Wednesday, April 07, 2021

Homolovi, Bluewater Lake, and Standing on the Corner in Winslow, AZ

 Our first stop after leaving our friends was Winslow, Arizona where we did stand on the corner and generally took it easy. Our camping spot for the night was Homolovi State Park nearby. Over 300 Ancestral Puebloan, Archeological sites are protected there, inhabited from 1260 to 1400 AD by ancestors of the Hopi people. We had made reservations in advance for dinner at the Turquoise Room at La Posada's Hotel in Winslow and it was an amazing meal. The hotel was the last of the Harvey hotels built and designed by Mary Coulter in 1929. It was rescued from the wrecking ball and restored to its former glory and then some. It feels like a museum but an inviting one. We'd love to come back and stay there someday. 

The atmospheric Standing on the Corner in Winslow, Arizona statue and mural. 

Our next stop was Bluewater Lake State Park in New Mexico. But we took the long way around to get there passing Route 66 several times and visiting both the Petrified Forest National Park which includes the Painted Desert. This was really fascinating and we were sorry we didn't have more time to do additional hiking, but we did the loop trail at the Visitor's Center and learned a lot about the origin of this geological wonder. Unfortunately, the museums in both parks were closed but we traveled the full length of the parks. The Painted Desert Inn, one of the museums, was built by the CCC from 1937 to 1940 and was renovated by Mary Coulter and run as a Harvey House from 1947 to 1963. In the parking lot there we experienced first hand a "dust devil". First tumbleweeds started flying through the air and dancing around, then suddenly a tornado of dust descended first on a surprised family next to their van and then ourselves. Seeing the family first warned me to keep my head down and eyes closed, but we were picking the twigs and dust out of our hair and off our clothes for a while.

A live musician played in one of the many living areas at La Posada Hotel in Winslow.

We arrived around 5 PM at Bluewater Lake and had our first main problem parking the trailer. It was a back-in site and right on a sharp corner. We managed to get into a position around a large rock that did not allow us to proceed further. After a long discussion and a few attempts, we sought the assistance of the Park Ranger, Mark. This is a well-equipped State Park! Mark drove a backhoe over, fastened a chain around the rock, added the strong towing strap Scott had luckily brought with us and pulled it away from our rig. By the way, Mark also was personally equipped as well as a SWAT team member - gun, handcuffs, bulletproof vest, etc. This was the first time we'd seen that uniform but Mark assured us it was standard.

Mark and his backhoe move a very large rock that had become wedged between our truck and trailer.

We hiked down to the lake the next morning. Unfortunately, it was cloudy and like Lake Mead, had very low water. The boat ramp looked like a plane could land on it. Lots of fishermen were enjoying themselves, however, from the shore. Scott wasn't tempted to have a swim! We were off next to Santa Fe, my next post.

La Posada mixes antiques with modern paintings
by contemporary artists.

Another living room

Scott and I in the obligatory photo

The restaurant across the street

It's a girl, My Lord, in a flatbed Ford

Homolovi means "little hills" in the Hopi language. The settlements were built on top of these to protect them from the seasonal floods of the Little Colorado River nearby.

Wild burros can cause real damage to the habitat
depended upon by native wildlife.

Pottery fragments were scattered everywhere and 
many were picked up and set on rocks throughout
the ruins

The largest cellar hole in Homolavi that has 
remained mostly intact

Route 66 is defined by "kitsch"

This polished rock was just one
among hundreds of all sizes at the
biggest of the Petrified Wood
Companies we saw, Jim Gray's.

Besides the beautiful petrified wood, there was 
lots of "kitsch".

You can get a feel for the size of some of the 
petrified logs here. Now we are actually in the
National Forest.

One of the logs just lying on the

Viewpoint on the road through the Park

A piece of red petrified wood just sticks out of
the ground here.

Here's a view of the Painted Desert, which is part of the National Park and photos just don't do it
justice, at least our's.

The Painted Desert Inn, now closed.

A view along the highway as we enter into New
Mexico on Route 40.

That tiny black piece most of the way up the
boat ramp on the right is Heather. Scott took
this from the water's edge of Bluewater

And here's the lake itself, much dimished.

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