Wondrous views & a very nice Sheriff.

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Palo Duro Canyon

Flag of United States  , New Mexico
Sunday, March 30, 2014

Today was the first of our awesome view adventures.  We left Amarillo this morning after breakfast and headed to Palo Duro Canyon State Park.  This is, according to our tour guide, the second largest canyon in America, after the Grand Canyon.  The Grand Canyon is maybe a week later in this adventure.  Just a few words (couldn't get one in edgewise while on the tour) about Don Beer, who was our guide today.  Don was a very nice gentleman of 76, who grew up in the area and said when he was younger he let the wind  blow him away for about 28 years.  Then the wind blew him back.  And, yes the wind was whipping about 30-40 MPH today.  Not so much while in the upper levels of the canyon, but when on flat land.  Anyway, Don was deaf in one ear and wore a hearing aid in the other.  Naturally, the aid was in the ear always away from us.  The man talked the entire 2 1/2 hours of the tour.  I mean talked and talked and talked.  He told about Charlie Goodnight who founded the first cattle rance at Palo Duro, and about his escapades with the Texas Rangers and how he hung a couple supposed cattle rustlers caught in the canyon.  Anyway, there was never a moment of silence with Don driving the old GMC.  The canyon is a sight to see and we had a couple very good vantage points for pictures.  Posting just a few of what we took.

After Palo Duro we headed towards Roswell, NM where I am writing this entry.  One thing about Texas, they don't mind getting you where you are going pretty fast.  State roads, not Interstate, have a maximum speed limit of 75.  Once in New Mexico that dropped to 70.  Still not bad.  The only problem was entering small towns along the way.  From 70 with little warning the limit dropped to 55 then 45 and then 35.  One town in New Mexico actually dropped it to 25 and then to 15.  15MPH thru the middle of town.  And, yes I tried very hard to stay within 5MPH of the posted speed limit thru towns.  Most places within 2-3MPH.   As we came into a little hole in the wall called Elida, Rhonda said this is how it's spelled, I failed to notice the forewarning, (so did my navigator), and before I could drop from about 74 to what I was supposed to be doing, the local sheriff had me.  As I passed him, I told Rhonda I hoped he didn't pull out cause I was sure well over the speed limit.  No such luck.  He pulled us over.  A very nice man.  Wanted to know how fast our car would go and talked about what a nice ride for cross country, and asked if the top was removable along with various other things.  Long story short, he let us off with a verbal warning.  I told Rhonda we should have gotten a pic of him standing next to the car.  Prolly not a good idea.  BTW: any small town in VA...........you get caught speeding like that....ya ain't gonna get no verbal warning.
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thepaynes2014 on

Our guide, Don, was a very colorful fella, with tons of knowledge about the history of the area we were in. When the tour was over, he said "You folks from Virginia are nice. I was the tour had been a couple hours longer". He was really a very nice man!

thepaynes2014 on

I didn't mean to insinuate that Don was anything but talkative, which he was. And, yes he was an extremely nice man.

Karla on

Don sounds like a very colorful fella indeed! On to Roswell, though, but I see no UFO photos... how disappointing! However it WAS excellent news you got off with only a warning from the local small town 'gendarme' ! Sometimes they can be rather unforgiving. It is still hard even now that we have lived here for almost ten years, to remember after driving at high speed through Texas, to sloooooooow down when ya come to a small town! Glad he was in a good mood and liked your ride!

thepaynes2014 on

Karla, we didn't arrive in Roswell until almost evening. After having dinner, we were just too tired to take pics of all the aliens walking around here. We did catch a lot of their foreign language conversations while at dinner. HA

Lynn & Dexter on

The kind of day memories are made of! Great story!

thepaynes2014 on

Lynn & Dex, yes the views and the camaraderie were awesome, and we are hoping for a few more memorable days along the way. Just no more involving the local police. LOL!!

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