Saturday – May 28, 2016
Twin Arrows Casino Resort
We spent a wonderful two days exploring the Canyon de Chelly National Monument in Chinle, Arizona. Based on a spur-of-the-moment decision, this visit proved to be one of our most memorable adventures.
After a hearty breakfast at the Navajo Indian operated Denny’s in Chinle, we were off to explore new territory in Northern Arizona. Our Arizona Atlas showed Arizona Highway 264 as a scenic route. Even though this added considerable extra mileage to our route to Flagstaff, we could not resist the urge to explore scenic route 264. We were not disappointed!
Along route 264, the traveler is introduced to the Hopi Indian Tribe and their culture. Indian communities along this route are separated by Mesa’s. As you descend from atop one Mesa into a magnificent, panoramic view of an expansive valley, perhaps a thousand feet below, several miles ahead is the ascent onto the next Mesa.
Arizona Highway 264 ends at Tuba City, Arizona, where the traveler picks up U.S. Highway 160. This is an appropriate place to refuel, before continuing on your journey. We stopped for fuel at the TUUVI Travel Center. To my amazement, I spotted a sign there that advertised they had fresh made FryBread (two pieces for $6.00). Sharon made a dash inside and purchased two pieces. We washed them down with a caramel frappe from McDonalds. While we were in Chinle, we searched in vain for FryBread while on the Navajo Reservation. We finally found some while in the Hopi Indian Tribe section of Arizona. Life is good!
We made a stop at the Walmart in Flagstaff to pick up a prescription for Sharon. While traveling south on U. S. Highway 89, about fifteen miles north of Flagstaff, I spotted a sign for the Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument. They have a campground there, so we decided to go back north on U.S. Highway 89 and check it out. The campground was crowded, but there were still six campsites available. There was very little privacy between campsites, so we elected to exercise our Plan B – Twin Arrows Casino Resort. We were able to view the Sunset Crater Volcano… so that made the trip worthwhile.
Sunset Crater is a cinder cone and is the youngest in a string of volcanoes that is related to the nearby San Francisco Peaks. The date of the eruptions that formed the 1,120-foot high cone was initially derived from tree-ring dates, suggesting the eruption began between the growing seasons of A.D. 1064–1065. However, more recent geologic and archaeological evidence places the eruption around A.D. 1085. The largest vent of the eruption, Sunset Crater itself, was the source of the Bonito and Kana-a lava flows that extended about 1.6-miles northwest and 6 miiles northeast, respectively. Additional vents along a 6.2-mile fissure extending southeast produced small spatter ramparts and a 4 mile-long lava flow to the east. The Sunset Crater eruption produced a blanket of ash and lapilli covering an area of more than 810 square miles and forced the temporary abandonment of settlements of the local Sinagua people. The volcano has partially revegetated, with pines and wildflowers. Since the last eruption of the volcano is a recent occurrence, it is considered dormant by volcanologists. (credit: wikipedia)
We arrived at the Twin Arrows Casino Resort to find immense, separate parking areas for RV’s and Semi-Trucks. We secured a secluded spot in an area with other RV’s. This will be our home for the night. Did I mention… overnight parking is free, with 24-hour roaming security! Thank you Twin Arrows Casino Resorts!
Tomorrow another adventure begins.
Departed: Chinle, Arizona
Departure Time: 10:30 A.M.
Arrived: Flagstaff, Arizona
Arrival Time: 6:15 P.M.
Camping Site: Twin Arrows Casino Resort (I-40, Exit 219)
Cellular Service: Verizon – 4G-2 Bars
Internet Service: Verizon Jetpack – 5 Bars
Dish TV Satellite Service: Excellent Service
Total miles traveled today: 293
South on U.S. Highway 191
West on Arizona Highway 264
West on U.S. Highway 160
South on U.S. Highway 89
East on Interstate 40 to Exit 219