Williams Arizona, Grand Canyon

May 10th, 2022

We left Holbrook Arizona on May 4th (Wednesday) and headed to Williams AZ, about a 220 mile drive. As we got closer to Flagstaff the terrain started to change. We went from flat scrub desert to a forest of the smaller shrub looking trees then into the largest Ponderosa Pine Forest in the world, called the Coconino National Forest. The Coconino National Forest is one of six National Forests in Arizona. On the North side of Flagstaff is Humphreys Peak (photo above), the highest dormant volcanic spot in Arizona at 12,633 feet. The Ponderosa Pines are sizable, and just beautiful, some grow to 600 years old. Northwest Nebraska, among other places, also has them. They have this coarse bark that is orange and black.

We stayed at the Grand Canyon Railway RV park which is part of a larger area that is owned by the same folks, located in Williams AZ (tourist town). There is the RV Park, a hotel, two restaurants, and the train depot. All in walking distance. I took Jake walking in the morning around the train depot and most days logged 2,000 steps. There are several interesting items around the train depot, from older trains to benches. The downtown “strip” of Williams AZ is the old Highway 66 with a bunch of shops that are just full of stuff that you can not imagine.

On Thursday the 5th we went to the Bearizona, a drive through/walk through zoo. The drive through is a fenced area with a three mile drive where you can see goats, wolves, bears, bison, reindeer, etc. There were several signs to keep your windows rolled up with rangers staged throughout to make sure you did. The walk through had smaller animals. Nice place.

Click here for some photos…

On Friday we went to the Grand Canyon. We got lucky with the weather, nice 80 deg and not much wind. The next four days had 20-40 mph winds, hard to do much outside with winds like that. We had tickets for a round trip to the rim from Williams via a train with a cowboy skit and a train hold-up. Once there we boarded a tour bus that took us around the South Rim. Pictures don’t do it justice, you have to be there to see the vastness of the area with the blue Colorado river at the bottom. The rock is so hard that the erosion rate is the thickness of a sheet of paper per year.

There is a village there and at peak season there are 2,000+ workers that live there. There is even a small school for the workers kids. Our tour bus driver said his boss had lived and worked there for over 20 years. You don’t need to do the train, just go and at minimum hike the paved rim trail.

Click here for a bunch of photos…

On to Las Vegas tomorrow for a few days. No gambling but we will see the Red Rock Canyon.