Northern Arizona 2011.

West from New Mexico we traveled along I-40 and Rt 66 with our destination being Flagstaff, Arizona.  I have traveled this route many times before but this time, since we were on no strict timeline, we stopped at just about every town and Indian Trading Post between Albuquerque and Flagstaff.  Below are a few pictures:

Below, Richardson Trading Company (Pawn) is a MUST visit store in Gallup, New Mexico.  It is a feast for the eyes. 100s if not 1000s of Indian blankets, saddles and items of Indian Jewelry and Artwork cover almost every square inch of the store.   I have been there 1/2 a dozen times and am amazed every-time I visit!

Gallup, New Mexico is a cool little town.  It’s the last town in Western New Mexico that offers just about everything one could need.  We spent the night at the USA RV Park about 5 miles West of old Downtown Gallup along Rt. 66.  The park was fantastic!  It’s a family run business and the pride in ownership is very evident!  The Office is open from 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM and has a great store with food, gifts and a small selection of RV supplies.  They even have live music from 5:30 to 8:30 every evening during the Summer at the outdoor BBQ pavilion where the offer a great selection of eats. There is also a swimming pool and small putting green.  Very clean and well run business!  I give them 4 out of 4 stars!

Above, a picture of the Gallup Cultural Center on Rt. 66 in Downtown.

Below, a statue of the brave Navajo Code Talkers, instrumental in the US Victory in the Pacific during WWII.

Above:  I love great small cafes and restaurants where the locals eat!  Jerry’s Cafe in Gallup, New Mexico is one of those great finds!  How did I find it…?  I asked a local!  Jerry’s offers everything from the typical breakfast of bacon and eggs to sopapiallas,  a light, soft triangle bread pocket filled with eggs, sausage and potatoes, topped with red or green chile sauce.  Boy was it great!  Highly recommended.  Jerry’s is located at 406 West Coal Ave.  It’s one block South of Rt. 66 in Downtown.   

Above;  La Posada Hotel and Restaurant in Winslow, Arizona is another great stop along I-40 / Rt. 66.  Built in 1930 it was a popular stop along the Santa Fe Railroad line.  It’s still a hotel and has a great restaurant, get the Crispy Pork Carnitas….. Yummy!

Below;  “Standing on a corner in Winslow, Arizona……”

I parked Bertha next to a “Flatbed Ford” but no girl slowed down to take a look at me…..”

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Change of Plans… On to Northern Arizona and California.

I had planned to spend a week or two in the 4 Corners Region but decided to do that trip later in the Summer.  I have a buddy traveling with me and this is his first trip West so I decided to hit Flagstaff, Las Vegas and San Francisco for his enjoyment.  Then he will depart and head back to Kentucky and I will roam the West for a few months!

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Taos and Santa Fe Recommendations.

After 4 days in Santa Fe and Taos, I don’t consider myself an expert on either place but I do have a few recommendations for travelers to New Mexico.  In Santa Fe “The Shed” Restaurant in a must visit.  It’s an eclectic blend of New Mexico dishes, topped off with green or red chile sauces.  “The Shed” is located one block from the old Downtown Plaza and I recommend you get reservations as this seems to be a very popular place for locals as well as visitors.  The New Mexico Museum of History and the Palace of Governors are two must see museums.  The History Museum has wonderful displays covering the illustrious 400 + year of New Mexico History.
In Taos,  a must visit restaurant is “Antonio’s” located one block north of the old downtown plaza.  Antonio’s is another gem of New Mexico flavors, and you can get the freshest guacamole on the planet.  It’s prepared at your table, very tasty!  A drive around the mountains in Taos is a great way to spend the afternoon.  When in Angle Fire, visit the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial.  One doesn’t have to be a military buff to appreciate the hard work that went into preparing the historical displays in the museum!  

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Around the Mountains in Taos.

Sundays always seem like a great day for a drive in the country!  Today Bertha and I drove the HW 64 loop from Taos to Angle Fire to Eagle Nest to Red River and then back to Taos.  A wonderful drive, the weather continues to be great, sunny with a slight breeze and temperatures in the 70s.

A nice stop along the way was the town of Red River, at about 9500 ft elevation.  Both sides of the street are lined with gift shops, restaurants, motels and bars.  The river runs about 50 yards from the road.

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Santa Fe and Taos, New Mexico 2011

I have spent the last 3 days in Santa Fe and Taos,  New Mexico.  The weather has been great, not too hot and not too cold!  Below are a few more pictures.

Near the Rio Grande Gorge in Taos, NM.  The mountains in the background are North East of Taos.

The Rio Grande Gorge looking toward the North East from the West side of the Gorge.

This bus sold ice cream, shakes, smoothies etc…. 100 ft from the Rio Grande Gorge.  The various signs around the bus explain that she uses solar to keep her ice cream cold!

One of the many colorful building of historic Taos.

Bertha and I parked at the Taos Valley RV Park and Campgrounds.  Of the three RV parks within 6 miles of Downtown Taos, I found this one to be the best!

The famous frontiersman Kit Carson lived in Taos in the mid-1800s.  A visit to his home / Museum is well worth it!

The Rio Grande about 20 miles South of Taos.  Many rafters were enjoying the beautiful day!

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Pictures of Trip 2011

2002 Bigfoot Camper on a 2005 F350 DRW 4×4.  A friend of mine in Kentucky helped me add the back porch.

A quick stop at the Cherokee Trading Post off HW 40 between Oklahoma City and Amarillo.

Stopped at the Big Texan in Amarillo and had an 18 oz steak.  There was one young man trying to eat the 72 oz but stopped at 52 oz.  Great place to visit and eat!

I saw the Clampett’s Truck Camper but unfortunately no sighting of Ellie-May.

A stop at the Tucumcari Historical Museum is a MUST!

A few of the sights at the Tucumcai Museum!

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Kentucky to San Diego, California.

I recently returned from a year working overseas in Equatorial Guinea, Africa.  I decided to take sometime off from working and take a road-trip in my truck camper, a 2002 Bigfoot on a Ford F350 DRW truck.  The best part about this trip is that I don’t have a set route or timeline (first time ever).   I know where I started, Lexington, Kentucky.  I know where I am eventually going to end-up, San Diego, California but other than that I am going to shot from the hip!

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ROAD TRIP 2011…….. Kentucky to California.

On May 15th I started a road trip from my home in Kentucky to San Diego, California in my truck and camper.  I do not want to hold myself to a strict timeline or route but rather decide as I travel.  I plan to update the blog every few days with new pictures.

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