Cloudcroft

Living on Mountain Time …

fog 2015

… this means kicking back — way back. You know, socked feet propped up, reclined cozily in an easy chair as summer rains drum on the rooftop, reading a good book and repeating catlike stretches, complete with good bone-cracking twists; leisurely strolling the peaceful village streets or hiking forest trails, where the breeze, sighing through the trees, and the quivering aspen leaves, often are the only outside sounds you hear; letting the forest dazzle your eyes with a pallete of colors, from spring's fresh new green to fall's brilliant fiery orange, stunning sunshine yellow of the aspen, and the maple's red-orange.

autumn peace love for facebook


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Mountain Time during winter months can be even more laid back. Mesmerizing fires in the wood stove or hearth can warm you right up and lull you into irresistible tranquility, or slumber. Outside, incredible perfect snowflakes flitter and fall and pile up for snow play on beautiful snow days. Young and young at heart pack snow and create entertaining sculptures. They frolic in the soft stuff, leaving signs of angels where they play. Snowboarders jump, flip and somersault in the air, landing gracefully (and sometimes not) before riding up the mountain to do it all again. Downhillers traverse the hillsides while cross-country skiers and snowshoers trek further away from it all to experience amazing moments of solitude and communing with nature.

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You can open any door in Cloudcroft to the great outdoors.

The night skies here are some of the darkest remaining on earth, affording an opportunity of almost endless star gazing. Star watchers from the world over travel here for our dark skies.

night sky 2015

Days begin with serenity and close with tranquility in our humble village. Many have discovered this during Cloudcroft's more-than 100-year history. The secret of Cloudcroft and the Sacramento Mountains first unfolded in 1898 when the crew laying out the “Cloud-Climbing Railroad" route rested at the mountain's summit. An Englishman in the crew is said to have dubbed the spot Cloudcroft — "a cloud in a field.”

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Mexican Canyon Trestle

Since that time, hordes of desert dwellers and other neighbors from near and far have flocked to Cloudcroft for a respite from the summer heat and/or a chance to play in snow that many do not witness back home. Or they've come here just to get away from it all. And you CAN get away from it all here. Instead of relentless automobile horns honking and humming engines, we listen to the almost-bone-chilling bull elk bugle across the canyons. Or hear the sweet sound of elk cows mewing at each other and their calves. The calves dance and prance like kittens for our entertainment. Catching the melodious songs of the beautifully colored birds as they call out and answer each other throughout the day brings smiles to our faces. It’s the Nature Channel every day here!

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Cloudcroft IS nestled away from it all. It's a place where you can come and do absolutely nothing or you can do it all. Either way you'll find Cloudcroft enchanting, your stay invigorating, and life on Mountain Time enticing.

Stay awhile, and come back often.

— Donna


stuff@offthebeatenpathstuff.com© Off the Beaten Path 2016