Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Back on the Road: Arizona and Route 66

Las Vegas at last behind us, we headed to the Hoover Dam. Lots of tourists and a bit disappointing, though we did park once in Arizona and took several pictures, though it was not possible to get a view of the dam proper from the Arizona side. We did have some confusion here as to time changes! We noticed as we crossed over the top of the dam, that there was a clock on the Nevada side and another on the Arizona side. We thought that this was because there was a time zone change, but both clocks showed the same time. How strange!

(Later, in New Mexico with my nephew, we learned that Nevada is indeed on Pacific Time and Arizona is indeed on Mountain Time. But Arizona does not change clocks for Summer Time and is, therefore, the same as Pacific Time!)

I note that as I write this several weeks after we were at the Hoover Dam that today the temperature is reported as being 99 F. We were there May 5th and the 80-85 degree weather was warm and welcoming -- further evidence that we did pick the right time of year for our journey! We were continuing to travel the Mohave dessert without the intense heat it's so famous for. The Hoover Dam, seen and photographed, our next destination was Kingman, Arizona and our entrance to Route 66.

Our first stop in Kingman was the Route 66 Museum, which I heartily recommend. Here Neil indulged me and bought a pink cap with Routh 66 emblazoned across the front of it! I wish we had had more time in Kingman, but not enough research was done on our part and I've since learned that there are several other places in town worth exploring, including the Kingman Air Museum. Anyway,. time was moving on and we were determined to make it to Williams via Route 66 that night as our stepping stone to the Grand Canyon, planned for the next day.

I had not been enthusiastaic at all at the thought of travelling the old road. But Neil had dreamed of doing just this for many years and I must admit that I am glad that we had the experience -- expecially in Arizona where much more had been done to restore the places along the way with real enthusiasm and humor! From Kingsman we headed toward Hackberry, Valentine and Peach Spring before getting to Williams. Suprisingly to me this was one of the most memorable segments of our trip -- there was the fun nostalgia of Route 66 itself, the bizarre Truxton Canyon with scenery unlike anything I'd ever seen before. It looked like moutains of rocks, even the slag heaps we see in England.

There was also the bleakness of Indian Reservation land, the grey and browness of the dry landscape. So it was somewhat of a relief to arrive in Seligman, see some sunshine, a train crossed our path, which Neil filmed and we shared some nostalgic Route 66 stops.
Seligman was lots of fun. I loved all the characters and the cars -- and was surprised that Neil had never heard of the Edsel! On the back end sit Marilyn and Elvis! Neil favored a different car! Lots of souvenirs to choose from, but I was happy with my pink hat -- worn in picture with Edsel.

Soon we headed down the road again toward Williams, our stop for the night, where we found a reasonable motel, my computer seemed to bite the dust and we had a great meal with lots of atmosphere and plenty of 'bikers' at Rod's Steak House!

Neil was amazed at the volume of railroad traffic and at the length of the trains. This one passed through Seligman as we were checking out a vintage covered wagon (without the cover! ) He was a bit confused as to how the 'movie' feature on my camera works ...

1 comment:

  1. That pile of rocks is so awesome. I wonder how that was formed.


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