By 11:00 am I had packed, loaded the truck and was on the road! Destination: a group of quarries south of Albuquerque, a 6 to 7 hour drive. I love the start of trip, Phoenix up to Flagstaff – deep canyons, the fantastic view of the Verde Valley as you descend from the mesa, the red rocks of Sedona, and pine forests outside of Flag. But the part of the trip that I like the best is seeing the great red cliffs on the Arizona-New Mexico border after the long drive across the open, empty plains of I40.
Got to my hotel and tired to go to sleep on NM time (NM is an hour earlier than AZ this time of the year) so I would be up and alert in the morning. Know what happens when you try to sleep because you have something important the next day? That right, I tossed and turned, counted sheep and tried every other trick I know, but couldn’t fall asleep until the wee hours.
I had set the alarm, so I did wake up early and got there when they opened. It turned out that a pump had failed during the night, so there were no slabs yet, it would be a few more hours – I could have slept in! Instead, I used to time to drive out the quarry area from the plant, about 20 miles away.
This company operates 5 different quarries in this area and they rotate their crew among the quarries depending on what type of stone they need. I'm going to the Vista Grande Onyx quarry and the day I was there they had already moved to a different location. The trailer above the quarry houses a large generator, air compressor, tools, and spare parts.
The Vista Grande Quarry