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Side Route, Gallup to Albuquerque

Statesboro, ga
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Side Route, Gallup to Albuquerque

Been to New Mexico numerous times and absolutely love the state! Most of my time there has been in the Albuquerque area but this trip will be a little different and I want to add even more difference to it.

Wife and I will be driving from Flagstaff, spending a Tuesday night in Gallup. I have always wanted to see the VLA and was thinking about a different, out of the way, route from Gallup to ABQ other than I-40.

My thoughts are:

From Gallup take NM 602 / 36 down to Quemado

US 60 East through Datil

Detour by the VLA

US 60 over to Socorro

I-25 up to Los Lunas

NM 6 back over to I-40

I-40 into Albuquerque

My wife are always much more interested in the off-beaten path than the more traveled tourist aspects. My question here is what type roads will I encounter? We will be in a regular rental car so navigating anything less than gravel could be potentially harzardous!

The distance or lack of anything along the way does not bother us in the least.

Any suggestions or comments on this route? This will be the first week in October.



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Albuquerque, New...
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1. Re: Side Route, Gallup to Albuquerque

The route you gave is paved all the way. I don't know the condition of NM 36 south of Zuni Pueblo, but assume it is o.k.

For the VLA, you don't need to detour, just stay on US 60. The complex is close to the highway, and is so big you can't miss it.

If you are returning west to Flagstaff, you might want to do NM 6 from Los Lunas on your return trip. Also, have you considered driving as much of old Rt. 66 as possible? A lot different than the interstate.

Statesboro, ga
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2. Re: Side Route, Gallup to Albuquerque

Thanks, we will be flying back home from ABQ after the Balloon Fiesta and we do plan on doing as much of Old Route 66 as possible between Kingman, AZ and Gallup.

We're flying into Vegas to spend a couple of days with daughter and son in law. Then driving to ABQ by way of Flagstaff and the Grand Canyon. I have explored a great deal of the area but my wife has never seen hardly any of it.

Thanks Again!

Uden, The...
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3. Re: Side Route, Gallup to Albuquerque

Just that you know. Before VLA is Pie Town. Name says it all. Pies!! Don't miss, they really are delicious here. Take your pick. 2 Restaurants, one at each side of the road.


Santa Fe, New Mexico
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4. Re: Side Route, Gallup to Albuquerque

Gallup is an interesting town. We usually stay at El Rancho Hotel www.elranchohotel.com , an older Rt 66 hotel. Not a lot of great dining in Gallup, but a few nice places. We usually have casual breakfast or lunch at Earls. Dinner the restaurant at El Rancho can be good. Do some shopping in town for jewelry, also check out Richardson's Pawn.

On the way south on Hwy 602, stop to visit Zuni Pueblo. A side trip over to El Morro National Monument would also be interesting. The drive including RT to El Morro will be close to 7 hours of driving. I would not add on the Hwy 6 at Los Lunas. You may want to consider spending the night in Socorro, a small college town. Holiday Inn Express is the best in town and next door is Socorro Springs Brewpub. A great stop and you will have a short drive the next morning up to Abq.

Statesboro, ga
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5. Re: Side Route, Gallup to Albuquerque

Thanks for the suggestions! My wife has already found Pie Town, she is the food finder for our trips. We always try to find the local, dive type places and stay away from anything fancy or chains.

We head out 2 weeks from today and can't wait. I think my brain is already on vacation although my body still has work to do.


6. Re: Side Route, Gallup to Albuquerque

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