As part of reaching my goal to visit every state in the U.S, I planned a Road Trip with my mom and sister. Unfortunately, my sister was not able to make it which created a noticeable absence. I have several friends who live in Arizona and they moved their schedules to prepare to see me so I did not want to reschedule.
We live in Texas and as Southeast as it gets! Driving towards Arizona was a big deal. The total drive according to Google would take 16 hours with 10 of those hours being used to get out of Texas!
EL PASO, TEXAS
Our plan was to drive through to El Paso and stay the night there. My father was in the Army when I was a youngster and we lived in El Paso at one point. I wanted to visit my old elementary school and apartment where we lived. Can you believe I remembered it? Well, yeah I did.
Elementary school in El Paso I attended in Kindergarten
Having the opportunity to visit our old apartment was a blast from the past. I remember playing outside in the dust since there was no grass. You can see from the picture below that grass was just non-existent. Fun fact is we lived in El Paso the year it had this crazy amount of snow dumped on it. We went from desert to winter wonderland over night!
Apartment complex we lived in
Enough about El Paso and on to the reason for the trip. Along the way we saw desert and Mountains. There was no way I was making a trip to Arizona without visiting Tombstone, the site of the famous gun fight at the O.K. Corral. By the way, I can quote the Tombstone movie word for word but never mind that 🙂
Tombstone is very hot, dusty and dry. The people were nice and some were dressed up to mimic the old way of dress. Here are some photos of Tombstone.
Old Tombstone City Hall
Site of the famous gunfight at the O.K. Corral. In 1881 the Earp brothers faced off against the Clanton-Mclaury gang in this legendary shootout.
Big Nose Kate’s Saloon was originally called The Grand Hotel. Kate was Doc Holiday’s common-law wife.
Reported by the NY Times back in 1882 to be “the wildest, wickedest night spot between Basin Street and Barbary Coast.” NOW that’s a serious reputation!
Bird Cage Entrance
Old Wells Fargo bank
We did not stop at any notable places in New Mexico but I did get this really nice shot of the rising sun. We also crossed the Continental Divide which was a cool check-in for Facebook.
Sunrise over the Mountains in New Mexico
THE GRAND CANYON, ARIZONA
On to one of the most spectacular sights I have ever seen in person! We stayed in Mesa Arizona but I did not get any pictures. It was a three and a half hour drive to The Grand Canyon but the scenery made the drive worth it. I tried to capture the beauty and majesty of the canyon but you just have to be there to appreciate it.
A few tips when visiting the Canyon even if you do not think you will hike. Take plenty of water, even if it is not hot. The elevation at 7,000 feet will take a toll on your body. Also, pack some sustainable snacks such as jerky and trail mix. Do not feed the wild animals. We saw Elk and Ravens on our trip but you can see squirrels, mountain lions and California Condors.
I have a crazy amount of photos from the Canyon but these are the ones I feel will give you a sense of just how beautiful it really is. Let me get on and show you the pictures!
The Grand Canyon
The Colorado River
View from the Desert View Watchtower
Resting my toes for a bit 🙂
Sitting on top of Split Rock with the Colorado River behind me
Side of the Canyon
Humphrey Peak as part of the San Francisco Mountains. This was on the way up to the canyon.
Mary Colton’s Desert View Watchtower
The Grand Canyon was place I will never forget. I am so happy I was able to see it in person and take pictures for memories.
The trip back to Texas was driven all at once starting at 9 am on a Sunday. We arrived in home 20 hours later!! It was an unforgettable time and I hope to bring the kids when they are a bit older. I have officially updated the Life List.
Have you been to the Grand Canyon or Tombstone? If so what was your experience.