Phannie

Phannie
Photo taken at Winchester Bay, Oregon

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Sedona, The Painted Desert and Petrified Forest

At Sun Valley RV Resort, Sun Valley, Arizona...

Yes, we are moving again, having enjoyed our stay near the Grand Canyon and some more fellowship with new "old" friends, Dave and Janice. Acquainted almost by accident through Janice's friendly hello on RVillage, we now consider these two like family. We come from very similar backgrounds, and we discovered that we are, in fact, neighbors when they visit their home base near ours in Conroe, Texas.  They've gotten us hooked on a game called "Rummykub," at which they are ringers, and we have them hooked on "42." The abuse at the table is brutal, but it's all in good-natured fun. 

Dave and Janice
We consider ourselves fortunate to have met so many really wonderful friends in our RV lifestyle, and we love to get together when we can. We hope to see these two again in Conroe.

We took a brief side trip to Sedona, about 35 miles south of Flagstaff. We had visited there before, but it was a long time ago. It's still the bustling, touristy place that it ever was, but few towns have ever been established in a more beautiful setting. We took this photo from the airport overlook:




Before leaving town, we had dinner at the Mesa Grill Restaurant at the airport. It was quite good--amazingly so, in fact, for an airport restaurant.

From here, we're making our way to southwest Colorado, where we will meet up for a few days with longtime RV friends Bubba and LouAnn. On the way, we decided to stop in and take another look at the Petrified Forest National Park and its environs, the Painted Desert. Here are a few photos we took:




I have long had a fascination for the history of Route 66, the iconic "mother road" that traversed half the country and was the means by which many families got their first look at the magical place that is the American West. In Arizona, New Mexico and Texas, Interstate 40 follows much of the old highway, and I'm always delighted to be able to drive down any part of it, observing some of the relics of that golden age of travel. Here is a photo of the carcass of a 1932 Studebaker that is placed exactly where the now abandoned Route 66 traversed this national park. 



The desert plants have since reclaimed the highway, so the only indications of the roadbed location are the old telephone poles, also abandoned, that are visible beyond the car. This was only a few miles from the Painted Desert Inn, also in the park and overlooking the Painted Desert:



This place was built as a CCC project from 1937-1940, when it opened to the delight of travelers as a hotel. When Interstate 40 was built, it lost some of its allure for the fast-paced traffic and closed its doors in 1963. It was going to be demolished at one point but, after being designated as a National Historic Landmark, it will be saved for posterity. It now houses a museum and bookstore. We didn't get a look inside, as it had already closed for the day when we arrived. We love the architecture, and we were able to walk all around it, taking in the spectacular views:


A few miles farther down the park road, we encountered the fascinating areas of petrified wood that had once been part of a thriving forest eons ago. The trees fell and were buried in river sediment and, over unfathomable ages, absorbed minerals that displaced the organic matter of the trees, only to be unearthed through erosion and now visible to onlookers. We thought the minerals in the logs made them quite beautiful:





At the end of our day in the Petrified Forest National Park, we drove back to the little town of Holbrook, also situated on old Route 66. We were delighted to see the iconic Wigwam Motel, where all the rooms were designed to look like teepees. It was easy to imagine how many travelers stopped here in the heyday of Route 66, much to the excitement of their children:



Our summer travels are coming to a close, and what a summer this has been! We have been away from the Texas heat for the four hottest months of the year, and now we will be returning to milder weather--perfect for more spoiling of our grandsons! 

We will not be idle, though. We have rallies to attend in San Marcos and the Rio Grande Valley. The ladies have a trip planned to First Monday in Canton and, after the holidays, we will be headed back to Arizona for our first visit to Quartzsite--known as Woodstock for RVers. After that, we will probably be wintering somewhere in the great Southwest. Next summer, we will be taking a Hawaiian cruise and then spending the rest of the summer somewhere in the Pacific Northwest. And who knows what else?!!

So, stick around and travel with us as we make our retirement dreams come true! 

Thank you, Lord, for this wonderful life; please forgive me if I don't appreciate it enough each day.

I had rather own little and see the world than to own the world and see little of it.  
--Alexander Sattler

20 comments:

  1. You just aren't an RVer until you experience Quartzite.

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    1. Well, we're looking forward to it; I think it's more a rite of passage than anything. We've heard about it for 20 years; now we'll see for ourselves.

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  2. Mike, we will be in Quartzsite in January when the BIG RV show is on. We were there this past January dry camping out in the desert for the the whole month.
    Would love to meet you both, so will keep in touch. Safe travels.

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    1. We always love to meet up with fellow bloggers. Watch the blog as we get closer to January.

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  3. Quartzsite and the desert is the place to be in the winter. Would be nice to finally meet up y'all again somewhere in the southwest this winter,we just love it there gonna be our 12th winter in the southwest. I know you don't boondock but lots of basic rv parks with hookups.

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    1. Hi, George! Yes, we already have a spot reserved. Hope to see you somewhere in the great Southwest.

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    2. Looking forward to it, not sure when we will be there but we will be at some point.

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    3. Quartzite is a place you will either love or hate from following you it may not be a place you will enjoy like we do. But you need to check to out at least once.

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  4. When we pulled into Quartzsite last December there were lots of closed up buildings and Kathy said "I don't think I'm going to like this". By the middle of the month the shops were opening and the town was alive. Our first month was An Quail Run RV Park while I installed our Solar. The next three months were spent living "Off the Grid". Kathy can't wait to get back to the serenity that comes with Dry Camping.
    Hoping to see you there sometime after the middle of November.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

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    1. Great; we would love that! Will be posting more about it when the time gets closer.

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  5. Great pictures, it is at least six years since we have been in that area.

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    1. It had been about 50 years since we had seen it. It was like new to us--very enjoyable.

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  6. We will definitely make a meetup happen in Conroe, for sure. Just sad we are heading opposite directions after that.

    Great, great pics in the "Painted Desert" and in Holbrook. . .hope we are able to do the same later in the week.

    See you guys "back home." Safe travels!

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    1. We will tie a yellow ribbon around Phannie's exhaust pipe. Can't wait!

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  7. Always fun to wrap up one season with a look forward to the next, and the next!

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    1. Ain't that the truth! Like you and Craig, we just keep pinching ourselves.

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  8. Thanks mike,haven't talked in a while,been on a road trip with the wife for a 2 months in our Prius.National parks ,other sites and friends and relatives.The wife and i visited the painted dessert and petrified forest in 2014,so beautiful.Enjoy ,hope some day to meet you both.Happy travels

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    1. Hi, Bob! We would like that! Keep an eye on the blog and, if you find us nearby, give us a shout!

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  9. Your Painted Desert, Sedona and Petrified Forest pictures are amazing! Thank you for sharing. Ditto to what Bill said above. It would be lovely to meet you both!

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  10. Hi, Patsy! I hope we can make that happen. Stay well and safe travels!

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