Author Topic: New Mexico - northwest region  (Read 9079 times)

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Offline bgphelps2

New Mexico - northwest region
« on: July 17, 2014, 10:58:14 pm »
This mid-Sept, I will be cycling, solo, self-contained the northwest region of NM. How do I get my Trek 520 and me to Chaco Park? Route 57 is 20 miles of dirt road which my Trek can't do.  Do I hitch a ride from Crownpoint or White Horse? If I can get me and my bike to the Park - all the better.  But that may be a flip of a coin. For you touring cyclists, how have you gotten everything there? Also, did you come in from the north on Route 550 to 7900  to 7950?  That looks extremely remote.  What type of tires and slime do you use for goat head protection?

Offline jamawani

Re: New Mexico - northwest region
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2014, 01:48:43 am »
I have toured Chaco Canyon as part of longer bicycle trips a couple of times.
I tour on a Trek 8000 - but you can do it on a Trek 520 with care.
(I took some insane two-tracks from the west on one trip.)

I'm not sure what your overall route is - -
But there are only two entrances to Chaco Canyon - north and south.
The highway from Cuba to Crownpoint is paved and quite good.
There are little stores at Torreon and Pueblo Pintado.
You can also get water at a number of Navajo chapter houses.
The road from the south is usually far better.
It may vary, but the north road usually has horrible washboards -
And you have to access the north road from a busy US 550.
Not to mention that the south road goes by stunning Fajada Butte.
The turnoff from IR 9 to the south road is at an abandoned trading post.
There is potable water and camping at Chaco.

Offline bgphelps2

Re: New Mexico - northwest region
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2014, 09:20:24 am »
The Chaco Park people and bike shops told me Route 57(one of the northern routes into the Park) is closed and to take 7900, then 7950 into the Park and that about 5 miles of it is dirt road. Route 57 from the south was dirt road.  Either way, my Trek 520 on 700x32 tires will have a difficult time. Unless I hear differently when I get to Nageezi on Route 550, I'll ride 7950 as far as my bike will get me and if and when it gets impossible, 'hitch' a ride into the Park.  Chaco is just part of my Northwest NM Loop. From Chaco, I want to get to Cuba and then Jemez Springs. Keep in mind that a Trek 8000 is an excellent Mtn bike.  A Trek 520 is not.  But you already know that. But you do know the type of dirt roads out there and that will be helpful to me. If you think my fully loaded touring bike can do those dirt roads, I'm game for it!  What's the 'best' way to get from Chaco Park to Cuba and then Jemez Springs and then down to Bernalillo.?  Do I backtrack my way out of Chaco the way I came in or is there a more direct way back to Route 550?  From Cuba, there's 13 mile dirt road before it hits paved Route 4 to Jemez Springs.  Is that road doable by my touring bike or not? This will all be happening from mid to end of Sept. I'm hoping my 40 degree bag plus extra thermalite underwear will suffice in the northwest NM nights.