Leaving Wichita after a great breakfast with Tom, Miss W decided to follow the main highway to just north of Oklahoma City. Usually she prefers the smaller roads and scenic byways, but with the amount of rain in the last few days and more being predicted, she felt it was safer on the highway as that was less likely to be flooded.
By following Interstate 40 we were actually going through some of the very famous “Route 66″. Remember that movie “Cars”, well a lot of that was based on Route 66 which actually went through Amarillo. We diverted off the highway to visit a little town called McLean. It reminded Miss W of the town in the movie. Lots of old car stations, buildings looking dilapitated and lots of rusty junk around. Of course, there were modern buildings there as well.
Arriving in Amarillo, we planned to stay three nights which would allow us one day travelling around the area and another day visiting Mr Merker and his class at their school. Contacting Mr Merker it was decided to visit him on the second day as that gave him time to get organized with his students.
So off we went to the area known as Canyon, just south of Amarillo. First we visited the Buffalo Lake Wildlife refuge.
What do you expect to see when I use the word lake?
Water ……and more water.
This particular lake was different; it only has water in it when the wildlife and fisheries allow it to be flooded. When we were there, it was a dry lake with crops being grown in the middle of it. The only water to be seen was where the windmills bring water up and store it for the animals to use. We took lots of photos explaining how the lake is used.
What is Davo saying to Miss W?
Next we headed back into Canyon area to go and see the Palo Duro Canyon. This was magnificent. We took lots of photos especially at the flooded waterways. In fact, we couldn’t complete the loop driving because one of the floodways was closed to traffic as there had been a lot of flashfloods in the last couple of days. It would be great to be a host at one of the campgrounds – see one of the images showing what a host has at their campsite.
There was still lots of colourful foliage in the canyon area and we looked out carefully for any wildlife. Just as we were leaving and going over the flooded area #1 guess what we saw? Deer – no. Coyote – no.
Suddenly dashing across the road between us and a couple of cyclists was a bobcat. The cyclists were American and Miss W asked them what they thought we might have seen – a young bobcat they thought. WOW! A real wild animal in its native habitat. A pity we didn’t get a photo, but he raced across the road so quickly.
We headed back to Canyon again and this time visited the Panhandle Plains Historical Museum. Lots of interesting displays about oil and gas as well as cowboys, native Americans and life in the West. Took lots of images of the displays.
Back to Amarillo for the night and get prepared to visit Mr Merker and his class.
Arrived at the school about 10am to chat with Mr Merker about blogging. His students have only just started their blogs but they have progressed so well. Went for a small break to the office and rest rooms so the students could set the room up for my visit.
They had created a fantastic banner with symbols representing both Texas and Australia. Miss W talked about Tasmanian devils and my blog showing them where they can read more about the problems of my species. She then talked about our trip and where we had already been. By the time we got back to our hotel, the students had already left some comments. The students had lots of interesting questions and many wrote about our visit.
Leaving our mark at Cadillac Ranch
Mr Merker took Miss W and I to lunch at a Mexican restaurant. Thank goodness, the food wasn’t too hot and spicy and Miss W tried a taco and a burrito – she thinks. Talking over lunch, we found out that one of Mr Merker’s teachers when he was in elementary school was one of the Route 66 specialists for the movie “Cars”. He told us about Cadillac Ranch just west of Amarillo. We went there and left our mark. Can you guess which part of the movie is represented by Cadillac Ranch?
What did you enjoy most about the movie “Cars”?
If you have also seen the sequel, “Cars 2″, which one did you prefer and why?