We’ve ridden over 700 miles for the last two days. We spent Friday night in Post, TX and tonight we are in Los Alamos, NM.
Yesterday was pretty uneventful. It takes along time to get out of Texas when you live in the heart of it. Some interesting town names we rode through – Goldthwaite, Bangs, Early, Zepher, Mullin, Santa Ana, and Sweetwater in no particular order. We ended up spending the night in Post which was founded by the same person of cereal fame.
Today was a different story. We left Post about 8:15 am to get an hours worth of riding in before breakfast. We hightailed it down Hwy 380 which is long, straight, and (on the Texas leg) fast. I might also mention that it was COLD! I had enough sense to put on my leather jacket, but could have used a sweatshirt underneath it. I turned on my heated grips (sweet!) to 4/5′s of the way to keep my hands warm under the full finger summer gloves I was wearing. We stopped in Brownfield for a taco and then got back on 380. I used to think that the Beach road from Winnie to High Island was the longest, straightest road in the world. I was wrong. Hwy 380 is the longest, straightest road in the world. I put the cruise control on and could have literally not touched the handlebars for 30 minutes at a time. When your going 70 mph, that’s 35 miles without a curve. So needless to say I was in a zone that didn’t require much thinking.
After about 200 miles of this I was finally afforded some relief in the way of some twisties! Yay! We took 380 towards Capitan, NM which runs through a pretty sweet valley. The road follows along the bottom of the valley and has some nice views and some great turns but it was extremely rough. So slow down, enjoy the view. We rolled into Capitan looking for gas and food. There was a Shell station there and a restaurant with Green Chile Stew. I got both!
We left the restaurant and headed west on 380 again. The road got smoother and I found a dinosaur rock radio station playing some good tunes. I was enjoying my full stomach, my rockin tunes, and the wonderful twisties when I got a panic punch in the back. I hit the brakes and looked down the road and we were coming face to face with the biggest 4 legged creature I’ve ever seen in the wild.[simage=14,320,n,right,] I believe she was an Elk about the size of a horse and she was running away from us. I continued to slow down and a couple of seconds later her two little ones followed her across the road. Beautiful site to see, but it definitely put a damper on my good time. I had plenty of time to stop and it crossed my mind that if I got to close, she might head butt me! We spent the next few miles going the speed limit and discussing the beauty and the beast we had dealt with.
We exited off 380 (finally) and got on NM-3, the equivilent of a Texas Ranch Road. We rode it for 15 miles and never saw vehicle. We took US285 for another 70 miles of straight hwy. At least by this time we were flanked my mesa’s and Austin type hills most of the way. We exited on to I-25 for a few miles to get around Santa Fe and then we took 285 which is a like Burnet road in Austin, only with views. They need to get the red lights timed on this one as we caught everyone of them. We then picked up NM502 which has great views, great pavement, and a 55 mph speed limit through the Indian reservations. It was not a bad ride, but we were ready to get to the hotel and get off the bike. 502 got very interesting in the last 16 miles. This was 45 mph road that zigzagged around the sides of the Jemez mountains. This was a really steep climb with one hairpin after another. I finally took a pull off, so we could take a decent picture.[simage=28,320,n,left,] 5 minutes later we were checking into the Best Western Hilltop House in Los Alamos, NM. We grabbed a pretty good meal at the Blue Window Bistro and am now relaxing in the room.
Tomorrow we head for Ouray, NM and are expecting some weather that won’t be all that pleasant.