Refined Ranch Life

By Jeri Clausing

On its face, Truth or Consequences, N.M., seems an odd place to launch a high-end adventure tours company.

Two-and-a-half hours south of the state’s only major airport and in the opposite direction from the popular mountain-tourism enclaves of Santa Fe and Taos, the small, hippie-style hot springs town in southeastern New Mexico has traditionally had little to offer outside of its funky inns and RV parks that have direct taps into the hot springs acquifer that runs underneath it.

But Truth or Consequences, or T or C, is also midway between two of billionaire conservationist Ted Turner’s sprawling ranches, which he recently opened up for private, guided activities, from mountain biking and hiking to wildlife and ancient artifacts viewing. It is also the closest town to New Mexico’s Spaceport America, the nation’s first purpose-built spaceport and the base for Richard Branson’s commercial space tourism venture, Virgin Galactic.

Put all those elements together, along with Turner’s recent acquisition of T or C’s nicest hotel, the Sierra Grande Lodge and Spa, opening his Ladder Ranch home for private rentals, and a trip to T or C with Ted Turner Expeditions (TTX) offers a chance to experience some of New Mexico’s history, future, beauty and wildlife at its untouched finest.

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