When we took a trip to Tucson to see my wife’s grandson, Sgt. Michael. We went to the Grand Canyon. The jumpoff place is Williams, Arizona. It is located on old Route 66 and it was a spot picked by Union Pacific Railroad and it was their choice to build one of their famous hotels. These hotels were created to encourage tourists train passengers. This was the way people traveled in the 1800s. The railway did all of the long distance travel. In the 18 and early 1900s
The original hotel building has been converted for tourists and is a tourist center, a restaurant, gift shop, bar. They have the interior of the frontier bar all decorated in its original style. At the back of the room is a carved oak and pine backing that was originally in one of the original bars is a beautiful piece of craftsmanship about 15 to 20 feet wide and 12 feet high and has a look of a frontier bar. A steak dinner is a great way to spend your time and we put our time to the best use possible steak on the table. A nice room awaited us in the new hotel building. Itis attached to the original building and is an exact copy of the original hotel and keeps the experience authentic
After breakfast the next morning. We prepared for our day at the canyon. Go back in your memory for me. How many times have you had a wild West shootout show. The morning after your second wedding. After the show’s conclusion of the law men had picked up all of the actors who had been killed and the other ones had walked off into the bunkhouse and in the shops in the back of the scene section of the mockup town started for the train. In this part of the world train yards always are right next to the hotel.
The train is pulled by either a diesel engine or a steam engine. Today we were in luck. We got the steam engine. The train runs from Williams, Arizona to the southern rim of the Grand Canyon is the Grand Canyon railroad. There is enough business to keep this railroad viable just from the tourists and the freight that needs to be hauled to supply the needs of the vendors at the Grand Canyon..
This is the only train that I know of that stops to pick up the train robbers. Then there is a mock train robbery with guns drawn and lots of noise. A sheriff appears the best looking biggest size actor you’ve ever seen. And he is a great public relations guy and for the rest of the trip. He will stop by your seat sit down on the arm of your chair and have a great conversation with you.
There is a first and second class on this train. The first class gets you up into the Vista cars and the buffet that is served is a little better. The food is set out in the buffet style and the drinks get bigger and bigger as you can closer to the canyon. The Vista cars are the bubble pops, that you see along the railroad that goes across the Great Plains. The Vista that you see on this countryside is Western rolling rangeland. It’s about 30 miles to the canyon. We pulled into the station at the South rim of the Grand Canyon and the canyon is a lot bigger than it was in your imagination. It is wider and deeper than anything we have ever seen in the eastern United States.
Pennsylvania has its own Grand Canyon. But the definition of grand no longer. Has the same meaning in my mind.
We did all the suggested things and went to the recommended spots in the little village that is on the South rim. We went to the trail concessions that hires out the donkeys and goes down the trail to the bottom of the canyon. What we learned is that the waiting list is six months to a year to get your reserve donkey to go to bottom of the canyon. We had lunch in the restaurant that overlooks the rim of the canyon. It has floor-to-ceiling picture windows as you can imagine, so that while you are reading you can experience the canyon.
The trip back on the train was just as nice as going north but without the train robbery.