This was another after-work bike ride along the Paseo de Bosque, a paved multi-use trail along the east bank of the Rio Grande. I took the opportunity to explore some side paths at the northern end of the trail.
One can cross under Alameda Boulevard from the parking area on the south to the north of the road. Note the pedestrian bridge across the drainage ditch that can be seen under the Alameda motor bridge.
I started at the Alameda Open Space parking area off Alameda Boulevard. This is the northern terminus of the Paseo de Bosque. However, the trail does continue under Alameda Boulevard. On the north side of Alameda, one can continue north along the levee road, or cross the Rio Grande on the pedestrian bridge and continue north on the Corrales Bosque Trail.
This picnic area, north of Alameda, between the drainage ditch and the river, is often used for family outings.
From the parking area a spur leads past a constructed wetlands to Rio Grande Boulevard, where Bruce Papitto’s sculpture “The Bell Keepers” is located. Also, the parking area connects to Alameda Boulevard, which has a wide bike path along the shoulder.
Normally, the wetlands is off limits (except to wildlife), but today the gate on the backside was open, so I was able to explore within the wetlands area.
At the intersection of Alameda and Rio Grande Boulevard, is a sculpture by Bruce Popitto representing the rescue of a bell from a flooded church in Spanish colonial Alameda.
Paseo de Bosque itself goes south from the parking area. Today I passed under Paseo del Norte and continued on to Montaño Boulevard. Both of these major roads have underpasses so foot/bike/skate traffic on Paseo de Bosque will not be endangered by motor traffic on Paseo del Norte or Montaño.
Many un-maintained trails branch off the paved trail. I took one of these, a 2-track that went to and followed an older levee. This older levee may have been constructed by debris and silt captured by fields of jetty jacks.
A fine evening adventure was brought to an end by fading light.
Whether by design or negligence, the gate to the wetlands was open. I was able to explore the service road and photograph these mallards through a break in the surrounding vegetation.
Paseo de Bosque crosses the drainage ditch and ascends the levee. Most of the length of the trail is along the top of the levee. Drainage ditches were built on both sides of the river so the wetlands (aka "swamp") could be put to productive agricultural use.
"Jetty jacks" were used for flood control before the dams upstream of Albuquerque were built. These metal structures, seen to the right in the photograph, were anchored by steel cables, and would trap debris and silt when the river flooded. Fairly quickly a levee would form , serving to constrain the river to its channel. Today dams regulate water flow in the Rio Grande, and the jetty jacks are no longer needed.
An underpass provides safe passage for crossing Paseo del Norte.
Another underpass provides safe passage across Montano.
At intervals along the trail, benches are provided for weary travelers.
Paseo de Bosque: Alameda to Montaño at EveryTrail
EveryTrail – Find the best Hiking near Albuquerque, New Mexico
Not much elevation change when biking along the river.