We woke to a lovely cool day in Silver City, NM, and got on the road toward The City of Rocks State Park. It was about 32 miles away on NM61, and the route was very pleasant. We got there, stopped at the gate to pay the five bucks admission, then went in.
Here is the entrance; you can see the rock formations to the left:
These rock shapes were made originally from volcanic eruptions millions of years ago and then eroded by wind and sand. The place is so named because the rock formations look from a distance like a city of small skyscrapers. I have known about this park for years but this is the first time I’ve visited it. It has its own visitors’ center and information area, but people are still allowed to camp right out there among the rocks. There are several sites set up with picnic tables and steps. I heard a woman talking to her daughter. She said, “It is sure different out here from the first time your dad brought me here in the 50s. Then it was like a big party area, lots of trash everywhere.” I could visualize that, and I am grateful it has been cleaned up, but at the same time, I am glad people are still able to enjoy it. So many places are roped off and then no one can use them; to a certain extent, it’s good when people can fully enjoy a natural phenomenon, as long as they don’t deface it or destroy it in any way.
We spent some time shooting photos at City of Rocks, but then it was time to go. We had other things planned for the day.
We got back on NM61 toward NM152 and the Gila National Forest, but first I wanted to make a quick stop in Faywood. It was more of a photo opportunity that I hope to share with my school kids when the year gets underway, but I was excited to be able to see the ranch I was looking for. I never would have found it, either, if not for the help of the friendly people at the post office.
We rode NM61 for a while, and I thought the scenery was interesting. Big bluffs near the road, mountains in the distance, areas of of lush foliage, much as we’d seen when we’d ridden toward Silver City from Glenwood. Big puffy clouds filled the sky and the air was reasonably cool. The road meandered through several small communities, and it was very quiet. Not much traffic either. Soon we came to NM152.
I will just give you the summary of this road: I had a blast! It was such a fun road, and we enjoyed ourselves both directions that we rode it! When we finished with one run, though, we ended up in Hillsboro only to find there was no gas in that town! So, we rode 18 more miles to I-25 and fueled up at a little RV park. I enjoyed talking to the lady there, and in addition to buying gas, we got a lemonade and a candy bar each. I needed some energy for the ride back! It was just as much fun going toward Silver City, and we thoroughly enjoyed it. The scenery was beautiful, too. We rode from high desert to lush pines, and in the middle section, we went through a deep canyon with rocks towering above the road. Then we rode back down to high desert again.
We arrived back in Silver City late afternoon, then sat around at the hotel for a while trying to figure out what we were going to do for dinner. We decided that it was the perfect night to explore the gallery/eclectic section of old downtown Silver City, so we rode two-up on Hal’s bike. We found a great little restaurant by asking a local woman where was a good place. It was called Diane’s, and not only did we have a great meal there, we enjoyed the music of a talented young woman who was playing the guitar. And then it ended with a piece of chocolate cake! Mmmmmm.
Here is the outside of Diane’s:
After dinner, looking down Bullard St.:
A pretty storefront:
The wind kicked up, the temperature dropped significantly, and on the way back to the hotel we saw lightning in the cloud bank to the east. No sooner did we get the bike put up and the cover on than it began to rain. It rained for quite a while, and we heard thunder for most of the storm.
Now I am sitting warm and cozy, listening to the rain, and dreaming of the adventures we will have tomorrow!