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Posts Tagged ‘San Juan Range’

Through the window of my RV, which was parked about 10 miles south of Durango, Colo., I had a magnificent view of the Rocky Mountains' San Juan Range. -- Photo by Pat Bean

Be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O’Shea, you’re off to Great Places. Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So … get on your way.” — Dr. Seuss

 

Day 17

It was with eagerness that I finally said good-bye to the dreaded Interstate 40, which I would never have driven except for Mother Nature’s tantrums. Not knowing when I would have to stop because of her semi-toppling winds, I wisely, if sorrowfully, chose to avoid my usual backroad routes where RV parks were few and far between.

But today I left Albuquerque, New Mexico, and its gentle Sandia Mountains behind me as I traveled down Highway 550 toward Durango, Colorado — and the more rugged Rockies. These are the mountains that stir my soul to exhilaration.

 Highway 550 is a easy-going four-lane, lightly traveled road that passes through the Santa Ana, Jemez, Zia, Jicarilla Apache, and Southern Ute Indian reservations. It took me from Albuquerque’s 5,314 feet to above 7,300 feet, and across the Continental Divide a couple of times. Sagebrush, juniper and oil wells dotted the landscape. If not for the shape of the landscape, steep hills and high mesas, it would have echoed my drive through West Texas.

I stopped for the night about 10 miles south of Durango, and drooled for awhile out my RV window at my first impressive sight of the Rockies. Corny as it may sound, tears come to my eyes every time I meet them again after an absence.

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