Follow along with Sharon and Dwight as we travel 99 days across America in our RV.
Our first morning Las Vegas. Kinda chilly in town but very chilly at Red Rock Canyon. Got up early and arrived at the Canyon just after the “the rear side of the human anatomy crack of dawn” (keeping it family friendly). It was cold my friends, but it was beautiful.
We hiked the Calico Tanks Trail. The was approximately 2.25 miles round trip through some seriously rocky areas. Most of the rocks are actually sand stone and probably one of the most unusual hikes we have done so far. The colors and textures were simply breathtaking. The rocks are so soft in appearance and when you touch them them almost have a soft feel to them. One of the coolest parts of Red Rock, is that you can climb on all of the rocks and really get to check them out and learn more. The pictures posted are only a small sampling of the amount we took, and they do not do the space justice.
After our hike we drove the scenic loop and again witnessed the marvel of our world. Mother Nature is a force not to be taken lightly; she is indeed a true artist.
As we drove home we spotted a cool little “hamlet” tucked away in the countryside. As we always do, we made a “sharp right turn” and discovered Blue Diamond. Blue Diamond is a sleepy little area of about 200 residents that will take your mind back in time to a simpler way of life. We stopped and shared a breakfast pizza at The Cottonwood Station; yummy for sure. The staff were so accommodating and genuine, is was a simpler time for sure.
What’s really cool about Blue Diamond is that it is only about 25 minutes from las Vegas…what’s not so cool about Blue Diamond is that is only about 25 minutes from Las Vegas. Confused ?? The folks that live here (some folks are second and third generation) love it; it’s close to work and everyday services but feels so far removed from the city. The have a school, police, gas station and center of town with a church and kids play area. What that tends to bring is developers that want to steal the paradise for profits. Recently the town has been in “discussions” over water rights and the way the area looks to us, it will continue. I hope we don’t see “Paradise Lost”.
The afternoon was spent running some errands on the way back “home”. A Target by the RV Park was the main stop to pick up a prescription and few odds and ends. While in the shopping center we spotted an In-and-Out Burger (they are a west coast thing); neither of us have ever had a burger from there. So in we went. What a cool vibe and we got hats!! Check out the pics below. I agree with all of the bloggers…really good burgers and fun staff.
Tonight we are “Ubering” to the strip to check out the Neon!! No more blogging to0day. The Neon will be on tomorrows page. Thanks to everyone for watching our travels. We appreciate it very much.
No defacing…it was done with another piece of sandstone…
Below are 20-30 second videos during our hike…
Hey Gang, I hope all is well. We spent most of the day driving from Williams to Las Vegas. The scenery out here is very beautiful and the drive up US93 from I40…simply spectacular. The mountains really started coming into view the further north we drove.
When we arrived in Vegas we were an hour early for check in so we parked the RV in a mall parking lot and drove over to check out Ethel M Chocolates. Good stuff!!! Click on the link to learn more about them. https://www.ethelm.com/pages/about-us
Also on the property is a awesome cactus landscape garden started by Forrest Mars many years ago.
While were there we made reservations for later in the day so we could take part in a wine and chocolate tasting. Andy our instructor was a wealth of information about the history of chocolate and how it’s produced along with the history of MARS and Ethel M.
We then went back to grab the RV and make our way over to the Las Vegas Motorcoach Resort for 5 nights. “Swanky Joint”. We got checked in and parked the Mirada and hooked up. We walked around a bit then took a dip in one of the three pools before heading over to the wine and chocolate tasting at Ethel M’s.
After the scrumptious chocolates and wine we decided to check out the lights of the Vegas Strip and Freemont Street.
I would love to write an entire page on what we saw today, but the pictures and videos below will do a much better job than I could ever do. We have so many more pics than we could ever put it the blog. It’s hard to stop taking pictures with all of the beauty we are experiencing.
We left the RV at 4:01 am and took the hour long drive north into The Grand Canyon. It was freaking cold; 17 degrees and it did not get above freezing until well after sunrise, it was so worth it. We not only saw the sunrise but got up close to some animals too. And the icing on the “hiking cake” is that we were the very first to arrive in the parking lot so after we witnessed one of the most spectacular sunrises we got to do lots of hiking before the park got really crowed.
The history, both human and geological in this area is mind boggling.
Back at the RV it was burgers on the grill for a early dinner along with some tasty blueberry wine.
We have met some really great folks on our journey and today was no different. After dinner we hung out with a couple of very cool ladies from South Carolina. Meeting new people on this trip has been some of the most memorable highlights.
Very chilly overnight!!
The day started with good intentions…an awesome breakfast at Goldie’s and then an hour ride north to the Grand Canyon. Breakfast was indeed, as it always is…awesome; but the ride out to the Canyon was a bust today. While enroute we tuned to the 1610 am information station to learn that at the current time, there was a 2 hour wait at the entrance station and further waits within the park. So, with that info we turned around and went to plan B. That was to just walk around Williams a bit and relax at home :)).
Tomorrow we will head out at 4 am (the park is open 24 hrs) to see the sunrise at 6. Much better plan than waiting in long lines and hanging out with “thousands of our friends”. We both have been to the Canyon but have never witnessed a sunrise. The folks we talked to today said it is very pretty, so it should be a great time. Check back tomorrow for those pics.
For now some pics around Williams.
The two pics below are on Goldie’s Windows. Jeff the owner and the staff are just plain good people. It helps that we agree with all three signs.
Sharon was so good today, oatmeal for breakfast and liver for dinner. But wait, the good intentions will
She is so ashamed, she won’t even show her face. Now come on Sharon, we know it’s you behind the
Just a cool day of driving and checking things out along the way. It was very windy the entire way; as it has been since the middle of Texas. Steady 15-20 mph wind with gusts between 30-40 mph. We need a “Super C” RV. Maybe in the future??
Soon After we left the KOA at Holbrook we stopped at “Geronimo, the worlds largest petrified tree”, Hmmm??? Geronimo (the tree) and the associated tourist trap were well worth the stop. We bought our first “travel magnet” there. It is what all “tourist traps” should be. They have been in business since 1962 and have very cool stuff. NOTHING FROM CHINA!! All American and locally made. The staff were outstanding and the time we spent super fun. If you want a plastic cactus or a real deal Indian purse, this is you place. Something for everyone.
From Geronimo we headed further west on I-40 to Winslow, AZ. “It’s a girl my lord in a flat bed Ford slowin down to take a look at me”. Spent some time checking out this iconic downtown and having some breakfast. The Flatbed Cafe is a must stop for a Santa Fe Skillet and French Toast (kids plate…for Sharon).
From the iconic Town of Winslow we headed to see the Meteor Crater. The site is on privately held land and has been open to the public since the 30’s. The site is, amazing to see and learn about. Approximately 50,000 years ago a 150 ft wide meteor (made mostly of iron and weighing several thousand tons) slammed into the ground at about 26,000 mph and created the depression in the earth.
The depression is about 550 ft deep and a mile across. The Apollo 11 Mission Crew trained here for the flight to the moon.
From the crater it was on to Williams, AZ and the Grand Canyon RV Park where we spend the next few days checking out the Grand Canyon area.
By the way…it is going to be about 20-25 degrees overnight at the RV park…yikes.
Today was just as outstanding as yesterday. Between the two days we took so many pictures. We just couldn’t stop looking around and finding more cool things to check out. You could spend a lifetime exploring the area. The pictures and videos below are just a small portion of what we saw between the two days.
The petrified wood found in the area is approximately 250 million years old. This is about the same as many of the dinosaurs we know today. The trees were originally located and grew near the equator before the land mass that now is part of North America began to shift north and west. The land originally was a tropical forest and between the land shifting and the seas that we know once covered much of the earths surface, the trees were deposited here. Through time the organic material was pushed out and/or decayed and minerals deposited into the trees and so was created, essentially rock. Over time the winds and rains of the desert uncovered what we see today; many more may still be berried. The different minerals that had been forced into the wood give the “wood” the different colors. Simply amazing what mother nature is capable of.
The “Painted Desert” is a region of the Country that covers approximately 7500 sq miles in the Southwest United States and the Petrified Forest National Park is within the Painted Desert. The landscape of the Painted Desert is amazing to see and it is hard to put into words the beauty of the area. The pictures below barely to the Desert justice. The human history in the area has also documented back 13,000 years.
Within the Park as well as the Desert we took multiple hikes and got to explore some fascinating places that we won’t soon forget.
We also took a few pics around Holbrook to show some of the old Rt 66. Dinner both nights were so good. Last night was steak at the Butterfield Stage Steak House and tonight was Mexican at Romo’s; both in Holbrook and both outstanding. We left both 5 Star Google Reviews. YUMMY!
Hey Gang, hope everyone is doing good. We spent most of the day driving the second 200 miles from
Albuquerque to Holbrook. Again, so much awe inspiring scenery. The vastness of the western States is something to behold. Along the way we stopped at a few spots that peeked our interest. Nothing famous but just eye-catching and just plain cool.
Along the way Sharon bought a new blanket at a cool Navaho general store for our “short queen” mattress. The store was at the Continental Divide. In RV’s sometimes beds are not exactly to the size we are all accustom to in our homes. Sometimes they are bit smaller and they do the resizing to help with room. Our present comforter is ginormous and is a pain to work with.
After we parked and set up our home we took a walk over the camp store. There we found Twinkies! So Sharon decided to relive a healthy breakfast of her youth. Sprite and Twinkies.
We are spending the next 3 nights at a KOA near the Petrified Forest and Painted Desert. Can’t wait till tomorrow, but today was cool coming across little surprises that we would not have seen if we were not driving across this Great Land.
This one’s for Mark (Sharon’s Brother)
Dwight got lost in his jacket…
Wow…all I can say is the drive this morning was amazing. Every day we wake up with anticipation of what lay ahead and the days never seem to disappoint. Today was no different. The ride down I-40 from the western Texas Panhandle into New Mexico was truly inspiring. The landscape was ever changing. Around every hill and curve the land unfolded before our eyes. Browns and greens and every shade came to life right before our eyes; not to mention the blue sky. New Mexico is the “Land of Enchantment” and that is the truth.
We took a couple of breaks along our 200 mile journey today just to take it all in. The first was at Russell’s Truck Stop. What a cool place; part car and culture museum, part restaurant, part grocery store and part gas station. It was where I found my PB and J sandwich!! One of the best surprises of the day was found at a New Mexico rest area. The best burrito we have ever had; big and fat and packed with goodness!! Also right behind the rest area was an awesome view of the land beyond.
As we rolled into our RV Park for the night (RV Park and casino) we were met with super cool park hosts that escorted us to our site. After we settled in we took a walk over to the casino and proceeded to loose $50. We need our Donna!! I think we set a record on how quick that can be done…LOL
After the loss we came back and made fajitas on the Blackstone and watched some paramotors flying just outside of the RV park.
Easy day. We spent the morning wandering around The Jack Sisemore RV Museum. I have always loved looking at old RV’s and it looks like Sharon is falling in love with them too!! They had some great examples of all different types; from class A’s to some early small tow behind trailers.
The early afternoon was spent at the The Panhandle Plains Historical Museum at West Texas A&M. The Museum is so packed with local history that dates from the prehistoric time all the way to present day. They did not miss a time period or subject matter!!! We have found so many of these types of smaller museums throughout Texas. The State has incredibly rich history.
On the way home from our day out…we needed to fill up the Colorado with gas…check out the Texas size gas prices !!! LOL.
Dinner was not at The Big Texan but at the great Mexican spot we found a few days ago, Abuelo’s
A big Texas Good Morning to all of our friends. We spent most of the day hiking in Palo Duo Canyon. It is the second biggest canyon in the US…bet you can figure out the biggest. I’ll give you a hint…it is Grand in size !! This guy is full of jokes.
Any hoo, Palo Duro is full of spectacular views and vistas. We had such a good time hiking and experiencing the beauty of the Canyon and there is so much history to learn about. One of the events that really helped to shape the area is that the last battle between local Indian Tribes and the US Calvary took place here in 1875. This event essentially ended the fighting and wars that had been waged on the Indians ever since the Western Expansion many years earlier. Learning all of the history was enlightening and saddening all at the same time.
As time went on, the development of the largest cattle ranch (and the first) in the Texas Panhandle was created in Palo Duro Canyon by the man named Charles Goodnight. I can see why everyone throughout history has loved this place…it’s magical.
We finished off the day with a ribeye at The Big Texan Steak House. It’s kinda touristy, but you have to go there while in Amarillo. It’s been open since 1960 and is world famous. They have a 72oz steak and if you eat it and all of the sides within an hour, you eat free. We are wimps and had much smaller ribeyes.
We both thought it would be kinda cheap since it was a definitely a tourist spot, but were amazed when we dug in and tasted the great flavors. Both of us felt the ribeyes were some of the best steaks we have had. We may go there again before we leave the area.