My brother and I got it in our heads to go on a tour of the southwest, and see some of the cultural sites along the way. Given that I have recently acquired my 99 4runner and run it around the malls, I figured this was a golden opportunity to go out and enjoy the comforts of a relatively modern vehicle (as opposed to the uncomfortable cabin and loud roar of my 87).
We traveled 1800 miles, with about 200 in 4wd (only about 80 in low range), and about 250 total miles of dirt. Took 5.5 days.
Also, just a disclaimer, there were no wiffle ball bats on this trek. Simple camping was all we have, and for all but one night, we slept under the stars on sleeping pads and tent foot prints (one night we had to actually set up a tent due to hoards of mosquitos). Zero rock crawling was done. Just about the only wiffle ball bat I would consider is a fridge, but I can buy a lot of ice/dry ice for 800 bones. However, 100 degree heat really eats through the ice, even in a nice marine cooler.
So, on with the story:
We headed out of Bailey (where I picked up my Brother) and headed south on 285. As we were cruising, we decided to change plans, and, with the help of the smartphone, we contacted the Forest Service, checked road conditions, and headed over Engineer Pass instead of taking the highway, with a stop in Lake City for some delicious Sodas from the Soda Fountain:
Old Dam on the Lake City side:
This place is for sale. Only access is by bridge:
Top of the pass:
My ugly mug:
The Silverton Side:
We hit pavement again, and a short time later found a place to cook a quick meal before hitting the road again. My brother decided the fastest way to clear the propane hose was to light it. Fawesome.
We Fueled up in Durango, and headed across the border on the highway and into New Mexico. It was coming up on 11:30 as we pulled out of Aztec, NM, and started looking for a place to camp once we'd cleared the Rez.