No. AZ Road Trip Day 2 – Holbrook to Chinle 
Thursday, November 26, 2009, 11:21 PM
Posted by Administrator
While waiting for our host to fry up an astonishing amount of bacon, we wandered around the gorgeous backyard, which is sometimes used for weddings, and checked out the banquet space, which had a previous life as a steakhouse and, before that, an airplane hangar.





While enjoying the bacon, served with omelets and biscuits, we were entertained by our hosts' stories of their lives in Holbrook, as well as slightly offended by their use of ethnic terms suggestive of a past generation…or two.

We started our travels with a stop at Jim Gray’s Petrified Wood Company to check out his impressive collection of rocks, as well as some museum-worthy fossils. This particular specimen warranted a photo, not so much for its beauty as for that little white sticker. It reads “$24,000.”



The next few hours were spent driving the 28-mile scenic stretch through the Petrified Forest and Painted Desert, a road which we thought would be perfect for a marathon course. We pulled over periodically to take in the spectacular views, petroglyphs, ruins and, of course, the forest which has turned to rock over the past 250 million years.







After exiting the scenic drive, we were ready for lunch. If you’ve read reports of our past trips, then you know that we are pleasure eaters. We love fresh, flavorful, healthy food and we enjoy discovering truly local fare. However, in the Navajo Nation, the foods of choice seem to be Indian tacos and Navajo fry bread. And so, we decided that, on this trip, we would have to put pleasure aside and become survival eaters. Luckily, we happened upon a Subway just down the road. It’s not fine cuisine, but you always know exactly what you’re getting.

Our next stop was a quick one at the Hubbell Trading Post. If you’ve never been to a trading post, then this might be a compelling attraction, but we didn’t spend much time browsing the collection of rugs and rifles.



Just before sunset, we reached our final stop of the day, Canyon de Chelly. Thinking it would be a great advantage, I had made reservations at the only lodging inside the park, Thunderbird Lodge. As it turns out, there are a few chain hotels right outside the park that I’m confident would have been newer, cleaner and more comfortable than Thunderbird.

After reading some bad reviews of the Thunderbird cafeteria, we decided to head just down the road to the Holiday Inn (where we should have stayed) for a fairly good dinner with fairly bad service. Alcohol is not permitted in the Navajo Nation, but this restaurant did offer several varieties of non-alcoholic beer and wine. We passed. I don’t want the calories if I can’t have the buzz.
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