JEMEZ SPRINGS — A packed weekend schedule of winter fun awaits visitors to the Valles Caldera National Preserve this weekend. Visitors can cross country ski or snowshoe in the moonlight or daylight and then take home a Christmas Tree.
The first of four scheduled Moonlight Skiing and Snowshoeing events is this Saturday, Dec. 14. Visitors can enjoy extended hours to experience the magic of the Preserve after the sun goes down. Purchase your Skiing and Snowshoeing Permit at the Valle Grande Information Center and Gift Shop as late as 8 p.m. and enjoy the full moon, bonfires, and the stars until 9 p.m.
Other Moonlight dates this winter are Jan. 18, Feb. 15 and March 15. Visitors should come prepared for below freezing temperatures.
The first of our two free days offered this season, will be Public Appreciation Day this Sunday, Dec. 15. Bring the whole family to take advantage of the skiing opportunities on the Valles Caldera National Preserve. Free skiing and snowshoeing will be offered from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. from the Valle Grande Staging Area (VGSA.) Parking space is limited for these free events, so please car pool. The second free day is and Winter Trails Day Jan. 12.
And finally, don’t forget to buy a Christmas tree at the VGSA this weekend or buy a permit to cut down a tree for a $10 fee. They will be on sale 9 a.m.to 5 p.m. Friday through Sunday and Dec. 20 through Dec. 24. For more information, go to this weekend’s events calendar at http://www.vallescaldera.gov/
The Valles Caldera Trust oversees the Valles Caldera National Preserve, formerly the privately owned “Baca Ranch.” The 89,000 acre property is located in the Jemez Mountains in northern New Mexico. It was purchased by the federal government in 2000 under the Valles Caldera National Preservation ActThe property is known for its huge meadows, abundant wildlife, meandering stream, remarkable scenery and science based adaptive management. More information about the Preserve can be found at www.vallescaldera.gov