Once we had repacked the car, we left Rabi’s at about 10am after a fantastic weekend. The drive back to join Route 66 at Gallup was boring and extremely slow in places, as it had been on the way up. After a brief supermarket stop to buy some lunch and switch over, we continued along Route 66 (still mostly interstate) towards the Petrified Forest National Park. Crossing the state line into Arizona the time changed again, since Arizona is the only state that doesn’t observe daylight savings time. (We are now 8 hours behind the UK and will be for about the next month.)

The Painted Desert

We arrived at the Petrified Forest and were warned not to collect any petrified wood, since it is illegal. We drove the main road through the park, stopping at various overlooks to take pictures of the unusual rock formations and of various petrified wood sites. After the first couple of stops we both somewhat sheepishly admitted that we were expecting an actual forest… not a desert with scattered bits of petrified wood. At the Crystal Forest overlook, we decided to take the trail, which was 0.75 miles of winding paved path which took us past lots of pieces of petrified wood. This was interesting, and we saw lots of different types of petrified wood, but we were definitely done with petrified wood by the end of it, so decided against doing anymore trails and continued on to our motel for the night. Deciding that it would be a waste of time to double back on ourselves only to join the interstate for the rest of the trip, we took the back way from the South entrance to Holbrook.

Some Petrified Wood

Our home for the night was the Wigwam Motel, where, as the name suggests, you stay in Wigwams. There are perhaps 15 wigwams arranged around a central courtyard, and a nice touch is that vintage cars are parked outside each one, although as the afternoon turns into evening these are interspersed with the more modern cars of the guests. After unloading our stuff, we settled down to watch some Roswell High for a bit before taking turns to get our blogs as up to date as possible before going to the Grand Canyon for 5 nights. This was interspersed with more Roswell and a trip to the supermarket across the road for Ben & Jerry’s. We went to bed at the somewhat early time of 10pm, which to us felt like 11pm due to the time change.

Wigwams - the old cars outside each one were a nice touch.