I didn't take any new photos of Holbrook but we did stop there for lunch. I spoke with one of the locals about the Hashknife Pony Express. If you thought the pony express mail service ended years ago, you are wrong!
Each year the posse riders receive the oath of office from the Holbrook Postmaster authorizing them to carry the U.S. Mail by Pony Express..
The Holbrook Chamber of Commerce hosts a send-off dinner for the posse riders each year.
The 2009 Pony Express ride started from the Holbrook Post Office. Leaving Holbrook, the posse's annual route takes them on Dry Lake Road to Heber, and over the rim for an overnight in Payson, and then on to their campsite on Friday night by the Verde River. Along their route the posse picks up pony express letters from post offices in Heber, Pine, Strawberry, and the riders will be handing off the mailbags every mile or two to the next rider waiting along the roadside.
The hand off was repeated with all of the mail bags of thousands of letters, so every pony express letter is carried by horseback before the arrival of the U.S. Mail at the Scottsdale Post Office on Osborn Road.
The ride was again successfully completed in January 2010. I shall have to mark my calendar next year to go watch them.
This stretch of road is near the Arizona / New Mexico border. Isn't it pretty?You can really see the layers and colors of the sedimentary rocks.
Here is a natural amphitheater.
It was so pretty with the white snow, brown and red earth, and green trees.
When we got to Gallup, we decided to do an auto tour. I have been in Gallup many, many times, but haven't really driven around much. I was pleasantly surprised to see all the wall murals
and old buildings.
This statue is commemorating the Navajo soldiers in the armed forces during the war. They were called Code Talkers because they used the Navajo language in military communications. It is the only modern language impossible to decipher.
This link is to more information about the Code Talkers.
I thought this building had some interesting architectural features and a very pretty wall.
There were signs all along the freeway advertising the historic El Rancho Hotel so we had to go see it. Built in 1937, many famous people have slept there, including John Wayne, Presidents Reagan and Eisenhower, and many others.
Here's an old theater.
Soon, we were back on the road with those stunning vistas.
We came to the Continental Divide. I tried to figure out which way the water was draining but it just wasn't cooperating. ;0
Here are some more photographs of the great southwestern United States.
Here's Buddha, saying ,"Come on, I wanna go home!"
I will post my favorite southwestern vista as this week's Friday Foto.