Made it to Las Vegas, New Mexico That Is!! Then Santa Fe – Then Albuquerque
Day 32 July 4th Santa Rosa, NM to Las Vegas, NM 64 miles Total Miles 1,791
Weather: Warm 87 degrees, sunny and 13 mph head wind
Day 33 July 5th Las Vegas, NM to Santa Fe, NM 74 miles Total Miles 1, 865
Weather: Hot 90 degrees, sunny and 15 mph headwind
Day 34 July 6th Santa Fe, NM to Albuquerque, NM 74 miles Total Miles 1, 939
Weather: Warm 89 degrees, sunny, light cross/headwind
Since we have not had the time to post for three days, due to a combination of long hard rides, interesting people to visit with and the author being lazy, here are the summaries of the last three days.
Day 32 – July 4th
Today was a day of climbing and isolation. Our route took us north towards Las Vegas, NM. Sometimes we struggle with the Adventure Cycling maps because they seem to take you off route sometimes and you are not sure why. We were traveling on I -40 this morning and our ending point a few days from now is Albuquerque which was just over 100 miles away. But Adventure Cycling has us going an extra 150 miles out of the way so we go thru Santa Fe. Evidently when setting the route a group of business men from Santa Fe pushed hard to have the route come thru their town and there you go. So we are pedaling north to Las Vegas.
The ride was tough because there were very limited services between Santa Rosa and Las Vegas – about 60 miles away. So we had to make sure we had enough food and water to get us through. For liquids we had our six water bottles, our collapsible water bottle( which holds enough water to fill four water bottles), four – 32 ounce Power Ade and a bottle of Sprite. We used all the liquids except one Power Ade.
Our first possible stop was about 30 miles out at the small town of Dilla – they had a lounge/bar there – it was closed. So we stopped anyway to take a break. While we were checking it out Tracy found a new friend – a German Shepard wandered over to check us out – he/she was a really sweet dog and sat by Tracy and followed her around. He/she even followed us down the street a bit when we head off on the bicycle, until Tracy told the dog to go home.
We made it to Romeoville/Las Vegas around 3:00pm after a long, hard day on the bicycle. We had several hard climbs today to get from 4,700 Ft elevation in Santa Rosa to 6,400 Ft in Las Vegas. We camped at the KOA in Las Vegas – it is the first time we have had to set up the tent – it was fun to camp again and the night was nice and cool dropping to 60 degrees. The night sky was amazing – with many stars to see. We could hear the fireworks from town but unfortunately could not see them.
Before hitting the hay we wandered around the campground and met a very nice couple from Albuquerque, who we stopped and talk to for quite a while. They had a really nice RV and just take off in it and see where they end – sounded like fun to us.
Day 33 July 5th
We got going early because again we knew we had lots of hills to climb, hot temperature and a head wind to deal with. We ate breakfast at camp, packed up and off we went. We stated out with some great downhill sections to bring us back down to the Pecos River – which we have now crossed three times. But of course after a nice down hill the climbing begins again. We climb from 6,000 Ft back up to 6,800 Ft in about 13 miles, not a really steep climb just a long one!!
Our next climb was after lunch in Pecos – climbed back up from 6,800 Ft to 7,600 Ft in 5 miles to the town of Glorieta. We then bounced up and down until the ending point in Santa Fe at about 7,000 Ft. We got into town and of course got lost and were tried from a long hard day of riding. We planned to check out some cool things suggested by our Warm Showers host but were too tired to do that so settled for a beer at a local micro brewery. – 2nd Street Brewery and then biked the last five miles to our Warm Shower hosts (Dennis and Patty) for the night. Luckily the ride was on a great trail – the Santa Fe Rail Trail, and downhill!!
Dennis and Patty were great hosts we had a nice meal and great conversation. All to soon it was 10:00pm and we needed to get to bed for our early morning start.
Santa Fe is a really nice city and had some cool things we wanted to see – I guess we will just have to come back someday.
Day 34 July 6th
Got up at 5:15 to hit the road at sunrise. Patty and Dennis set out a nice breakfast for us to start the day. So with full stomachs we were on the road by 6: 15am. Dennis provided us with directions to get out of town and miss all the road construction on Hwy 14 – Turquoise Trail, it worked great and even provided us with a up close and personal view of three full size dinosaurs on Dinosaur Trail – too funny.
The beginning part of the ride – about 20 miles was downhill to Madrid. It was a nice way to start the day. Dennis suggested we checkout Madrid which we did and stopped for our second breakfast at the Java Junction for a latte and snack – YUM!! As Dennis described to us Madrid is a hippy enclave with lots of cool shops and restaurants – very cute. Although when we went thru the only thing open was the coffee shop – that was alright with us that was all we needed. But it certainly would be a fun town to spend some time in.
All too soon we were back on the bike again for the monster climb out of Madrid. Boy was it a tough one – 1,200 Ft in less than five mile and then another 500 – 800 Ft climb right after that. Tracy was singing in her head the elephant song – one elephant went out to play, out on a spiders web one day, he had such enormous fun he asked another elephant to come – etc. She got up to 40 elephants during the climb!! But we made it and had some great down hill to finish our day. In fact we had one more climb about 23 miles out from our big climb and then it was downhill the rest of the way to Albuquerque.
The ride thru Albuquerque was nice although to cross the whole city – (population of 545,000) it was a good 25 miles from edge to edge. Of course we were staying on the far west side near Old Town. We even rode right thru the University of New Mexico, which our daughter, Alex, daughter Melissa and us visited on a recruit visit for Alex. They were interested in Alex pole vaulting for them. As we bicycled thru campus we saw some things we remembered from our visit – it is a really nice looking campus.
We are staying at the Albuquerque Hotel for the next two days – tomorrow is our day off the bike. We plan to check out Old Town and maybe take the Sky Tram up the mountains. Here is the blog, pictures and videos will be coming.
We will hit Arizona within the next three to four days – more adventures to come.