GAWA2011, Day Five: Hello from the Desert

Vegas looked a bit less sinful by morning light. On our way out of town, we stopped at a grocery store to pick up the day’s food rations: rolls, cheese, and Fuji apples. Feeling decidedly European, we munched on bread and cheese and we drove southeast.

We also drank plenty of water along the way, because of all the ways to die in the West (and there are a lot of them!), dehydration is the silent killer.

It's fun to hydrate!

Also, here's a Roadtripping Word to the Wise: if you are going to keep cheese in your car, invest in a cooler or eat it all in one go. Just trust us on this one.

A few miles out of Vegas, we began seeing signs for the Hoover Dam. Allissa became strangely excited about the prospect of seeing it; however, since we hadn’t planned sufficiently ahead nor understood the very clearly marked signs along the way, we merely drove over the top of the dam rather than getting a good view of it. Still, Alissa took a classic souvenir picture of the guard rail, so that counts for something.

On the drive between Vegas and Flagstaff, we were once again stunned by the view. Having lived in Florida for over twenty years, I find that it doesn't take much now by way of natural scenery to stun me: a mere change in elevation or the sight of mountains of any kind seems to do the trick.

Welcome to Arizona!

At any rate, when the scenery didn’t have us riveted , Alissa read aloud from The Loneseome Gods. Also, I drove over my first tumbleweed at this time. The excitement was palpable.

Upon our arrival in Flagstaff, we bypassed the city and drove straight out to Wupatki National Monument and something something Sunset Crater, where we played among lava floes and 11th century adobe ruins.

Alissa Climbs the Lava Flows

Land Ho!

Hello from the desert

Wupatki National Monument


Fortunately, the wind did not blow us away.

Wind Tunnel


Sunny with a chance of hair

Our hotel being along “historic” Route 66 should have lent it some charm; however, I’m sorry to say that it was, in a word, a dump. We locked ourselves in our room at The Knight's Inn well before sunset and settled down to hope that our little red VW would still be there in the morning.

It was.

See the rest of the Day 5 pics HERE.


  1. I like the picture of the reflection in the sunglasses!

  2. I suspect there is not a single Knight's Inn that is NOT a dump. We locked ourselves in ours too. And turned off the blinking Christmas lights strung up on the circular bed because they were driving us nuts.

  3. Reflection pictures are fun, and require a patient model... fortunately, I am generally blessed with patient people in my life. :)

    I would like to say that I have made a decision not to stay in any more dumpy motels, but... it's either travel on a shoestring budget or travel a lot less. Seems to be a no-brainer.


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