Saturday, April 30, 2011


We are really sorry, Cairn, that we didn't listen to you. (Cairn is our GPS) We left Silver City this morning at 8 am, headed for Elephant Butte Lake State Park. We were out early to beat the high winds that were supposed to come up in the afternoon. When we put in our destination, Cairn said to go south on US 180, which would take us to Deming, then head to I-25 on NM 26. No, no, we said. It is a direct shot on NM 152, straight east. We really should have paid attention.

Hwy 152 is like the road we drove on the way to Gila Cliff Dwellings--lots of 10 mph hairpin curves, and even more 15 mph curves.

Look at this image on Cairn.

I thought it was a beautiful trip.

John was driving so he wasn't as impressed. He didn't see much other than the road and the steering wheel and the speedometer. In addition to the curves, we went from 6,000 ft to 8,200 ft, down, back up, and finally down to 4,100 ft.

When it leveled out some, we came to a sign that said narrow bridge. Then it said 12'6" bridge. Our RV is 12'9"--at least. The sign on the bridge itself said 12'8".

We pulled over to the side while we talked about what to do. We had spent over an hour driving at an average of 25 mph up and down hills, around sharp curves. Did we have to back up to a place we could turn around and drive back the same way? While we were thinking, a motorcycle rider stopped and said he thought we could make it if we stayed in the center of the road. Copper trucks drove this road. He said the 12'8" was at the sides of the road where the supports came down. God bless that biker.

We drove to the bridge and I got out and walked in front of the truck to watch and see if we would fit. (Obviously, we have done this before.) We had at least a foot of room above the front air conditioner. When we reached the second bridge, we drove on through without stopping for me to check it out.

Thank heavens, we made it to our destination. Don't ever take a 36' fifth wheel trailer that is 12'9" high on Hwy 152 in New Mexico!


  1. Wow! That must have been a scary time. Glad you made it. That made me decide to get an app for my iPhone that shows low clearance places.

  2. That does sound quite scary. I've been to roads where I would never go through again, in really mountainous areas, so I exactly know how you feel...Plus there is always dangerous driving people out there, so one can't be too careful. Thank heavens that your John is a safe driver. All the best on your future journeys - Max

  3. Boy, do I appreciate this! We didn't get the height experience but definitely the winding road:

    Phew! Glad you made it through okay.

  4. Thanks for commenting on our blog about this road. We were originally planning to go that way but changed our minds after doing some research about it. Glad we didn't!
    Looks like we've been following each other. We're at Caballo Lake SP but will probably move on to Elephant Butte (South Monticello) tomorrow. Maybe our paths will cross one of these days.

  5. For being a fearless man... this is one of my fears -lol- driving our rig and then getting stuck on a road where we can't turn around... or like you, driving a long way and then having to back track! Ugh, but I guess it's go be expected a SOME point when you full-time... glad you guys made it through!!