In the 1920’s a man starts a general store on Route 60 – one of the first coast to coast US routes. His doughnuts were no good so he started making and selling pie. Business took off. When they tried to open a Post Office in town they applied for the name ‘Pie Town’, initially refused but then accepted. There are now 4 pie cafes in town – we were initially disappointed as we were hanging our for savoury pies but it didn’t take long to embrace the choices of pie: pecan, chocolate, berry, New Mexico apple (flavoured with green chili and pine nuts), rhubarb, lemon….served with ice cream or whipped cream from a can, yummmmmm
One of the pie shops had a Time magazine full of Trump – the woman behind the counter ‘loves Trump’ and didn’t agree with Alan’s suggestion that perhaps he didn’t treat women well! The retired war veteran I met at the Post Office thought Obama was an alien, Hillary was not an option and Trump was a schmuck .. always interesting to ask the questions
The waitress where we had lunch told us that the county ruling is that all properties must be armed (packin’ guns is the expression) – adamant that that is the reason there is no crime in town. We met Tony who has a sign on his gate “You are now in range”!
Nita moved to town in the 80’s and raised her six kids in what is now the Toaster House. She has since moved out of town and when she saw a hiker walking past her house in town she realized she was on the Continental Divide walking trail plus various biking routes including ours. She opened her house to the self propelled vagrants and it is stocked with all you could ever need for a rest-over – food, clean towels, clothes (for when you are washing all that you are carrying), shampoo, loo paper…. People leave a donation when they leave and that helps pay for the consumables. It is a comfortable home and when we arrived there were at least 20 hikers plus us staying there. The second night there were just 5 of us.
Nita takes visitors for a short tour of town (it is a very small town, population 60) and one of the highlights is the 25 meter wide radio telescope that is hooked up to 10 others in the US and equates to a 5000 mile wide antennae with the accuracy to see a football (or even a rugby ball) on the surface of the moon. It is quite active and rotated in all dimensions while we were watching it over 10 minutes.
We rested a day in Pie Town before the short haul to Grants. We took the paved alternate as it was said to be more scenic as it passed through the Narrows and close to the spectacular La Ventana arch and unbelievably more pie action (see the pics below)