WHERE IN THE WORLD IS ERIN? (you can zoom in!!!)

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Saturday, September 19, 2009

Donkeys may not sleep in bathtubs...

Believe it or not, this is actually a current law. In Arizona, it is illegal for donkeys to sleep in bathtubs. This is just one of the many facts that we learned while doing a bit of research for a quick trip across the Mohave desert.
We arrived in Desert Hot Springs on Tuesday night, after a longer than anticipated drive from Los Angeles. Word to the wise: DO NOT take a flight into LA and plan to drive in RUSH HOUR!!! OMG!!  It was insane...it took us nearly 2 hours on the freeway to move a total of 20 miles!! Never again will I make that mistake. Anyhow, we got to Owen's mom's house after a lengthly 4.5 hour drive and a much needed stop at my favourite american fast food joint: Rubios. If you haven't had Rubios you are seriously missing out. Fish tacos to kill for!
After arriving in DHS and having a lazy day in the 45 degree heat with Karen, Owen's mom, we started to plan a quick 2 day excursion to go see the Grand Canyon in Arizona. We figured we would be able to make it there and back with only a one night stayover. We did it...but it was tight.
We departed from DHS at 5:30am on Thursday morning and started driving through the desert. We decided that we were going to take the scenic back route and make our way to the Grand Canyon then down to Sedona to camp. We ended up driving the old Route 66 highway. We were literally the only car on the road pretty much the whole way. We made a point of taking an extra few hours to drive through an old ghost town that "refuses to die" called Oatman.
Oatman is apparently famous for being haunted by Clark Gable, as well as for being over run with wild and not so wild Burrows (donkeys!) They are said to roam the streets of the old town to the extent that it is hard to drive a car down the road. As we approached Oatman, we were greeted with "watch out for Donkey" signs, and signs warning to not feed the animals, so I was just a litte more than disappointed when we arrived in the town centre without sight of a single burrow. We got out of the car and walked around. Still no burrows. So we decided to leave and continue on our way...We saw signs all over the town with a carrot with a cross through it, that read: "Do not feed the donkeys with this sticker on their heads, they will choke to DEATH. Do not remove the stickers from their heads!"  My guess is that too many people removed too many stickers and ALL the donkeys choked to death, so now Oatman has no donkeys.
So on from Oatman to the Grand Canyon. We drove for a total of 8 hours, and finally arrived at our destination. The charge for admission to the park was reasonable at $25 per car and was valid for 7 days. They give you a little map and let you do your thing. We parked the car (for FREE!) and walked towards the "south rim" really couldn't see anything except for trees, and I thought that we were still quite far from actually seeing anything, when all of a sudden (YES! ALL OF A SUDDEN!) the ground opened up into one of the most spectacular sights I have ever seen. The grand canyon really is quite amazing. It is nice that the state of Arizona really hasn't let the beauty of something so unique be taken over by vendors and attractions. I was pleasantly surprised that the park layout was very basic, with a narrow paved path parallel to the rim. Owen and I found a nice little outcropping hanging out over the canyon, and upon further inspection, noticed that we could climb down to a small ledge about 8 or so feet below us. That was our lunch spot. It was amazing. No people, and only the view of the canyon. We were very soon joined by a curious little squirrel who no doubt wanted our food and was by no means shy. I swear he would have hopped right up on our laps had we let him get that near.

After a few hours at the Canyon, we decided to head 2 hours south to Sedona, home of the mystical red rock canyons. Our plan was to camp overnight along the oak creek, which is said to have mystical healing properties. That didn't quite work out. 2 of the 4 campground were closed and the remaining 2 were over capacity.Bummer. We ended up driving for about 4 more hours before finding somewhere to camp. We settled ourselves atop a long winding mountain road above the eerie town of Jerome. It was cold, we were tired.

I didn't sleep a wink, so we were up early, on our way to Las Vegas to try to find Owen some shoes...haha...yes, that is the ONLY reason we were going there. We detoured on our way to vegas to drive over the Hoover Dam, and let me tell you, it really isn't that spectacular. At least I didn't think so. We moved on quickly and arrived in a sweltering hot Las Vegas around noon. We shopped for a few hours then left for home... well... owen's moms home.
We again decided to opt to take the scenic route home. We drove down an old road through the middle of the Mohave National Reserve. Again, the only car on the road, for a very LOOOOOONG time.  The drive was really cool. We came across a random group of sand dunes, a volcanic crater, and a forest of Joshua trees.
Now we are back in DHS. 3 states, 37 hours and 2495KM later. I dont want to sit in a car anymore. Thankfully, we'll be in mexico in a few days, car free!!!

Until then, xoxo
(Hope my drawn out account didnt bore you all!)


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