Day 21 – Monumental

I have slept alright in the night and don’t seem to have any further bites.  On my way out I call in at reception to hand in the keys to the two rooms… no one comes out, mmmm hardly surprising!

Am glad to see the back of the Ponderosa.  I hope today is not going to be as blowy as yesterday, just so tiring trying to keep in a straight line.

Onwards to Albuquerque and I realise I have now passed the 3000 miles mark, that’s at a rate of about 1000 miles a week… mmm not sure I am going to get to everything like this 🙁

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I like Albuquerque and wish I had ridden the extra miles and stayed here last night.  I make my way to the Harley shop.. of course.

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It’s a bit of a disappointment to be honest… I try another one not far from 66, but this is just bike parts and servicing so don’t stay long.

I have to say that New Mexico is just stunning, the scenery is amazing… this is the ‘big country’ with the classic cowboy film backdrop..

I try to capture it as best I can but the photos just don’t do it justice.

 

As I start climbing into the mountains I come across this.. Owl Rock.. it really does look like an owl.

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and just around the bend… (not for the squemish)

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I’m not sure if it is a rattler, I don’t get off the bike for a closer inspection in case his mates are waiting in the bushes to pounce.  This is a stark reminder that there are animals in this country that can kill you very quickly, so it pays to be careful.

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Next is Laguna, a native american town.  I stop at this diner for my late lunch,

 

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it is completely staffed by local people.  It is fast food again of course, but it’s quite good so I take the half I cannot eat and will have it later.

I continue on 66, but come to a dead end… again.  I consult my map and it says to take a shallow tunnel under the interstate… I find it… mmmm should I chance it, there’s no one for miles if I have difficulties…

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Here’s the other side..

 

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Nothing ventured and all that… in fact it was fine, a bit tricky coming out into all the sand but managed to get the bike up onto the tarmac no problem, so I’m glad I went for it.

Coming now into Grants

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and then just past Thoreau guess what?

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At least I got a warning this time so was able to change direction.

The weather is closing in now and it looks like rain.  Will stop at the next town, Gallup, and get a room.

The sky is looking as monumental as the landscape… really quite beautiful.

I look on booking.com – not taking any chances – and find a hotel for the night.  I am quite early so decide to watch the television.  After a little while the tops of my feet and some toes start to itch; they are incredibly itchy.  I can’t see any bites and there don’t seem to be any bugs about.. maybe I’m allergic to something they have put on the carpet.  I put a cold flannel on them, that seems to help. I have decided to have a kind of rest day tomorrow, will definitely do my washing and clean the bike too so might only ride a short hop tomorrow once I have done my chores.

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