Explore the New Mexico Section of the TransAmerica Trail on a Motorcycle

Exploring TransAmerica Trail on a Motorcycle

The TransAmerica Trail (TAT) is a network of interconnected small backcountry roads of dirt and gravel that traverses the United States from coast to coast. An amazing riding experience, it is a rider’s dream to cross the country on the TAT. However, if you don’t have the time to travel from coast to coast, you can always take a day to explore the New Mexico section of the TransAmerica Trail. 

The TAT is the brainchild of Sam Correro, who wanted to find a route across the country that relied only on unimproved backcountry roads. Since his first attempt in the 1980s, the TAT has expanded and added alternative routes. As a result, the trail stretches nearly 6,000 miles from Oregon or Los Angeles to North Carolina or New York—from sea to shining sea. 

With the availability of GPS, riding the TAT has become far more accessible and pleasurable. However, safety remains paramount, especially when traversing the gravel and dirt roads that comprise the TAT. Always know your route before you ride, and carry supplies with you.

The New Mexico Section of the TransAmerica Trail

The New Mexico section of the TransAmerica Trail is a short section of only 72 miles from the Oklahoma border. From Boise City, OK, take 325 west, then turn left on NS-12, then right on EW-21 heading west. At the state line, turn right on NS-1.

Go north on NS-1 Rd (which runs along the state line), then shortly, turn left (heading west) on 410/18. You’re now in New Mexico. Continue on this road until it meets 406, then turn left onto 406 (west).

The next turn will be right onto Atencio Road (B053), which you’ll follow until you make a right on B054, heading due north until it turns northwest after intersecting with and becoming B044.

Continue on B044 for a long way until you reach an intersection with Lake Highway (370), where you’ll turn right. This road goes west and then takes a sharp north and meanders until you reach an intersection, where you’ll turn left on 456.

Continue on 456 until reaching B036, which is mile marker 56.77, where you’ll take a right (Long Canyon Rd.). Along this route, you’ll encounter many switchbacks until you cross over the Colorado Line, where the road name changes to Hwy 4, which will lead you to Branson, Colorado.

The road conditions in this section of the TAT are either dirt or compacted gravel roads. If it is dry, be prepared for a lot of dust. If it is wet, you may find yourself fighting through the mud. In either case, the ride is worth it as you traverse the foothills of the Colorado Rockies. You will ride over rolling hills and deep valleys, crisscrossing the terrain toward Colorado. 

Branson, Colorado

Branson is a cool town with a rich dryland farming and ranching history. The city grew steadily after its founding in 1918. However, the drought and dust bowl of the 1930s stunted its growth as the population dwindled. Branson sits between a break in the mesas separating Colorado and New Mexico and serves as a small portion of the Santa Fe Trail. 

However, Branson is tiny, with a population of 77. If you’re looking for a shower, a meal, and a bed, head 50 miles northwest to Trinidad, Colorado.   

Law Tigers Motorcycle Lawyers

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