Of all the bits and pieces of the Open Space, this is my favorite. Wedged into a wide valley, the vegetation here is more diverse than in some of the other areas of the Foothills.
This area was once part of a Spanish land grant given to one Diego Montoya. It included all the land from the top of the Sandias to the Rio Grande, a considerable chunk of property. In 1716, 35,084 acres of this land were given to Elena Gallegos. While it was unusual for a woman to inherit a land grant, the reasons Elena was given the land was, unfortunately, not recorded for posterity.
Besides the cottonwoods, chamisa, and various wildflowers, you will find yucca, cholla, bear grass, Apache plum...Read More