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Old 06-18-2021, 10:32 AM   #1
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Taos to Chama NM

Has anyone travelled from Taos NM to Chama NM?

There are basically 2 routes...64/84 which could be dicey pulling a trailer. Or the 64/285/17 truck route.

Wondering...not that much difference in travel time and that is not the concern. Main concern is the white knuckle factor.

Heading that way July 1st.

Thanks,
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Old 06-18-2021, 11:04 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by islandtrader View Post
Has anyone travelled from Taos NM to Chama NM?

There are basically 2 routes...64/84 which could be dicey pulling a trailer. Or the 64/285/17 truck route.

Wondering...not that much difference in travel time and that is not the concern. Main concern is the white knuckle factor.

Heading that way July 1st.

Thanks,

Drove my 1979 Classic 30' Motorhome and pulled my 30' trailer several times taking the most beautiful Hwy 84 route. Not a white knuckle in my book, just have to stay of the brakes going down into Chama.
The 285 route is a scenic wonderland much different to the 84 route, which includes echo canyon.
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Old 06-18-2021, 01:21 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by islandtrader View Post
Has anyone travelled from Taos NM to Chama NM?

There are basically 2 routes...64/84 which could be dicey pulling a trailer. Or the 64/285/17 truck route.

Wondering...not that much difference in travel time and that is not the concern. Main concern is the white knuckle factor.

Heading that way July 1st.

Thanks,
It's a beautiful route and despite what you may think you see on the map, it's not very challenging. Go for it.
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Old 06-19-2021, 08:18 AM   #4
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Thanks everyone.
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Old 06-19-2021, 08:40 AM   #5
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And if you want to spend the night up there and do some fishing, Hopewell Lake has a decent campground in the high-mountain cool.

https://goo.gl/maps/tGvj2MHnVtwu6jgi9

Oh, and do not just use your brakes for the way down. Downshift. Use your brakes only occasionally. Just as you'd do on the downslope of any pass in the west.


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Old 06-19-2021, 09:32 AM   #6
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Taos to Chama

We used to live in Pagosa Springs and went through Chama many times. Our memory of a few times from Taos or the pass above Chama (17) suggests that both mountain passes are not white knuckle routes. Another interpretation depending on mountain pass drives is that these are roughly equivalent. Perhaps the 17 route is a somewhat gentler descent.
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Old 06-19-2021, 10:00 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by islandtrader View Post
Has anyone travelled from Taos NM to Chama NM?

There are basically 2 routes...64/84 which could be dicey pulling a trailer. Or the 64/285/17 truck route.

Wondering...not that much difference in travel time and that is not the concern. Main concern is the white knuckle factor.

Heading that way July 1st.

Thanks,
I live in Taos and make annual journeys to Lake Powell over the 64/84 route with my 25 foot airstream. I do not think it is white knuckle at all. It is a beautiful drive, especially in early October when the Aspen's are changing. If you take the other route, consider traveling some back roads thru El Rito. Beautiful and off the beaten path. Just pulled the Airstream thru that route about a week ago on visit to Abiquiu Lake. Also, there is a nice state park campground at El Vato Lake near Chama if looking for a place to camp. The lake is low, but still scenic.

Bill
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Old 06-20-2021, 09:37 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by islandtrader View Post
Has anyone travelled from Taos NM to Chama NM?

There are basically 2 routes...64/84 which could be dicey pulling a trailer. Or the 64/285/17 truck route.

Wondering...not that much difference in travel time and that is not the concern. Main concern is the white knuckle factor.

Heading that way July 1st.

Thanks,
All information is great...we are on an extended road trip...heading towards 4 corners,any other camping or must see would be appreciated.
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Old 06-20-2021, 10:38 AM   #9
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All information is great...we are on an extended road trip...heading towards 4 corners,any other camping or must see would be appreciated.
If you're in the Four Corners area, you're not too far from some of the most beautiful landscape in the country. North of Durango is The Million Dollar Highway (US 550), which runs for 25 miles between Silverton and Ouray. But be considerable to the other folks on the road and leave the trailer parked somewhere before you head out on this wonderful journey!

Last summer, we were feeling rather adventurous so we rented an off-road capable Jeep in Durango and took the long way between Silverton and Ouray. The Alpine Loop gives a full day of Amazing views and lots of off-road fun, as long as you're not in a hurry. The round trip took us 8 hours, if I remember correctly.
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Old 06-22-2021, 09:37 AM   #10
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And if you want to spend the night up there and do some fishing, Hopewell Lake has a decent campground in the high-mountain cool.

https://goo.gl/maps/tGvj2MHnVtwu6jgi9

Oh, and do not just use your brakes for the way down. Downshift. Use your brakes only occasionally. Just as you'd do on the downslope of any pass in the west.


Lynn
The break thing...I noticed on my 2021 Ram with the tow package, on descending a steep incline when I tap the break it automatically downshifts. If I tap it again it will down shift again. I never noticed that with my other vehicles. I guess this is because of all the shift by wire,and that you really don’t have a gear selector. Just PRND. You do have a gear limit button. Not the same as a paddle shifter.
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Old 06-24-2021, 06:38 AM   #11
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NM 4 from Los Almosa NM to Valles Caldera

This is the White Knuckle drive! I ascended the road up but didn’t take it down. Uncountable number of slow tight turns. NM 4 to Pueblo Jemez has long steep grades. Used the trailer disc brakes as an “ anchor”. When replacing axles install disc brakes. You’ll be glad you did. Have had 2 Airstsream with drum brakes. The difference is incredible.
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Old 07-04-2021, 09:43 AM   #12
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Quote:
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I live in Taos and make annual journeys to Lake Powell over the 64/84 route with my 25 foot airstream. I do not think it is white knuckle at all. It is a beautiful drive, especially in early October when the Aspen's are changing. If you take the other route, consider traveling some back roads thru El Rito. Beautiful and off the beaten path. Just pulled the Airstream thru that route about a week ago on visit to Abiquiu Lake. Also, there is a nice state park campground at El Vato Lake near Chama if looking for a place to camp. The lake is low, but still scenic.

Bill
Made the trip on 64/84 on Thursday. Beautiful drive and I agree not a white knuckler. Light traffic so I could drive at my own pace. If I had 2 cars behind me I just pulled over at the first opportunity and let them pass. They all waved and went happily on their way.
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