Monday, March 2, 2009

Summer 2007 Car Trip - 36

The area around Durango has been used as a backdrop for many Western movies. Among the movies were The Sons of Katie Elder, Treasure of the Sierra Madre and Wagons East. It was during filming of the latter that comedian John Candy had his heart attack and died. There were many more Westerns made here featuring John Wayne, Dolores del Rio and Dean Martin. I just can't remember them all.

So it was no surprise to anybody that I rushed them through breakfast the next morning. We were going just outside of Durango to visit a real Western movie set! I couldn't wait.

This movie village was only a few miles out of town with a backdrop of mountains to make it feel even more westerny. We arrived in the parking lot and had our choice of spots since there was not a person around. Only the feeling of ghosts from past visitors. We walked over to the ticket booth and interrupted the young man sitting inside. He reluctantly laid aside the joint he was smoking and took our money. I think it was 5 pesos per person.

We walked down a long lane, adorned with markers stating the names of the movies filmed there, the year made and the major stars. I was thrilled.

Here's the start of the main street.

Midway down looking to the end of the street and the "graveyard".

I was expecting a lot of fake front buildings but was pleasantly surprised to see that they were actually 3D buildings. I was unpleasantly surprised to discover that you could not go inside them. They were probably just big empty squares anyway.

They even had these rail tracks laid out with a couple of cars on them. You can't tell from this picture but I was hanging on for dear life as the car joggled from side to side, bouncing me along. I was pulled out of my cowboy fantasy when B yelled, "Get off that you dork!"

They even had a gallows set up for cattle rustlers and the like. Sometimes they got the wrong man and the innocent were hanged. I was going to say the innocent were hung, but that is an entirely different story.

Of course my last wish was not for world peace. It was to be buried right here.

With my luck, they would have just thrown me into the sagebrush and left me to the coyotes.

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