Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Highway 104, New Mexico: The Cliffhanger

Highway 104 between Las Vegas and Tucumcari, New Mexico. 2007.

I've been down this road before - Highway 104 between Las Vegas and Tucumcari.

Surprised me the first time in 2007 and again the second time, August 2013.

From Las Vegas, you're tooling along a flat, not-unpleasant track, then bang, there it is, one of those vast scenic New Mexican panoramas.

Highway 104 between Las Vegas and Tucumcari, New Mexico. 2013.

A 1985 story about this road, by Jon Mark: New Mexico Highway 104: 110 Lovely, Lonely Miles. An excerpt:
Heading west from Conchas, the landscape is virtually unmarked by man's presence. You'll find traffic so light that only one car every 20 or 30 minutes may pass a given spot. This part of New Mexico is a high, vast, rocky, sagebrush-covered plain at the foot of the Rockies' eastern slope. Here, Highway 104, a shoulderless two-lane strip of asphalt, traverses hills and red rock mesas.

The land rolls up and down. A car rides the slopes as a ship rides the waves in the sea. The sea changes constantly as the sun moves in the sky and the car moves on the ground.

Here's a 2012 paean to Highway 104 from Ramblings From a Road-a-Holic: New Mexico 104: A Delightful Excursion.

And another 2012 entry: Of New Mexico 104, Josh Beckett and Six-Game Lead.

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