Red River, New Mexico

May 21, 22, 2018 - As we headed out of the higher elevations of the Rio Grande National Forest we recalled how we had been camping just 20 miles from the head waters of the Rio Grande River.  You know, the one that defines the border between Texas and Mexico.  We would be following the Rio Grande River all the way out of the Creede area and pick it up again coming out of Taos.  We came out of the mountains at Del Norte onto a large  open valley through Monte Vista and Alamesa.  The weather was still a little stormy and we traveled through two hail storms or maybe just one and we hit it twice.  At Fort Garland we turned south and started entering the Carson National Forrest.  At the turn to the east came up to take us into the mountains we saw a sign pointing to Rio Grande del Norte National Monument 4 miles.  We took the right and drove out to an overlook of a huge canyon carved by the river through the years.  You can see the same phenomenon in Taos  and other places - amazing shapes, rocks, formations and awesomeness of millions of years of existence.  We spent a few minutes taking pictures and discussing how the photos could in no way capture the experience of the view.  A little while later we drove the four miles back to pick up the east route to Red River.  

The drive from Questa was through the narrow valley with dramatic elevation rise on both sides.  At Red River we encountered the familiar charm preserved since we came here first back in the 1980’s.  We stopped at the supermarket for a few things and headed to Roadrunner RV Resort on the east side of town. The weather was starting to look stormy so we didn’t try to get out and walk the town as we had planned.   

James went in at Roadrunner to pay and I remained in the cockpit in the temporary staging lane.  An employee came up to window and greeted me and welcomed us to the campground.  He asked if we were there for the Rally coming up that weekend and I said no.  He then went on to tell me there was an annual motorcycle rally scheduled which brought in a lot of revenue but really was a pain to deal with.  Glad we didn’t hit that date for our visit.  

When James came out he had the code for the entry gate and we zoomed on in to our site and did a quick set up.  I took Chase to the dog park and he sniffed around and eventually did his thing so I could pick it up and get him back to the camper.  Chase loves going to dog parks.  They are typically fenced with a cyclone type fence and he loves to explore with no leash on.  At Pancho Villa State Park in New Mexico he tried to get into the gate at an old building which had a cyclone fence around it for preservation.  

We got hundreds of channels on the aerial tv antenna so we messed and gummed the rest of the evening and got up to a cool and fresh morning in the mountains.  I knew I’d seen a cafe or two on the main road through Red River and sure enough we found one with lots of parking spaces on the street.  We explained to Chase that we’d be right back and he took to guarding our home on wheels.  

Inside the cafe were a few folks having breakfast and two ladies who worked there one of which took us to a table.  Both ladies had asked us if we were here for the rally.  As we looked around we saw motorcycle art work on the walls and there were a few extra piercings and tattoos on many of the people in the building.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that.  Nonetheless it was a fairly decent breakfast and we finished and got on with the drive to Taos.  

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cokepoe@gmail.com CokePoe.com 2018