Never a dull moment

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Flag of United States  , Texas
Monday, April 4, 2011

Well, today's travel was quite a bit more interesting than I had anticipated. For the first hundred miles the wind was hellacious; 30-40 MPH side winds with higher gusts. That went on for almost two hours, the longest two hours of the trip so far. I was so tense that I took an hour and a half lunch break while the wind died down.

I thought about calling it a day and getting a hotel room right after lunch, but I got back on the road anyway, albeit with some reservations. But the wind subsided and soon I found myself singing and appreciating my departure from west Texas, surely one of the most desolate places in this nation. 

 As I approached New Mexico the topography improved considerably. There were hills, curves, vegetation and the beautiful town of Artesia. By the time I got there I had decided to go all the way to Alamogordo, so I didn't stop to take pictures of the town. It looked like a nice place to live with lots of "Now Hiring" signs posted.

From Artesia to the town of Cloudcroft (aptly named) the elevation climbs from 3500 feet to 8600 feet. The mountains were beautiful going up to Cloudcroft, but the much steeper descent (100 miles ascending vs. 20 miles descending and several runaway truck ramps) offered some absolutely spectacular views. The photos will be more explicit.

Once I was down the mountain and checked into a motel in Alamogordo, I immediately got back on the bike and headed out to White Sands National Monument for the sunset. It was like being on another planet ....... and a much nicer one than I inhabited earlier in the day :D

P.S. Don't forget to click on the photos for a larger version and some comments.
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Comments

Carl on

Nice photos John. We have had our share of wind here as well. Gusts of 40-50 mph and 200,000 people without power including us!

Brian on

Hey there! Sounds like fun, love the pictures!

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