Albuquerque – Quarai Ruins – Mountianair – Abo Ruins – Los Lunas – Albuquerque
October 28, 2011
Ride to Quarai and Abo ruins – follow NM 333 to NM 337 then right/south to NM 55 then right/south – look for the Quarai ruins turn off about 16 miles down NM 55, then back onto NM 55 to Mountainair, right on US 60 for 8 miles to the Abo ruin turn off on the right- back on US 60 to NM 47 to Los Lunas – Right on NM 6, then right on NM 314
Ride was 145 miles with lunch in Mountainair
I found this ride posted with Let’s Ride New Mexico, it was scheduled for Friday–a work day. Billy posted and was leading the ride, I’d seen several of his posts and was looking forward to riding with him. Billy only rides during the week. I got up early, finished my work and rode over to catch the ride.
The meet up point was Einstein Bagels, it’s located right at the beginning of NM 333. This makes it a perfect meeting spot for rides going east.
Seven bikes and riders made it out for this Friday ride to Mountainair and back. The ride started on time at 9:30, it was cool when we started, but not as cold as I expected. There was almost no traffic on NM 337, providing an opportunity to run the twists and turns, one bike broke out and took advantage of the light traffic.
The group made a brief stop at NM 55, then covered the 16 miles to the Quarai Ruins.
The Quarai ruins of the Salinas Pueblo Missions National Monument, was once home to over 300 people.
It’s main feature was a huge sandstone church. More than 300 years ago it was the center of trade between the Native Americans and the Europeans. It was abandoned in 1677.
At the Quarai Ruins I walked the loop trail through the monument and back to the main building. The mid morning light really made the ruins look beautiful. Some of the trees still had their leaves adding bright color to the scenery.
One of the other riders, Gary, walked the trail with me and he commented on how this area was “a delightful oasis”, I have to agree.
We then made our way to Mountainair and the “Alpine Alley” for our lunch.
The Alpine Alley is a comfortable and easy place to eat. The staff go’s out of their way to make you feel like you belong. I find the food to be OK (It’s like a deli), but the people are so nice it’s many riders favorite stop in Mountainair.
After lunch, two people from the group headed back the way we came, the rest of us took US 60 for about 9 miles to Abo ruins.
At Abo there are the ruins of a large chruch and monastery built around 1629. The mission and village had a population of over 2000 and was abandoned because of Apache raids.
After walking the ruins, we got back on US 60 and rode to NM 47. Once you cross the train tracks, NM 47 is a empty straight flat road for about 10 miles, great for opening up.
At NM 6 we rode over to NM 314, it runs near the Rio Grande, providing us lots of views of the changing colors. Where the Interstate crosses NM 314 the group broke up. Most caught the interstate to head home. I stayed riding the valley, taking the slower rural route back.
It was a fantastic ride, the weather was perfect and I really enjoyed this group of riders. It was a wonderful way to spend a Friday. I really want to thank Billy for setting up the ride and giving me very nice day.