If you’re the kind of traveler who avoids Interstate freeways in favor of back road adventures, here’s a book you’ll enjoy reading. Arizona and New Mexico: 25 Scenic Side Trips (Imbrifex Books) by Rick Quinn will guide you through these two states that are full of stunning scenery and interesting landmarks on the roads less traveled.When researching this book for the Roadtrip America series, Quinn drove 11,000 miles and shot 7,000 photographs. The result is expert advice that will help make a road trip through this part of the American southwest a memorable journey.
Memorable was easy, since the region is loaded with natural wonders (Grand Canyon National Park, Carlsbad Caverns National Park, White Sands national Monument, Antelope Canyon, etc.), historical and cultural sites (Cliff Dwellings, Petroglyph National Monument, Aztec Ruins National Monument, etc.), and scenic landscapes (Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway, Monument Valley, Salt Mission Trail Scenic Byway, etc.).Although Arizona and New Mexico are full of amazing and notable destinations like these, Quinn aims to entice travelers to explore more.
Of course he knows that the fastest way to travel long distances by car in the U.S. is on Interstate highways, so each side trip that he describes begins at an exit off an Interstate and takes the traveler back to an Interstate at the end.Quinn provides alternative routes from Interstates 10, 17, 40, and 25. Each of the 25 trips is driveable in a day, so there’s no reason to stick with a boring, quick, point-A-to-point-B drive through. Choose as many detours as time allows for fascinating additions to your Southwest journey.
The book is easy to follow with color-coded pages for routes that are sorted by geographic region. In addition to beautiful color photos, he includes visitor information for parks, attractions, and unusual lodging and dining along the way. A driver who sticks to Interstate travel might never see or even know about many of these.A remarkable landscape of deserts, mountains, and canyons provides a backdrop for explorations as you travel at a slower pace on recommended two-lane highways. Keep a highlighter handy to mark the spots you won’t want to miss when on a road trip through these southwestern states.
The book is available from Amazon and other sources.