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Albuquerque to Tucson-ideas for must sees and hiking?

Grand Rapids...
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Albuquerque to Tucson-ideas for must sees and hiking?

My husband and I are planning a SW trip March 5-12. We have visited the lovely Tucson area twice and were thinking of spending a few days with friends there again. However, the airfares to Albuquerque have us considering doing a driving loop trip of some sort and take in Tucson along the way. We have seen Bisbee, etc. We enjoy hiking (we are in our mid-50s) and beautiful scenery. Do you have suggestions for a scenic route to/from Tucson? Thanks so much.

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Silver City, New...
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1. Re: Albuquerque to Tucson-ideas for must sees and hiking?

If you liked Bisbee, you'll probably enjoy Silver City. It's a 4-hour drive from Albuquerque via I-25 and NM 152 through the Gila National Forest. There's plenty of hiking in the area, and Bisbee and Tucson are each about 3 hours away. Read more about Silver City at http://www.silvercity.org.

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2. Re: Albuquerque to Tucson-ideas for must sees and hiking?

NM-152 west from I-25 near Caballo Lake is very scenic, and enroute to Silver City you get a look at one of the country's largest open-pit copper mines. This one has been mined since the Spanish Era in New Mexico. A very scenic route (once you're past TorC on I-25).

Two other alternates for scenery:

Albuquerque to Socorro, then west on US60 passing the VLA (Very Large Array Radio Telescopes), Pie Town, to Edgar, AZ. From Edgar you have two excellent options: South on forested US191 to Alpine and Clifton, then SW to Safford (where there is a very nice state park with lake just ouside of town.) Continue to I-10 and Wilcox and over to Benson. If you have not visited Tombstone, it is certainly worth a stop.

The other route from Edgar, AZ is west via Pinetop-Lakeside on AZ260 (a much prettier drive than US60!) to ShowLow. ShowLow has the most motels and restaurants in the area. From ShowLow, enjoy US60 SW through the Fort Apache Indian Reservation, with a stop at the impressive Salt River Canyon. Then on to Globe, Oracle, and Tucson. Of the three offerings, you should be able to enjoy two of them on a roundtrip of Albuquerque/Tucson.

Have a great time on you little adventure!

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Grand Rapids...
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3. Re: Albuquerque to Tucson-ideas for must sees and hiking?

Thank you both for your thoughtful ideas. I will spend some time looking at the different options.

4. Re: Albuquerque to Tucson-ideas for must sees and hiking?

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