Bandelier: Fee Free Day, Fall Fiesta, Natural Resources Talks, Raptors, Pueblo Crafts, Dances And Hike Saturday!

Pueblo craftspeople will sell their wares at the Fall Fiesta Saturday, Sept. 27 at Bandelier. Courtesy/NPS


Saturday, Sept. 27 will be a terrific day to visit Bandelier National Monument. For starters, it is Public Lands Day and all National Park Service areas nationwide will be fee free – that is, no entrance fees will be charged. 

At Bandelier, the bookstore also will have everything discounted 15 percent, and the gift shop will offer specials, too.

And, it is the monument’s Fall Fiesta so 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Pueblo craftspeople from several of the local Pueblos will be selling their wares, the Santa Fe Raptor Center will be showing their rescue birds, and there also will be Pueblo dancers. 

Also as part of the Fiesta, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., the park’s Resources Management staff will offer a series of talks on area natural resources, including the Park Flight program, longterm ecological monitoring and its applications to park management, and the use of time series imagery to document ecological change. International interns will do a presentation on the natural history and avifauna of Old Mexico, and Los Alamos fire ecologist Terry Foxx will wrap up the morning with a talk on the importance of public lands to research, our sense of place, and quality of life for present and future generations. 

And, for those who want to get out and see a seldom-seen part of Bandelier, the the Trails Program Lead will be leading a moderately difficult early-morning 2-mile round-trip hike along a part of the monument’s east boundary, with great views of Frijoles Canyon, the Bandelier Wilderness and the Rio Grande River. Numbers are limited; contact the Visitor Center, 505.672.3861 x 517, for details and to sign up.

The next Fee Free Day, the last for 2014, will be Veterans Day, Nov. 11.

The shuttle buses, necessitated by flood damage to the parking lot, are still running. Visitors arriving before 9 a.m. or after 3 p.m. are welcome to drive directly to the Visitor Center area, but during the busy time of each day, visitors need to catch the free shuttles either at the White Rock Visitor Center or at the amphitheater parking lot in Juniper Campground.

For more information on buses, Fall Fiesta, the hike, or the monument in general, contact the Visitor Center at 505.672.3861 x 517; it is open 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., seven days a week.