Day 8, Amarillo to Tucumcari. Canyon and Cadillacs
19/8/11 woke up in Amarillo, Texas.
After experiencing the Big Texan Steak the day before, I was ready for more of the BIG THING in Texas. The largest state amongst 48, the things in Texas have to be large. I always associated this part of the world with tall guys with a space for the horse between their legs, but that may be the side effect of watching Lucky Luke when I was younger.
Even though Amarillo is one of the largest towns on 66 with plenty to offer, we decided to venture further afield to a town called Canyon, or more precisely, to the actual Palo Duro Canyon, just south of Amarillo. It’s impressive, yet accessible and not as overwhelming as the Grand Canyon. The bright red cliffs are stunning. The Canyon runs for many miles and is hundreds of feet deep, with drive through of about 16 miles. We took some great shots, but since the temperature at the bottom was over 120 Fahrenheit , we didn’t stay there all day.
From there we headed to the Floating Mesa. It’s an art installation that creates an illusion of a natural feature, a mesa, that has been “slashed” horizontally so that the top seems to be “hoovering above the base with no visual support. It must have been to cloudy for the instalation o be at it’s best as it just looked.. well.. it was not very impressive for neither me or Shane.
Our next stop was the Cadillac Ranch. It’s a famous site on 66, featured in countless music videos and pics. It has been moved to it’s current location in 1997, 20 years after the original placement. The cars are half buried in the sand, and even though there is a sign “no painting”, everyone seems to be coming here to leave their mark. There are hundreds of empty spray paint cans scattered around the field. Leah loved it.
I am happy she enjoyed herself as this is the only form of vandalism she is ever going to be allowed to do under our supervision!
We had a blast, but the evening was approaching quickly, so we hit the road again, with a brief stop in Adrian, which is suppose to be the half way between Chicago and LA, so half way through our 66 adventure!
We managed to get the last room at historic Motel Blue Swallow in Tucumcari.
Leah and Shane were not too impressed at the beginning, but it turned out to be the comfiest night’s sleep on the route so far!