On the Road With Doris & Ez

We're going on a road trip!!!! Could be three weeks could be three years, we'll see. Read below to see where we are now.....

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Almost Home - Santa Fe and Northern Arizona - October 2007

After so many quick stops on our drive across the country, we were ready to kick back and enjoy our week in Santa Fe. We’ve been thinking more and more about building our next house and, since we love the architecture in Santa Fe, we spent lots of time driving through some of the quaint neighborhoods and visiting open houses. We were lucky to run into the contractor at one location and Ez spent over an hour quizzing him about building methods and materials. We made a day trip to Taos in search of the perfect green chile stew that we remembered from an earlier visit but, alas, there was a new chef at the Taos Inn restaurant. His (less than perfect) green chile stew was still pretty good.

We made the required visit to the downtown plaza in Santa Fe and checked out the wares of the Native American vendors under the portico. Then we strolled through shops full of beautiful artwork and handcrafts (and a lot of cheesy tourist souvenirs). And because it’s chile harvest season, we bought a cheery red chile ristra to decorate the entrance to the motorcoach.

Next we left Santa Fe and headed to Page, Arizona for Ez’s high school reunion. The planners put together lots of activities including a great dinner and dance. It was fun for Ez to reminisce with old friends and catch up with folks he hadn’t seen in over 40 years. Not so much fun was the reunion golf tournament that took place on a day when the wind gusts reached over 50 miles per hour! It’s hard to concentrate on your golf swing when you can barely stand up! (That's the Colorado River seen from the Navajo Bridge near Lee's Ferry.)

Our home for our two weeks in Page was the Wahweap Campground which overlooks Lake Powell and is one of the most scenic places we’ve ever stayed. Visiting Page is always a great opportunity to visit with relatives and old friends and explore the red rock country of northern Arizona. This time we really ventured off the beaten path. Our first adventure took us up into Cottonwood Canyon to see the changing colors of the cottonwoods and tamarisk along the Paria River. A few days later our group took off with quads and a 4-wheel drive truck to explore the top of the Vermillion Cliffs that look down on the Paria where it meets the Colorado River at Lee’s Ferry. The scenery was breathtaking, but a truly amazing sight was a California condor being harassed by a feisty red-tailed hawk. With its nine-foot wingspan, the condor looked like a B-52 bomber being buzzed by a fighter jet!

Another day we took off with Ez’s brother and his wife to explore the top of southern Utah’s Kaparowitz Plateau. We made our way back and forth up the narrow switchbacks to the top of the mesa for a spectacular view. The “road” down wasn’t much more than a sandy wash scattered with wildflowers that wound its way between steep red cliffs laced with seams of coal. Needless to say, we didn’t run into much traffic on this trip!

There was more great scenery (and more people) on our trip to the north rim of the Grand Canyon. We hoped to catch the fall colors on the Kaibab Plateau, but only a few aspens still sported their yellow foliage. The view into the canyon was memorable though and we saw dozens of mule deer along the roadway as we headed back at dusk.

Now we’re spending a few days in the Verde Valley in central Arizona. This is a favorite spot, close to Sedona, Jerome and Cottonwood. Yesterday we drove to Clarksville to catch the Verde River Railroad for a scenic trip up the Verde River Canyon to the old town of Perkinsville. It was a brisk, sunny day and we agreed that this trip ranked up there with other train excursions from Durango to Silverton, Colorado and from Chama, New Mexico to Antonito, Colorado. We didn’t see a lot of wildlife, but we were rewarded with a couple of bald eagle sightings! Not bad, huh?

It’s been great to get back to Arizona and the West. We’ve really missed the long horizons and beautiful vistas. We’ll be spending about in week near Fountain Hills before settling into our winter home at the fabulous Scottsdale Trailer Corral. Check back for occasional posts about highlights like our upcoming trip to Portland to visit our daughter and son-in-law and our new adopted granddaughter Nola!!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll continue to check on future posts...each of your travel accountings makes me want to jump in the car and take off...alas, it will have to wait.
Linda in T-town

12:49 PM  
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