It was day 1 of our Spring Cross-Country Trip from Arizona to Massachusetts. We decided to stay at the Petrified Forest KOA in Holbrook, AZ. There are several things we want to see here and the Meteor Crater was one of them. It's located at Exit 233 off Route 40 and is about 53 miles west of Holbrook.
The wind here was crazy and the guide inside said they've been known to get 120 mph gusts! Yikes. Hold onto your little ones! Because of the wind the tours around the rim were not offered that day. The cost of admittance is probably standard for such destinations but it must be a challenge for parents with several children. I think back to my own parents who had 6 children. We were an active family, always doing something or traveling somewhere and I really appreciate that now. However, the kids we saw inside were very happy interacting with the exhibits and handling the wind outside as they white-knuckled that railings which checking out the observations spots.
It was a very friendly attentive staff throughout the Visitor Center. The gift store was a very thorough store ranging from affordable items to delight children to collector items for adults.
They had a Subway sandwich shop and, on the day of our visit, you got a coupon for a free cookie with your Subway purchase. There was also a discount coupon for their Mobile gas station on the way out.
Here is our first video attempt. My awesome mentor keeps guiding us to better and better video production.
Be aware, especially during the hot weather, that dogs are not allowed inside the Meteor Crater visitor center or on the guided only tours around the rim of the meteor.
"While pets are not permitted inside the Meteor Crater facility or when hiking outside or on one of our guided rim tours, we do have a dog run located right off the parking lot. Also, if you have a kennel for your dog, we will make every effort to accommodate your dog inside to the right of the Admissions area. Please just feel free to ask and we will do our very best to accommodate your dog." - Meteor Crater team
While camped at the Desert Oasis RV Campground, we found several interesting things to do. One of them was taking the Queen Mine Tour.
Laurie and I were once quite involved with our local Chamber of Commerce and, more specifically, their tourism activities. So we understand the importance of having something to proudly, and prosperously, put forward to draw tourists too. The Queen Mine is actually Bisbee's Vsitor Center which is the perfect combination for a tourist destination and the viability of that Chamber of Commerce! You'll learn a lot about the whole area as they have a great supply of literature and video to view.
It was also a rainy day AND something the boys had never experienced. At 11 and 12 years old, they were curious and so were we! Although Arizona has many towns that grew from mining towns, that is not the case in Massachusetts where the boys live.
"Outfitted in hard hat, miner’s headlamp and a yellow slicker, thousands of Bisbee visitors ride into the Queen Mine Tour each year—heading underground and back in time. Tour guides, retired Phelps Dodge employees, lead the group 1,500 feet into the mine and recount mining days, techniques, dangers and drama. Adding a personal touch, the miner-turned-tour guides help visitors experience what it was like to work underground."
One in particular I found interesting was how they used mules and kept them in the dark causing them to lose the ability to be in the light. That story is in the video above.
We highly recommend taking this tour, especially with curious young people! It's nice when they learn history at the actual spot rather than on 'Google'.
Read more about our Bisbee and Tombstone trip here.
While we were exploring the towns of Bisbee and Tombstone in Southern Arizona, we chose to stay at the Desert Oasis RV Campground just outside of Bisbee. The Good Sam rating ensured it was a good place but we discovered it was quite a magical place too!
When I asked Paul from Desert Oasis RV Campground, ‘What is the magic of Bisbee?’ he answered, ‘No one judges anyone!’ I thought that was a very nice answer!
And speaking of Paul, we asked him how he came to own the Desert Oasis RV Campground and what he's done since he owned it.
The Desert Oasis RV Campground is a Good Sam member campground. It does not have a swimming pool, but it DOES have over 3 miles of nature trails surrounding the park. We, and especially Rue, enjoyed the nice wide walking trails.
Big rig friendly too! "A campground on an Arizona desert oasis for those active adults who love the outdoors. The camping area has a panoramic view of the Mule, Swiss Helm, Perillo, Chiricahua and Dagroon mountains and is located just outside the quaint, historic city of Bisbee, voted as having the best year around climate in Arizona. In winter, the dry desert air makes it feel a few degrees warmer than the thermometer indicates.
Located on a 120 acre ranch we are pet friendly and have over 3 miles of hiking trails. Our accommodations also include camping cabins and RV rentals. For your enjoyment we have a large well equipped recreation center with exercise equipment, tv lounge, pool table, and a well equipped kitchen for get-togethers. We provide a pleasant environment, you have the fun." Learn more here.
Paul, we'll be back!