees, and a huge city deep water well enclosed by a chain link fence and guarded by government signs showing statutes that warn bad things happen to those who trespass.Wildlife has hidden itself but you see signs they are close by, if you are observant.
Other hikers are out this early morning, and, as we pass each other on the trail, we all say our hellos cheerfully. Nature lovers are glad to be out even if seeing humans is not what we come to the foothills for.
By the time Alex and I return to the parking lot,more parking spaces have opened up and the lot is looking empty like it does most working days of the week.
You would think there would be more people hiking with a city of almost a million spread as far north, south and west as we can see.
Nature and exercise, however, aren’t part of everyone’s vocabulary.
It is a bit funny to me that we put Open and Close times on the Wilderness and have a locked gate to keep people out.
Last time I looked, the wilderness wasn’t wearing a watch.
I don’t think anything out here runs on our human time tables.