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Old 06-12-2008, 11:52 AM   #196
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Antelope







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Old 06-12-2008, 11:57 AM   #197
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I believe

...off in the distance on the horizon, we could see the Capulin Volcano which we would attempt to ride up the next day. I lined it up with the GPS, and it seemed to be the right direction. Can't remember exactly how many miles away, though... but many.

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Old 06-12-2008, 12:09 PM   #198
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The pronghorn incident

We were seeing more and more antelope. We came upon one group, and there wasn't a good place for them to clear the barb wire fence. One by one, they slipped under, but this one guy was indecisive... jump over, or scoot under. We slowed down to let them clear, but then he'd just run down the road, delaying the inevitable that we would overtake and pass him.



Finally, he decides to go through the fence, and gets a prong caught... and starts thrashing around. I ride by him, and stop... double back intending to unhook his horn from the fence.



The look of sheer terror in that animal's eyes was quite disturbing. As I was dismounting the bike, he finally broke himself free, and scampered off, leaving a few tufts of hair in the barbs. I felt bad for the guy, but man, that's some hyperactive survival instinct.
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Old 06-12-2008, 12:15 PM   #199
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Black Mesa

We see the Mesa's in the distance,



And eventually arrive at the campground and pick a spot.



Which is almost rejected because of a red ant presence, the potential consequences of which are roundly debated.



I try to convince LDF that the ants do not represent a mortal threat, and we set up camp...



She remains skeptical...

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DR. Rock screwed with this post 06-19-2008 at 07:43 AM
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Old 06-12-2008, 12:18 PM   #200
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Picking up the groceries in Boise City was totally the right call... there's nothing open at the camp ground... a general store up the road looks closed from last season and currently abandoned.

It wasn't a long day,



So we decide to go for a hike:



This would be cool... but we'd have to drive there, and that would cut into our gas reserve... oh well, another time.

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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 06-12-2008, 02:15 PM   #201
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Okay, I'm all caught up now! You can continue...



I hadn't heard of the ride, store, fly TAT scenario. Gives me some ideas. I want to do the TAT with my son before he heads off to college in a couple of years and gets his own life and forgets who his ol' man is--but didn't know how to swing the vacation schedules, etc.

One of my fav TAT RR's to date, thanks for taking the time!
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Old 06-12-2008, 03:39 PM   #202
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We are a good team, I don't care what she says.

Damn tootin.'
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Old 06-13-2008, 07:57 AM   #203
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Nature hike

The park was nearly deserted. We left the fee in an envelope at the ranger station...$6 or $7, I don't remember.

There was a marked trail that went up into the hills a few miles and looped back.







Maybe it was from knowing that there were fossilized dinosaur tracks nearby, but the landscape really did look prehistoric.





We're not in Kansas anymore, are we Toto?







This area (according to the info signs) is at the confluence of several ecosystems, so there are plants and animals mixed together here that usually aren't found together.







It must be spring:

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Old 06-13-2008, 08:07 AM   #204
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Back at the campsite



It's dinner-time... our favorite Dinty-Moore beef stew, with secret ingredient added:



As the sun set, the fearsome red ants had gone underground, but we were visited by this group of modern dinosaurs:



The air got cool as the sun set, and since there was a fire ban posted in effect, we couldn't make a campfire.



I know a lot of people who ride the TAT don't camp, but the nights we spent out of doors were way better than the motels available along the way. With lightweight gear, it really doesn't add that much, and even when you're planning a motel night, it's nice to have the security of knowing that if you had to, you could pitch a tent wherever.

BTW, this area was so remote, that we weren't able to dial in any of the 7 NOAA weather channels, nor any AM or FM stations. I find that impressive given that we're still in tornado alley.
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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:10 AM   #205
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Last day on the TAT

The next morning, we packed up...



Made our way out of the park,



and riding back south to pick up the TAT, the weather didn't look particularly inviting:


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Old 06-13-2008, 08:14 AM   #206
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Our route



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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:27 AM   #207
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A couple of concerns

First, is the rain that I see falling a few miles away in almost each direction. None right where we are, and we don't seem to be headed directly into it, but I figure we're probably going to get wet at some point today...



Would have been nice to know the forecast.

The second concern is fuel... we have about a 200 mile range with the 4 gal tanks... this is how far we've gone since filling them:



And this is how far we have to go to get to Maxwell, NM where I'm hoping there's a gas station:



58.5 + 141.9 = 200.4

Now, I have two 2L soda bottles full of extra, and two 22oz fuel bottles as well, so that's maybe another 30 miles, provided we don't spill any with tip-overs, or take any wrong turns, or have to back-track...you know the drill... you ride with that gnawing pit in your stomach, redoing the arithmetic every few miles to make sure you're not missing something.

If we stayed on the TAT, we'd be able to gas up in Branson (?) or Trinidad, CO.
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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:51 AM   #208
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Into NM

Sandy roads,



We crossed the Santa Fe trail...



And before we knew it, we were at the border:



I've seen photos of this sign in other's TAT ride reports. For me, the relevance is less that we're entering NM, but rather that we've conquered the full length of Oklahoma.
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:54 AM   #209
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A little bit-o-pavement,



And then it's back onto the dirt,



Riding through ranch land,



It seemed to be raining in every direction.



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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 06-13-2008, 09:15 AM   #210
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Ethical dilemma

We passed through a ranch. I don't mean the open land, well, that too. What I mean is that the road passed through a cluster of buildings... the house, the shed, a barn, a yard, a shop, another building.

We didn't see any people, but it looked well kept and habited. There was a pen with some horses, a couple of vehicles, two big tanks one labeled "Diesel" and the other "Unleaded". Even though we weren't trespassing, (we were on a public road), I didn't stop to take any photos, because it felt like we were invading through someone's personal space.

About a half a mile along the road past the compound, we pass some cattle, they scatter, and I see this one twitching, and foaming at the mouth.



It had obviously been seizing there awhile, the dirt around its legs and head was swept as if it had been making a snow-angel. It's eyes were glazed over, and it while didn't seem conscious, it was painful to watch. I think through my options:

A. Put the beast out of its misery ASAP. (How? I don't know... a big stick?)
B. Ride back to the ranch buildings, and try to find someone and tell them about the sick cow.
C. Ride on.
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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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