We awoke to bright blue skies and crisp air, which quickly became hot. Coffee-less, we drove in vain for 3 hours and literally saw nothing. No life. Nada. We finally arrived in Santa Fe and went straight to Dunkin’ Donuts for that coffee - and free wifi. Put off by what we’d seen of the city and prices of accommodation, we left town pretty quickly to get to Angel Fire (our next mountain bike destination).
We found a quirky hotel just outside Angel Fire and, after a quick freshen up, found ourselves in an authentic saloon, circa 1880s. As the only patrons, we spent the evening drinking beer and chatting to the bartender before discovering what a “chicken fry steak” actually was. After a cosy, restful sleep we were feeling optimistic and headed straight to Angel Fire for some mountain biking. The rapid transformation of the landscape as we ascended the mountain was incredible, and beautiful. Fall truly is a spectacular season!
On the chairlift we met a robust 69 year old who insisted on giving is a guided tour of all the trails. It turned out he was the record holder of the most vertical feet descended in North America (after only 4 years of mountain biking!). He eventually left to our own devices for our third run, and we were about to complete our fourth when a storm front came through and the mountain was closed down. The biking vibe soon left us (and lack of fitness caught up with us) and we left to find a camp for the night. We ended up in a very bizarre RV park, where upon arrival we were invited to a group singalong/bbq with an interesting assortment of characters. Despite our skepticism and the discovery that Sean had lost his jeans, belt and our gas lighter, we survived the night and even heard our first coyote calls.