Day 2 – Tucson to Pinos Altos Cabins

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This is me this morning on the porch of the Blue Cabin!  61 degrees, enjoying the view and the wildlife.  Today I have seen some chipmunks, some spotted towhees, buzzards and briefly a hummingbird.  Unfortunately the feeders were empty so I have now filled them and am waiting for their return.   But back to yesterday,

Tuscon to Pinos Altos

Had a great night’s sleep at the hotel and they had a very nice hot breakfast buffet.   I really hated to leave Tucson before we got to see more of it.  When we return at the end of the week we are at least going to drive thru the historic downtown area.

Eastbound on Arizona I-10

Eastbound on Arizona I-10

We headed east on Arizona I-10.  The terrain was amazing, how many times can I say it?  Flat scrub land, mountains, cactus, sage.  We exited the freeway at Benson and headed south to Tombstone, Arizona, site of the historic gunfight at the OK Corral.  The landscape changed just short of the freeway into a riparian area, low ground where there is actually water at the surface or close.  Many more trees.  The most interesting were the pecan farms and roadside stands selling pecans and walnuts.  We even passed a commercial pecan shelling/cleaning facility. 

Soaptree Yucca and Dana, near Benson, Arizona

Soaptree Yucca and Dana, near Benson, Arizona

Look at this huge soaptree yucca!  This was a common sight along the roadside.

Tombstone, the town, was sort of an amusement park.  There were several bars/restaurants touting their historic roots.  We chose to eat lunch at Big Nose Kate’s Salloon  (she was Doc Holliday’s girlfriend), because they had live music, a country singer with a guitar that Andy thought sounded like Alan Jackson.  The movie Tombstone was running on a continuous loop on one screen.  It was a real bar, lots of memorabilia on the walls, a place to have your photo taken in a wooden casket, for a fee of course (I Got Laid In Tombstone on the front).  The middle-aged waitress was about to fall out of her top.  So it was very entertaining and the food was delicious. 

Big Nose Kate's Saloon, Tombstone, AZ

Big Nose Kate's Saloon, Tombstone, AZ

Before I left, my brother Larry told me to be sure to eat green chilis on my hamburgers, so I did and it was yum-mo (to quote Rachel).

Boot Hill Burger, 1/2 lb ground beef, green chilis, pepper jack cheese and grilled onions, yum yum!

Boot Hill Burger, 1/2 lb ground beef, green chilis, pepper jack cheese and grilled onions, yum yum!

We should have stopped there.  But noooooo, I had to see this diorama of the history of the city and the gunfight.  I saw it reviewed as a “cheesy” must-see on the TripAdvisor web site.  It was as described, probably made in the 60’s, narrated by Vincent Price it was a four sided 4 foot tall mountain that had different scenes on each side.  Some of it was animated, fires had little lights inside, a spotlight highlighted sections as the narration went on.  In between rotations, a screen dropped down with movie scenes depicting parts of the story.  It started with the Native Americans that lived there first, then the miners, then the townspeople and the gunfight of course.  No photos were allowed so you’ll just have to use your imagination here.  The funniest part was the characters in the gunfight fell over when they were shot.  It wasn’t supposed to be funny, but the presentation was.

Street Scene, Tombstone AZ

Street Scene, Tombstone AZ

Well, you could buy a combined ticket to see the diorama, the OK Corral museum, a live depiction of the gunfight, and the newspaper office museum, where you got a free replica copy of the Epitaph Newspaper of the day (woo-hoo!).  So I bit.  Big mistake because the weather had been pleasant  when we arrived but it got hotter and the wind blew harder.  By the time we waited in the sun for 20 minutes for the gunfight to start we were all crabby and sunburned.  While we waited, we were entertained by mannequins positioned in the corral as they would have been when the gunfight started (if you don’t know the story, look it up, it’s on Wikipedia just like everything else).  There was a recording that ran as if the mannequins were talking, but their mouths did not move, but then they raised their arms when the recording sounded like gun fire and we all started laughing.  Sadly they did not fall down, that would have been really hilarious.  You’ll have to look at Dana’s blog for photos of the Corral, I was trying to keep Andy from having a meltdown in the heat and did not get any photos.

OK Coral stage for live drama

OK Coral stage for live drama

We were finally admitted to the grandstand to watch the play.  The people in it in were more interesting than the story itself, who are these people who toil in “summer theater” in Tombstone AZ?  Well the story played out, and the victims were left lying as we exited the stands.  They took it seriously, and it was serious business, being murder and all, no good guys here really.

Actor portraying Doc Holliday

Actor portraying Doc Holliday

 We visited Boot Hill Graveyard on the way out of town, saw where the victims along with other unfortunates were buried and then we were out of there for our final leg to our cabin in Pinos Altos.  Dana has the photos of that too.

The trip was smooth sailing, again along I-10, more great scenery such as this at one rest area we stopped at.

Rest area near Arizona/New Mexico border

Rest area near Arizona/New Mexico border

We ate dinner at a nice family restaurant, Kranberry Kitchens in Lordsburg, New Mexico, where Dana and I had the special, Green Chili Chicken Enchiladas.  It was so good, seasoned just right, not too hot.  Andy had chicken tenders but he was just too tired to eat much.

Green Chili Chicken Enchiladas at Kranberry's Restaurant, Lordsburg, NM

Green Chili Chicken Enchiladas at Kranberry's Restaurant, Lordsburg, NM

One hour later we arrived at our cabin – so lovely, clean, comfortable just as described.  We all slept well, and decided to have a quiet day today since we have pushed ourselves the last two.   More about the cabin, wildlife, etc either later today or tomorrow.

View from the front door, Blue Cabin, Pinos Altos Cabins

View from the front door, Blue Cabin, Pinos Altos Cabins

Check out Dana’s blog (click on the link to the right) as I’m sure he has plenty more to add to this travel story and good photos too!  However, you will only see food photos on my site LOL!!

PS:  Sorry this blog posted late today.  The internet was down at the cabin this morning, we went out for lunch and sightseeing and it is back on this pm.  More tomorrow on Day 3.

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About SallyK

A little blog about the ordinary and not so ordinary things our family does, places we travel, things we see. Like travel, cooking, family stories, book reviews, music? You will find it all here - comments welcome!
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One Response to Day 2 – Tucson to Pinos Altos Cabins

  1. Jenny says:

    Really nice information. I was wondering if your fell of the face of the earth or not. Sounds like everything is off to a good start. The cabin looks nice and I’m sure it was nice a quiet. Nothing much going on here.

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