Experience New Mexico's majestic landscape from the sky. Illustration by Michael Byers.
Soar over Gallup’s red cliffs
Family-owned X-Treme-Lee Fun Balloon Adventures gives you an uplifting perspective of the stunning cliffs and canyons of Red Rock Park, near Gallup. “People are immediately taken aback by the red sandstone canyons,” says owner Bill Lee. “We fly either up canyons or do what we call canyon hopping, where we fly into each canyon. Sometimes we even land on top of the cliffs.” More than just a flyover, though, the 60-to-90-minute rides ($225 per adult, $185 for 15 and under) dig into the histories of the area’s Indigenous people and point out places where Ancestral Puebloans carved toe- and footholds into the cliffs. 1400 Kit Carson Dr., Gallup; 505-979-2012
Let ’er zip in Red River
In the summertime, Red River Ski & Summer Area becomes a warm-weather wonderland with a tubing course, mini golf, aerial park, disc golf, and a seated zip line. Be daring and whoosh through the lush mountains on the two-person Pioneer Flyer Seated Zip Line ($10 for one ride, $80 for 10), which pulls you backward 600 feet and then lets you soar over the Pioneer Corridor at up to 35 miles per hour. “There’s enough of a pause after it pulls you back to take in the view and realize how high you are,” says Marketing Manager Reed Weimer. “You get a really good view looking down the canyon.” 400 Pioneer Road, Red River; 575-754-2223
Take to the skies in a tram
In just 15 minutes on the Sandia Peak Tramway ($15–$25 round-trip), you rise to meet a panoramic 11,000-square-mile view of New Mexico’s incomparable landscape at the top of Sandía Peak. “First-timers—some who are scared of heights but ride anyway—say they’re amazed by how smooth the ride is,” says Director of Marketing and Communications Jessica Fox. Top off the experience at Ten 3—at 10,378 feet above sea level—with a toast to your surroundings. 30 Tramway Road, Albuquerque; 505-856-7325