Sunday, June 17, 2012

RVing is Always an Adventure

Today was one of those days when even the jello kept melting.

We left Richfield, Utah bright and early with a “plan” to drive less than 200 miles to Bountiful, Utah. The “plan” was to stay overnight at the Elks lodge and then head on to Wyoming the next day. After spending considerable time in route planning so that we could see the most scenery with the easiest drive, we decided to drive up hwy 89 to Bountiful.

 The day started on on a positive note: we saw diesel fuel for $3.53/gal. That was 26 cents/gal cheaper than anywhere else. A great way to start the day. But, as we pulled into the station we had to wait for the motorhome ahead of us to hitch up his toad. Let me be clear, he had already finished fueling his motorhome, and then decided to hitch up the toad while still at the pump. We were happy to see that he headed the opposite direction on the highway as he left.

Howie started off the day's drive, and then I took over after about an hour. The first thing I did was miss the turn to hwy 89, and landed on a rural road complete with slow going tractors and bales of hay spilled across the road. But, it’s an adventure right? So Howie navigated the new route and I negotiated all the hazards, and only 38 miles later we were on I-15 heading north again. By the way for anyone else heading up I-15 to Salt Lake City, there are miles and miles of construction. 

 We switched off driving again and headed for the Elks lodge in Bountiful — not! Couldn’t find the place, so we decided to keep going to Evanston, Wyoming, which was only another 60 or so miles further down the road.

Once again we switched driving which left me to drive the mountain roads with, once again, you guessed it….more construction. It’s good to see our tax dollars at work and I’m sure the next time we come this way we will enjoy all those new roads, but…

So I’m driving and Howie is reading the directions to the Elks Lodge in Evanston. We find the right road and yes, we can see the Elks Lodge. It is right on top of the hill just as the book says it will be. I turn right and start up the hill, which suddenly becomes narrow and gravel. But there was no where to go but up, that is until we ended up here…


The Elks Lodge has closed and the parking lot is now this lovely junk yard. The owner was amused by very nice. He apologized because he hadn’t taken down the Elks sign from the building, and he offered to help us unhitch the car, so we could turn around and drive back down the hill.

So, 300 miles later we ended up at camp Wal-Mart sandwiched between a bunch of big rigs. The perfect ending to a “perfect” day.

This will make a terrific campfire story in a couple of years when we start to make up additional details to enhance it. :-)

North Through Utah

For all our RVing friends this park is located off the I-70 east of the I-15 in Utah.  And, yes, there is RV parking in the lot.  There is also an campground with rv parking but no hookups.  Wouldn't be bad in spring or fall, but it's too hot here now.

We are in Richfield, Utah hanging out at the Elks Lodge, nothing fancy but they do have 50 amp electric, so the air conditioners are humming away keeping ME cool and happy.  Everyone knows Howie loves the heat, so he doesn't care so much about keeping cool.

I couldn't pass up the opportunity to drive the 21 miles back to the Fremont Indian State Park, while Howie took in some alone time -- it's the big secret of happy RVing marriages :-)  Besides he has reached the point that all Indian sites look the same to him *sigh*

The museum is small but first rate, and there are several hikes to the many petrogyphs, pictographs and even a couple of pictoglyphs.  Since it was already in the 90s by the time I arrived, I elected to just take in the 1/2 mile paved hike around the visitor center, where there were lots of petroglyphs on the surrounding cliffs.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Zion National Park

So, we are finally on the move.  After leaving Southern California we spent a couple of days visiting Howie's sister in Bullhead City, AZ.  We had a lovely visit with Judy; we only wish it had been just a bit cooler than 103 degrees -- whew! that's warm!.

Next stop, Saint George, Utah.  It has been a few years since we last spent a time here.  Back in the mid 1990s, I spent 6 weeks on an archaeological dig in Hurricane, Utah, which is only a few miles from Saint George.  While on the dig I lived in my RV in Saint George.  The city has grown up a LOT since then.  We tried to find the location of where that archaeological site had been, but the whole area is now just a big housing tract.  It's kind of sad to think that that ancient Indian village is completely covered up with houses, manicured yards and roads -- all evidence of their life is gone. 

We took one day and drove out to Zion National Park.  We have been here before, so this time we decided to just take the 80 minute bus ride around and "do" the visitor's center.

  Typical Sandstone cliff  - Zion National Park

On the way to/from Zion NP we came across this bit of local roadside "art".  I wonder how many more impromptu art projects we'll see in our travels this year. 

Friday, May 4, 2012

It's been a long, long time....

Soooooo......, it looks like it has been over 2 years since I last posted on our travels.  I won't even attempt to cover the past 2 years other than to say we've been east-west and north-south.  But, I will try to post more often, than every 2 years, in the future.

Christmas Monkey is no longer with us.  He has been passed along to other family members for safe keeping.  Since he is always with us in spirit, we'll keep the name of our blog the same.

After many, many months of sitting in Sacramento while Howie received treatment for lung cancer we are at long last back on the road.  Our first stop is Park Sierra (SKP park) in Coarsegold, CA.  The park is close to Yosemite NP for day trips, but mostly it is wonderful to be in the Sierra foothills, among the trees and out of the big city.  We stopped in town yesterday to pick up "tourist information" and learned that Coarsegold is famous for its Tartantula Festival, in October.  We'll, no doubt, skip that!

We started our trip one day late.  After all those months of just sitting, our living-room slide out wouldn't slide in.  After doing what we could, we broke down and called for an RV repairman.  Although he had no idea what he did that fixed the problem, the slide finally came in.  We tested it in and out a few more times and decided it was too late to get started down the road that day.

Our first travel day was uneventful.  Howie drove the first 100 miles, which meant I got to make my first 2 lane, no shoulder, mountain drive.  It must have been pretty exciting as I noticed Howie was white knuckling it over in the passenger seat.  I on the other hand, I thought I did exceptionally well; I got us to Park Sierra safe and sound, without a scratch or dent.

We plan to hang out here until mid-May and decompress from city living, before we head to Southern California, which is just one town-to-town, BIG CITY!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Rockport, Texas

I know it has been awhile since I last posted, but to bring you all up to date.  We drove 3 long days across Mississippi and Louisiana on our way to Texas. 

Grandpa driving

We finally settled into our site at the Rustic Cove RV park in Rockport, Texas. Rockport is on the Gulf Coast and we are just across the road from the water.   We'll be here until the end of March.

Our friends Bob and Molly Pinner are camped at another park around the corner from us along with a lot of their friends.  They invited us over for a hot dog and marshmallow roast and I got to go along.   Here's Molly showing me how to roast marshmallows; Bob is watching on.

And here I am...

Last weekend we went to the Rock, Fossil and Mineral show in Corpus Christy where we ran into our friends Mark & Renita.  Grandpa tried to convince Renita he should get a discount on the admission ticket because he was wearing his Wyoming shirt (Mark and Renita are from Wyoming) but she was too smart to go for that.  Mark was working to control the crowds at the back door and since we didn't see any crowds we think he must have been doing a very good job.  All the food on the table is made from rocks -- we thought this was pretty cool.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Gulf Islands National Seashore

We just left the Gulf Islands National Seashore, which is a really cool place, with beautiful white sand beaches, a real fort (Fort Pickens) and some BIG guns.  

We started our visit last Sunday by taking a drive to Pensacola Beach, where we accidentally found ourselves in the middle of the staging area for their Mardi Gras parade. It was really fun to see all people dressed in costumes and hear the music as we drove along side the floats.  We even got some beads.  But, unfortunately grandma forgot her camera.  But here are some photos from last year's parade she found on another blog.

On Monday we drove the motorhome over the Gulf Islands National Seashore campground, which was only a few steps from the beach. 

We took a great ranger led tour of the fort which was built in the early 1820s and was used by the military to defend Pensacola until just after World War II. 

But best of all I got to sit on one of the 6" guns that were put on the beach in World War II to protect our country.  Check out the white sand and water on the beach behind me.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Carrabelle Beach, Florida

Today we drove the road along the Gulf Coast of Florida to Fort Walton Beach.  Along the way we traveled through lots of small beach towns and saw lots of beaches, but we just had to stop at Carrabelle Beach at a beach side picnic area for a late breakfast and walk on the beach.   Here's some photos of me at the picnic area and on the beach.



The sand was really soft and white and the sun was really bright, but it was very cold today.

We also took the dogs for a walk on the beach.  They were fun to watch.  It was Toby's first time at a beach, so he was running back and forth checking out everything and he just had to stop and sniff every seashell and piece of seaweed he saw. 

Carabelle Beach is famous for the role it played in 1943 when soldiers used the beach for training as they prepared for the Invasion of Normandy.  Here's a link to the historical marker that tells all about it. 

Grandpa and grandma also took some time to walk on the beach to watch the sunset tonight.  They didn't take me or the dogs this time and didn't take any photos.  Maybe they will take us next time.