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6-17-09 004_edited-1-2
Antelope & the Almost Ghost Town


4/6/10, Yeso, NM - This was a very nice and eventful day.  After one of Laverne’s great breakfasts, I said goodbye to the Gideons, and hit the road. Before leaving town, I stopped at the gas station and picked up a few things, including some more generator gas.  Not long after exiting the town, I crossed the Pecos river and started the long climb out of the valley.  I had Bob and Doc hitched, and they did a good job pulling the hills. 

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My fantastic hosts for the past day and a half, Jerry and Laverne Gideon

To give them a break, I stopped a little early for lunch at a wide spot that was set aside for road maintenance crews.  I spent most of lunch with a fellow Adventurer, that just happened to be driving by and wanted a lunch break.  Mike is on his way back to the east coast, after zooming around the US and Canada on a old Honda motorcycle that was given to him.  In the past, Mike has sailed in South Africa, Trekked in Brazil and hitchhiked in Mexico.  I had the pleasure of drinking a couple of beers with him, and swapping tales for about an hour. He’s a really great guy!

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Crossing the Pecos.  With much of the water diverted for irrigation, it’s not quite the mighty river of ‘Pecos Bill’ lore.

The ranches in this part of New Mexico are fairly large, with ranch houses spaced a few miles apart.  The land is more arid requires more acreage, per head of beef.

Not long after lunch, I passed a couple of herds of Pronghorn Antelope, fairly close to the road.  The ewes were quite heavy, and looked like they were about ready to lamb. Unlike most game I encounter, they had no fear of the clanky old wagon and horses, and paid us little mind.

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This was a nice spot for lunch, because I could turn the wagon and use it to provide a windbreak for the horses.

It was a windy day of travel, but not really unbearable. The wind speed averaged 25 to 30 mph, with gusts of about 40 mph.  Usually the wind sets with the sun, but I think there is a front passing through, and if anything, the wind has increased since sundown. Before bed, I’m going to pull the team out of their playpen and tie them to the wagon for the night (just in case).

Tonight I’m in the once thriving town of Yeso. At one time this was a train stop and a good sized community.  Now, the freight trains just pass through.  From a population of two or three hundred, there are now just three occupied houses.  However, there are a whole bunch of abandoned adobe houses and several abandoned businesses.

Just minutes before I reached town, the Gideons showed up and smoothed the way for me. They talked to the whole town, which was all in one house visiting, and arranged for me to stay next to one of the houses.

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Mike, an Adventurer that shuns society’s idea of a normal life and does is own thing. His trusty bike in the background.

Tonight, the team and I are comfortably bedded down, with both power and water. I cooked up a couple of the fillets, and Clem and I dined in style.  Tomorrow, we should get about halfway to the town of Vaugn.

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The first herd of Pronghorns that I passed.  A close, but somehow distant cousin of the elusive Jack-a-lope.  This herd was right next to the road and paid no attention at all to us.

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A mile down the road, the second herd started out about 50 yards from the road, then, as we moved closer, wandered back about another 50 yards.

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Ghost Town Team!

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Clementine speaking - “’Ol Bobby-Boy and I enjoying our feast of fillet mignon.  I wonder what the non-wagon doggies are eating tonight?”

Post Script - The winds just started gusting higher, so I took a break from writing and tied the horses to the wagon.