The Mobius Trip

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by DR. Rock, May 23, 2008.

  1. Staplegunnr

    Staplegunnr Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2008
    Oddometer:
    29
    Location:
    Middle of No Where, New Mexico
    Welcome to New Mexico! When asked Red or Green, it is about the color chili(sp) you want with your meal, not the color of the stop light at the corner.

    It has been enjoyable following your trip.
  2. kelsow

    kelsow Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,118
    Location:
    Halifax Nova Scotia
    Can't wait for the next instalment.

    Thanks for posting.
  3. JSPEED

    JSPEED 650 Strommer

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Oddometer:
    106

    Good points.

    You're right, it is someones property, so probably better left alone.

    If wild I would put it down for sure.

    I probably wouldn't try to find the owner either, you never know how they will react, sometimes humans are more threatening than animals.

    I've had to euthanize a cat on the side of the road and it's not pleasant but was necessary at the time.

    I am enjoying your report thoroughly.:thumb
  4. Rossbike

    Rossbike Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    Oddometer:
    66
    Location:
    Long Beach, CA
    Thanks for taking us along on your great trip. The photos have been excellent, one is now background on my laptop (high res on the endless straights). Very inspiring.

    :clap
  5. Chris M

    Chris M Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    26
    Dr. Rock,
    I really appreciate you going out of your way to share your story with us.
    It has really given me the incentive to go out and do one of these long distance rides.

    Again thanks and look forward to Part II.


    Chris
  6. G.Gordon

    G.Gordon Nation of Frustration

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Oddometer:
    9,243
    Location:
    just south of KCMO
    Great report... thanks for taking us along.:thumb
  7. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2006
    Oddometer:
    5,539
    Location:
    NYfC, yff
    for the feedback. I don't take notes while we're on the trip, just photos and memories, and it's amazing how quickly those memories fade. Even the things that left such a big impression on me at the beginning of the trip become overwritten by the new amazing stuff we saw & experienced by the end. So writing this up becomes an exercise for me in casting and curing, plugging memory leaks... kind of like mental JB Weld, if you know what I mean.

    We forward the link to family and friends, mostly non-riders, as a preemptive response to the inevitable "Are you two crazy??? :gerg" question.

    Answer: Yes, :getiton but we have a lot of fun too. See. :ricky:ricky

    That other ADVriders read and enjoy the RR is total gravy. I'm glad to give something back to a great community. :thumb
  8. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2006
    Oddometer:
    5,539
    Location:
    NYfC, yff
    and the quest for cold beer and liquor.
    :beer

    We left Maxwell on a dirt road,

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    That gave way to pavement before long. We crossed the path of the Santa Fe trail several times. Wasn't much evidence of it other than the sign.

    [​IMG]

    We spied this place at an intersection, and when we went in found all the chairs up on the tables, and a nice woman mopping the floor. She told us she was closed for a couple of days for spring cleaning, and wasn't really set up to sell package liquor, despite the sign on the outside, the place was mostly a bar. Looked like a neat place to hang out and throw back some cold ones. She told us we could buy package liquor at the St. James Hotel, and would have no problems finding groceries in Cimarron which we would pass through before getting to the State park campgrounds. :thumb

    [​IMG]

    Crossed the SF trail some more,

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    And started to approach the Sangre de Cristo mountains.

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    Since we had been directed there on our quest for booze, we stopped by the St. James hotel first, which is supposed to be haunted, but when we got there, they denied it (the selling liquor part, not the haunted part).

    [​IMG]
  9. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    Location:
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    We eventually found our way to the strip of civilization called Cimarron, NM.

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    We stopped for gas and groceries and a snack, and headed up the canyon into the mountains.

    I was struck by nostalgia when I realized that this is the town next to the Philmont Scout Ranch, where I had hiked and camped for a couple of weeks back in... hmmm... 1977? '78? We took the train there and back from Chicago. Yikes :eek1.

    [​IMG]

    I have some photos from back then, maybe I'll scan a few in when I get home if I can find the album. What's funny is LDF's nephew is planning on going there. Who'd have thought Aunt Francine would get there first? :D

    [​IMG]
  10. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    really started to turn spectacular... so this is what canyon carving refers to.

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    I could get used to this. :thumb

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  11. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Location:
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    We entered the Cimarron Canyon State Park

    [​IMG]

    But weren't quite sure where we were supposed to camp.

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    Stopped and asked around at a wayside,

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    Not helpful. But then we remembered the woman at the Colfax Tavern mentioned something about gravel pit lakes, which at the time didn't sound too appealing,

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    So we pulled in to check them out,

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    Not bad, eh?

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    They're dammed up pools on the creek which was done to enhance early settler's fishing experience.

    [​IMG]
  12. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

    Joined:
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    The campsite was all but abandoned. The season hadn't started yet. Showers not working, no electricity in the bathrooms, but at least there was fresh water.

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    Ahem. :puke1

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    OK... well, no problem, we have our Katadyn filter...

    Dinner time! :dg:yum

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    Well, sometime before we finished our cocktails, and the steaks were done, it started to drizzle. :(: Before we finished eating, it had turned into a fairly steady rain. :cry, and by the time we were done cleaning up, our rain gear was soaked. :bluduh

    We grabbed the weather radio, GPS's, and crawled into the tent around 8:30.

    Day's stats:

    [​IMG]
  13. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    We had all our gear under the two large vestibules of the tent.

    Sometime in the middle of the night, it's still raining, and we hear some scruffling inside the vestibule on LDF's side. I reach up and turn on my headlamp. SKUNK! "shhhh" I say. LDF starts shouting at it! Luckily it doesn't spray, and crawls out of the vestibule.

    All our food and critter-temping stuff was tied up in a bear bag, so I think it was just curious, and trying to get out of the rain.

    A few minutes later, we were drifting back to sleep, and we hear it again, but in the vestibule on my side. Same thing, it leaves. This repeats 3 or 4 times over the next hour, finally it leaves for good. I think it might have given a little squirt at one point, but in the morning, nothing smelled, so maybe not.
  14. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

    Joined:
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    or, "Be careful what you wish for."

    Sometime around 3-4AM, we both had to redistribute the evening's beverages. We scurried to the bathroom, and it was still pouring, and starting to get colder.

    We put on all our clothes (not a whole heck of a lot), and crawled back into the sleeping bags. We were warm, dry, and cozy. :arch But really not looking forward to breaking camp in the rain, and starting the day riding wet.

    The plan for the next day was to ride nice forest service roads from out of Angel Fire through the Carson National forest. That was looking less and less likely. I had tried to tune in the weather radio for the previous two evenings, and hadn't been able to get a signal. What we didn't know is that this storm system was dumping rain all over, and snow at higher elevations.

    I turn on the GPS, and in the dark, start scrolling around using the topo maps to check what elevation we're at, (7500ft), and how high we'd have to go to get across the range (two passes: 8400ft to Eagle Nest, then 9100ft to get to Taos which is at 6900ft).

    I drifted back to sleep just hoping we could wait it out, and maybe it would stop.
  15. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    We waited in the tent as long as we could stand it... nearly 12 hours. It was clear at this point we weren't going to be riding any dirt roads, and as we discussed our options, we formulated a plan. Don't be ambitious as to distance, just stay dry, stay on pavement, and get as far as we can until we can find somewhere to hole up and dry our stuff..

    Pack down and gear up in the tent. Drybags sealed, and rain gear on before exiting! The last day of our Nova Scotia trip, we had broken camp in the rain, and made the mistake of exiting the tent, then packing our bikes, and then gearing up. Problem was we got soaked under our rain gear the minute we left the tent, so this time was going to be different.

    As we were playing twister in the tent, packing everything into the drybags, we hear the sound of the rain change from that light pitter patter, to the wetter twacking of wet snow. :eek1
  16. FlagRS

    FlagRS Gone to the Dogs

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    1,212
    Location:
    N. AZ
    Doc, looks like typical afternoon crap for the mountains of the southwest. Keep going west and it should improve.

    Zone Forecast: Sangre de Cristo Mountains

    http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?zoneid=NMZ004&zflg=1

    THIS HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK IS FOR PORTIONS OF NORTH AND CENTRAL
    NEW MEXICO.

    .DAY ONE...TODAY AND TONIGHT

    THERE IS A SLIGHT RISK OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS THIS AFTERNOON AND
    EVENING ACROSS THE NORTHEAST CORNER OF THE STATE...GENERALLY ALONG
    AND NORTHEAST OF A RATON TO LAS VEGAS TO CLOVIS LINE. THE PRIMARY
    THREATS WILL BE LARGE HAIL...DAMAGING WINDS IN EXCESS OF 60 MPH AS
    WELL AS LOCALLY HEAVY RAINS...ALTHOUGH AN ISOLATED TORNADO CAN NOT
    BE RULED OUT.

    MEANWHILE...A FEW DRY THUNDERSTORMS OVER THE UPPER GILA REGION MAY
    PRODUCE GUSTY WINDS UP TO 45 OR 50 MPH.

    .DAYS TWO THROUGH SEVEN...TUESDAY THROUGH SUNDAY

    THERE IS A SLIGHT RISK OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS DURING THE AFTERNOON
    AND EVENING HOURS ON TUESDAY AND WEDNESDAY. THE PRIMARY THREATS ARE
    LARGE HAIL AND DAMAGING WINDS IN EXCESS OF 60 MPH. THE MAIN CONCERN
    WILL BE NORTHEAST OF A RATON TO CLOVIS LINE.

    ADDITIONALLY...DRY THUNDERSTORMS WILL DEVELOP IN THE SOUTHWEST AND
    WEST CENTRAL MOUNTAINS AS WELL AS THE RIO GRANDE VALLEY WHERE GUSTY
    WINDS UP TO 45 OR 50 MPH ARE POSSIBLE.

    WEATHER CAN CHANGE VERY RAPIDLY. ALWAYS USE THE LATEST FORECASTS
  17. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

    Joined:
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    By the time we had the bikes packed, there was snow sticking to the ground, but not yet the pavement. I have destroyed one camera, and had to have the replacements repaired 3 times (including the one taking foggy photos on this trip). As much as I wanted to capture photos of what we were experiencing, I couldn't risk destroying another camera. So I stowed it.

    [Side note -- this day's events and my inability to photograph it inspired me to buy an Olympus 1030sw, waterproof, dustproof, shock resistant. I'm still not satisfied with the photos I'm getting with it compared to the Fuji F30 -- mostly because of inferior auto-programs and lack of manual override on the olympus, but I'm hoping I can sort that out soon.]

    We pulled onto the highway, and started to climb. At times we were moving less than 10mph. Snow started sticking to the pavement. Every so often a car would fall in behind us, and we would pull off and let it pass. The road was twisty, visibility was horrible, it was cold, we were getting wet. :wink: Doesn't get any better than this.

    When we did get a glimpse through the snow swirls, and fog, the views were just gorgeous. There wasn't much wind, so the heavy snow was weighting down the branches of the pine trees. We pushed on over the first pass, and somewhere between Eagle Nest and Aqua Fria, we pulled into a general store / gas station for a rest.

    As we dismounted our bkes, we stared at each other for a moment. Until we each saw the other, I don't think we realized how bad it was what we were riding through. We had snow crusted into every crevasse of our gear, and a big icicle hanging down off the chin piece of the helmets. :eek1

    We just bust out laughing.:rofl and went inside. If there's one image I have in my head that I really regret not being able to record, it was of LDF's expression looking at me looking at her.

    Inside, it was clear that LDF was much colder than I was. :vardy. She was chattering away, and we were melting into big puddles on the floor. We appologized to the owner who was quite nice about it. They thought we were :loco. We bought some hot coffee, :nod, snacks, and plotted our next move.
  18. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    We find out from the store owners that there's no way we would have been able to have ridden the forest service roads as there were 4ft drifts still blocking them at the higher elevations even before this snowstorm. Also, this weather was supposed to clear up by the end of the day. Also, we had an even higher pass to clear if we wanted to get to Taos, which we did.

    I was concerned if it snowed much more, or the wet snow turned to ice, we would have to do a big reroute to get over the range, so I figured let's just take it slow, and try to get to Taos. So we geared up again, and pressed on. The second pass was just as bad of conditions as the first. But by early afternoon, we were descending into Taos, the temperature was rising, the sky was clearing, and we made it!

    I set the GPS to find a laundromat, and figured we'd start by looking for the hotel nearest to that. We found the laundromat walking distance to town center, and there was a great hotel across the street.

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    They let us park the bikes out back.

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    And we unpacked,

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    set the tent to dry,

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    stripped down so we were only wearing our rain gear, and headed for the dryers with fistfulls of quarters :D.

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  19. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    5,539
    Location:
    NYfC, yff
    but intense.

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    This was probably our most challenging day of riding. The numbers don't tell the story, do they?

    [​IMG]
  20. La Donna Fugata

    La Donna Fugata You're not the boss of me

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    157
    Location:
    Downtown
    Thanks babe for the time you have taken to tell our story. Your way with words makes me laugh out loud as you recapture the memory so beautifully.

    Thanks for all the kind words of our fellow ADV riders. Big hello to our canadian dual sport buddies that have checked in.

    Anyone contemplating the TAT trip my only advice is "just do it". It's a great jounery.

    LDF