Friday, June 8, 2012

Friendly visitor's center

We're sitting outside at a lovely picnic ramada at the Amarillo Visitor's Center and I'm going to try to post some pictures of the Canyon.  We'll see....

A dear friend, Charron, asked me if anything on this trip has surprised me.  I said that I couldn't think of anything up to that point.  I have a different answer now....Palo Duro Canyon surprised me (us) completely.  You've seen my previous pictures of what the panhandle of Texas looks like....We've driven across it many times before, nothing new to us.  Usually its a place to move through as fast as possible.  Little did we know that such a fantastic area is just 1/2 hour south of Amarillo.

The high plains seem to go on forever, then suddenly, a "crack" appears in the ground and as you follow it, it gets deeper and deeper.  We've been in Grand Canyon, the Copper Canyon of Mexico and so we knew what was coming.

beginning our descent

can you see our campground in the valley?
our site til Monday

our sheltered little ramada on Beluga's other side

There were other, beautiful isolated campsites further into the canyon, but we decided to stay at Sagebrush campground because it was higher ground and a bit closer to the things we wanted to do and see.  To get to the others, some small river crossings had to be made.  Given the weather we'd encountered, we decided to stay on the high side of the water....

One of the beautiful,  private campsites

river crossing # 2

Dave standing below the high water mark sign...

looking for the elusive Oriole

We took a ranger led bird watching walk one morning and added 9 new birds to our "life list".  Very cool for us  birdwatchers you know...

Bullock's Oriole

We've seen lots of friendly wildlife at our campsite....

Who left that rubber snake next to the fire ring....oh, its not a rubber snake....

No one seemed to know what kind of snake this and white with red patches along its back.  It was busy digging in the ground next to our fire ring.  This picture was taken from the bedroom window...I'm no fool!
Dave and the cowboys discuss our snake situation

the "boys" convinced the critter  to leave, but it was back the next morning.    I wonder what is so interesting just under the ground right here?  I also wonder if it will be there again when we get home today...

And this picture is for those of you who bet my new hiking boots would never see the ground....


  1. You are having quite an adventure. Lucky you were able to mostly avoid the 4X4 in the road. Could have been lots worse. Good driving by Dave.
    Have heard of the "Big Texan" type restaurants in Texas. Don't know how anyone could eat all of that in 1 hr.
    Palo Duro Canyon looks fantastic. Good move to stay on the high water side. Never know what the night might bring.
    Enjoy the photos.
    We're having lots of big swings in the weather. Monday high of 98. High SW winds. Then mid-day Tue, wind shifted to NW. Temp dropped 30 deg in about 3 hrs. Wed. morning was 44. It has been like this for several weeks. Another cycle today/tomorrow.
    Travel safely.

  2. Wow ...Suzie, you are just going to have to go out and buy Dave a big White Texan hat like those other guys. He looked like such a New Yorker!!!! Can just hear the tales over their beers that night. Hope that snake stayed awayyyyy!!

    And very glad you didn't do that river crossing thing with Beluga ...she may be named for something in the water but I bet she doesn't swim well.

    Loved Duro canyon ...ok, ok, Texas does have some beauty but I could do without the snakes and the high river signs.Whew...

    Off to work now but tomorrow I'm going to HiddenValley adventure park with Mom and Geneva for a look at their wildlife. Mom is very excited to go!!! Hoping to see some young babies.

    Love you both!