We woke up at 4am, and were on the road by 430am. It took about an hour and a half before the sun started to rise in our rearview mirror, and we knew that we were officially on the way. There were many stops over the next 16 hours, having gotten little sleep the night before, both of us took naps when it wasn’t our turn at the wheel. Our first obstacle came with about an hour or so left in Texas; pouring rain and massive flooding. We took it easy, and since we were driving down some smaller town, some of the roads had closed due to the flooding. After what felt like four hours of driving through rain, it finally ceased when we got to New Mexico.
When it was time to think about where we were going to get food for the road, we knew we were approaching Albuquerque so naturally we looked up the nearest Whole Foods. After a nice relaxing stop, it was time to keep going. We had about six hours left and at that point, we could see the finish line.
At one point we pulled over at a local rest stop, about three hours away, and decided to stop for a photo op. Since it was a quiet rest stop we were able to get right next to the sign and mark how far we’d come. Flagstaff was really close, and we couldn’t wait to get to our hotel room. As we were driving we noticed something weird: our phones had gone forward one hour, but the car was still in Mountain Time. That’s when we realized that Arizona doesn’t observe Daylight Savings, so while we were in the state, we were going to be in Pacific Time, not Mountain Time. Although this was a slight surprise, we didn’t really mind, it would give us more time later that night to sleep. One thing we were so happy we got to see was the sunset over the desert next to us. It was absolutely breathtaking to see the colors and the dark blue skies above us. As of now we were chasing sunsets, and they kept making it worth it.
Finally we arrived at our hotel room and were able to relax. Although the drive was tough, we were very happy with our decision for getting there right away because it would give us more time down the line. As we got ready for bed, we couldn’t wait to wake up and explore our first National Park of the roadtrip.