Taos, New Mexico: a road trip of highs and pueblos

Snowboarders love the unpisted gullies of Taos, in New Mexico. Off the slopes, the region’s adobe villages offer an insight into Native American culture and a chance to support local communities, as our writer discovers on a road trip

In the biting cold of the dark, incense-scented St Jerome chapel, tour guide Francisco Velarde, or “Flying Hawk” in his native Tiwa language, is explaining his people’s history to a small audience of tourists huddled in pews in their ski jackets. His ancestors, the “red willow people”, have lived here in Taos Pueblo for 1,000 years, he says, making it one of the oldest continuously inhabited communities in the US; an unusually successful revolt made them the only tribe to never be displaced on to a reservation. It’s a fascinating history, especially from the mouth of this passionate, streetwise student, part of Native American hiphop group Po.10.Cee, which has 27 albums to its name.

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