Mayhill, NM
Mayhill Hotel in Mayhill, NM

I got an email today from a good friend that lives nowhere near me. He had sent the email to two of us from a common WordPress community who are both located here in New Mexico. Apparently, some of his relatives where in the state and traveling south from Santa Fe to Mayhill for the weekend and he wanted to know if we were familiar with the area.

Of course, I HAD to respond as Mayhill is a usual stopping place during our weekend rides. See the building at the end of the picture on the far right side? That is a little general store where we stop to rest. The exterior windows are covered, no wait… plastered in “questionable” political jokes. Very funny to read them all.

I asked him if he wanted directions for the scenic route to Mayhill from the north?… I could send him one of our many favorite motorcycle ride loops on that side of where we live.

Lincoln, NM
Billy the kid’s Last Escape from Lincoln, NM

I told him if they have time for a stop, that going through Lincoln is very cool. Lots of Billy the Kid history and about a half day, to a day, of town museums to tour.

Then in that same general direction is Ruidoso. Downtown on Sudderth Blvd. is a Mountain Resort style street. The street is lined with window shopping and endless sidewalks for walking.

Another fun place to visit and the closest to Mayhill is Cloudcroft. This time of year there is almost always some kind of street celebration just off the main drag (which in terms of being “main” does not mean much here in NM). Again, and like Ruidoso, the Cloudcroft street has unique little shops that are fun to wander through. If they do get to Cloudcroft, then they might as well head down the mountain toward High Rolls.

Be sure to stop at the old trellis and vista point on your way down the mountain. You can see the White Sands in the distant valley. Although the valley seems distant from the Vista, in reality, it is really only 20 minutes down the mountain and 14 miles in the valley to reach the White Sands National Monument Park – a worthy ride and a great place to stop and eat a picnic lunch.

Cherries in High Rolls New Mexico
Photo by Audra Crispin

It is cherry picking season in High Rolls too and they could go to an orchard to pick their own bucket of fresh delicious cherries. Visiting the Apple Barn for a yummy caramel apple and picking up a knick knack or New Mexico souvenir may also be in order.

Then, as you come back into Cloudcroft, turn right to return to Mayhill “the back way”. It’s a BEAUTIFUL drive. (A side detour to the SunSpot observatory would only be another hour there and back.) Take note of the blue planet signs along the road that are spaced appropriately relative to their distance from the sun – the sun being Sunspot).

No Scum Allowed Saloon in White Oaks, NM
No Scum Allowed Saloon in White Oaks, NM

I am beginning to think they should have planned a longer stay in the area because there is a lot more to tell them about. I forgot to mention White Oaks (more Billy the Kid stomping grounds that in reality has not probably changed much since he was there) and The Ring of Fire walk near Carrizozo with desert vistas and views of an ancient volcanic lava flow.

At the same time, I have come to understand that my friend’s father (one of the relatives that will be here) might just be the gallivanting type so he may be likely to see the signs and head on over to the sites anyway.

On the other hand, this could also be an opportunity for me to just talk the hubby into a little ride out to Mayhill this weekend. We could stop in at the hotel, drop off a mysterious note with directions (like an old-fashioned treasure map), address it to my friend’s dad and leave him with an amazing story to tell his friends about his southern New Mexico adventure!


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