Tag Archives: Roadside Attractions

Painted Canyon

On Your Way to Fargo, Stop and See the Sights

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Let’s say you’re heading into North Dakota coming from Montana on I-94. Let’s say you want to take in the view of the amazing scenery, including and especially Painted Canyon. Let’s say we’ve got a place for you!

Fargo wasn’t our only stop in this great northern state. Theodore Roosevelt National Park, which is only about 20 miles from the MT/ND border, will make your day. This is historical Dakota Territory, with a park aptly named for a U.S. President who spent a lot of time here. This is no ordinary scenic overview.

There’s plenty to see in the Park itself, but if you’re in a hurry, there’s an amazing scenic overlook of Painted Canyon as you’re heading East on I-94 towards Fargo (see map point above). Watch out for bison.

Perfect stop for the All-American Summer Road Trip. Adventure on!

   

Links
Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Painted Canyon Visitor Center

 

Aliens in the Desert

We Kind of Believe

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This week marks the 70th anniversary of the famous “Roswell Crash”. Regardless of what actually happened, July 1947 was when the aliens + desert = UFO phenomenon was born. And since we enjoy aliens so much, given our visit to Area 51 last year, we thought it a fitting tribute to post about our stop at Alien Fresh Jerky in Baker, California.

Only an hour and a half from Las Vegas, along I-15 in SoCal’s Mojave Desert, Alien Jerky is a cornerstone of Baker. Although the store is still from this world–complete with intergalactic space cruisers and plenty of alien buddies hanging around–it pretty much operates in its own universe. It’s the closest thing to an extraterrestrial space station that the average red-blooded American can visit….unless maybe you work for some cryptic government agency no one’s ever heard of…

Alien Jerky is the brain child of Luis Ramallo, who started the business with a table in the desert, where sat his homemade jerky. Sticking with the popular alien theme, his idea took off, and the rest is history.  There’s even a UFO-themed hotel in the works, set to be built right behind the store.

A nice break from reality on Planet Earth.

Alien Jerky Store Website

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Castle for the Road, Anyone?

At Bishop Castle, Your Start to Summer Awaits

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We’d like to thank one of our readers, Kim, for sending us these photos and sharing her story. Kim visited Bishop Castle a couple weeks ago–an interesting way to start the summer. Thank you, Kim. 

You read that right. It’s a castle. In Colorado. About an hour drive southwest of Pueblo. We thought we’d seen it all at Carhenge, but this place definitely gives Carhenge a run for its money. And what is it about Colorado, anyway? We always find weird stuff there, like that one time when we found a dinosaur in Golden. At least he was friendly.

Anyway, back to Bishop Castle…

60 years ago, Jim Bishop had a vision, and that vision was to build, build, build. Then he built some more, then more…and then some more for good measure. He just kept going. Today the sprawling castle that bears his name reaches high into the sky with unmatched views. There’s even a ballroom. We’re also told there’s a dragon on top of the building.

Bishop Castle is a bold and action-packed workout of a tourist attraction, given the spiral staircase and all, so we advise comfortable close-toed shoes. We definitely look forward to seeing this for ourselves someday. 


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Bishop Castle official website

What’s This Strange Thing?

Add This One to Your Oregon Trip

Special thanks to Oregon Department of Transportation for their cooperation on this article.

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Oregon’s a beautiful state. For those who’ve only been to the coast, we recommend driving through Eastern Oregon. The unrivaled views are amazing. And along the way, you’ll find some interesting curiosities, like this phone booth. We did a double take when we saw this one.

It’s one thing to occasionally find the ever-disappearing payphone these days, but it’s a completely different story to encounter an actual phone booth! Complete with windows, vintage phone sign, and, presumably, a working phone (although it was out of order when we visited). This was too good not to feature on UWanderings. These relics from the past are almost gone; we’re happy that ODOT preserved this one.

The crazy things we find on the road. Seriously.

This gem from the past is located at Boardman Rest Area in North Central Oregon, off of I-84. See map above for details. Happy travels!

As Soon As You Arrive in Utah…

Hidden Gem Has a Whole New Meaning with This Place

Special thanks to Utah Department of Transportation for their cooperation on this article

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You see a sign that says “view area” after driving all day. You’re tired, and maybe you think “I’ll pass…still gotta long way to go.” We’ll admit that even we do that sometimes, but those viewing areas tucked away on the side of the road–or the side roads–can turn out to be the best free views you can find on your all-American road trip.

We’ll always be grateful for deciding to stop at Harley Dome View Area in Eastern Utah that one evening.

Located just 3.5 miles west of the Utah-Colorado border along I-70 (see map), Harley dome gives you an up-close view of the West’s jagged yet amazing landscape. Look carefully and you can watch hawks fly around. Then take the winding path up to the main attraction: a panoramic view of the Wild West. Words cannot describe this place, but pictures can.

Don’t miss this opportunity; Utah is a beautiful state. The evidence begins the moment you arrive.