« another border shot | Main | Putting up »

Pueblo, CO

Total Miles: 377
Miles to Date: 3257

I'm now in Pueblo, Colorado, which is where I'm posting both this entry and the last one, as well as the various pictures in between.

Got up fairly early this morning, with the idea that I would get to Taos in time for some lunch and some shopping. It took me a little longer than I'd planned. Yahoo maps tells you that it's roughly 70 miles or so from I-25 to Taos, and calculates the mileage as if you're averaging about 65 mph. What it doesn't tell you is that a good 30 miles of the trip to Taos is composed of narrow, mountainous, 2-lane highways filled with 30 mph squiggles and 20 mph switchbacks. I left Tucumcari thinking I'd get to Taos by about 11, and didn't actually make it until 1. Part of that was my fault, stopping for photos, but part of it was that the road to Taos is actually a pretty tough drive. I was happy that my car was fairly fresh, but even then it struggled a bit. There were stretches where I was literally slalomming up and down hills with frequent turns.

Still, it was gorgeous, and worth the trip. Since I was basically doing the tourist thing myself, I can't get too down on a town that's made such a central space for tourism. I did what I could to talk with the shopkeepers, though, and found out that there were actually quite a few New Yorkers there. I chatted up the guy who was "on duty" at an artists' co-op, and it turned out that (a) he sells a lot of his work to people from NY, and (b) he got a degree from Cornell in the early 80's. Yeah, I bought a small print of his, along with a few other things. A lot of small purchases for me, and a couple of mid-sized ones. Had some lunch at a local place that looked overpriced, but actually ended up being pretty good.

I did a little better job leaving Taos than I did getting there, but still it was a pretty tense drive. Not only is it winding road, but in a lot of places, you're a couple of feet from a pretty long drop. Combine that with the daredevils who push at you from behind, and it was a tense trip in and out. Once I got back to I-25, I managed a couple more hours of straightaway (albeit up and down quite a bit), before pulling up in Pueblo. Tomorrow, I'll be turning right at Denver, and making an I-80 run to Iowa.

[On a somewhat different note, maybe this service exists and I just don't have the energy to track it down tonight. But I'm less than satisfied with the fact that neither Yahoo nor Mapquest allows someone to input multiple points on a trip. I can get maps for Tucumcari to Taos and Taos to Pueblo, but not Tucumcari to Pueblo with a side-trip. Does anyone out there know of a multi-point trip tracker?]


Microsoft RoadTrips thingie (horror) does a good job as a multi-point tracker.

What's this ... a cross-country janut? Solo? For mulitpe poitns you need a GPS device. Hope you're having fun out there.

If you have a AAA account, you can do that with their online TripTik. It lets you plug in various cities, and (I think) whether or not you want the scenic route or the highway.

And I swear, that email is coming. The pics are beautiful, by the way.