We left Cuba with full tums from the popular (and very good ) Mexican restaurant Bruno’s. Alan, Rob and I climbed out of town, initially on black top, then up lovely dirt roads, and for the first time, with running streams crossing our path. Rob was able to educate us on the local flora and fauna. We were biking through the upper elevation forests of the grand Ponderosa pine and the white barked Aspen groves.
We camped early (it was meant to be a rest day after all) and after dinner enjoyed a campfire with Alex and Brian who showed up. That night the noises around the tent were disconcerting – is it a bear – no – the moonlit shadow of a pack rat running across the topside of the tent inner had us dragging the tent to a new location. Lost one of my smelly socks probably to the same critter!
More climbing the next day, and our first patches of snow, before a massive rough descent down the Ponderosa Mesa, all the way back down to the heat and ice creams of Abiquiu. The next day we parted ways with our biking companions, Rob was heading back to Durango and Brian and Alex were delaying the upcoming snowy sections. Thanks guys for the company.
We yoyo’d back up to Lake Hopewell, down and then up to the Brazos Ridge and camped high (almost 11,000 feet) when we hit soft snow covered sections of road. Being smart cyclists (with enough food on board) we waited for a freeze and the next day we were able to ride most of the large snow patches on the fat tyres – big smiles!
Mid morning we got to the (understated) border with Colorado, a milestone, and as luck would have it we got a toot and a belch of steam from the narrow gauge historic steam train whose tracks we had just crossed. Thanks New Mexico for the great ride!