24 March 2007


In September of '06 I wrote about a town called Tinkertown [see link at right] on highway 14 in the east mountains. My friend Jon had come out from CA for a rodeo and I had heard about this place so decided to make the trip there. Amazing to say the least.

My friend Rudy came out later that year for the New Mexico State Fair and I made my second trip there and discovered that the Turquoise Trail [highway 14 ] continued on past Tinkertown. When my buddy Rudy came out this past week I thought now was a good time to...


The reason for returning was to find the town of Madrid...err...not Madrid as in Madrid, Spain but as the locals pronounce it MADrid. A new movie had opened the weekend before called WILD HOGS with Tim Allen, John Travolta, Martin Lawrence and William H Macy which takes place in MADrid.

The movie finds the four middle age buddies taking to the road on their motorcycles and trying to re-capture their youth 'on the road' only to end up offending a real biker gang that has been terrorizing the town of MADrid New Mexico. The film is basically a remake of City Slickers and pretty much contains every cliche in the book...but there are enough good jokes spread through out to make it interesting. Not to mention its local flavor. With that knowledge in hand, we took to the road ourselves.

I decided rather then take the long way around the Sandia Mountains to Hghway 14 I would drive up Interstate 25 and cut off at Route 22 just north of Albuquerque and cross over to 14. To my suprise once you take the exit off the freeway 22 becomes a dirt/gravel/broken asphalt shortcut ...'gulp'. The map I had did not note that and soon you are on 11 miles of rough road. So if you are plannng on going to MADrid from Albuquerque I would recommend taking I-40 east to Highway 14, unless you have a four wheeler then rough road is not a problem, especially in inclement weather.

Right off the bat MADrid reminded of a place I once visited called Jerome, CA. Both are abandoned mining towns that have now become mecca's for artists/crafts people and is the local point for biker gatherings. Jerome however is much more touristy. Not that MADrid isn't but the town has not been polished and cleaned up as much as Jerome. Jerome is pretty much a collection of buildings along one main road. MADrid has that but it also has original buildings down surrounding streets and up on hills. Where as Jerome feels like a movie set, MADrid feels like a LARRRRRGE movie set...hahaha...

...to be continued....

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