Friday, May 21st, 2010
Ciudad Mante, Tamaulipas to Real De Catorce, San Luis Potosi, Mexico
Now it’s on to Real Catorce. This is a semi ghost town at nearly 10,000 feet elevation. I’m basically seeking some cooler nights, but if there’s a ghost town thrown in as a bonus who am I to argue.
My map showed a paved side road which would take me to Metahual. 20 minutes in, it turns into a construction zone. 2.68km’s being paved said the sign. Well I can handle that. A detour is required to get around the construction. I somehow managed to mess it up and ended up in the yard of a poor squatter type family living in a hut with mud floors. “Que Vende?” asks the woman as I’m getting directions from the man (What are you selling?). I really have to leave a few things at home on my next trip! It turns out there are 50km’s of dirt road ahead of me. My rear tire is worn right down and I’m not about to do any more gravel until I get a new tire when back in the USA. So I went back and took the very fast highway to Metahual.
From there it’s only 56km’s to Real De Catorce. The riding was very easy today, all but the last 23km’s of the total of 400km’s today. When you turn off the main road to head to Real De Catorce, imagine a rough cobblestone street stretching for 23km’s to the town. It’s a hard surface road all right. I wouldn’t want to be riding it in the rain when the stones become slippery. Before heading into the village, we all had to stop and wait for oncoming traffic to clear from the one way 2km long tunnel which is the ony access to the town.
There are still people living in this town but the majority of the buildings are in ruins after the silver mines ceased operations. It’s now a tourist town and very quiet in what is now the off season. I apparently missed the peyote celebration in April. Peyote is a sacred substance to many natives in these parts and forms part of their lives and their spirituality.
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