Sept 26 Into the desert sand and mud

Leaving Cuba NM we entered georgous desert country – right out of the Road runner cartoons, We had a remote 80 km offroad stretch with Thundershowers in the forecast – but the sky looked fine so we headed out.  Of course the sky ended up darkening and the long vistas of the desert let you stare at the menacing rain clouds and lighting you are about to ride into.  We did get rained on some but luckily the storm cells were moving around and we didnt get too hammered, although the roads out the there turn into this super slick gooey red clay that is even hard to walk on let alone ride a bike.  Crawling along in first gear with legs thrust out as outriggers we inched along.  The bikes went down repeatedly and it would take the two of us to pick them up but we perservered and got through the section fine, but a lot longer than we thought.  Amazing that when the sun comes out the road dries up pretty quick and all is ok.  Back on the county road we got caught by a squawl and I swear it was the apoloclpyse we had to stop and could barely keep the bikes upright the wind blasted us, crazy rain and lighting all around.  Amazingly  it lasted only 10 minutes and was then sunny again, go figure.

That night we camped in Grants NM in an rv park alongside the interstate  and continued south towards the Malpais (Badlands – a huge area that was an old lava flow where we could do a hike and visit some lava tubes – long tunnels where the lava on the surface hardens but the hot stuff below continues to flow, creating long tunnels.  The roads were dry and the dirt was hard, hero riding, we were flying having a great day – until TK had a low speed fall, she is fine, but bent her shift lever.  I straightened it but bike would not shift and something felt properly buggered inside the gears. So we had to limp along to the next paved road – no cel reception anywhere.  I rode up ahead to get a signal to make our second call to AAA and couple hours later we were loaded up on the flatdeck and on our way to Albequerque, about 140 kms away, and wait till Today till motorcycle dealership opens.  We will likely be here for a couple days getting her bike fixed.  All motorcyle shops I have come across are closed Sunday and Monday, which drives me nuts. So today we take it in and hope it is not a bad fix, although one possibility is that we have to take the motor out and split the engine case to get at the internals.

On the flip side, my insurance runs out today.  Originally we had allowed one month to ride through the US and the CDT trail takes 2 weeks so I figured we had plenty of time but here we are.  ICBC says I have to buy a new 3-12 month policy but it will only be in effect if I ride again on BC roads during that time – which does not apply to us.  I could buy a 12month policy but refuse to pay $1500 for what will be no more than 2-3 days of insurance.  They say I need to find coverage here in New Mexico.  The insurance places in New Mexicio tell me I need to find a policy from BC – Catch 22.  We have 300 miles of interstate to get to Mexico but what I think what we will do is return to the trail where we left it and bad dog it done to Mexico via the back roads.