Monday, September 04, 2006

Albuquerque to Lake Navajo, New Mexico

The day started out with New Mexico style home made breakfast burritos and coffee. We hung out and relaxed a bit, did some laundry. Yea, we actually had some dirty clothes to wash already. Sandy likes to keep her Duc clean so she washed her bike. We didn’t leave until 2PM since Mary Ann and Sandy had some catching up to do. Then it was time to leave and that was stressful for us shorty girls on the heavy bikes. Al monitored the traffic on the road since there was no way I was going to stop at the top of the gravel hill to see if anything as coming. The coast was clear I pulled out of the gravel pit and on to the road. It was easier then I though. A few minutes later Sandy was behind me and we were heading for the northwest corner of New Mexico.

We spent the night in a 100 year old adobe house

There was a bit of traffic on the interstate and we left later then anticipated so we decided to skip the twisty roads and just took 550 North still trying to make it to Mesa Verde by nightfall. 550 is designated as a scenic route on my map but I didn’t think it was all that scenic and it was a pretty straight road. I’d avoid it next time. We ran in to a small rain storm that lasted just a few minutes and arrived in Aztec, NM in the late afternoon. It was pretty hot here and we were sweating while trying to figure out what we should do next.

We looked at the map and realized that Mesa Verde was still very far away, so we headed east where we knew of a State Park that we could camp at. The road getting to the park was cool, it went up and down like a rollercoaster and had some great scenery. Confusion set in when we passed an entrance to a camp site, the road leading there was a beat up dirt road. We stopped down the road at a gas station to get more info. Then we fund out that wasn’t the park I saw on the map, the other park was further down and the road to it was paved. Paved was good, gravel/dirt was bad on a loaded up ST bike when you can’t even flat foot.

We arrived at the Navajo Dam and then Lake Navajo Sate Park. Navajo Lake is New Mexico’s second largest lake. The entrance booth was closed already since it was after 6PM so we continued in to the camping area where we could self check in. The guy at the gas station told us the camp site was full this morning, but we were hoping some people left already since the three day holiday weekend was over. As we headed to the park, we saw a lot of cars coming form the park heading the opposite direction. When we got to the camp site more then half of the camp sites were empty. We rode around the steep and narrow but paved roads and found a camp site with some grass to set up our tents on. Not all sites were good for tents, most looked like RV sites and there were many RV’s still here. Our site was a RV site too but, we parked our bikes in the spot where the RV would park. The price was $14 for the camp site, we put the money in to the self-pay envelope and dropped it in to the box.

Navajo Lake

Navajo Lake State Park


Our camp site

It was a delightful night for camping. The air was cool but not cold and the sky was clear. The moon was almost full tonight and there were so many starts in the sky. Our camp site was pretty close to the bathrooms, so we didn’t have to walk too far. At around 10PM we called it a night and zipped ourselves in to our tents. My spot was a bit slopped and every time I turned to the other side I’d slide down on since my sleeping pad, and pillow and sleeping bag were made out of slippery type materials. This was my first time camping on a motorcycle trip, so all my gear was new, just tested out for a few nights in my back yard a week before this trip.

No comments: