Woke up late by local time, even later if you consider the rest of the trip is on Eastern Time. Alanya made breakfast, which was tasty, and time passed quickly. After a very relaxed/ing morning, I eventually I got my act together and got on the road around 1230h local. Crazy hot day and poor route planning eventually convinced me to detour over I-40 to get away from city traffic. After lunch, had a nice ride until I caught up to a couple of Harleys running 15-20 under through the nice twisty bit of US70, and using a lane and a half to do it, so it took a long while before I had sight lines to pass. Stopped for gas and some wake-up juice, burned about an hour just cooling down.
Back on the road, after about 15 miles the road started getting nice and twisty just as the shadows started getting deeper, and a couple of deer sightings convinced me it was time to find a room for the night and save the mountains for morning. The closest places the GPS knew about were my destination and a half-dozen motels I’d passed leaving the gas station, so I turned back. Found a suitable motel, cheap. Clean, but not fancy. They still have mechanical locks! I can’t even think of the last time I had a real key for a hotel room.
A quick half hour of riding tomorrow will get me to the really fun stuff.
Tomorrow: Deals Gap, Cherohala Skyway, other mountain roads.