Weekend Trip to Arizona…Part II

Let’s continue our journey!

Soon after we left Phoenix, we left the Interstate to join highway 69 on our way to Jerome. However, before heading there, we stopped and waited for Tyson’s friend, Austin to join us.

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Austin arrived shortly in his 1987 Acura Legend.  His car has had a few upgrades to make it his own. This is the first generation of the Legend and Austin has kept it in nice shape.

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Here’s Austin, Chris and Tyson catching up…

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For the next 19 miles, we headed up Highway 89A which greeted us with many great curves to experience. I came over this road quite a while ago when I had my RSX. I had forgotten how much fun it was! (photo taken from Tyson’s ILX)

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Here’s some shots I took with the RSX back in 2007:

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It seems like such a long time ago!

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Soon after, we all arrived in Jerome!

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Finding parking was tricky. So we opted to create our own spaces!

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Here in Jerome, we were to have lunch and be joined by another one of Tyson’s friends, Brandon from Flagstaff. Brandon is a proud owner of this 1995 Acura Legend LS Coupe 6-speed. Much like Tyson, Brandon is quite a Legend enthusiast. He swapped out the stock motor for a 3.5L from the 96+ RL. The chassis overall has about 220,000 miles. He came to meet us with his girlfriend, Alishaba.

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We strolled the streets for a short while and found a nice little BBQ place called, Bobby D’s BBQ. 

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Everyone seemed to be pleased with some good ol’ BBQ in their stomachs.

Left to right:  Brandon and his girlfriend, Alishaba, Austin, Tyson, me, and Chris

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After lunch, we said farewell to  Austin, Brandon and Alishaba and then continued up 89A for Sedona. Again, many memories here too back in 2006-07 when I used to work there. Here we are arriving on the outskirts of town:

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Sedona is a town that has fantastic landscapes and clear skies. Makes a perfect backdrop for a photo-shoot!

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Tyson had suggested we try a hiking trail off Dry Creek Road called, Devil’s Bridge. I love the outdoors and hiking so that sounded like right up my alley! I’m not sure of the distance, but it must have been close to 3.5 miles there and back.

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The views were spectacular as we started to climb.

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Here, Tyson caught a pic of me and Chris slowly coming up the path.

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After what seemed like an eternal climb, we finally made it to the bridge! With a sheer 50ft drop to the bottom, this arch is the largest in the Sedona area. When we arrived, there were people already there taking pictures.

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A big thanks to the hikers who took our picture there!

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After that hike, it was time for a snack and a drink. We stopped at a really neat, space-themed place called, Red Planet Diner.

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This looks like the sort of thing you’d see in Roswell, NM!

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In addition to some quarky touches to the tables, menus and walls, the ceilings were really cool to examine while we waited for the food.

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After the snack, the last leg of our trip together was up Oak Creek Canyon. I love this road, and it was a real treat to drive it again…especially in the Accord. There are many curves and crests I was familiar with, but only with my RSX at the time. Rain, sun, snow, I drove this route probably several hundred times! Here’s some pictures back from 2006:

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The road was absolutely gorgeous to drive through in mid-winter!

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However, that didn’t make the RSX too happy…

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The climb up from 4,200ft to nearly 7,000ft is achieved in this canyon. What does that mean? Lots of switchbacks!

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Here we go…about to penetrate Oak Creek Canyon. The road through the canyon isn’t the smoothest in the world, but I was pleased that the Accord smothered the bumps and coarse surface with aplomb!

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One of my goals on this trip was to try to recreate some photos from when I used to come through here. Sadly, I was only able to bring one photo to recreate. Here’s my attempt:

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The road after this stop turned quite demanding with all the switchbacks. However, Tyson’s ILX and my Accord were able to handle them with ease. Even though my suspension isn’t the best in the turns, the 240HP V6 was able to spring out of those corners with haste. Tyson’s ILX with its sport tuned suspension and 200HP I-4 was a scalpel in the bends. Trust me, this is when having a manual transmission really pays off!

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After we came to the intersection of I-17, we parted ways where Tyson and Chris headed back to Phoenix. I went on to Flagstaff.

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More to come…stay tuned!

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4 thoughts on “Weekend Trip to Arizona…Part II

  1. tysonhugie says:

    Jason, thanks for sharing Part II! Loved those pictures of Oak Creek Canyon in the winter – I bet that road gets nice and slick when the snow & ice enter the picture! Looks like you had some fun with the RSX. Excellent pics! And I fully agree with you – there is no substitute for a manual transmission on a curvy road like that. Loved the analogy of the scalpel 😉

    • pawela says:

      Thanks, Tyson. Oak Creek Canyon is like a winter wonderland in winter. It was great when I was there. I have to admit though, A little scary when driving over the switchbacks with snow and ice. Judging by how quickly your ILX looked like it changed direction and kept level in the corners, a scalpel it must have been!

  2. […] I took a bit of a detour after Prescott. I decided to take the TL up to Jerome to see how she handled the curves. I came here earlier in the year with my friend Tyson on an Arizona drive. […]

  3. […] With a little more fooling around while meandering our way to Flagstaff, we got to the hotel before too late. The next day, Tyson and his gang met us at the hotel and we headed off to Page, AZ. (Pictured here: Peter, Tyson, Jennifer, Jouhl, Stephen, Chris, Alec) Two of Tyson’s friends here you might remember: Peter from Death Valley and Chris from White Sands and Sedona. […]

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