Photos from My Tombstone Ride

1/21/06

I decided to take advantage of the nice weather we've been experiencing and ride to Tombstone for Yogi's birthday gathering. I attended a previous one back in 2004 and really enjoy the tour through Bisbee and other points in southern Arizona and New Mexico. I've also been trying to learn some Spanish for my South American tour, so I decided to make a detour through Mexico on my way to Tombstone.

I left here Friday around noon and hustled out to Fort Hancock, Tx for the night. I received my wake-up call at 4:30 the next morning so I could ease out to Columbus, NM, then south into Mexico. Going through El Paso I noticed the temps were around 32 degrees. I had the electrics turned on and it felt fine going through the city. I was surprised to find out that the temps got even cooler on the west side of the city going out across the desert. In fact, I left them on high till I was half-way through Mexico. At Columbus I went south to Las Palomas and found me a restaurante for breakfast. I had just learned how to order scrambled eggs earlier in the week and I needed to test the water. The only restaurant that was open was totally empty. I went in and said cuatro huevos revueltos, no pan, no carne, no papas, no chorizo, no nada. He said, tortillas, and I said, ok tortillas. He brought out 4 scrambled eggs with a couple of tortillas, so I guess we communicated. It was fun.

I didn't get any paperwork to transit Mexico, but I didn't feel I needed to since I was just going to be there for a couple of hours. Sure enough everything worked out. However, I wasn't sure until I got back into the United States safely, maybe I was just lucky. I had asked several people earlier if there were any Military checkpoints or anything else I should worry about. Everyone replied, no problema. Well, I was just barely in Mexico at the second town when I come up on a Military checkpoint, exactly what I wasn't wanting to do. They didn't even stop me, just flagged me on by. However, the next two checkpoints searched my bags a little more thoroughly. It might not be so bad if they weren't carrying machine guns. The first town of any size that I came to was Janos and they have a Mennonite farming community just out of town. You just don't expect that in Mexico?

Anyway, I eased on through the altering terrain of the rough country to Aqua Prieta where I would exit the country only to have to make one more inspection, this one is for fruit supposedly. I made three Military and one fruit checkpoints while crossing 200 miles of Mexico in a little less than four hours, interesting. I was also very surprised at the long lines to exit the country. I would have continued to Naco instead if I would have known. I have exited at Naco before and it can be very simple. Regardless, I was soon through the line and back on American soil.

I rushed on up to Tombstone to meet Yogi and his friends just in time for lunch. I met Kent Ailes and his friend in the parking lot. Kent had purchased a new Triump Tiger apparently because it still had the dealer tags on it. Kent has a tendency to accumulate a few bikes. After taking a couple of photos, I went in and said "hey" to Yogi then grabbed a seat along with Jeff, Dal, and Bev from the phoenix area. I had a quick lunch and was on my way.

I was planning on cutting across to Alamgordo, NM on the way back, and when I got to Las Cruces it was still daylight and I wanted to cover more ground for the day. I decided to stay on I-10 and ride back to Van Horn for the night. It was safer for me to stay on the interstate during the night hours. I departed Van Horn at 5:30 am on Sunday morning and it was 19 degrees. I was a little surprised that it was that cold. The forecast said it would only be 28. Regardless, off we go, I've got to get home. The temps weren't bothering me until I got back to Abilene where it started raining. Even though it was up to 38 degrees it felt much colder than the 19. I'd much rather travel when it's dry. It continued to rain all the way home. It was forecasted to be 58 at home, but was only 44 when I arrived. As I learned from my flying experience, weather is always subject to change.

Anyway, I had a great time and got to practice my spanish and become more familar with some customs in Mexico. Nothing replaces practical experience, you just have to get out there and do it.

 

 

Breakfast in Las Palomas, Chihuahua, MX

The same quaint cafe

Downtown Las Palomas
Notice the Mennonite Carriage?
Pemex fuel (large trucks too)
Downtown Janos, Mexico. The sign is taking you to Casas Grandes
Following big trucks through mountainous terrain

Everybody had to make a living in Mexico

(The wheelchair guy is selling goods in the middle of the street)

The long lines to exit Aqua Prieta. A good reason to enter/exit through smaller towns
Kent Ailes on the right and his traveling partner on the left
Downtown Tombstone, notice the six-shooter
They've changed their streets back from asphalt back to something more natural for the old west.
Click here to download a video of the dining room. It was a large group and there was plenty of chatting going on.