When to Go to Southwestern New Mexico

Mild and sunny winters are this region's major draw. From May to September, though, it's just plain hot. Really hot. And dry. The mountain areas provide a respite and are generally 10 degrees cooler during the day. Unless you're used to dry, intense heat, plan summer outdoor excursions for early morning or late afternoon. Wear sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat in the midday sun, and don't just carry plenty of water—drink it. Temperatures drop in the evenings, so keep a light jacket or sweater on hand. Spring is cooler, but it can bring strong, dusty winds. The weather between mid-September and early November tends to be delightful and balmy, and the sunsets and moonrises at this time are fantastic. During the fall harvest this whole valley takes on the rich scent of roasting chiles.

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