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Old 09-25-2008, 12:46 PM   #391
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After a rough start,

things were starting to smooth out. We were making good time, weather was more or less holding out, although clouds were building up.



But for the moment, we were going to stop for a snack, hydrate, dehydrate,





And smell the flowers before carrying on...





And it was right about there that we slipped into the Mobius zone. It could rain on us, we could stop right there and pitch our tent. We didn't know where we'd be staying, or eating, and it didn't matter... anywhere was good. The route is laid out, we can invent bypasses if need be... the bikes are running fine, we can fix them if they don't, it's a beautiful day, we're together, life is good...

Let's RIDE!

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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 09-25-2008, 01:25 PM   #392
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This turned out

to be a perfect introduction to riding at elevation...



No real steep switchbacks,



Or drop-offs that make your stomach rise up to your throat...

Just challenging enough, and buckets of fun


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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 09-25-2008, 01:30 PM   #393
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As the trail

would sweep along the ridges, I'd wait for LDF to get way ahead, take her photo...



and then race to catch up... if she didn't see me behind, she would wait, and sometimes take my picture:






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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 09-25-2008, 01:33 PM   #394
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The weather

was alternating clouds



and sun



We crossed through some open range land





And eventually dropped back down into the forest





We didn't get rained on... not a single drop. Finally we get a break!


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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 09-25-2008, 01:38 PM   #395
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We drop down into

Angel Fire, NM



traversing a couple of steep pitches down, but nothing too bad.



and pull into a small grocery store to pick up provisions for the evening.

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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 09-25-2008, 01:43 PM   #396
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We cross the valley

around Eagle Nest, NM





and swing around the lake



and into Cimarron canyon



yeah, it's paved... but we can suffer riding through a sandy canyon wash another time (or 5)
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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 09-25-2008, 01:48 PM   #397
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It's twisty...



It's fun...



It's beautiful...









And before you know it, we've arrived at the Gravel Pits "Maverick" campground that we stayed at last May on Mobius I.
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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 09-25-2008, 01:56 PM   #398
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Does familiarity breed contempt?

Not always...

Last May:



This September:



It was the same exact camp SITE! Last time we were here it started to snow... Last May, our rope that we used to tie up the food up in the tree to keep it away from Francine's imaginary bears got tangled, and I had to cut down the bear bag and left part of the rope in the tree...



It was still there.

I can't remember what we had for dinner... but I know we had oatmeal for breakfast

It was a great, almost perfect day of riding.



I think for a couple of flatlanders, not bad for a late start, crossing two N.F.'s., and a stretch at 11,000ft?
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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 09-26-2008, 08:02 AM   #399
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Day 3; Sept. 8, 2008

Today would be a fairly big mileage day, however except for one hill climb into Branson, CO, it should be fairly high speed.

The plan was to go from Cimarron northeast, cutting through some remote ranch land on dirt, take a side trip up the Capulin volcano, weather permitting, (which we missed last May), hook back up with the TAT in northeast NM, then make our way northwest to Trinidad, CO, and if we got there early enough, get an oil change and new rear tires at Valcom. Whew.



We got an early start, dropping out of the canyon





A little paved warm-up to start...







The morning clouds,



quickly burned off...



And the yellow-lined in the pavement disappeared,



and then, so did the pavement.



and the gravel... until we were back in the dirt


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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 09-26-2008, 08:09 AM   #400
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No "wolves" this time



We were basically backtracking through this area from Mobius I, and I was surprised at how different the landscape looked traveling the opposite direction.



There were places where I would swear we hadn't been before,





and then we'd come around a bend and I'd recognize it again.

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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 09-26-2008, 08:45 AM   #401
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Blueberry stalls again

right about here.



me: LDF:

Actually, I had to pee. Then I took a couple of photos of a windmill.



and of my bike:



Just letting Blueberry sit and cool down, and rest and relax.

Then I started her up, seemed fine at idle, crack the throttle, seemed fine at higher revs, put it in gear, died.

Repeated that a couple of times. On the 6th or 7th attempt, I was able to put it in gear, accelerate, and ride up a ways, and back.



It was fine again. Hmmmm.

Now, here's a guy-secret: (and please, guys, don't kick me out of Guy-dom for letting this out, 'cause I think they're starting to catch on anyway.) When dealing with something that's not working right:

5% of the time, if you do NOTHING, it will start working right again by itself. If you're shrewd, you can apply some theatrics to make it seem like the "fix" was because of what you did -- think Fonzarelli and the juke box, or A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.

Another 30% of the time, simply disassembling and reassembling the thing... without troubleshooting, or replaceing a single part, will get it working again. Here, it's easy to impress the non-mechanical, since you've obviously done something with tools to fix the thing, except you yourself have no idea why it worked.

50% of the time, you disassemble, find the problem, and are able to fix it easily. This is the real deal.

10% of the time, you disassemble, find the problem, and realize that it's not fixable. Time to replace the whole thing.

5% of the time, you disassemble, think you've found the problem, attempt the fix, find out that that wasn't it, try again, can't get it working, and ultimately are unable to diagnose the problem, or fix the thing.


That last 5% group is where the MAJORITY of wrenching HOURS are spent, and is associated initially with profanity then frustration, , alcohol abuse , and tears .

The biggest clue that you're getting into that last category is an INTERMITTANT problem that isn't consistently reproducible, with several things that COULD be causing it. Is that what we had here? You betcha.

(slide sticking? diaphragm folding? vacuum leaking? ignition timing failing to advance? butterfly valve problem? jet(s) plugging? needle loose? fuel line plugging? etc.???)

Did I want to tackle a bike / carb teardown in the middle of nowhere if I didn't have to?

So, I decided as long as it was working, we'd ride. If it kept happening only intermittantly, I'd try to narrow down an explanation by observing when/how it happened, and if I was backed into a corner and it just stopped working, I'd tear it down.

I'm not sure this sat so well with LDF. "What if it happens when I'm in traffic, or on a steep climb, or something else??? "

"Ahh, don't worry, it won't... you can just pull over... I'll have yer back... it's probably not gonna happen again... "

(shoot... I just didn't have any better ideas)

So off we rode.



For the next week of the trip, if you see a photo of me and wonder what I'm thinking... it'd be a pretty good guess that I was thinking through how a carburator works, and what the problem must be to cause the stalling Blueberry was suffering.
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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 09-26-2008, 09:06 AM   #402
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Capulin volcano National Monument

Finally, off in the distance, we saw the volcano:



As we moved towards it, I realized it would be a perfect day to drive up and look around...



It was getting to "lunch" (snack) time as well.



I stopped in the visitors center, and paid the fee.

(I gotta agree with GasPipe's rant here. -- these things should be paid for with tax money and free to visitors)

I chatted with the ranger about the existence of a back road around the east & north side of the volcano that appears on the GPS...

"No, that hasn't been used for decades... it used to be a state road, but now it's all gated off... yadda yadda"

So I'm starting to formulate some generalizations... BIA land -- avoid altogether . National Forest land -- Totally rocks . National Monuments -- stay on the pavement .

Later on I generated opinions on National Parks, and BLM land with regards to dual-sport potential. But I'll save those for later.
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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 09-26-2008, 09:11 AM   #403
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Twisty paved climb

Takes about 5 minutes.









A nice view, and you don't have to work very hard for it... minimal crowd... I'll give it two .

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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 09-26-2008, 09:19 AM   #404
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Rest break at the top

In '06, we climbed Mt. Etna in Sicily... Now that's a volcano...



So it takes a lot to impress us volcano-wise.



It was a nice place to take a break, read the educational material,



Adventure bunny enjoyed herself, but then she hasn't climbed Mt. Etna. Yet.

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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 09-26-2008, 09:24 AM   #405
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The ride down

was equally enjoyable... I stopped at one point, peered over the eastern edge, and could barely make out the faded tracks of the old state service road. Sigh.



And before we knew it, we were heading off into nowheresville, back towards the TAT.



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