Start: March 8, 9:00am in Page, Az
End: March 8, 9:00pm in Holbrook, Az
Yesterday was inexplicably incredible, seeing the Grand Canyon and feeling a sense of accomplishment for having reached our final destination, but the adventures don’t stop there! As we travel back to Georgia over the next couple days, we have plenty of sites to see along the way. Today marks our last day in Arizona, and we have a full schedule to soak up every last minute in this beautiful state.
To start the day off, we got in Archie (what we’ve decided to name our hard-working Nissan Altima) and drove north to Utah where we of course stopped to snap a picture as we crossed the state line.
Our first destination today was The Wave in Marble Canyon, Az, which is a repeated pattern of layered red, orange, and white rock that blends in a wave-like formation to look like a sea of rock. Unfortunately, we were unable to see it due to the need of a pass 24 hours in advance, but that didn’t hold us back from enjoying the beauty around The Wave. After twists and turns, winding down a bumpy, middle-of-nowhere dirt road to get to the trails leading to The Wave, we embarked on a 4 mile hike along the Wire Pass Trailhead. Although we wish we could have witnessed the natural wonder of The Wave, we soaked in the beautiful scenery of red and orange rock, green flora, and the glowing sunshine. Not only was it great exercise after being in a car for the past few days, it was also a great chance to just stop and see Arizona. We’d seen national sites and popular hotspots like the Grand Canyon and Phoenix, but we hadn’t gotten the opportunity to be in the middle of nowhere and just take in the state’s natural beauty.
Around 2:00pm, we dusted off and hopped back in Archie to tackle the crazy dirt road we drove on to get here. Finally reaching a steady pavement, we were back on the highway and driving towards Horseshoe Bend, a site that Mary had been looking forward to all day. Once we got there, I understood why. A horseshoe-shaped meander of the Colorado River, its unique formation, immense depth, and flowing water make it yet another one of Arizona’s natural wonders. Standing at the top of the cliff, you could see far and wide out into Arizona. The rocky ground glowed orange under the sun, and I felt incredibly lucky to be there (I guess it was the horseshoe).
We also wore matching outfits, because what’s a group road trip without matching outfits?
As the day was winding down, there was just one stop left before we got to our final sleeping location for the night. Yet another dirt road in the middle of nowhere, we turned down it in search of the White Mesa Arch. However, this dirt road made the last one feel like a joy ride. We’re positive that at one point good ole’ Archie was driving sideways along a slanted mound. But it wasn’t without some reward. The White Mesa Arch is an intriguing arch within a mountainous rock that, when the sun shined through it, was a stunning scene.
Today was a long day filled with hiking beautiful trails, off-roading in Archie, and more great conversations in the car. Leaving the middle of nowhere and entering a somewhat less middle of nowhere town, we pulled into the Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Az. What’s a wigwam? So glad you asked. It’s an Indian tipi, and we got to sleep in one. Possibly one of the best decisions we’d made on this trip, sleeping in a wigwam was exciting and quaint, and we got great t-shirts out of it.
Tomorrow begins our second longest road trip as we travel from Holbrook, Az to Columbia, Mo, crossing through New Mexico, Texas, and Oklahoma. We’ve still got some great things planned for a break in between, and with great company like Mary, Taylor, and Devin, 18 hours in a car will go by in no time (or so we tell ourselves).