Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Day 4: Cadillac Ranch, TX to Great Sand Dunes National Park, CO

We slept in Amarillo, and got up early to head west. This was our big driving day. So, Ant Farm's Cadillac Ranch is just outside the city limits, and we decided to stop by it. I was shocked by the police presence and just sheer number of people there! It turned out to be Larry Frederick's Life Across America ride through Amarillo. He is a retired policeman who was injured in the line of duty and saved by blood transfusions. He rode across the United States on his bicycle as a nationwide blood drive. Please, go on out and donate blood or plasma and support this great cause!

We also decided to support Tavolini ;)

We headed west...on super, super back roads. I have always been a fan of paper maps, AAA maps to be specific. (Rand McNally, I'm sorry--but you are not nearly as accurate) I do have to say, over the course of this trip, I found that GPS is even more dedicated to finding rural routes than I ever was with my box of AAA maps. What can I say---I'm impressed!

Fine dining outside the Valero station. Tavo opted for deli meat and some cheese...

..and I went for my Grandpa's favorite fishing snack--sardines in hot sauce ;)

Gratuitous New Mexico shot in honor of Christo. Yep, we were in your home state for a couple minutes ;)

Then we hit our destination, Great Sand Dunes National Park in Mosca, Colorado. So beautiful! They backed up to the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, which are the southernmost subrange of the Rocky Mountains.

It's bear country, and the ranger SCARED me to death by saying that bears can tell what coolers are and that they have food in them....even if they're in my car! (lol......I think he was pulling my leg??!!)
Our view. Can you believe this?? I really was amazed. Okay--I'll be honest. I kind of wanted to stop and just stay here for the rest of the week. It was THAT beautiful. Seriously.

(Only drawback? No showers. We found this out AFTER playing in the dunes and hiking all over and getting really filthy and sweaty. Well, there are always baby wipes...)

Our view. OUR VIEW!!! We fell asleep and woke up to this!!!

After setting up camp, we went hiking all over the dunes. This is so fun!

Then we went back to our campsite. Camping and food to come!


doggybloggy said...

I have sprayed the cadillacs a couple of times but I am sure my tags are well covered over....thanks for the NM shout out.....

The Blonde Duck said...

I've always wanted to go to Cadillac Ranch! How cool!

Anonymous said...

Love the dune photos!

Marjie said...

Good thing you both tan. I'd be the color of Tavo's shirt after about 15 minutes, and that's no joke. One of my idiot sons has moved to Arizona, and I know he's going to die of sunstroke one of these days.

Great pictures! Love your travelogue. (From another AAA atlas lover)

TavoLini said...

Doggy--we went back through New Mexico, too ;) The layers of paint on those cars is quite ridiculous!

Blonde--Don't you live in TX??!! It is such a huge, beautiful state :)

Leo--Thanks, girl!!

Marjie--yeah, we tan but my nose does otherwise ;) I love AAA maps--I have used them exclusively for many road trips! Visit him in the dead of that New England winter and take tons of sunblock :D

Jenn said...

I've always wanted to see those cadillacs. lol.

I love the landscape photos. Just goes to show the beauty of nature. :)

Joslyn said...

What gorgeous photos! I have always wanted to be in sand like that;) So fun to see your adventures!!