A Travellerspoint blog

October 15, 2010

The main reason we stayed at the funny Flinstone campground was because it was just up the street from the Planes of Fame Air Museum. We of course toured it. You've seen one plane, you've seen them all but Don enjoyed it. We were wishing Pete was with us as underneath the wings of each plane was several models of radio control planes. He would have really enjoyed it.

We drove back down and got on Route 66 again. On our original way through we did not stop in Williams as we knew we would be coming through on our way back down. It is a very quaint western town and they have kept several of the old buildings along Route 66. It runs right through the middle of the town but is actually 2 streets as each street is one way. We parked and walked around soaking up our last exposure to Route 66 on this trip. The only thing we had not been able to do on Route 66 was have a beer. It was still too early in the day even for a practice pre dinner drink so we found a brewery (Grand Canyon Brewery) right on 66 and bought some delicious beer to enjoy later. We stopped to get gas in Ash Fork which is also on Route 66 and found another relic of a building to add to our every growing photo album.

We are currently in Prescott, Arizona in a campground right in the middle of the Granite Dells. We hiked up a trail to the top. A great view.

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October 14, 2010

I think we need two computers! Since we have revised our plan and are heading south, Don wants on the computer to research places to stay and of course I want on the computer to keep this journal up to date and answer e-mails etc. Don has been winning. Sorry for the wee delay.

We toured the south side of the Grand Canyon. It is a Canyon and it is Grand. What more can I say. You have all seen the pictures and in fact the pictures do not do it justice. It is something you must see for yourself. We also stopped in to see an IMAX National Geographic movie. In that film we saw parts of the canyon that visitors do not get to see. It was pretty impressive.

Right now we are in a very funny little campground called Flinstones. It is totally like the cartoon. The office you check in is the Buffalo Lodge. Pretty Funny. Don and I think it looks like something left behind on Route 66.

An interesting observation. You know how at home you see those signs that indicate to be aware of deer crossing and some kind person has gone around and stuck big red stickers on the nose of the deer so it looks like Rudolf? Well down here those signs are RIDDLED with BULLET holes. I like the red stickers much better.

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October 13, 2010

We are back in the Grand Canyon but on the south side. This morning we toured as much of Monument Valley as we could. Got some great pictures. I will send a couple along next time we have internet connection and I'm sure you will all recognize this place. We are at a beautiful State Campground right at the East Entrance and our plan is to tour all of the south part tomorrow. Please let there be no 'Fear Factor' involved.

Posted by mhussen 12:42 Comments (0)

October 12, 2010

Our planned journey was going to take us north from Colorado into Utah to see several other national parks. It has been bloody cold the last few days especially at night. The trees are all in their fall colour (only yellow - not like our Canadian Red) so we have revised our plan. We are thinking of heading down again next September to tour these places but for now we bid adieu to that song that has been spinning in our heads (John Denver, Rocky Mountain High) and are going SOUTH.

Our travels took us by a place called Shiprock which is a big monolith that was on Don's list to see. One of those ones that he has been seeing from the air. We also went by El Capitain (aptly named don't you think) that he not only was able to see from the air but it appeared on their navigational charts.

Okay everyone, get an atlas out. We went to Four Corners. It is the only place in the United States were four states geographically meet. There is a lovely monument there and you can actually get on all fours and be in Utah, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona at the same time.

We ended up today in Monument Valley. Talk about a picturesque campsite. We are in a valley with red sandstone rock formations on three sides and the side that didn't have a formation you are looking right at the park. For all you John Wayne fans six of his movies were filmed here including such biggies as Stagecoach. Fort Apache, She Wore A Yellow Ribbon and The Searchers. We are pretty sure the rock that figures in the movie "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" was here as well but until we get internet again we can't find this out for sure. Because of the view I got nothing done and didn't want to leave. We even ate our breakfast sitting in the cab of the Motorhome to take full advantage of the view.

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October 11, 2010

Today we went back to Mesa Verde and toured the other half. We decided to take a couple of the tours to get up close to some of the cliff dwellings. The first one was Cliff Palace called that because it is the largest of the remains. It was pretty easy to get down to the site and the site itself was worth the trip down but the trip back up was pretty steep. Stone steps with little grooves carved out of the rock for your hands and then several ladders straight up. Fortunately the ladders were right against the rock face so I managed to get back up. My legs were shaking pretty bad by the time we reached the top but I was proud of myself for making it.

Next we went to Balcony house which is a smaller cliff dwelling that you can only see if you go down to it, well down to it and then back up.

Melody's Experience with Balcony House:

I was so proud of myself for visiting the Cliff Palace I thought, piece of cake, I can do this. Well, we go down a steep path and stairs about 130 feet and then there is this 32 foot ladder (which Don says is about up to the roof of our house!) going straight up. I assumed they would be like the last ladders but nooooo, this ladder was not against a rock face. I even went up the steps to the base of it but it was just getting scarier by the minute so I turned around and went back. Kinda shamed faced as there was people way older than me and families with young children and I was the only one that turned back. I knew if I tried I would get half way and freeze. I went back up the 130 feet via path and steps and then had to sit and wait for about 45 minutes for the next tour to come through as there was a locked gate. I did enjoy the quiet of the canyon. The view was amazing. Two ravens caught site of me. I had my hat on with my 'Phil Dickson Plays Music' button and I think it was flashing in the sun. They kept swooping down for a better look. I'm sure they thought I might be lunch.

Don's Experience with Balcony House:

I did continue with the rest of the tour. Very different from Cliff Palace. We climbed up the tall ladder that Melody described to a balcony with a stone wall about 3 feet high built along the front of the balcony. There was a wall that separated the balcony into 2 sides with all the rooms constructed into this sheltered alcove in the canyon wall. A lot of the original structures are still there. Fascinating. The park ranger that accompanied us was very interesting telling about the history (as much as they know) and also great detail about what we were looking at. Now we all had to move along to exit the site. This involved squeezing between two rock face walls, crawling on hands and knees through a 12 foot tunnel that had a huge boulder in the floor half way along, then up another wooden ladder to a ledge which was right on the cliff face, then up the cliff face using foot and hand grooves dug into the rock to another ladder that finally took us up to the top of the cliff. I was very glad that Melody had decided not to continue when she did because she really would have freaked at what we had to do to climb back up.

We also stopped and toured Spruce House which is the best preserved dwelling. It was a long walk down to it but all on a lovely path with no dead drop offs. There is even one of the Kiva's there that still has it's roof on it so you can climb down inside it to see what it looked like originally.

We spent so much time in the park today as there was so much to see we ended up going out for dinner. We were supposed to BBQ Turkey for Thanksgiving but it was already 6ish. We found this place "Main Street Brewery and Restaurant" in Cortez that not only makes their own beer right on premises but also has a farm where they grow the beef that they serve. All range free grass fed, no preservatives, steroids etc. all totally organic. Yum Yum Yum on the beer AND the steak. Another great day - but then it's always a great day when I don't have to cook.

Posted by mhussen 12:41 Comments (0)

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