All of these photos were taken on our journeys to Socorro County and the Rio Grande Estates subdivision. For more pictures and information from our journeys to this area be sure and click here - Char's own web page of Socorro County
Socorro County is centrally located in the State of New. It is bordered to the north by Valencia County and the city of Belen which is about 32 miles S of Albuquerque sits just to the north of the county line. The county seat is the the city of Socorro which is located further south along the Rio Grande River, an hour south of Albuquerque and two hours north of Las Cruces. Belen is in a valley nestled against the Manzano Mountains on the east, and Mesas on the west.
This is a growing area and in February 2007 completed the commuter rail service between Albuquerque and Belen. There is a large labor force in Los Lunas and Belen that work in Albuquerque and they can now take the Rail Runner into Albuquerque!
Many consider this a great place to retire because of the relaxed lifestyle: no lawn to mow unless you plant one, pueblo-style buildings, and year round accessibility to Albuquerque 30 miles away where the International Airport is located.
The City of Belen's population is currently about 7000. They have an average annual rainfall of 10 inches per year and snowfall of 11 inches and many people consider the climate ideal. The daytime high temperatures are in the low 90's in the summer months and daytime high temperatures are in the 50's in the winter months . The temperatures do fall below freezing during the winter months but the snow quickly melts.
With such wonderful weather conditions area offers an abudance of recreational activities. The majestic Manzano Mountains, encompassing 36,970 acres, and the Cibola National Forest both provide unlimited opportunities for hiking trails, hunting, horseback riding, backpacking, camping etc.
Across the valley to the SW of Belen is the Sierra Ladrones which lies between the Rio Puerco to the east and the Rio Salado to the southwest. The highest peak is Ladron Peak at 9,210 feet and her summit is almost 4500 feet above the Rio Grande Valley! Part of the range is included in the Sevellita National Wildlife Refuge. Animal species include mountain lion, pronghorn, bear and desert bighorn sheep
Belen also offers recreational swimming, soccer, volleyball, and tennis as well. Terra Del Sol Golf Course, considered an executive course, is an 18 hole course with dining open to the public.
It is home to the National Radio Astromony Observatory and New Mexico Tech. There has been quite a bit of growth to the north of this county in the Belen and Los Lunas areas and the location of these communities from Albuquerque makes it inevitable.
If you would like to see a copy of the New Mexico State Liquid Waste Regulations Click Here