Last updated 10/22/09
Again this morning was bright and cold, so I hurriedly heated
my water and went about making instant coffee and oatmeal. As I finished
breakfast, I contemplated the ride out of the campground. There was a fairly
formidable hill up a knarly dirt road to negotiate. No pics, but I have a heck
of a helmet cam video.
I left the campground turning east onto Hwy 152 continuing through the Gila
National Forest to Caballo. It seems I find a new favorite road everyday, and
this morning was no exception. Hwy 152 winds through the mountains wonderfully,
with plenty of switchbacks and beautiful vistas.
After reaching Caballo, I turn south on Hwy 187 and the road flattens out as it
winds along next to the Rio Grande river on its way to Las Cruces. I ran across
this 'calf farm' on the side of the road. Rows and rows of calf houses as far as
the eye could see. What a horrible existence.
I continued on to Las Cruces where I turned on US 70 east across White Sands
National Monument to Alamogordo. I then turned east on US 82 and started a steep
climb up into the Lincoln National Forest through the towns of Hill Rolls and
Cloudcroft. Beautiful road, lots of cops, major speed trap. After passing
through Elk, the road flattened out for the remaining 40-50 miles into Artesia.
In Artesia I turned south on US 285 and decided to make my way to Guadalupe
Mountains NP just over the Texas border to camp for the night.
I turned off of US 285 onto Hwy 137 about 20 miles south of Artesia. If you've
never had the good fortune of travelling to GMNP, it lies at the end of Hwy 137,
a fifty mile dead end road, nicely paved, open range land, absolutely desolate,
twisting through the low mountains and rocks. At one point I caught myself
thinking, "you're out in the middle of nowhere, on a 17 year old motorcycle
you know nothing about, no cell coverage, no people, no houses, you're fucking
crazy." But I was having the time of my life. And true to form, I had again
happened upon one of the best roads I'd ever been on.
I was about the only person in the campground and found a great site to pitch my
tent. It even had a picnic table!
I wandered down to the bathroom and took notice of the signs prominently posted
on the outside wall. Something to think about as I went to sleep that night.
Another couple of views of my campsite.
And one looking west from the door of my tent, and another of the road leading
1, Salt Lake City, Utah to Escalante, Utah
Day 2, Escalante, Utah to Tuba City, Arizona
Day 3, Tuba City, Arizona to Show Low, Arizona
Day 4, Show Low, Arizona to Silver City, New Mexico
Day 6, Guadalupe NP, Texas to Big Bend NP, Texas
Day 7, Big Bend NP, Texas to Rock Springs, Texas
Day 8, Rock Springs, Texas to Martin Dies Jr SP,
Day 9, Martin Dies Jr SP, Texas to Desoto NF, Mississippi
10 & 11, Desoto NF, Ms to St. George Island, Fl to Christmas, FL
Back to Ride Reports Home Page