Wednesday, June 29, 2016


Up at the crack of dawn,  all the cars were wet, good thunderstorm last night, seems to be a nightly occurrence.    In the parking lot before the rush, long shadows being cast by the T's.

First stop was Bandelier National Monument, a very early pueblo way down in a canyon by a stream.   Ancient peoples, longgone.     It was a very steep road down into the canyon, we stopped at an overlook and had a look before committing the T to the task.

Am I really going down there?

This canyon cut by water through volcanic cliffs,  and the ancient people enlarged naturally occurring pockets to make dwellings.   We did explore a few of them.

Home, sweet home.  The kiva below was quite large.   The typical dwelling was about 10 x 10 at the most.

Next stop on todays tour was Los Alamos.   Now, you will notice that there are no pictures of that little excursion,  very frowned upon.   In addition, Bill and Pat Bratt were selected for the random search, pat down for weapons and inspect the car.  "What's in the back?"    "Tools to fix the car."   This shady couple was then judged to be harmless and they passed through the check point.  Great fried chicken lunch in the original ranch building at Los Alamos and then a tour through the museum.   Would have loved to take a picture of Little Boy and the Fat Man but did not.  

Los Alamos is on top of a rather remote plateau and the road down is steep and curvy.  "Patti, take a picture."   " I can't, I am too busy leaning!!" 

All still present and accounted for.  Tonight we will make sure nobody glows in the dark.

One more funny story.   Jim Boyden had a starter switch failure.  Could not get the car started.    Solution:  Jim posted Jean at the controls, crawled under the car and shorted across the starter terminals with a screwdriver.   Car started, Jim was not run over, life is good.

Gotta throw in one more picture,  since we knew in advance that the hills today were going to require some significant braking, Ray tightened up his brakes.   So,,,,,    all day, the car seemed to lack power.   Finally discovered one really hot brake drum.   Loosened it and problem solved.   Must be a moral here somewhere.  Let's see, if it ain't broke,,,,,,,,,,,,,


You know how you can tell a good day coming?     Leaving the hotel in Albuquerque for Santa Fe, I hit 7 miles of green lights through the city,  Wahoo!!!!   That got us out onto the backroads of NM and onto the Turquoise Trail,  so named because there have been turquoise mines here for 1000 years.   Beautiful western country drive.

Fun stop at Madrid at the Mine Shaft Bar.    Madrid was at one time the biggest ghost town in the U.S.  They mined coal here until 1954, then shut down and everybody walked away.   Now recovered as an artsy town.    With a great coal mine museum, just the way it was left in 1954.   I like locomotives.


   Several movies have been made here. 
This is Maggies Diner in Wild Hogs.
I liked this artifact.
We did find a dirt road to go down to another museum.
The on to Santa Fe,  bunch of troublemakers blocking the street.
Got a good shot of a large chunk of the T’s attending.    Look close and you can see Pat and Ray’s white wheels.

One more picture of the day,   yard art…….


Monday, June 27, 2016


First touring day!   157 miles,  good workout for the T's.  Our plan, leave early, get in early.  Sun just peeking and lots of activity in the back lot.

Headed south out of Albuquerque, on the secondary roads and crossed the Rio Grande,,,,

Which is actually pretty big here.

Donut stop at a Ford dealer,,,,,

Okay, just how many people will a T carry????

Albuquerque Host Larry Azevedo, grandson and Pat.

And then more country road,,,,,,,    on and on,,,,,,

Lunch in Mountainair, try to find that one on the map.

Stopped at some ancient pueblo ruins, from Spanish Friars time,,,,

But most importantly, found ice cream at this tiny country store,  the tour made their day, for sure.

Are we out in the country?  Check out these signs.

Tonight, pizza party and T adjustments, getting ready for tomorrow.


Gallup to Albuquerque.    Leaving Gallup on old 66, we passed by this.

It is obviously needed here in Gallup because when I walked down the road towards this tent, I noticed these little bottles, airline size, everywhere, one every 3 or 4 feet lying in the weeds beside the road.   So I started a collection.

 Crossed the continental divide at 7300 feet, definitely picked up a few mph on the downhill side.  Stopped at a nice new rest stop, with an unusual feature.  They had a set of buttons to vote whether you liked the stop or not.  We debated what would happen if you voted no, decided maybe it would give you give you a shock if it did not like your answer,,,,,,

In Albuquerque, trying to find the right exit, the GPS took us through a maze of freeway, I think more complicated than LA.

Found it, the Elegante Hotel,,,,,

And promptly unloaded the cars.   Here is a riddle, how do you make a too tall Fordor fit in a Touring trailer?  Answer:   Put smaller wheels on it, right Jim??

Rooms are nice, view is questionable,  2 Rms, Riv Vu,   remember that movie?

Anyway, had a welcoming party and we are ready to rumble.

Saturday, June 25, 2016


Williams, AZ; to Gallup, NM.  Easy day, not too many miles.  All above 5000 ft altitude.   You know what happens to a bag of chips when you bring it from sea level to 5000 ft?   Do we look like that also?????

 This begs the question, if we go to 10000 ft, are we in danger of a major explosion?

At a rest stop, we found Ray's new glass truck, takes nice big panes.

We had to try one tourist trap.

Click to make bigger picture,,,

Are we on Route 66???    Then you have to find the "Standing on the Corner" Statue in Winslow, AZ.   Does the younger generation even know this song?  

I think it is interesting that Winslow has a 9/11 memorial, a couple Trade Center standing beams in a little park.   They may be a long way from NY, but they remember.

Gotta stop at every little town on 66, in Holbrook found a VW lover, who loves to modify them,,,,,  Guys loved this, ladies finally dragged them away.

 And remember the Wigwam Motel, right out of the fifties.

 While the ladies investigate the accommodations, Bob found his new truck.  Love at first sight.

But soon forgotten with his newest love,,,,,

Overnighting in Gallup, Zimmermans western store and Richardsons Trading post were a big hit with our traveling group.   Western shirts, moccasins, hats, who do you think bought what?    Tomorrow, ALBUQUERQUE.............

Friday, June 24, 2016


Only 80 degrees when we got up this morning in Barstow,   formed up a convoy and hightailed it out of town.
We've got a convoy!!!!

Barstow to Needles was incredibly smoky, amazing how far the fire smoke carries from southern CA.    Crossed the Colorado into AZ and the price of gas dropped 40 cents per gallon. And our speed limit went from 55 to 75.   And 75 is what the big rigs do.
Pressed on and found this is our day for trailer tires.    Peder blew one by Needles, put the also.  Hot weather, bumpy roads, tires need to be in really good shape to survive.

Anyway, visited the Mohave and Route 66 Museums in Kingman, and then lunch in a retro diner,,,

and then,,,,,,,

Okay, Bob, where are we?

Right on, Snow Cap Drive-In in Seligman.
With its righteous facilities out back.  Alberta, be careful, I think that is the men's.

Also found rust, you know how that is.
Had to lock the ladies up while we negotiated that one.     (to no avail)

Ended the day in Williams, 7000 ft and cool.   So nice.