Mesa to Pitt 2015

Mesa to Pitt 2015
Mesa to OBX

Friday, April 11, 2014

Amarillo Tourists April 5

Saturday, April 5....We woke up and the wind was absolutely going off, the skies were gray, and it was very near the freezing mark. A perfect day for a day off, as I have really been taking advantage of the good weather we've been having, and moving along pretty well. The day eventually decided to warm up some, the skies cleared a little, but the wind stayed with us. We decided that it was nice enough to do some tourist things. We started off by going west on Interstate 40 to the 'world famous ' Cadillac Ranch. I had heard of it, probably because it was mentioned in the animated movie 'Cars'. It consisted of ten Cadillacs from the 50's and 60's, buried nose down in the dirt in the middle of a farmers field. The cars were really beat, and the layers and layers of paint were the only thing holding them together. The 'artist' who created this odd sight, invited everyone who visits to bring spray paint and add to the 'art.' The paint had chipped off in places and it was literally an inch thick in places. The same 'artist' also has placed hundreds of road signs around Amarillo that say things that make very little sense, and there is absolutely no relation to what the sign says, and any highway rule or caution. I found my first one south of Amarillo yesterday, but only saw a couple more today. If I hadn't read about this 'artist ' on line, I wouldn't have 'got it ' at all.
Our next stop was at an RV museum at a dealership, that really turned out to be pretty cool and interesting. The crazy thing was that there were antiques inside each old RV, that people could have walked off with, but no one did. Things like sets of Tinker Toys, old metal food containers and transistor radios, were part of the displays. I took some pictures of some original RVs that weren't refurbished, and some that were, all the way from Model T RV attachments to rigs from the seventies.
Then it was off to Palo Duro Canyon State Park, a place we had never heard of. As it turns out, it is the second largest canyon in the USA, after the Grand Canyon. It is crazy, because there is no flatter place on earth than this area, but all the sudden you come to this 500 ft deep canyon, that was carved by the Red River. It goes on for a long way, obviously, but the area that is accessible by car was a loop about 15 miles long. We descended into the canyon at a 10% grade, and found it quite beautiful. There was lots to do, like hiking trails, campgrounds, mountain biking trails, and a lot of other outdoorsy type stuff. There was a mountain bike race going on, but we only saw four riders, who weren't racing as much as surviving on the single track trail course that was marked off with chalk and little flags. Pam and I climbed up in to this interesting cave like formation, but that was all the hiking we had time for. 
After catching a quick mass, we were off to the number one rated steak house/tourist trap in all of Texas. The Big Texan Steak House offered a free 72oz. steak, if you could eat it in an hour, along with a baked potato (huge), two shrimp, a salad and two dinner rolls. If you couldn't do it in an hour, it cost you $72.00. The contestants sat on an elevated table setting, with a big red clock, keeping time. While we were there, about 7-8 people were trying it. Nobody came close, but over the years over 50,000 people have tried it, with about 5000 being successful. I settled for a 20 oz t-bone and Pam had prime rib. It was pretty reasonably priced, so it was worth it. There were some musicians serenading the tables, so I had them play Country Roads for us. They struggled thru the lyrics a little, but were pretty good.

Mike whoopin it up at the Cadillac Ranch!

They are all at the same angle!

At the RV museum - this FlexBus was in the movie "RV"

They also had classic/antique motorcycles

The museum is indoors at an RV dealership

Check out the tear drop camper being pulled by the car!

 Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Tumbleweed stuck under the Jeep!  It was a very windy day

Driving through the canyon

This is the little cave that we hiked to

From the cave looking out

In the cave looking up

In front of the cave

Looking down on Pam on the return trail

Mountain bikers on the race course

These Texas longhorns are part of the state herd

Check out those horns!!!

Finally he stuck his head out for a look!  His name is Brisket!!  No lie!

Here's Brisket posing

Sign in someone's yard!  They desperately need rain out here

Cowboy dinosaur in front of Big Texan Steak Ranch

Everything is big in Texas!

National Geographic is doing a special on the restaurant and their 72 ounce steak contest!  There were two guys competing with cameras in their faces!  Note the timers on the wall

View from our table - it's a big place

The band that was stopping at the tables

Country Roads, take me home.......

Mike's 20oz steak!

No, he didn't eat the garnish!  Wimp!

This girl tried (and failed) the 72 oz challenge

This was our view from our table!

They also have a limo (with horns on the grill) that will pick you up at your hotel or campground, take you to the restaurant and then back home.  We drove ourselves

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