Friday, January 4, 2013

A Visit to Phoenix’s Mystery Castle

"Life is not holding a good hand. Life is playing a poor hand well."


Many times when we’re in a place we’ve either lived at or been to many times, we get in a rut.  After all, we’ve been there and done just about everything.  The Phoenix area is kind of like that to us.  However, on Friday we did get a chance to do something we hadn’t done before.  We visited the Mystery Castle.   Even though it had been featured on TV, in magazines and even is listed in the Arizona Historic Register we had not heard of it until then.

This castle sits at the base of South Mountain. It is definitely unique and very gaudy. It was built -phx1_2over a period of about 15 years as room by room was added. The owner, Boyce Gulley,  left his wife and daughter in Seattle when he discovered he was ill.  He headed to Arizona and this was the tribute he built for them. It had 18 rooms and 13 fireplaces. It was built of a native stone with lots of unique features. Many nooks and crannies were stuffed with things that had been collected over the years.

The steps used to be part of the tour.  I’m sure you can see why it is no longer included in the tour.
Mr. Gully thought of everything.  One rock bench was built for tall people and the bench next to it for small people.  This room was called purgatory because it sat between the Chapel and the bar.

  I thought the best part of the castle was the view of Phoenix.

It was interesting and it was fun.  There were two more things we enjoyed on Friday that were interesting and fun too.

First we met a really nice couple from my stomping grounds …. PORT ANGELES, WASHINGTON.  We chatted a bit and were astonished to discover that we had lots of things in common … including our names and our motorhomes.  I no longer have a “Jerry” twin.  I have “Jerry” triplets – that’s an inside joke.  Now you know his name.  His wife … well, he calls her Sacaja-wino.  Anyway, tomorrow we have a planned chat session as we reminisce over all the similarities we share.  It’s definitely a small world after all.

The evening ended with a super dinner with super friends.  We rolled on east to Apache Junction and met up with Sandie, Jim, Paul, Bobbie   and Diana for dinner.  Then, spent a while catching up at the Dixon’s as we planned our next adventure together in “Q”.

It was a great day.  We’re thinking Saturday’s going to be pretty good too!

‘Tis life on the road.


  1. Isn't it amazing how small the world is at times. Neat castle, we'll have to check it out the next time we head West.

  2. Dang...we missed Mystery Castle. How did I do that?

    The view of your supper plate isn't bad either.

  3. So good to see you guys last night. Looking forward to just sitting and visiting at Q.

  4. It amazes me how we can find new things to see/do in a city where we thought we'd seen/done it all. Hidden treasures are everywhere.

  5. So this guy was too sick to stay in Seattle, so he comes to Arizona and builds this castle? Maybe more of us need to get "sick" like that. ;c)

    Or maybe that's what people did before the Internet?

    Good luck with your Q plans, wish we were heading that way this year, but probably we will next year. Arizona has a strong pull on us.

  6. Did you send an email with a link to some "tweedleedle" something? I didn't open it. Could that be someone hacked into your account??

    1. YES!! That's an account I rarely use and usually transfer responses to my regular email. Glad you didn't open it.


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