About Me

Tired of the mundane and craving an adventure, on Saturday, May 22nd, 2010, I embarked on the ultimate American road trip through all fifty states. After nearly a year and a half on the road, on a budget of less than 50 bucks a day, this is my story...

New Mexico Chapter 8: "Tucumcari Tonight"

A Tribute to Route 66 in Tucumcari
 Saturday, ‎August ‎6th
Today I left Carlsbad Caverns around 3pm, taking Highway 285 North up 230 miles to Santa Rosa, where I took a dip in Blue Hole, a remarkably clear, 80-foot-deep artesian spring fed from an underwater aquifer, with 3,000 gallons of water flowing per minute.  It was only an hour drive from Santa Rosa to Tucumcari (pronounced TOO-kum-kair-ee), a classic Route 66 town, and "unofficial 'Mural City' of Route 66, because of the over 30 life-size and bigger than life-size murals throughout the city, thanks to the work of local artists Doug and Sharon Quarles.  A large number of the vintage motels and restaurants built in the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s are still in business despite intense competition from newer chain motels and restaurants in the vicinity of Interstate 40, which passes through the city's outskirts on the south."

One of Many Murals in Tucumcari

I spent the night at Empty Saddle RV Park on Route 66, where for only FIVE DOLLARS I was able to dry-camp.  Only five bucks!!!  The new owner was really friendly and conversational, and there was plenty of space, too.

Sunday, ‎August ‎7th
This morning I awoke to some grunting noises, opened my eyes, and saw an older guy next to my tent, apparently walking his dog.  He walked past my tent a second time on the way back to his RV, and I was really creeped out.  Last night the owner warned me about this guy being a bit of a horny, old trucker.  Why would he walk his dog past my tent of all places?  I had purposely pitched my tent on the edge of the property to avoid him!  Was he watching me sleep?  YUCK.

One of Many Murals in Tucumcari

I packed up and had a shake for breakfast (yep!) at Kix on 66, a modest diner with a surprising selection of shake flavors, of which I chose to mix coconut and raspberry, for a winning combination (if I do say so myself) I would highly recommend!

I spent the rest of the morning discovering mural after mural, painted on the walls of old gasoline stations, restaurants and businesses throughout town.  The Chamber of Commerce was closed, but luckily it had a map of mural locations - painted on the side of the building as a mural unto itself!


  1. Hey Matthew! It seems like an eternity since we met in Yosemite in late May. I've really enjoyed catching up on your adventure since I last checked in. Wow, you really are living an amazing life. Enjoy every bit of it. I'm just happy to have been a small part of your adventure.
    Take care of yourself and keep posting. :)

  2. Hey Rob, time sure flies! I'm really glad someone's reading my blog :) Thanks to you, I had a place to stay in Yosemite (and delicious meals) - thanks again! Say hello to California for me :)


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