This weekend kicks off the summer travel season, and our sponsor Sandy Driscoll of Academy of Dog Obedience reminds us that a well trained dog can be a welcomed travel companion. Here is an account of a trip Driscoll took with Gunner, her nine-year-old doberman, on Route 66. It’s told from Gunner’s point of view.
After spending our first night in Needles, we headed out to Winslow, Arizona via old Route 66. On the way, we had some great Old West experiences! First stop was Oatman, Arizona, which is an authentic Western ghost town and mining camp located on old Route 66 between Needles and Kingman, Arizona. It has old gunslingers who stage a gunfight with real guns (blanks, of course) and has wild burros roaming the streets.
Sandy walked me around the town, then we joined the crowd when the gunfight was about to go live. The nice gunfighters all saw me and asked if I was okay with gunfire. Sandy told them I was. I took a doggy temperament test several years ago and gunfire was part of the test to make sure I didn’t freak out. Well, just as everything was gettin’ exciting (my first gunfight, ya know!) this weird braying/honking sound echoed from the far end of the street. All the folks around there were thrilled because this meant the burros were coming down from the hills to stroll through the main street. Just when I was about to experience all this a nice lady who worked in one of the stores suggested to Sandy that she put me in the car. She could tell by the honking burro sound that it was the big male and said he didn’t like big dogs and would stomp on me! Geez! I know there’s that song that says, “Get your kicks on Route 66” but it sure doesn’t include me being kicked by a macho burro. Well, Sandy wanted me around for the rest of the trip, so I had to watch from the safety of the car.
After we left exciting Oatman, we took the long hilly route (old 66) past old abandoned mines, and crested on the hill was Cool Springs, which back in the old days was a gas station and cabins … a refreshing stop. It’s been refurbished, with a museum and pleasant stop for a cool drink. The owner thought I was so cool that he invited me in. He tells me that their local humane society is called, The Arfanage.
Motel 6 is our usual pet friendly hotel, but Sandy splurged and took me to the famous La Posada Hotel. It’s in Winslow and used to be, back in the thirties and forties, a main stop for the rich and famous. It was along the railroad line, and Amtrak still stops there. La Posada Hotel has been beautifully restored and has a fabulous restaurant called the Turquoise Room. Most important to me, they absolutely LOVE dogs! They only charged $10 more for me to stay there, and even welcomed me into their lounge while Sandy had a drink. While we were there, everyone came up and chatted with me. Seems there was a group of people who had traveled the rails from Los Angeles to Winslow. They had lots of musicians with them, so they had their own music. Boy, were they lots of fun! Any of you who travel with dogs shouldn’t miss it.
The next day, as we were driving out of Winslow, heading to our pals in Santa Fe, we had to stop at the Eagles’ famous “Standin’ On The Corner” spot.