Driving through the flat Texas panhandle, you’d never guess that only 25 miles south of Amarillo the earth opens to the second largest canyon in North America. Palo Duron Canyon, known as the Grand Canyon of Texas, stretches 120 miles long, ranges from 6 to 20 miles wide, and is more than 800 feet deep. However, unlike the Grand Canyon, where you can reach the canyon floor only by mule or foot, you can drive right down to the canyon floor in Palo Duro Canyon State Park.
O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain
–Katharine Lee Bates
During our twenty-day road trip from Chicago to Monterey, California, down to Santa Monica and back across Route 66, my favorite patriotic song, America the Beautiful, came to mind. The topography constantly changed. From mountains, some still with snow, to lush valleys, to the hot, dry desert and ocean views, the landscape painted a beautiful backdrop for our trip. We’re sharing some of the scenic areas that we drove through in this video.
Editor’s Note: This article originally appeared in U.S. Long Cuts. We are merging U.S. Long Cuts with Midwest Wanderer, adding a “Beyond the Midwest” menu option.
Editor’s Note: Following are links to Route 66 articles that first appeared on our U.S. Long Cuts blog. We are merging U.S. Long Cuts with Midwest Wanderer, adding a “Beyond the Midwest” menu.
We passed the giant Cross at the Crossroads dozens of times over the years. Repeatedly we’d commented that on one of our trips we should stop to check out the cross that soars into the sky just off the interstate where I-57 and I-70 intersect at Effingham, Illinois. We finally visited recently following our visit to another giant cross in Groom, Texas, the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.