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Offline twowheeladdict

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Ride to NM for Hatch Green Chilis and Pistachios
« on: March 27, 2016, 02:16:49 am »
1300 miles.  New rear tire.  Weather looking iffy.  Plenty of layers and heated grips.  The original plan was to do the ride in two days.  700 and 600 miles.  Unfortunately, weather was moving in so I decided to leave out a day early and ride until I hit rain.  Then I would hotel while the storms passed by. 
 
Found a decent Hotel in Benton, AR.  They let me park my bike under cover and there was a nice restaurant on the premises for a steak and beer.
Storms were done by morning, but it was cold, damp and cloudy.  I was wishing I had packed my heated vest, but I have yet to make a hole in the pocket of my riding suit to run the cord for it. Took a break at the Texas welcome center and put on more layers.
 
 I spent most of the day with just a slight chill, but still managed to get in a 600 mile day.
 
There is not much to say about Lubbock, TX.  Found a Hotel and a meal and planned the next day's ride.
The weather was looking mighty cold at the mountain passes of Cloudcroft and Ruidoso.  I contemplated heading towards Carlsbad and down into El Paso before heading north into New Mexico, but decided that it added too many miles.  Instead I waited to leave the Hotel until I knew I would hit the pass at Ruidoso at the peak temperature.  The pass is at 7500 feet.
 
The first place I stopped coming down into the Tularosa Basin was McGinn's Pistachio Tree Ranch.
 
I didn't even bother to take my gear off.  I just wanted to warm up, so I went inside all Hi-Viz yellow and sampled all the different treats they have for sale.  My favorite is the Atomic Hot Chili Pistachio Brittle.  Sweet and heat.  Great combination.
If you look closely, you can see the San Andres Mountains in the background and part of White Sands National Monument. 
 
My next stop after checking into my hotel was for chili and beer. 
The locals told me to stop in at the Hi-D-Ho drive in for a chili burger. 
 
It did not disappoint
 
I washed it down with a local pecan beer.
 

Offline twowheeladdict

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Re: Ride to NM for Hatch Green Chilis and Pistachios
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2016, 02:17:24 am »
The temperature change in the desert southwest can be more than 50 degrees from sunrise to mid afternoon.  The mornings were below freezing so that meant layers in the morning and vents open in the late afternoon. 

I rode down to Orogrande to do a little work.  Yes, work gets in the way of some good riding sometimes. 

 

I didn't want to brave the gravel roads up to the job site so I left my bike down by the gate.  Can you spot it?

 

Unfortunately, someone decided they needed to grade the area where my bike was parked so I had to move it.  I thought I would leave it at the bottom of the hill, but there just didn't look like any good place, so before I knew it, I was riding it up the steep grade to the top of the hill.  Of course, I know that going up hill is a whole lot easier than going down.  There were a couple spots that wanted to take the front tire, but I was able to manhandle the beast and told myself I would never do that again. 

 

I wanted to get photos of the Trophy at White Sands National Monument, but the winds were gusting to 55 mph and the dust was just too much to subject the bike to.  Instead, I explored some of the higher elevations around Alamogordo.

I found Nelsons National Forest.  Well, that is what the sign says.
 

I also visited the Alamogordo Space Museum
 

 

 
Notice the Union Jack?
« Last Edit: March 27, 2016, 02:33:19 am by twowheeladdict »

Offline twowheeladdict

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Re: Ride to NM for Hatch Green Chilis and Pistachios
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2016, 02:19:06 am »
Time to head home and fortunately the winds have died down some.  Unfortunately, it is even colder.  I saw temps down to 19 degrees up in the mountains, and the rest of the day I don't recall seeing 50 degrees.  I experienced the loss of digital speedometer for the first time, and saw the little snowflake symbol on the dash.  I was riding directly into the sun so I had my polarized sunglasses on with my transition face shield.  I would see the road and traffic, but I could not see the bike's instruments or even the GPS screen.  I had to rely on the cars in front of me to set a safe speed.
 

I found a little dive hotel in Gainesville, TX that smelled heavily of Indian Spices.  I asked to see the room before checking in and it was OK for the money.  I was tired and cold and didn't even bother to go out for supper.  The one thing I didn't realize was that there must have been some train tracks close by.  Fortunately, they must have a rule about blowing the horn at night because I didn't hear it until I awoke at 5.

I wanted to get an early start, but the frost on my bike told me I might want to wait until the sun is out.
 

I need a change from the straight roads through Texas, so I plotted a route that cut the corner of Oklahoma, went into Arkansas and back on the interstate to get around Little Rock.  I then got tired of the interstate and decided to had on back roads to the next bridge south of Memphis. Personally, I would rather ride 13 hours on curvy back roads than 6 hours on the interstate.
 

For my last day, I decided to ride a piece of the Natchez Trace and then meander on some Tennessee back roads to see if I could round off my tires a little.
 
If you have never ridden the Natchez Trace, you should add it to your bucket list.  It runs from Natchez, MS to near Nashville, TN.  No commercial traffic allowed and limited access means you can travel the entire length without stopping if you wish.

Here is the Natchez Trace bridge over the Tennessee River.
 

and another shot of the Trophy with the river in the background
 

I observed during this trip that the fuel economy is greatly affected by the windshield.  I saw as much as 10 mpg drop in economy with the windshield raised.  The ability to change the suspension for the load was great.  The ability to change the mode on the fly made a huge difference in comfort on some of the rougher roads.
I did experience the loss of digital speedo and one morning it didn't come back until the temps were in the 40s.  That kept me from being able to use the cruise control. 
I also experienced some weirdness with the stereo system.  It was like it couldn't decide to stay on the NAV and wanted to switch to radio and almost like it was doing two things at once.  Then, if I shut off the radio and just Bluetooth the GPS to my headset it was fine.
 
« Last Edit: March 27, 2016, 03:06:21 am by twowheeladdict »

Offline atrophy

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Re: Ride to NM for Hatch Green Chilis and Pistachios
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2016, 03:32:39 am »
Nice write up and ride!

It appears the Trophy does not like cold weather.  My turn signal switch sticks when it's below 40.  Maybe one of your audio buttons sticks when cold.
I'm surprised the cruise would not work when you did not see the digital display.  I thought that was just a display problem.

They are still great bikes for eating the miles.
2016 Tiger 800XR  Black
2013 Trophy Lunar Silver

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