Saturday 25 February 2006

Preparing To Move On !

Today we’re getting mentally and physically prepared to move on tomorrow. We are heading to Tucson even though we don’t have a reservation at a campground. I have spoken with the office at the Prince of Tucson and have been told that they can put us in a water/electric spot probably for a night or two and then move us to a full hook up site. For a week we don’t really need full hook ups though.

Yesterday I had noticed that there was someone else in the campground from Ontario and the license plate said that their Saturn had been purchased at Pickering Saturn. They also have a DirecWay dish on their C Class motorhome from 3i Communications. So today when we came back from our showers they were outside with their dog so we talked to them for a while. Their dish is automatic and costs $8000! It takes 5-10 minutes to find the satellite so even though we have to set ours up physically it usually only takes 15-20 minutes to get it set up so for the extra $, I think we’ll keep what we have.

This afternoon I headed west to Cottonwood to go to WalMart to buy groceries. I never seem to get out of there under $100 these days. I drove around some side streets in Cottonwood and then headed back to Camp Verde. I stopped at the little shopping mall there but didn’t find much. Then I drove into Camp Verde and back to the RV park to unload and put away the groceries.

After feeding the dog, he and I went for a walk, then I had a short nap.

I’m looking forward to moving on tomorrow. I think Gordon has mixed feelings. He mentioned this morning that he wouldn’t mind staying another week but as of now, I think we’re going. All that could change over night though!

I have two photos posted for today, one is of the countryside area around the RV park. The photo was taken from the park and the other is of the office/clubhouse at the RV park. Very nice clubhouse with free wifi.

Friday 24 February 2006

A Really Slow Day!

Today we were both totally wiped out from our trip yesterday so we didn’t do much all day. I sat outside and read for a while and took a couple of walks. Although it was only 26F when I got up this morning, it got up to 70F and was sunny and clear with few clouds. The only clouds were just above the mountains and other than that the sky was clear blue.

Around 4:30 p.m. we drove over to the town of Camp Verde with the intention of taking some photos of the town but instead we just drove around and wound up driving west on Hwy 260 to Cottonwood about 15 miles away. It is much larger than Camp Verde and has a SuperWalMart so guess where I’m going tomorrow. I had thought about booking a campground there but thought Camp Verde was closer to Sedona, turns out, its not however the campgrounds looked small and old and the one we’re in is new and clean with nice large sites with concrete pads.

So, we wound up not taking any photos and coming back in time to prepare dinner and watch TV.

Since I didn’t take any photos today, I’m putting up one of a view from the campground that I took earlier in the week.

Wupatki Pueblo Ruins

Sunset Crater and Bonito Lava Flow

Grand Canyon Views

Sunset Crater, Wupatki Pueblo and The Grand Canyon!

We left Distant Drums RV Resort at 8:45 a.m. to head north to the Grand Canyon. Gordon had spoken with Fred (his photographer friend) and some of his friends and it was recommended that we enter at the eastern rim of the canyon. There were also some sights to see on the way. The drive was uneventful thank goodness and we noticed along the way that apparently you aren’t someone unless you have a horse corral in your front yard! We got through Flagstaff and headed north, our first stop to be Sunset Crater Volcano.

Sunset Crater first erupted in the winter of 1064-65. It is the most recent in a six-million-year history of volcanic activity in the Flagstaff area. What is now a 1,000 foot high volcano began to form when molten rock sprayed high into the air from a crack in the ground, solidified, then fell to Earth as large bombs or smaller cinders. As periodic eruptions continued over the next 200 years, the heavier debris accumulated around the vent. The lightest, smallest particles were carried the farthest by wind, dusting 800 square miles of northern Arizona with ash. Perhaps as spectacular as the original eruption were two lava flows, the Kana-a in 1064 and the Bonito in 1180. They destroyed all living things in their path.

We walked on the lava flow, walked along the pathway and took some photos. One of the photos I took is above. It’s very pretty to see all the black lava-like sand with the green trees against the blue sky.

Then we stopped at the Wupatki ruins. To me this is history and I’m not a history type person but these ruins of the pueblo were interesting because it was all red rock like the rocks at Sedona.

We then headed on to the eastern rim of the Grand Canyon. Glad we purchased the National Parks Pass last year. We’ve gotten our moneys worth. It’s $20 to enter the park if you don’t have the pass. We stopped first at the Desert View overlook and a nice lady took our picture on my camera and it is included with today’s blog. We then stopped at almost all of the viewpoints going toward the south rim mainly looking for a good spot for sunset photos. We saw lots of rock, canyons and trees. It is indeed a place to see and I’m glad we went (even though it was a very long day and today I feel like I’ve been pulled through a knothole) however I have to say that the Sedona area with all the red rock is prettier (again in my opinion) and I think Big Bend National Park is also prettier and more interesting. I have however included some photos taken of the Grand Canyon.

We wound up leaving the park just before sunset after taking some photos in the golden light. The sun was bright and there were no clouds so we decided to head back. We left through the southern rim exit and drove toward Williams hoping to find a Taco Bell for dinner.

Not much by way of fast food in Williams but it was interesting to see the town. This apparently is where a lot of people stay when going to the park. It is quite a distance though probably an hour’s drive to get to the south rim.

We continued on, not finding a sign for Taco Bell anywhere even going through Flagstaff. We didn’t get off the Interstate relying on the signs so decided to head back to Camp Verde where we knew there was a Taco Bell. We arrived back at the RV at 8:45 p.m., a very full 12 hours, traveling 340 miles!

Wednesday 22 February 2006

Vegged Out Today!

Low 26
High 66

Today Bib and I vegged while Gordon went shooting photos with Fred. Before Gordon left this morning we signed up for one more day here so we can travel through Phoenix on Sunday. Hopefully the traffic will be better on Sunday.

I recorded our monthly expenses, read a bit both inside and outside, went for a couple of walks and packed a lunch for us to take tomorrow on our journey to the Grand Canyon. It’s supposed to be a high of 50Fand sunny at the Canyon tomorrow. The low is 11F but hopefully we won’t see that temperature. We’re leaving fairly early but not before dawn but will probably stay for sunset.

No photos today. My camera is being charged in preparation for tomorrow!

Tuesday 21 February 2006

Snoopy laying on his doghouse with Woodstock on his nose
Sedona scenery

Sandra on hiking trail

Beautiful Area but Too Cold!

27F this morning. I think we won’t be staying here another week as we had talked about. Beautiful area but too freaking cold! They even shut the water off in the campground last night. Not that that’s a big deal as we have our own water on board.

Slow start this morning but this afternoon we headed into Sedona for more photo shooting. Gordon is still wiped from yesterday’s shooting from before dawn to after sunset and he has another day planned like that tomorrow. Then we’re off to the Grand Canyon on Thursday for the day, weather permitting.

We drove around and took pictures of the Sedona area. Awesome scenery here! We stopped in the downtown area and looked around the shops for an hour but didn’t see anything I liked better than my money that I could afford anyway. So all I have to show for today are lots of photos. We got home about 6:45 p.m. so it was a full afternoon.

Monday 20 February 2006

Monday Monday

This morning’s temperature at 7:15 a.m. was 29F. Brrr! But, by 8:20 a.m. it was 39F and warmed up to 61F and was sunny. Mesa days were bright blue sky while here the sky does have some cloud. It’s definitely cooler here but quite pleasant in the sun. I think Mesa is also getting cooler weather right now.

Gordon left before dawn to take sunrise photos and then was picking up Fred, the photographer that we met yesterday and going to Jerome.

  • Jerome is located on top of Cleopatra Hill at 5,200 feet. Once known as the wickedest town in the west, Jerome was a copper mining camp and grew from a settlement of tents to a roaring mining community. Four fires destroyed large sections of the town during its early history resulting in the incorporation of the City of Jerome in 1899. Founded in 1876 it was once the fourth largest city in the Arizona Territory. The population peaked at 15,000 in the 1920’s and when the Depression of the 1930’s slowed the mining operation, the population dwindled to around 50. It was promoted as a historic ghost town.. In 1967 Jerome was designated a National Historic District and today is a thriving tourist and artist community with a population of around 450. The town sits above what was the largest copper mine in Arizona and produced 3 million pounds of copper per month. Men and women from all over the world made their way to Arizona to find work and a new way of life. Today the mines are not worked and Jerome has become the largest ghost town in America.
While the boys were out taking photos, I stayed at home with Bib and got my housecleaning done, went for a few walks and took a few photos.

The park has really filled up today. Looks like a rally of hi low trailers plus a bunch of others. We now have neighbors on all sides but no one behind us yet.

Yesterday when we were at Fred and Nan’s house a couple of havelina happened by their front door right in the city of Sedona! I snapped a quick photo which is above.

Facts about the Javelina (pronounced Havelina)

  • Collared Peccary (Javelina) is the only wild, native pig-like animal found in the United States
  • They are called Javelina because of their razor-sharp tusks, Spanish for javelin or spear.
  • You may smell a peccary before you see it.
  • The prickly pear is ideal food for the Collared Peccary due to its high water content.
  • Collared Peccary have poor eyesight and good hearing.

Our site - #111 at Distant Drums RV Resort, Camp Verde, AZ

Sunday 19 February 2006

Meeting New People!

This morning Gordon was out taking sunrise photos while I had a slow start and after our walks took another nap. I knew today would be a busy day as we had made arrangements to go to the home of one of the guys that Gordon has met through, another photographer who lives in Sedona. We were to be at their house for 2:00 p.m.

We left at noon not because it’s far away but because Gordon wanted to scout out photo opportunities. There are certainly a lot of them in this area. Sedona itself is a very pretty little city surrounded by red rock mountains of different shapes. The adobe architecture is beautiful! There is not much by way of shopping here but there are all kinds of galleries and craft places. After our photo scouting mission, we arrived at the home of Nan & Fred on time and enjoyed our afternoon, the guys talking photography and places to photograph and the ladies talking about painting and crafting. Nan is taking both oil and watercolor lessons and has done some excellent paintings. She enjoys doing portraits and is really good at facial features. We then went to dinner at one of their favorite restaurants, Judi’s in Sedona.

Gordon and Fred are getting together tomorrow and heading over to Jerome while Nan is at one of her painting courses and I’m being a drudge and doing housework and spending some time with Bib as he was all alone all day.

Tonight is TV!

Photos today are of a Sedona scene and the four of us at the restaurant.