So at morning light we are wide awake and ready to break camp. On the road by 7:30, we are discussing if we should drive more directly or cut over and go to a town called The Gap. We decide it’s not worth the drive just to say that we did in fact “Fall into The Gap” (okay that reference may be a bit old for some of you). It’s a good thing we decided to take the more direct route otherwise we would have missed Bedrock City. This is a true replica (can you say that?) of how the Flintstones might have lived. It had to all be designed by drawings as unfortunately we have no true artifacts from that fabled, long gone city. There is a gift shop (of course there is) and you can pay five dollars to walk through the actual city (we chose to decline). We had a blast just taking photos in the parking lot.
Back on the 180 heading to Flagstaff, Thomas has a Cranberry Apple Cherry Clif Bar and says it reminds him of Captain Crunch Crunchberry. Wow he’s instantly seven years old again, watching the Flintstones and eating his favorite cereal. The route is absolutely beautiful, traveling through Ponderosa Pines and Aspen trees; we hit the summit at 8046 feet.
Not sure we were expecting anything from Flagstaff but it turns out to be a quaint city with an adorable historic downtown district. This marks the fourth city from the Route 66 song that we have seen. Obviously a launching pad for skiing and other outdoor sports as it had a number of sporting goods stores, one of which we picked up a new French press. Yeah we brought a huge bag of coffee but forgot the espresso maker. We drove around the city and got some great shots of old hotels.
From Flagstaff, we hopped back on I-40 making our way east again, destination Winslow. Yes this city has been popularized by a song but not the Route 66 one. We head to “Standing on the Corner…” where the Eagles song “Take It Easy” is now immortalized, complete with a mural, a statue of a dude holding a guitar and an actual flatbed Ford parked nearby. Photos are of course necessary and Thomas calls his sister Kathy (obviously an Eagles fan) to let her know where we are standing. We buy her some earrings shaped like a Route 66 sign with the verbiage, “Standing on a corner in Winslow Arizona”; also a lapel pin for Frank.
The Old Trails Museum is located in Winslow and it houses some great historic photos and artifacts. It also tells the story of the Harvey Houses and the girls who made their way west to work in them (remember the Judy Garland movie, The Harvey Girls? Of course you do, you big mo!). We spoke to the curator and she told us how she ended up in Winslow from Mississippi – turns out her husband is in law enforcement and he got a job there; now he’s retired and she’s bringing home the bacon. She said she was born in Mobile, AL probably at the same hospital as Thomas’ dad (apparently it was the only one around when she was born in the fifties so it was likely the only one when he was born in the twenties).
We had lunch at Rosa’s, an Italian restaurant recommended by the lady who helped us at the gift shop and it turned out to be excellent. Thomas had the pesto chicken sandwich and Frank had an Italian sausage (watch the comments there) sandwich that was so juicy he had to eat it with knife and fork (like the French eat their burgers, eh Brenda?).
Back on the I-40, we make a stop at Jackrabbit Trading Post for some ice and sodas. They have a billboard with a picture of the jackrabbit and a sign saying “Here it is” so there we were taking photos on and with the jackrabbit.
We were originally going to stay at the Wigwam Motel in Holbrook but upon arrival decided against that. It was still early in the day and Holbrook was pretty barren so we opted for some snaps of the motel instead. Recognize the set-up? It was the inspiration for the cone hotel in the movie “Cars”. We did a quick spin around Holbrook and then moseyed along across the AZ border into NM and on to Gallup.