I decided to drive to Phoenix via CA 78 rather than straight using I 10. It’s all about adventure and interstates just don’t seem adventurous. Anyway, it was a bit adventurous, but we’ll get to that later.
I started through a dry mountain scene, which was lovely but windy so not a lot of pictures.
But then I got into the sand dunes, which were really cool. I stopped at a pull-off to take some pictures…
And got stuck in the only patch of sand that was on the parking lot. Luckily just at that moment a Jeep pulled up (with a winch if necessary) and the guys pushed me out. I feel like this was karmic repayment for the overturned Jeep incident last week. In reality I could have dug myself out, but it was nice to not have to as it was 108 degrees. It is also amazing that there happened to be someone at that viewpoint at that time, because I saw almost no cars. So there you go, and here is a picture of the sand pile.
Then I hit more rocky mountains and my first ever saguaro cacti, there is the picture. When I saw them I started cheering. It was a very exciting moment for me.
Then I stopped in Buckeye, AZ to check out the local history museum, which was closed, and the Hobo Joe statue that is very large.
It is monsoon season in the south west, which I didn’t realize, so my wettest time was in the desert. On the plus side, it has created some amazing cloud formations.
Bryan and I did some work at the local Barnes & Noble.
And then we tried to go see some ruins but it ended up being much too late, so I went the next day to the Sears Kay ruins. They were built by the Hohokam around 900 years ago. This was my first opportunity to see Native American ruins, but definitely not my last. These were really exciting for me and reminded me of my tour of medieval ruins in the UK a couple years ago.
It also afforded excellent views of the valley.
This side trip was on my way to the Grand Canyon, which *spoiler alert* is very grand. I think I took roughly 250 pictures, so I’ll have to try to limit the ones I post. I also went to the petrified forest, which was pretty cool. So you have that to look forward to.