The Windiest Road in Arizona
The windiest road, Coronado Highway, aka Devil’s Highway (666), is Arizona’s windiest road. When you look it up online, you will find that it has over 460 curves, and if you fear not knowing what you will find around the next curve, you should take another road.
My sense of direction is that of a first-grader. I don’t know which is East or West. I don’t know if the road goes up or down, and I can’t tell by looking at a map if we are inside or outside a windy road. I walk out of a restaurant’s bathroom and end up in the kitchen or a wall at the end of the hallway, and I don’t drink. Well, only one glass of wine. I am directionally challenged.
I have walked out of hotels and turned right. I don’t realize I have gone the wrong way for another four blocks.
I map my way with apps on my phone but don’t know which way to go. I wander.
I don’t mind wandering, and maybe that is why I travel solo. Getting lost doesn’t make me upset unless I find myself in a dark ally in a strange city. I don’t walk in the dark for that reason.
I am retired and have plenty of time to roam. It doesn’t bother me. It does bother others with whom I travel. If you always know where you are going, don’t read this article. This article is for people like me who might feel they are the only ones wandering around and getting lost.
My friend, Ruth, yes, that is her real name. If she reads this blog, she will know I am referring to her. She is very organized and knows where she is going. She was the driver on our trip around Eastern Arizona. I think we were going East. We both wanted to travel the Devil’s Highway because we were curious. Ruth Ann and I have taken road trips together, so I believed we would be ok even if we got lost. I was wrong. She doesn’t like to get lost. Well, not as much as I do.
I was the passenger, and I was in charge of giving directions. We planned to travel from Morenci, AZ, to Greer, AZ via the Devil’s Highway. We entered the address of our hotel in Greer in the Garmin in her new car. We got on the road after a stay in Clifton, AZ. In case you are planning to take this trip, there is only one hotel and one restaurant in the town of Clifton. The hotel was quite old, and a couple from Massachusetts had bought it and spent the last three years remodeling it. The hotel beds were lumpy. We asked the owner how to get to the nearest gas station.
We went in the wrong direction and ended up in Safford, AZ. We found a gas station. After filling the tank, we entered the address of our Greer hotel in the Garmin, and off we went.
Ruth Ann was driving, and I was looking out the window and commenting on the scenery. We were following the directions of the Garmin. The map was in the back seat, tucked away in my bag.
We did not see the curves and the windy turns. Three hours later, we arrived at our hotel.
“That wasn’t so scary after all.” I said
The Garmin had taken us around the windy road. Ruth Ann was not happy.
“That is the reason we came on this trip.” She said
I felt bad and disappointed. I studied the map, traced the road I highlighted, and tried to figure out where we went wrong.
“We should change our plans and go home in reverse on the windy road.” I said
We got up early the following day. Ruth Ann was not feeling well. She ate Hack Braten, a german dish with ground beef herbs and spices rolled up like a sausage and red cabbage for dinner. We stopped at a gas station to fill up the tank and bought a bottle of Pepto Bismol for $9. We asked the cashier to lead us in the right direction to travel the Devil’s Highway. He gave us “The look” and said, try not to get nauseous. The last time I felt nauseous, I was riding in a friend’s sailboat in Lake Michigan on the coast of Saugatuck.
We found the road; there is only one marker labeling the road as the Coronado Highway. Maybe they don’t want to encourage daredevils to drive the road.
Yes, there were curves but no falling-off points. Ruth Ann was the driver, and she didn’t think the road was the hype it was supposed to be. Both of us have traveled highways with more curves.
Who are these people that designated this road the windiest road?
We completed the trip, and Ruth Ann will never ask me for directions again.
She has agreed to go to Barcelona with me next month. I hope she is prepared to get lost again.