Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
November 1, 2014

Westward Ho! Day 1 of Roll Call on the Road in Arizona

My alarm goes off at 3:30 a.m. to give me enough for a quick shower, a shot of caffeine and a ride via Uber to National Airport for my 6 a.m. flight to Las Vegas via Atlanta. I get to the airport and guess what? The TSA lanes aren’t even open. I could have slept another 30 minutes.

airport4 251x335 Westward Ho! Day 1 of Roll Call on the Road in Arizona

Empty-handed. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Eventually, I get on the plane and land in Sin City, where I manage to bypass all the slot machines as I make my way to baggage claim and the shuttle bus to the rental car hub. Now comes my favorite part: I LOVE driving through the desert, and I now get to drive from Vegas to Tucson, taking in some absolutely spectacular scenery.

Here are a few of the shots I made with my phone, including a roadside place where you can shoot guns and have a burger,

bullets3 445x333 Westward Ho! Day 1 of Roll Call on the Road in Arizona

Combo dining. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

a Route 66 sign in Kingman, Ariz.,

rt663 445x333 Westward Ho! Day 1 of Roll Call on the Road in Arizona

Get your kicks. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

and a flask from the souvenir shelf at a gas station.

flask3 251x335 Westward Ho! Day 1 of Roll Call on the Road in Arizona

Drink up! (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Part of my plan for the day was to find a beautiful scene to shoot at sunset with my real cameras. And had it not been for a few self-imposed detours and a couple traffic jams (how is there traffic in the desert?) I would have made it through Phoenix with plenty of time to find that perfect spot, maybe with some cacti.

But as I clear the Phoenix area, the sun is setting way too fast, and there isn’t a single cactus to be seen. Thank you Arizona, for 75 mph speed limits. Just as the sun was about to go behind the mountains, I found a small clump of pitiful cacti. Here’s what it looked like.

 Westward Ho! Day 1 of Roll Call on the Road in Arizona

The sun sets in the West. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

This journey started almost 22 hours ago, and now it’s time to sleep.

  • Derrick S.

    Looks like this is taken from off to the west side of I-10 just south of the town of Guadalupe?!? Between Riggs Rd. and Queen Creek Rd!?!
    You are zoomed in I believe. The mountain in the background looks like the Sierra Estrella Madre Mountains. Nice shot of the sun, you can almost feel the heat of the day here in Phoenix. Though today it is really mild as far as the heat goes. It can get as much as 17 degrees hotter than this. Instead, we have about 30% humidity with lower temps of 105. Enjoy your visit Roll Call on the road.

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