Goodbye, New Mexico... Hello, TexasWestward Ho, Day 49: Santa Fe, NM, to Amarillo, TX
Apparently the world did not end yesterday, as some thought the ancient Mayan calendar predicted, for we woke this morning to clear skies and 15° in Santa Fe. Three things were on our agenda for today: moving across New Mexico toward Texas, hiding a letterbox in New Mexico, and finding a few boxes.
When we planned our route, seeking a hospitable place to leave our NM treasure, the best option we saw on the map was north on I-25 to the town of Ribera, and then south on New Mexico Highway 3 to Villanueva State Park. The park turned out to be an ideal home for our letterbox. Along the banks of the Pecos River, the park sits at the base of 400-ft sandstone cliffs. Rocky trails climb the canyon walls, and now one of the trails hosts a letterbox from Georgia.
|Pecos River at Villanueva State Park|
After planting our letterbox in the state park, we continued south on NM-3 until we reached I-40, the highway-come-lately that replaced the legendary Route 66 in much of Texas, New Mexico and Arizona in the 1960s. Originally opened in 1926, Route 66, also known as the 'Mother Road,' ran 2,500 miles from Chicago to Los Angeles and, in its heyday, was the most famous highway in America.
|Santa Rosa, NM|
|Another nostalgic Santa Rosa, NM, business|
Fortunately for us, these old Route 66 landmarks also attract letterboxers wistful for a trip down memory lane, so we found numerous boxes near these vintage sites today. At the end of the day, we changed our plans to stay in a little New Mexican town near the border and pushed on into Amarillo, happy that the setting sun was no longer in our windshield.
|SUNSET IN MIRROR IS PRETTIER THAN IT APPEARS.|