We had been warned by the couple we met on the trail north of Salida about a very rocky climb that we faced a soon as we got into New Mexico. It wasn't long before we were there. A couple hundred yards up the trail I came a cross a fella pushing his bike up the hill. I had to stop and give some support; in words if nothing else. These guys have all the respect I can give another adventurer. They are hard core for sure. And they have all been a pleasure to talk to. I suppose the adversity they overcome makes them have an attitude such that nothing can bother them; even dirt bikers. Kindred spirits of sorts.
The bike he had was something unusual. It was very long as if it had a trailer but it was a single frame piece. Only two wheels. He said it was better than any trailers he had towed. Made for a wheelbase of around 7 feet. Not as maneuverable but easier to handle was what he said.
We continued up the hill being careful not to roost the cyclist. The rocky slope went on then leveled out then got worse with the world famous baby head rocks for around a mile as we climbed. At the top we were treated to this vista.
I was trying to make Abiguiu for the night so I didn't stop for many photos. The terrain was definitely transitioning from mountain to foothills and on to the desert. We stopped at this old cabin for a break.
I enjoy trying to imagine what it would have been like living in a place like this. There was an old corral across the road probably from the same era. And the view down the valley was soothing.
We made it to Abiguiu in time to eat supper and get to Lake Abiquiu where there is a Corps of Engineers park to camp for the night. Supper was a plate of chicken enchilada and chile relleno with green for me.
And for Perry a chicken quesadilla. With poblano cream sauce so you can't pick it up with your fingers so easy.
The food was awesome and we decided then that we would be back for breakfast. I plugged the campground into the gps and off we went. MISTAKE. I forgot to reset the navigation settings to keep us on the highway. So, she took us on a road that paralleled the highway which on the map was named OHV Road. That's off highway vehicle for those that were wondering. It was dusk when we left the cafe. So, we were on a two track trail, at night, with deep ruts and potholes that would swallow a jeep. I could tell that there was a river on our right so I knew we must be heading toward the lake. Then, there it was. It loomed above us in the darkness. The dam that made the lake was blocking out the stars in the sky. I had a sinking feeling that we would have to retrace our path and go back to where we had started. Not happy about that thought. We got to the bottom, rode past the generators and through the parking lot where we found a road that took switchbacks up the face of the dam and deposited us on the highway about a quarter mile from the entrance to the campground. Sometimes you just have to get lucky. Here's the path we took.
The river split the space between our path and the highway. We checked in and set up for the night. Perry put his KLR on the center stand to do some chain lube work. The surface was a little two steep and the bike rolled forward and fell against the split rail fence. Damage: one broken mirror perch. We will check in the morning to see if it can be fixed. That's two drops for him, one for me. But it's a long road ahead so we'll see how the tally ends.
Our track for the day:
Next: Into the desert