Fifty thousand years ago a giant fireball streaked across the North American sky. It struck the earth in northern Arizona, exploding with a force 150 times greater than the atomic bomb. In a blinding flash, a huge iron-nickel meteorite estimated to have been 150 feet across and weighing several hundred thousand tons, struck the rocky plain. In seconds, a crater 700 feet deep, over 4,000 feet across, and 2.4 miles in circumference was carved into this once flat rocky plain. It boggles my mind.
There is a great Discovery Center and Space Museum, and even a 15 minute movie exploring the mystery of the meteor. I also enjoyed browsing through the gift center. It’s a must see s-it if you you are near northern Arizona.
Arizona’s Petrified Forest National Park is perfect for exploration and discovery. It is known for its fossils, especially fallen trees that lived in the Late Triassic Epoch, about 225 million years ago. It was a delight walking around these ancient giants.
Just took a little walk 1 mile south of Catalina Hot Springs Resort. Found this little “aguaculture” oasis. How many Great White Egrets can you spot?
I was quite tickled that a little Arizona town, became a tourist attraction because of an Eagles song. They did it up proper, and I love the little details in this scene. There are plenty of tourist shop to get your Eagles or Route 66 fix.
Well, I’m standin’ on a corner in Winslow Arizona….
While the North Rim of the Grand Canyon is my favorite, the South Rim boasts many more view points, and looking north into the canyon is easier on your eyes and better for pictures since the sun is behind you. It is hotter on this side, and the wind can be ferocious. Still, the views are spectacular!
The Beehive Kilns in Frisco Utah is an old mining town that offers great ghost town exploring. The incredible giant beehive structures on the hills are actually old charcoal kilns. You can still smell the smoke in them. The roads are sketchy, I was glad my truck had 4WD. It was a fun morning adventure.
Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge is a beautiful 74,000 acre park in Corinne Utah. It includes a variety of habitats such as open water, mudflats, wetlands and uplands. The refuge host millions of migratory birds each year. The Educational center was closed, but the 12 mile auto route through the refuge was open. It was a breath of fresh air to see all this water in an otherwise dry area.
My favorite animal at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park is the Okapi, a member of the giraffe family. I understand it to be the last large land mammal to be discovered. The park is one of the largest tourist attraction in the area. The African tramway was closed during my visit, so I only managed to see the African exhibits. I hope to get back soon to visit the other areas.
There is nothing as beautiful as the Pacific Northwest Coast. There are many beaches to explore. Rialto beach is one of my favorites.