"It ain't New and it ain't Mexico" Part 2. New Mexico scouting trips 2 & 3
New Mexico scouting trips 2 & 3. November 2017 and 2018
Scouting Trip #2
Our 2015 trip was a lot of fun and provided a wealth of knowledge,(read about our 2015 trip here!) but we'd just barely explored all of what New Mexico had to offer. In November of 2017 I returned to New Mexico to specifically explore the southern region; Las Cruces, Alamogordo, Ruidoso. Within these areas lay the Lincoln, Cibola and White sands National forests and parks along with countless forgotten roads and deserted towns. I was certainly intrigued.
If you're interested in riding New Mexico with MotoVermont in 2021, check out our tour page: New Mexico Tour 2021
This area is quite beautiful and I especially enjoyed White Sands and several of the Ghost towns I encountered like the town of Carrizozo pictured below.
However, Southern New Mexico lacked the diversity of landscape that we loved so much about Central New Mexico, where we had ridden in 2015... Scouting trip #3 below!
Scouting Trip #3
OK, we were now set on the area of Central and Western New Mexico. A region that stays fairly warm during mid Fall and provides a dramatic and varied topography.
This time, we had a crew. Riding buddies ranging from age 25 to 60 and ready to tackle the unknowns of a scouting trip.
For this trip we met in Los Lunas, NM. Just a few exits south of ABQ airport where some of our group arrived. On a beautiful early November morning we took off on sandy two track and arrived at our first stop; the ghost town of Riley, NM. Several buildings line the small town, including a beautifully preserved 200 year old church.
We loved riding the "wash" trail so much in 2015 that we made sure to add it into our updated route and tried to make that section even longer.
We arrived in Magdalena for the first time and immediately appreciated the authentic cowboy town with it's old west style buildings and dirt streets. Unfortunately for us then, but great for us on our 2021 tour, the historic Magdalena Hall hotel was undergoing a complete renovation. We found a nice motel just up the street.
Breakfast at the Magdalena Cafe?
Riding past the Very Large Array radio astronomy observatory.
We quickly rose about 5000 ft in elevation from Magdalena. It had been cold overnight and apparently a bit of snow had fallen at the top of Mt Withington.