Beginning May 1st we spent six weeks in Show Low, AZ in the White Mountains of northeast Arizona. At an elevation of 6,400 feet we thought it would be a pleasantly cool place to spend some time in the spring without the need for air conditioning. After arriving we discovered the month of May in the White Mountains is known to be very windy. At the same time, we heard on the local weather that all of Arizona was experiencing 20+ temperatures BELOW normal. We didn’t need air conditioning but we sure needed the heat on. During our six weeks there we had winds almost every day of 25-30 mph with occasional gusts of 45+. We had nighttime temps in the 30’s, more rainy days than we thought possible in Arizona and to our amazement we had snow on the 20th of May!
May 1st, the day we arrived was our eighth wedding anniversary and we celebrated with dinner at a steakhouse in Show Low. It was a very nice meal but I was really feeling under the weather. Five days later Bill insisted I go to the Urgent Care in Show Low where I was diagnosed with acute bronchitis. They gave me a breathing treatment and sent me home with lots of prescriptions. I don’t know if the elevation along with the cold rainy weather complicated things, but I was really down for the count and it took me most of May to recover.
Bill kept himself busy doing maintenance inside the RV such as cleaning vents, replacing the water and ice maker filters and flushing the hot water heater. He attended a few Show Low amateur radio events and enjoyed their nightly radio net call-ins.
As May turned to June it was like a switch was turned off and the winds died down. The weather warmed up and I was finally feeling better. With only a week left in Show Low, we wanted to spend some time exploring the area and doing some geocaching.
Show Low is an unusual name for a town. You may be wondering where the name came from and so were we! The answer came in a tiny little city park where we found statues of two men sitting at a table. In 1876 two ranchers by the last names of Cooley and Clark claimed and became partners in managing 100,000 acres of land in this area. As it became evident that the land could not support two families, neither man was willing to buy the other out. To settle the matter, the two men agreed to play a friendly card game of Seven Up at the kitchen table in Colley’s house across from where this small park stands today. As the game neared completion, Cooley needed just one point to win. Clark held a three card and feeling he had nothing to lose said, “show low and you win the ranch”. Cooley drew the deuce of clubs and won the game. He renamed the ranch “Show Low” and today the main street through town is called Deuce of Clubs.
Another day we walked the Mongollon Rim Trail, a nice easy paved trail with lovely views. The Mongollon (pronounced Muggy-Own) Rim is a topographical and geological feature that cuts across Arizona and forms the southern limit of the Colorado Plateau. It extends 200 miles eastward and ends near the New Mexico border. While it can’t begin to be compared to the views at the Grand Canyon, it does have some nice far reaching views of the Plateau Country and Desert Canyon of Arizona with drops of up to 2,000 feet in places. After so much time inside it was nice to be outside and get some fresh air and exercise!
Show Low is a really nice town with small town friendliness while having the convenience of many stores and restaurants, including a Walmart Supercenter. We would not mind returning again, though we would wait until after the May windy season!
Currently we are in Prescott, AZ until mid July.