Carrizozo, NM to Socorro, NM
This morning started off with an amazing detour at the Valley of Fire just outside of Carrizozo. The Valley of Fire is a huge valley filled with hardened lave from a volcanic eruption that happened many years ago. It was an amazing site, especially because we got there just as the sun was rising above the mountains in the east.
The ride, like yesterday, was absolutely beautiful. About 5 miles before lunch, we started a descent that lasted almost 35 miles! It was breathtaking most of the time.
The whole thing wasn't all downhill, but the uphills weren't bad at all and the general trend was down--it was amazing! I rode with Jeff, Matt, and Daniel and we made great time while also stopping to take pictures and explore a little. The shoulder was good so we could ride two abreast and chat during our ride. While on a flat, we passed the site of the first atomic bomb explosion.
I can see why they chose New Mexico, there is nothing much going on out here. I can't repeat it enough how amazing the downhills were today. The climb up was hard and tiring, but knowing that the downhill was going to be gorgeous made it all worth it. The views after cresting the top of the hill was always amazing.
A bunch of people have started asking people to prom today, so being ahead of the pack we got a few requests to write chalk for people so they could ask people to prom that were ahead of them. It was fun and made me even more excited for prom! We chalked at the top of one hill and had some fun taking jumping pictures!
So far New Mexico has completely surprised me in how beautiful it is. I was not expecting to fall in love with New Mexico but I have. There is so much more to this state than just desert and cacti. I'm sad we're blowing through it in four days! Tonight 3 out of the 5 chore groups gave their presentations on the affordable housing organization they researched for the trip. It was really cool to learn about the different organizations out there and how specific they are to the region they work in. After that I took a sleeping pill and passed out at 9:15pm and woke up just a little bit before our 4:30am wake up. It was wonderful.