Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Tribe, Tourists See Different Things at Tent Rocks.

Byline: Poco de Todo RICHARD MAHLER For the Journal

Five years ago, I wrote a travel guidebook about New Mexico that had two main goals. First, I sought to tell readers about places that New Mexicans themselves knew, loved, and were eager to share.

Second, through deliberate exclusion, I wanted to protect places that were too rare and too fragile to tolerate visitors or that were already being loved to death.

Tent Rocks is no longer a secret, so I am breaking my self-imposed silence. In one of his final acts as president, Bill Clinton used the 1906 Antiquities Act to create Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument on property "of critical environmental concern" already administered by the Bureau of Land Management near Cochiti Pueblo, about southwest of Santa Fe.

"Kasha-Katuwe means white cliffs in Keresan, the language of our people," Cochiti Lt. Gov. Donald Suina said. "That is what we call the Tent Rocks." (The Keresan spelling of Cochiti is "Kotyete.")

Whatever name one chooses, mere words are inadequate to describe the otherworldly quality of the sculpted cliffs and teetering rocks that dominate these wooded foothills of the Jemez Mountains along Peralta Canyon. …

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