Saturday, April 30, 2011

Thursday: Cars, Craters, and Canyons

As mentioned in yesterday's post, Rob and I stayed at the Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Arizona Wed night. It felt like we had entered right into a scene from the Cars movie...The parking lot around the teepees was filled with old time cars and historic signs from the Route 66 days. We arrived late Wed night, so the hotel staff left our key under the mat and also left the light on for us. Small town hospitality and trust is something we very much appreciated.

Breakfast for us was enjoyed at a local cafe called Joe and Aggies.

During breakfast, we asked our waitress about the town - famous for dinosaur sculptures and petrified wood from the Petrified Forest - and she explained that the man who had created the concrete dinos had plans to create a dinosaur museum in hopes of attracting more visitors to keep the small town viable. After dying a few years ago, his dream never came true. The kids sold many of the dinosaurs and the town never got its museum.

She also explained that Radiator Springs in the Cars movie was actually based off Holbrook and two other towns in the area. The movie producers came out to see the town and start drawing! It was cool to see the book of Cars drawings and then look out the window and see the buildings that inspired them.

After breakfast, we walked across the street to see some of the dinos and the petrified wood.

After the dinos, we carried on westward towards the Grand Canyon! Two desperadoes on the road again. Crank up the Willie Nelson!

Before arriving at the biggest ditch in the West, we took a short detour to see the Meteor Crater, the breath-taking result of a collision between a piece of an asteroid traveling at 26,000 miles per hour and planet Earth approximately 50,000 years ago. It is nearly one mile across, 2.4 miles in circumference and more than 550 feet deep.

p.s. Check out where we were...middle of nowhere.

We arrived to the Grand Canyon early afternoon and enjoyed a 5 hour hike down the Canyon and then back up. Icepacks for the calves anyone? This was my first time visiting the Grand Canyon aside from seeing it out of a plane window, and man oh man- what a sight! The depths and angles and massiveness of the place was absolutely breathtaking. I could have stayed there gazing for hours. This was definitely one of God's greatest works of beauty.

I'm almost hesitant to post pictures, as they just don't do the place justice, but it does give you a good idea.

We hiked down a trail that started about seven miles from Grand Canyon Village called Hermits Rest. It was pretty easy going down the rocky canyon trail, seeing the beautiful formations, the changing landscapes and the incredible views. We started late, so we were some of the only people on the trail, which made it seem like we found a private untouched place. Every so often, we would look up and splendor to see how far we came, but then we would shutter thinking about climbing back up to get back!

We made it back up huffing and puffing, wishing we had worked out a little bit more and vowing to hit the gym again when we got back to our respective cities.

After enjoying a breathtaking sunset sitting on the edge of the canyon, we headed back to our hotel to end another very fun day.

Things Learned Today:
"When traveling in the West, pack more than one sweatshirt. Those desert nights sure are chilly."
"Tumbleweeds explode when you hit them while driving on the Interstate."
"Be nice to everyone who takes your picture at the Grand Canyon. You may run into them again the next day at a small gas station 70 miles away."
"Always stretch before hiking down the Grand Canyon."
"Drive slow down the barren Arizona roads and watch out for cows"
"The word 'moderate' when describing Grand Canyon trails really means 'sorta extreme.'"
"Sammy Hagar was really describing Rob's car when he wrote his song 'I can't drive 55.'"


  1. You guys are having the trip of a life time! So enjoying tagging along!

  2. I always thought staying in a tepee would be so cool!

  3. Awesome couple of days. Love the second to last photo of the canyon. BTW, nice shirt!

  4. Found your blog through Lana's. Looks like a blast. My five year old loves movie Cars. I will continue to follow along on your road trip.

  5. I am a HUGE Cars fan!! You lucky duck! lol. (Did ya know they're coming out with Cars TWO this summer?! Yeahhhhh!)
    P.S. I found your blog from Ms. Lana's blog at Walking the off Beaten Path :) Glad I did!
    P.S.S. I loved the "Things You Learned"... hilarous! :)


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