While I hesitate to try to post photos of the West after the fabulous reports made made by other members here, I seem to have amassed a certain number of pictures from my own trips in the area -- notably California, Nevada, Arizona and Utah. But some of them are maybe not so bad and it is usually interesting to see photos from the pre digital days, so I guess I will go ahead and do it.
Unfortunately, everything is all mixed up, both places and years, but it's pretty much jumbled in my head as well.
Anyway, before you reach the wide open spaces, there is always a rather strange buffer zone through which to cross between civilisation and the raw desert.
Sooner or later, you are on the open road.
In the late 1980's, the German film Bagdad Café was a smash success in France. I would say that for at least the next 5 years, anybody who went from France to the American west found it symbolically necessary to go to Bagdad if it was at all possible. The movie embodied just about all of the phantasms that both the Germans and the French can have about such places, which is one of the reasons that you find so many French and Germans wandering around the West.
The road to Bagdad was a bit flooded. Yes, it can happen.
Naturally nothing from the movie is visible anywhere near there, but one wanders around a bit anyway.
Beautiful photos, Kerouac. Though I can place some of the locations, for others I'd just be guessing. While I wish you had more specifics, I'm glad you are posting some of your old photos and am enjoying the rich colors of film. What a treat!
Awesome photos! You did very well with your pre-digital camera.
I recognize Lake Powell, the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, and Mexican Hat. I didn't manage to get a good photo of Mexican Hat like you did. I think my favorite photo is the road shot just above it. Such gorgeous colors. That may be the same road in that famous motorcycling scene in Easy Rider.
I've encountered a good number of German, French, and other international travelers in the Southwest over the years. It's always fun to chat with visitors from around the world. Of course, I've met my share of characters from the U.S., too.
I absolutely love the first picture in Reply 8. It's a huge landscape and the colours are just amazing. There are photos equally great after this one but as they are not numbered I cannot say which ones they are! Some of them are like mountains of the moon and the shapes are spectacular.
The roads are so lonely. Did you get worried sometimes? Did you stock up the vehicle with lots of water? I don't suppose I'll ever go to this region but I would sure love to.
I was too young and stupid to worry back in those days, although I did pay attention to signs that said things like "next service station 173 miles." Oddly enough, I did not have any water with me at all. I just assumed, that since I saw a car about once an hour, that in case of difficulty the rare car would stop to help me if necessary. What a deranged conceit!
I had to laugh this evening while spending time with two of my closest friends. She is French, is in love with the American west, and certainly knows all about Baghdad Café. He's an American and a well-read scholar, who has never aeen the movie. She is planning yet another long driving trip west, while he wants to go to France instead.
Since they went to France for several weeks last year (and visited with me) this summer they are headed west, much to his chagrin.
OK this German must have totally missed "Baghdad Cafe" and even though we always drive by the sign on our way to Kanab, UT - we never have been there LOL. The Dinos are in Cabazon (where there is a great high end outlet shopping mall now) 13 Miles west of Palms Springs. We pass it every time we drive to LA on the I-10 from Phoenix.
From the interstate highway, the uncommon view of two giant dinosaurs, on an arid plain surrounded by mountains, is an irresistible magnet. But tourists are not the only ones compelled to stop. Well within LA's convenient day-drive sphere, the Cabazon dinos became media darlings in the 1980s, appearing in everything from Coke commercials to rock videos to the film Pee Wee's Big Adventure.
I recognize a lot of course, living here for 17 years but I absoltuely adore that you saw Zion in the snow. We've been there several times and I am torn between Zion, Yosemite & Bryce Canyon. Apples & Oranges of course.
Great shots Kerouac!!! My first time in the West was in 1992 and I don't have the photos here in the US. Agree with the water. We (GF and I) never really had any water.... we had usually enough gas though but never worried about that. Ahhh youth!