I’m writing this with a belly full of canned salmon and tortillas, and my van parked in Big Bend National Park, paying 40$ for one night of camping. So its safe to say the comforts of home in Santa Fe were greatly appreciated. I got to stay with my cousin Nancy, and met her baby boy, Sage, and partner Cass. We had a lot of fun doing family bike rides and cooking meals together.
Cass is a wealth of travel knowledge, having just returned from a bicycle trip that took him from Alaska to Patagonia. He let me test out his fat bike on one ride; the rigid 29+ surly was surprisingly cooshy and enjoyable to ride.
Down the road in Albuquerque, as my odo rolled over to 280,000k I sought out an oil change. While getting my oil changed I decided I should roll by the house that the Heisenberg lived in in the show Breaking Bad, and I made a quick GPS route, rolling by there and the car wash.
Based on a recommendation from my godparents, I made a stop at Bosque Del Apache, a bird sanctuary, for some photos. This kicked off a fun filled day, that I wrote about here.
Cass recommended I hit Silver City on my way South towards El Paso. He has a buddy there named Jamie who owns “the Bike House”, a place where traveling cyclists can crash for free. He also teaches an outdoor program to kids and builds amazing trails. He took me on an urban trail he built that snakes along the creek in Silver City, under bridges and over pipes and rock work. Its nothing like I’ve ever ridden before.
That morning I had redeemed myself by riding up and down the Cherry Creek Trail. The trail intersects the Continental Divide Trail near the top of the climb. The CDT is singletrack that runs from Banff, AB to the Mexico border and is the basis for a race every year in which cyclists must compete self-sufficiently with no outside help or team mates.
After riding in town with Jamie, he kindly guided me on a scavenger hunt to find my Granny’s old house. Because my mom gave me the wrong surname for her grandparents it was difficult, but we ended up finding the big old brick house that is now Smith Realty.
I motored on down the road to Aguirre Springs Park and camped outside the gate. In the morning I skated the road and took some photos, then headed east to White Sands National Park.
This park is beautiful, and I would love to spend more time there backcountry camping out in the dunes and shooting more photos. Most of the road was graded into the gypsum rock and was surprisingly hard; I took out my skate and fooled around a bit. and From White Sands, it was a hop, skip, and a jump down into Texas.