We began this day in Hobbs, New Mexico after an awesome Day 7 supercell to the east of Roswell. We were anticipating two full down days on Days 8 & 9, so we planned to head the scenic route northward to our next target by Thursday. This involved a trek through Albuquerque and up into southern Colorado on Day 9.
We knew this would take us really cool places, but I’m not really sure I anticipated what lay ahead on the trip. We left our awesome Holiday Inn Express (shout out to them, they’ve been clutch this trip), and headed towards Roswell. We stopped at an incredible burger place called Big D’s Downtown Dive for lunch, and I had one heck of a burger.
The pace gets two thumbs up in my opinion, as the food was great and the ambiance of the place was excellent. I loved the experience. Also: Roswell is pretty cool in general, but the alien thing is weird and totally embraced. I love that. The whole town is themed around aliens, which is pretty funny.
We then embarked for Albuquerque. To cut out the boring details, we eventually arrived there that afternoon. The area was so beautiful. It was surrounded by mountains, but the town basically sat in the floodplain of the Rio Grande. It was styled much like you would expect a southwestern town to be, with plenty of Adobe architecture present. We first went to check out some Breaking Bad sights. This was not really my thing, as I am not the biggest fan of the show. However, the mountains around town were beautiful.
Then began the crazy part of this day. We decided to take a tram to the top of Sandia Peak. For a bit of background, I am not a heights person. I cannot easily do them, and have always been like that. They freak me out, but I thought I would be perfectly fine on this thing. Nope. Not even close. I was terrified the whole 15 minutes up the mountain, and then when we got to the top, I felt physically terrible. I almost passed out a couple of times. I never, ever knew my fear of heights was so severe but it was almost debilitating to an extent. I couldn’t really walk around much because it just freaked me out to. Still, the views were pretty in retrospect.
We eventually made back down to the ground, and then capped off the night with what may have been my favorite meal of the trip. We ate at the Range Cafe, and I got New Mexico Mac and Cheese. It was absolutely fantastic, and we had great service. We ended up in Santa Fe for the night.