Friday, October 24, 2014

Arizona Adventures, Day 2

This trip was a little more exciting...almost too exciting.

Our trip through Oak Creek Canyon, to Sedona, was on winding roads that tend to make me very motion sick. Because of this, I decided to take a Dramamine before we left.

That left me a little loopy for the rest of the day.

Just as a warning. And explanation as far as some of these pictures and videos go.

So far, so good!
(Someone looks a wee bit grouchy...) 

Rolled through lots of elevation changes.
My ears were going crazy.

Lots of sleeping breaks in here. 

Where are we?
No clue.
Pretty though.

After a big nap, we made it to Sedona!
(By the way, I napped, Jalon drove. Just in case I needed to clarify that.)

This machine...
I wanted an actual paper fortune, as a souvenir.
Here's my reaction to that:
After all that napping, I really needed some coffee.
We had to hunt for some, but found the perfect spot to enjoy it!
So pretty!
Then Jalon takes this picture...
I look drugged.
Well, to be fair, I was.
After this, we went to Jerome, AZ.
A living ghost town.
Pretty cool.
Great views!

The toilet garden?
Kind of interesting...I guess.

I LOVED this building!

Really cool garden area.

Found lots of goodies inside!
Couldn't take pictures of the inside though.

Buildings that were original parts of the "ghost" town.
Lots of fun walking through here.
After this, we went to Black Canyon City, which is where Jalon grew up.
Pretty small, but it was cool to hear his stories and see his Grandpa!

Found an old Stage Stop in his town.
I was mad.
I really wanted to go inside.

Well, that's it for now.
That night we went back to a new hotel room, near family and hung out with them that night.
I went to a hockey game.
My first one.
I will share my experiences with that in another post...
I only have so much space here.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Adventures in Arizona- Day 1 Part 2

I'm just going to jump right in. After that hike back to the car, despite how long it felt it took, it was only noon. There was no way we were ready to call it a day.

But, we quickly realized that the Grand Canyon was only about 40 minutes away from us.

Well, why not?

(We had already been there, many years ago, but one time is never enough...)

The Grand Canyon!
I took a selfie to send to my son back in Minnesota.
I don't think he was impressed...

A giant,


in the ground.
Don't get me wrong.
It was beautiful and very cool.
But still...just a big hole.
A very popular big hole.
Time to go...

Damage from fires.

That hill looked like someone got hungry and just cleaned it off real quick.
Poor naked hill.

Very beautiful Aspens among the pine trees.

Jalon wanted a picture of the pretty trees, but he wouldn't actually stop the vehicle for a photo.
I had to stick my head out the window and hope for the best.
I got 2 photos out of 800,000,001 that turned out OK.
Pretty sure I didn't exaggerate that. 

On our way back down to Flagstaff, we found an old Pioneer Museum.
We really just wanted to see the train, but, turns out, they had more for us!
Like a creepy house/museum, full of weird stuff.
See Above: Buffalo head.
(You may not find that weird. However, I was confused as to why it was there in the first place. Did the Pioneers hunt those and save the heads? Did that one attack one of the pioneers? WHAT'S ITS STORY?!?)

They also had an authentic pioneer house to explore.

Pretty neat.
Pretty darn small.
Still, give me a book and I could do it.
(For a few days...I would seriously miss my Target.)

Inside the train caboose.
Jalon wanted to see the bathroom.
I hope this isn't being used anymore.
We were exploring this caboose and I had some extra "air" that was trying to escape.
(Not sure if you get where I'm going. Just in case, we call it a toot here.)
Unfortunately, we were not alone.
There was a random man wandering around the train at this time.
(Of course there was...)
I felt as if I could have powered this train, with all that "wind" I was carrying around.

(Just in case you were worried, I felt better by this point. And yes, that means I tooted. Probably in this picture.)

Adorable, aren't we?
Despite my powerful "wind" he still loves me.
Shortly after this, we found a hotel, showered and decided to hunt for gluten free food.
We scored BIGTIME!
Check that out!
I'm going to write the owner and plead with him to open more!
I really, really, really, need one of these next to my house.
Here was my food:
See that?
Gluten free and organic.
I was in HEAVEN!

Oooooh...just looking at this is making me hungry!
It was a Cajun pasta. (Warning: Major spice factor)
Gluten free.
They had 2 things that weren't gluten free on the menu.
I almost moved in.
If it weren't for the fact that Arizona is 800 degrees F. year round, I would.
Day 2 is tomorrow!
Are you excited?
Well, try to be, ok?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Arizona Adventures- Day 1, Part 1

Arizona is slightly more interesting than I originally thought.

Which means, we crammed a TON of places into a few days. It was a blast!

Well, for the most part.

Technically, our "first" day was flying and arriving. Thursday, we flew out of Minnesota at 2:30. Arrived in Arizona around 4. Luggage took awhile. Then our rental car was a good hour wait. It was around 6 when we arrived at my brother-in-law and sister-in-laws place. After a delicious dinner out and hitting up a Whole Foods, we weren't left with a ton of time.

They let us crash at their place for the night before we headed north for our big adventures. (Thank you for that!)

We started pretty early. I think we left the house around 7:30. It was going to take a bit to get where we wanted to go.

I think I'm just going to share some of the pictures from the first part of that day, because they will tell it better than I can.
On our way out!
You can see my hair blowing.
So weird having windows down in October.
It was beautiful out!

Hot air balloons!
Sorry, I'm a simple person.

Not sure if you can see the giant spider web.
Thank God no spider.
Must have been human sized.

Montezuma Castle
"Well preserved cliff dwelling, built by prehistoric Sinagua Indians in A.D. 1100."
Postcard reference for those that are curious.
I wanted to go inside.
They watch pretty closely too.
No easy way up that hill.

Some sort of bird dwelling on the underside of the cliff.

It was neat to see the walls built into different areas of the cliff.

One of the openings held a hive.
Very large hive.
There was a sign that said, "Ancient bees here. If chased, please run."

Not sure if your supposed to do that...
must have been snack time.
He's so weird.
Don't feed the animals!

What the castle looked like on the inside.

More driving north. Saw some "fog".
Turned out to be smoke?
Lots of fires up here.
Kind of sad to see that.

My chip bag was on the verge of exploding.
We kept creeping up in elevation.
"Popchips" was going to take on a whole new meaning.

Our second stop of the day, Red Mountain.
Volcano time! 

1.3 miles of hiking to get in there.

Cactus that you can eat?
There are brown balls of fruit that grow on it.
You can make jelly with it.
But pass.

After what felt like years of walking, we reached the good part!

Not sure what he's doing here...weirdo.
We climbed a portion of the rock.
Not a good plan.
Easier to climb than it is to get down.
I roll easily.

So very beautiful!

Jalon decided to explore up high.
Due to my "rolling" I felt it was safer for everyone if I just stayed put.

See him waving?
I barely got this picture.
I was being hunted by a stray wasp.
I spent the next 5 minutes sprinting around the cave area.

Another pretty view.

Hiding inside some sort of hole.
Looked like a waterfall area...when Arizona has water.
Does that actually happen?
I have my doubts.

I found an elephant!
Time to go.
So hot.
So tired.
After all that rolling, escaping bees and hiking, I was ready to head out.
That's it for Day 1, Part 1.
I have too many pictures and don't want to be too boring.
The rest of the days aren't that exciting, just so you know.
I'm way too lazy for all that jazz.