One place most people probably...
One place most people probably don't see when traveling to Amarillo is Cal Farley's Boys Ranch. It is located 36 miles northwest of Amarillo off Highway 385. Boys Ranch is a children's home that has been in existence since 1939. It is built on the site of the wild west town called Old Tascosa. Old Tascosa was the county seat of Oldham County in the late 1800's, and the original courthouse serves as a small but nice museum. Boys Ranch is well worth the 30-40 minute drive. You can get a guided tour from one of the resident children, and there is plenty to see. Boys Ranch is set in a beautiful 'oasis' of very tall cottonwood trees along the valley of the Canadian River. It is truly a place that must be seen to be believed.
~ Amarillo, Texas ~
Back when I was a teenager I traveled along stretches of US 87 & 287 across the prairies of Northwest Texas. While traveling through this northernmost part of Texas I have actually seen tumbleweeds and pint-sized tornadic swirls of dust known as “dust devils” skip across the highway in the searing summer heat. Of course, this is tornado country, but I was thankfully spared the site of seeing any Texas twisters rip paths of destruction.
"Amarillo and the road from Dalhart & Dumas"
Heading out of New Mexico on US 87, we passed through Dalhart, a small town with a downtown consisting of a row of old buildings lining a block or so of a street. I think we ate at a diner here once. Anyway, we stayed on 87 for about another 40 miles until reaching the town of Dumas. At Dumas, 87 merges with US 287, on which we set a course for Amarillo. A rather isolated city with a population of more than 100,000 residents, Amarillo serves as the hub of this part of Texas. In fact, downtown Amarillo even has its own skyscraper, surrounded by a few mid-rise buildings, which can be seen from many miles away due to the lack of trees and other obstructions on the wide open landscape. I have actually stayed in Amarillo a couple of times, as it is the most logical stopping place to look for accommodations in these parts. Nevertheless, I have never explored the city on foot. Based on the restaurants I remember seeing from the road, I imagine that this is a city where steak-eating challenges are popular. I also know that city is famous for its Cadillac Ranch, a roadside oddity located west of the city and outside the scope of my route.
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