Clines Corners marking its 90th anniversary

The venerable Clines Corners convenience store, restaurant and trading post about halfway between Santa Rosa and Albuquerque is marking its 90th year in operation this year.

The anniversary was duly noted by a photo essay in the Santa Fe New Mexican newspaper over the weekend. website contains this history of the place:

Roy E. Cline set up his gasoline station and a café at the intersection of New Mexico highways 6 and 2 in 1934.

In those days they were the unpaved link between Moriarty and Santa Rosa (Hwy. 6) and Encino with Santa Fe (Hwy. 2). At that time Route 66 had a totally different alignment; it ran north towards Las Vegas and Santa Fe, in a wide arch between Santa Rosa and Albuquerque as you can see in the map below. Clines Corners is in the middle of the map, where NM 6 and NM 2 cross.

Roy “Pops” Cline was born in 1890 and died in Mountanair NM in 1982. He lived in Oklahoma for a while, but in 1926 moved to New Mexico with his wife and seven children (six girls and one son, Roy Jr.).

More can be read in a 2020 profile in New Mexico Magazine. Clines Corners finished a significant expansion of its facilities that year.

Clines Corners continues to thrive because it’s at the crossroads of U.S. 285 (a highway that connects to Santa Fe) and Interstate 40.

It also thrives because it’s pretty isolated. Save for Flying C Ranch to the east and a handful of mom-and-pop gas stations, it’s the only place with facilities between Moriarty and Santa Rosa — a distance of about 80 miles.

Clines Corners also sits on a plateau of about 7,000 feet elevation. Therefore, a lot of bad winter weather occurs there. An old-timer told me the influence of Pedernal Mountain to the south tends to send wintry weather to Clines Corners.

Though Clines Corners remains unincorporated, it continues to show up on all sorts of maps.

(Image of Clines Corners in 2022 by Paul Cooper via Flickr)

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