The following map shows the route for this day’s trip.
The large white spaces in New Mexico shown in the map segment represent the areas allocated to both Fort Bliss and the White Sands Missile Range. My path took me along four-lane US-54 directly across part of Fort Bliss and through Alamogordo and Carrizozo. Upon reaching Corona, I turned north and followed NM-42, NM-41 and US-285 to Santa Fe.
Much of the terrain along the route consists of very flat, arid, desert with very little photogenic scenery. These first two photos illustrate the scenery in this part of New Mexico. The first one shows the view northward along US-54 from a point about 13 miles south of the center of Alamogordo. The second photo shows the view towards hills to the east of US-54 from a point halfway between Alamogordo and Carrizozo.
While riding through Carrizozo around Noon MDT, I took these next two photos of two businesses alongside the highway.
At a point halfway from Carrizozo to Corona, I took this next photo to show the view northward towards the Cibola National Forest.
As I continued northward along NM-41 near the town of Estancia, I noticed some isolated rain showers northwest of the highway and took this next photo of the view. This was just a portend of more intense weather ahead.
At 2:15 PM MDT, I came over a rise and took another photo of the view ahead. On the right is a portion of the Santa Fe National Forest with rain clouds building up.
Nearly ten minutes later, I came into the community of Galisteo and took this photo of a small church as I passed by.
Just outside of Galisteo, I saw how the weather ahead was looking increasingly ominous and took this last photo before tucking my camera inside my jacket to protect it from the rain.
The XM weather radar on my Garmin Zumo 665 GPS unit indicated that I would likely just skirt by the heaviest rain. The thunderstorm cell seemed to be stationary over the Santa Fe National Forest. Thankfully that information was correct and I arrived at the Quality Inn motel without getting drenched.
That concludes this comparatively short travelogue installment for July 2nd. The next day I continued my journey northward into Colorado for the second time during this summer’s tour. More about that day’s journey in my next report.