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Day 17: Las Cruces, NM to El Paso, TX

63 Miles - State Highway 549, Tailwind, Bowlin's Old West Trading Post, Las Cruces - February 25, 2017

Jay Hughes

New Mexico Cycling Socks

Riding With Jay Hughes

In the morning, Jay Hughes of Las Cruces met me while I was having breakfast at IHOP. We had corresponded online for some time and he was planning to ride with me.

Jay also gave me a gift: New Mexico socks with the famed Zia. I loved it and wore it frequently! :)

Jay and I riding on Highway 478 ...

Cycling in Las Cruces At the start, I was my typical self -- biking slow and kind of irritable. My Trek felt especially heavy and sluggish compared to Jay's speedier bike.

I felt bad over how I kept stopping to adjust this, adjust that, take this layer off, put these gloves on, etc. There's Jay waiting for me during one of my stops.

Pecan Farm We passed many pecan farms.
Anthony, New Mexico

Tamales For Sale

Tamale

Anthony, New Mexico

Eventually Jay and I got into a rhythm and we hit Anthony at 26 miles.

My plan was to head east on Road 404 over Anthony Gap and then turn south into Texas. Jay would bike back to his home in Las Cruces.

We did rest at the Anthony Country Store, and oh my gosh, the tamales they sell are amazing!

Definitely stop by if you're in the area ...

Anthony Gap Route

Anthony Gap, NM

Cycling Over Anthony Gap

Jay and I said good-bye and parted ways. If you're searching for a route over the Franklin Mountains without doing the arduous Highway 375, considering taking Highway 404 from Anthony to Chaparral. Cycling over Anthony Gap had everything -- a wide shoulder, less traffic, and less uphill. The scenery wasn't too shabby either.

Cycling Towards Anthony Gap ...

New Mexico Scenery As usual, the speed was wonderful on the other side. Here's one shot of the scenery as I moved swiftly.

The Texas State Line
Texas State Line in El Paso
The Franklin Mountains and beautiful desert at the Texas state line, north of El Paso.

Videos at the Texas State Line

It wasn't a shabby spot.

A nice start to being in Texas.

A Concerned Rancher On The New Mexico Border
Zachary Paige
Shawn and his dog. His ranch is in New Mexico, but part of his driveway is in Texas.

A funny thing happened at the New Mexico / Texas state line. I did my usual "not too shabby" video in robust fashion, and after shouting it, the owner of the ranch on the New Mexico side of the border hustled out to see if I was okay. Maybe he thought I was mentally ill or had killed somebody. I'll admit sometimes I shout my line with a lot of passion and craziness! :p

It turns out the man's name was Shawn. After I apologized for alarming him, I explained about all that I do on my YouTube channel. He took an interest in my trip and soon we were chatting away. He boasted about his 13-year-old daughter Paige who's the 8th ranked BMX racer in the country! Wow.

Next time, I learned my lesson. Don't shout "not too shabby" unless I'm sure no one else is in ear's distance. :)

El Paso, TX

El Paso, Texas

I biked through neighborhoods in El Paso.
Purple Heart Memorial Highway

I got to the Beltway, Highway 375, which is the Purple Heart Memorial Highway.

The riding was on the tougher side. The wind was a nasty crosswind that partially hit me from the front.

The airplane landing was noteworthy. :)

Buena Vista CO Bumper Sticker

I reached the junction of Highway 375 and Montana Avenue (Highway 62 & 180) on the east side of El Paso. That would be a perfect spot to launch out of the city.

I stopped at the one motel in the area but it was booked. So I paid an Uber to take me west into the heart of El Paso to stay at another motel. After checking in and searching for my room in the parking lot, I noticed a Buena Vista, Colorado bumper sticker. Considering I lived there for 8.5 years and there's only a year-round population of 2500 people, I had to say "hello." Her name was Cathy and got a picture with her. :)

Arby's Shake There was an Arby's across the street. I stuffed my face and ended my meal with this mint chocolate swirl shake.

The glittery Arby's sign was pretty...

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