2nd May 2016 Albuquerque, NM to Moriarty, NM 71.7 kms - 44.6 miles Up = 798m - Down = 421m
2nd May 2016 - Albuquerque, New Mexico to Moriarty, New Mexico.
Monday morning arrived so time to get back on the bikes!! This was the start of our third week of riding! I can't believe the difference in the weather today. We could not have hoped for a better day as a rest day - or more to the point - a better day not to have to go out on the bikes!! Winds are only expected to be light today and later in the morning turning to be our friend "the westerly".
I can honestly say that the 3 warmshowers hosts we have had so far have been unbelievably wonderful to us!!! Our third warmshowers hosts, Dan and Susan at Albuquerque (and their dog Chocco) were so good to us that it makes it hard to leave!!
Dan made our departure from Albuquerque easy by biking 25 kms along bike paths and roads with bike lanes before letting us loose on Route 66 - which we followed all the way to Moriarty!!! One thing that I have noticed, through their absence in the USA, is those horrible bars we have entering and leaving bike path segments. Before I left, I rode in a new housing estate in North Lakes and the entries to bike path/walkways have bars so designed that you have to get off your bike to manoeuvre through them!! What is their purpose - to slow bike traffic down? - to stop people taking motor-bikes and cars on the bike-paths? ......................................... whatever it is - it seems to be a problem we have in Australia and they don't have in USA!!. The most I have seen here is a short pillar in the middle - but this doesn't impede cyclists at all.
So the way Dan led us through Albuquerque was effortless for us as far as checking on directions, but as well extremely informative as Dan pointed out spots of interest throughout the ride. Sadly, right near the end of the bike paths Don got a puncture - so we couldn't blame the freeway debris for this one.
Once on our way along Route 66 it continued to be a very enjoyable ride. Near Tijeras we came across the Route 66 Musical Road that Dan had informed us about. Apparently it was paid for by the National Geographic Channel for its series, "Crowd Control". The road plays part of "America the Beautiful" -- but only if you travel the speed limit: 45 mph.! It is strange!! We didn't get to hear the full musical song as not many cars came along and travelled at the correct speed for the music - but we could hear changes in tone. Pat said she obeyed the speed limit and heard it all!
It seemed to take ages to reach the top today and I think we climbed up to about 6700' above sea-level, as we had certainly dropped down a bit rolling into Moriarty. The motel owner said Moriarty was at 6,400'. The first 25 kms with Dan didn't seem too bad being a very gradual climb, but it became steeper as we went on along Route 66. We all felt a bit puffed today - perhaps a combination of higher altitude - and getting back on the bikes after a relaxing day off!!
However - we still made it to Moriarty in good time - the town seems to be about 10 kms long! Weather Gods had certainly smiled on us - so hard to believe how windy and cold it was yesterday - and yet today, while still a bit chilly with snow apparent on the hills - didn't seem as cold without the wind around. The owner of the Sunset Motel where we stayed in Moriarty was an age-group triathlete - so he knew all about cycling and was most interested in what we were doing. We talked of the many punctures we were getting and he kindly loaned Don a "leatherman" tool to help extract the wires from the tyres. We certainly used this Mike - thanks a lot!!
While we biked with Dan, Pat had made a detour to visit the Petroglyph National Monument in Albuquerque where last nights dinner guests perform volunteer work. It was extremely interesting, but the time of the year not quite the best as many of the garden blooms were not out.