Monthly Archives: March 2013

# 16 Phoenix – Just add water and hike

Nothing beats a good referral as they say in business. Equally as important nothing beats a good suggestion of great places to go for vacation and fun. Well as much as I enjoy giving my older brother a hard way to go. Today I have to give him a “high 5 ” for always talking about “The Zona”.

Even though he knows we are boat people, beach people, and bums. He also knows we value anywhere that is top shelf in the great outdoors. That combined with a great social and recreational environment creates a landscape for  exploration.

Recalling seven or eight years ago while visiting he brought us a book on Arizona and said you two have to go check this out “so get it on the list”. When people reiterate things with passion more than once, twice or five times you had better listen up, because chances are there is something worth while to see… I say if you are gambling on sending water people to the desert you must be holding a hand full of Aces knowing you are right.

Thanks big brother for dialing us in on these Mile Marker Memories. You just forgot to tell me that once I turn left off I-40 west onto I-17 south that the Ambassador III would drop like a rock from 7000′ to 1400′ in short order. And that folks is the difference between the mountains and the desert.

 

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# 15 Santa Fe slide show

With all the driving we do we really enjoy somewhere that you can park the car and walk around for hours taking it all in. Santa Fe is the perfect place for this. This  historic town has is all: museums, shopping, restaurant, and loads of art studios. Here is a small slide show we put together, check it out.

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# 14 Albuquerque High

Being in a metropolitan city surrounded by the beautiful  Sandia Mountains soaring almost 10,000′ in elevation, and with  Albuquerque itself at about 5600′ is defiantly a recipe for breathtaking views.  Regardless of how windy it can get this time of year. It is constantly having us saying look at this, look at that. I will not even try to go into explaining the history we have come to know. We will leave that to you and Google, or even better yet Southwest Airlines.  Now top it off with how ABQ has parlayed Historic Route 66 into the mix and they have our completed attention.

OK back to this wind thing, so we dodged most of the snow and made it out of Lubbock, however we notice the wind increasingly picking up like crazy in Fort Sumner, NM. We stopped to check and make sure “Billy The Kid” was still in his grave. Pam and I looked at each other…yep, done… were out of here.

Heading north up the highway to Sana Rosa the wind wearing me out broadsiding the van. A poor 18 wheeler in front of me is all over the place trying to keep it between the lines. We are talking 30-40 mile sustained winds for 80 miles while climbing up in elevation. Well as if that was not fun enough we made it to I-40 that was just reopened 2 hours earlier from the storm. Now we are heading on into 50 mile winds straight on. Now as we all know this is nothing new to this area, but it is all new to us at this level. Anyway 115 miles later we are at our new home for the week, and the wind is pretty much done and back to normal for the most part. It appears this is a cycle repeated every spring but hey, don’t worry about us starting to shake every time the fan kicks in. Now that we have seen how beautiful things are we are past it and kind of use to it.

As I write this the weather guys is calling for 55 MPH winds today.

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# 13 Dumb luck and Lubbock, TX

Since having our heads buried in the Hill Country for a few days. We figured like normal we would just circumnavigate our way to our next location, which was to be Amarillo and figure our accommodations out when we got there. After driving the first 150 miles and seeing only 6 cars we felt like we were in the middle of no where. Then all the sudden in Sweetwater we started seeing wind mills, wind mills and crazy amounts of windmills for miles and miles. We are talking a thousand plus and that’s just what we past.

We finally decided after 320 miles behind us and it being Saturday let’s  just go ahead and visit Lubbock for a couple of days and see what up. GOOD CALL, Amarillo got 18″ of snow and Interstate 40 shut down. We got 4″ in Lubbock and the highway to Clovis, NM we planned to take was closed too. The word they like to use for snow here is blizzard. Defined as a lot of damn wind, blowing snow, dirt and anything unattached around and in your way while driving… More on this wind thing later.

Well come to find out Lubbock has provided us with a lot of talented people we all have had the pleasure of enjoying for many years. Maybe you have heard of some of them…Buddy Holly,Mac Davis, Tanya Tucker, The Gatlin Brothers, Oh and some dudes name Waylon Jennings, and James Dean and many more. Lubbock is the home of the Cactus Theater, and Cactus Cuties.

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# 12 Let’s go to Luckenbach Texas

Like we said before, if you go to a fun city don’t focus in on it  so much that you miss what’s within a short drive a way. For us after 2 weeks of fun in San Antonio we moved  60 miles up the road to the “Hill Country” town of Fredericksburg. Settled by German immigrants in 1846. I will describe as the main hub for Luckenbach, the massive and beautiful Enchanted Rock, and just down the road in Stonewall where you will find the famed ” LBJ ‘s  Ranch AKA The Texas White House“. The area is equal distance away from both Austin and San Antonio, so if you ever visit either and want to take a ride it’s worth checking out. LBJ’s home makes me think of Graceland, you just got to love the 60’s and all the hi tech gadgets (let’s just say telephone obsession, and I thought my dad was bad) and decor, but no green shag carpet thanks to Lady Bird.

The area was so interesting we  spent 3 days canvasing it all, and really enjoyed getting lost on many of the back roads discovering ranches, more winery’s and scenic views. GPS find KOA… recalculating…when possible make a u turn.

The Hill Country is  a Texas Napa Valley waiting to happen with many first class locations well worth stopping in.

http://www.luckenbachtexas.com/

http://www.nps.gov/lyjo/planyourvisit/visitlbjranch.htm

http://www.fredericksburgtexas-online.com/

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