After leaving the Hoover Dam behind it was on to Kingman for supplies and lunch. Allegiant, the airline we flew with, charges hefty baggage fees, so we purchased most of our incidentals rather than packing another bag. One of the amusing sights in Kingman was this bumper sticker.
On the one hand, I think it is funny that the parents are living it up. They worked for it, they deserve it. On the other hand, the fact that they are driving around a Ford 350 in Kingman, AZ makes me think that maybe they aren’t set for their own retirement and will be saddling their children with financial woes later on (decidedly not funny).
Either way, it’s not my problem so we’ll move right along. Kingman presents a fork in the road decision when traveling East. You can either stay on the interstate or you can take the road less travelled, historic route 66..
As you may have guessed, we opted for route 66. The detour adds about 30 minutes to the drive and I would like to tell you that it was romantic, scenic, and full of interesting curios, but that would be a lie. Unless you are like Shae, and despise traffic, stick to the interstate and save yourself 30 minutes.
Eventually we reached Williams, a small town 30-45 minutes due south of GCNP, Grand Canyon National Park. We stopped in Williams for a pee break and for ice cream. Frugal Boy had never had a frozen dairy product before (at least to my knowledge) and thought it was a capital idea!
The last leg up to the park is mildly annoying as it is a two lane stretch of highway that serves the busiest NP in the nation. Seeing trains of cars stuck behind a slow moving camper is a common sight and experience.
Upon gaining admission to the park, we motored on towards my brother’s (Ed) apartment (he works there) and promptly ran into yet another traffic snafu. This time it was tourists blocking the road so they could take pictures of an bull elk that was grazing on the shoulder. The ‘wild’life in most national parks is far tamer than what it should be due to a lack of hunting and frequent handouts from well meaning, but uneducated visitors.
Enough of my complaining. We met up with my brother and had enough time before dinner to take a quick walk to the rim.
We had brought along the monkey backpack/leash for the airports and canyon. The only time we used it the entire trip was that first night at the canyon. My brother was telling us how vacationers lost their filters and would say and do inappropriate things that they normally wouldn’t do in regular life. So it came as no surprise when a group of tourists started pointing at Frugal Boy and taking pictures of him with his backpack on. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
The next day, Frugal Boy needed to burn off some wiggles so I set him loose outside Ed’s apartment. He discovered pine cones for the first time and thought the brightly colored fire hydrant was playground equipment.
That day we drove down to Flagstaff so we could rendezvous with my other brother, Matt, and his family who were driving all the way from home.
Ed hadn’t been to Walnut Canyon yet so we decided to check that out. Walnut Canyon is an abandoned Native American cliff dwellers site. It is kind of like Mesa Verde except on a tiny scale and markedly less interesting.
After completing the short trail loop that takes you down among the dwellings and back up to the visitors center, Ed remembered that he had been here during an ancient family vacation and it was equally less impressive in child’s eyes as it was in adults.