Oak Creek Canyon

 Posted by at 12:38 am  Nick's Blog
Apr 172011

Yesterday we were up and out the door bright and early for the second day in a row. We really need to stop that.

After a quick stop for gas, we were headed north on Interstate 17 toward Flagstaff to pick up the new issue of the Gypsy Journal from our printer. Since we would be full and  heavily loaded coming back, Greg and Jan followed us in their pickup.

At over 12,600 feet, the first views of the San Francisco peaks coming north out of the Verde Valley are awesome.


Greg and Jan stopped to check out Bookman’s, a great used book store with several locations in Arizona, while Terry and I went on to the newspaper and picked up the new issue. Then we returned to Bookman’s and did some browsing ourselves.

We left the Explorer at Bookman’s and rode with Greg and Jan for a little tour of Flagstaff, then stopped for a late lunch at a Mexican restaurant called Salsa Brava. It was good, but I think all four of us agreed that it was no match for La Fonda, which is just up the road from our campground.

After lunch, we picked up our Explorer and headed back to Camp Verde, by way of State Route 89A through Oak Creek Canyon. This road is rated among the Top 5 Scenic Drives in America, and the views are breathtaking.


But it’s no route for a big motorhome! The road is narrow, and there are several15 and 20 mile per hour hairpin curves. 


There’s a reason for those speed limit signs. It’s a long way down!


The road starts out in the tall Ponderosa pines near Flagstaff, and drops over 2600 feet in about two miles as it traces the winding course of Oak Creek down into the Verde Valley.


There was a lot of traffic, and as we got closer to Sedona, it got even heavier. We started seeing more high desert vegetation and the red rocks that Sedona is famous for.



It seemed to take forever to get through Sedona, where traffic was bumper to bumper and barely moving. Note to self – avoid this area on weekends!

We eventually made our way to Cottonwood, and then turned east on State Route 260 toward our campground. We got home a little after 5 p.m., unloaded the mailing bins and pre-addressed envelopes, and enough bundles of papers to get started with, and by then we were both dragging.

So we did something we hardly ever do, we took a nap. Okay, I take a lot of naps, but Miss Terry seldom does. But we both needed it.

We will be busy with mailing chores for the next couple of days, and we hope to get it all done before we leave for Show Low on Wednesday.

Thought For The Day – You aren’t wealthy until you have something money can’t buy.

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Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  2 Responses to “Oak Creek Canyon”

  1. Good morning. Moving day for us. Heading East to first see a cousin near Rockprot X, then a grandaughter near Atlanta GAand then mid-May see our son near Clarksville TN.
    We think we may have some of the diff. in our like or not so much like Mexican food. We think it has to do with the state of Mexico the menu comes from. American cooking is usually best where a person grew up. That is what they are used to. A friend of ours in Wichita has a Mexican resturant and when it was started they knew Durango cooking. They hired people to help them with menues from other states to reach a more diverse group. Some we like some we do not. and that is mostly the regional style.
    This week we stopped and ate our first Sonoran Hotdog. A real treat. Next winter we may try several vendors to get the diff. from one cart to the next.
    Happy paper stuffing.

  2. Nick and Terri,

    We just started following your blog and the Gypsy Journal! It’s great to see where you have been and to read the wonderful information / insights you and Terri have gathered since being on the road.
    Keep writing and we will keep reading….

    Tim and Mary

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