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The wind blew so fiercely we couldn’t open the door. When we eventually forced it open, we walked outside and both peered at the trees, hesitant about setting off in 45 mph winds. “We can always detour in 40 miles to Clayton,” I said, and off we drove after our morning coffee at a Love’s truck stop in Boise OK. We had 150 miles until civilization so we stocked extra fuel, water, lunch and headed out.

The wind was coming from the north and we were traveling north and west so we took turns being blowed sideways and backward. I’m lighter so I drove at a 70 degree angle to avoid being blown across the road, while Han seemed to drive flawlessly in a straight line. 40 miles in we crossed the border to New Mexico and decided to keep heading north and not detour. We were used to the wind.

About a half mile in to the state we enter deep sand. I saw Han ahead riding up on to the embankment and back down as I trudged through. At one point I swerved up the sand wall until the bike was vertical. It fell sideways and Han had to come back through the treacherous road to help me lift it. But the bike and I were fine.

We kept on moving through New Mexico. It was the most beautiful scenery we have seen yet. The temperature dropped and we were actually cold, which was a relief from the past few days’ heat. The plateaus blocked some of the wind as we gradually climbed before a twisty descent paved descent.

We drove through fields of horses and a token donkey where we stopped to oil our chains, adjust my chain tension, and have a snack. The dirt was soft and fast. We climbed rocky switchbacks on a cliff’s edge and saw the Juniper bushes spread out beneath us. We only saw one moving vehicle the entire 70 miles we were in New Mexico.

We had lunch 15 feet down in the earth perched in a dried river gulch and reflected on how amazing our ride had been.

We continued to Colorado, through Branson, “where the plains meet the Mesas” and 20 miles down the road Han ran out of gas. I saw him drift to the side in my rear view mirror and heard only one engine humming. Luckily we refueled with our reserve tanks-150 miles in- and kept on moving. We made our way yo Trinidad. While exploring the town we realized we were here last year and had the same trouble finding a latte until both this visit and last led us to “What’a Grind.”

We stayed at the Trails Inn Motel and had dinner at an italian restaurant with live singing performances by the staff, Rino’s Restaurant and Lounge. We were so worn out from the long day we had one drink at a bar downtown and went to bed. A long day of an epic adventure.

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