One of Questa’s newest assets is a .6 mile interpretive sign walking route that connects this small village’s (one) traffic light to its hidden historic plaza, and beyond. Not all trails are in the woods! Previous trail celebrations have attracted 50-75 walkers from Questa, Taos, Santa Fe, Colorado, and beyond. We hope this event will be as exciting—You are invited!
On Saturday, June 4, starting at 11 am, music by Michael Rael, and traditional treats will greet you at the trail’s Welcome Sign kiosk area. Guest experts will be available along this self-guided route that depicts the history of Questa.
When the Questa History Trail team began work on the project in 2016, we didn’t realize that the goal to illuminate Questa’s past would in fact illustrate a microcosm of northern New Mexico’s history. This diverse team of Questa residents gathered much expert information, many local memories, and soon unveiled a pretty unique story. From 1,000-year-old archaeology sites to historical Native interaction and conflict, remote religious practices in New Spain, multi-cultural family histories that echoed Europe’s Inquisition, place names of Arabic origin, and the impact of the 1918 pandemic; this and more is all here to learn about and appreciate along the walking route.
This project was initially dreamed of in a roundtable discussion of Questa residents and business owners led by facilitators with Frontier Communities, a part of the New Mexico Mainstreet Program for small, rural, or Native areas. Questa’s mine had just closed, and the restoration of the historic St. Anthony’s Church had just shown what a motivated group of citizens could accomplish. Generous support was offered by the Northern Rio Grande National Heritage Area, the National Park Service, the New Mexico Humanities Council, and the US Forest Service.
The Questa History Trail has an accompanying website (QuestaTrail.org),with much research on all the topics introduced on the interpretive signage, and much more history and culture. A related website shares personal memories at QuestaStories.org.
The Questa History Trail is a founding project of the Questa Creative Council, and we hope to see you there!