Sunday, March 29, 2015

We're Home

The time has come for these snow (not old) birds to head north so here we are.  We had a great trip home - great roads, little to no wind, sunshine, and warm temperatures - what more could one ask.

We left Tuesday morning and went to the Virgin River Canyon Campground which is halfway between Mesquite, NV and St. George, UT.  The scenery is very beautiful plus we had a chance to visit some friends whom we hadn't seen for quite a long time.  It was a great chance to catch up on what has been happening.  On Thursday we hit the road and were home by noon Saturday.  Believe me, there was no time to waste for the driver.  Once he got behind the wheel, there was no stopping him. But we never drove before sunrise or sunset but just a steady pace.

This is our view from the Campground.  This view was similar 360 degrees but was constantly changing depending on the direction of the sun.  The photo on the left is taken down by the Virgin River which was just over the edge of our site.

The temperatures were quite warm as we travelled but also had been for some time.  These are the trees blooming near Salt Lake City.  Many of the trees were coming out in leaves as well which hopefully means an early spring.

Since we were blessed with such great weather we decided to take a shortcut through the upper edge of Yellowstone National Park.  Of course there was still some snow in the trees but the roads were nice and dry.

A great stopover spot for the night is Idaho Falls, ID.  The city has provided a free campground for a one night stay (perfect for us) along the edge of the Snake River.  This is what we saw that evening - you can't beat that.

And with that, our winter trip has come to an end.  It has been a great winter, and I hope that you have enjoyed our story of our travels as we surely did enjoy experiencing them.  We travelled about 13,000 km (or just over 8,000 miles) with the motorhome - we saw lots, we did lots, and had a wonderful time.  As I close off, I will say good-bye and thanks for visiting.  Until our next trip, God Bless!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Happy Spring

We are still in Pahrump, NV but this is our last week here.  Once again, we have kept busy while we have been enjoying this wonderfully perfect weather.  Each and every day brings sunshine and great temperatures during the day with cooling temperatures at night.

I think all the maintenance has been done on the motorhome.  It has received another wash and coat of wax after giving the roof a good scrubbing.  There were a number of mouldings that had badly discoloured  that got a paint job - starting to look almost new (notice I said almost).

There was an RV show nearby which we took in.  There were mostly high-end coaches  - Monaco and Holiday Rambler.  The most expensive one was a mere $657,000.  I don't know how many units they sold but we did see some being test-driven so I'm guessing that there were some buyers.  We did see one in the park that has been made to double as an ice-fishing house (it is no shack).  Very unique.

We took a day and made a tour of Death Valley.    The colouring of the mountains and the varied formations is absolutely amazing.  Depending on the sunlight, and the time of day, and the direction you are driving, every turn is a new scene.  There were a group of cyclists that were doing a circle tour - all different sorts of bicycles and a very varied age of riders.  Fortunately, most of them that the wind on their back.
 Above is a panoramic view of the mountains along side the road

We took a 9 mile drive called Artist's Drive.  These two photos show the variety of colours at one point called Artist's Palette

 This is is called Zabriski Point - a scenic view point.  

On the right is one of the cyclists out for a ride.

 We did see some wildflowers - some had an amazing fragance - something that you don't find in the wild.
Flowering Yucca

A beautiful beaver tail cactus

 These flowers are very fragrant
There also was a balloon festival this weekend.  Lift-off was to start at 6:30 a.m. so it was a very early morning for us.  Well, some of them started to take their balloons and other equipment out at that time but lift-off did take place about an hour later.  While there were only 27 balloons and the shape of them all was very similar, the colours made quite a sight.  It was great fun to watch as the balloons drifted across the sky.  We just saw day one.  Tomorrow evening there is supposed to be glow balloons which we will have to see.  Perhaps they will be in next weeks story.

We were told that this was the local air force.  It really is a few of the many ultra lights that flew around.

Another week has come to an end and spring has arrived.  I hope you have a great week.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Good Bye Arizona

Here it is mid-March and we say good-bye to another state.  We are now in Pahrump, NV where we had planned on getting a good rest before hitting the road north.

The weather this week has been about as close to perfect as one could get.  The days are warm and sunny; the evenings are cool but comfortable.

The start of the week saw us at Lake Havasu City where we had a chance to do a bit of visiting as we  were able to see some friends that we hadn't seen for quite some time.  And we were able to visit some friends in their new home following their recent move from California.  Then early in the week we moved north.

Since this past week became a working week - or at least the last half of the week was.  We finally got our muffler problem resolved.  After all the frustration we had trying to get it fixed, we finally found someone who said "be here tomorrow morning at 8"  and guess what, we were home by noon.  We had been having some problems with some of our levelling jacks.  Sometimes they worked perfectly, and sometimes one would refuse to retract.  Not anymore - new springs on them all now.  And of course there is the cleaning that needs to be done so we best do it all in one day.  Gerry scrubbed the roof which led to washing the sides as well.  The good news - all that is left is a wax job (I think) so maybe next week will be the resting week.
Mt Charleston on our way home from the fish fry

We did go to a fish fry last night which was a fund raiser for the Catholic Church in town.  The fish was very tasty.

Since pictures of things we did this week won't be much fun to look at (who wants to see repair work being done), I have decided to share some pictures I took around our campground.  I hope you enjoy them.

It's spring time as the blossoms come out.  I don't know what the tree on the right is but the fragance is wonderful

The fish are huge in this pond - obviously they are well fed.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Lake Havasu City

Hopefully the processing glitch is fixed as I sit here and try to tell our story of the past week.  Somehow, the time has passed quickly and here it is, already Monday.

This past week was spent in Lake Havasu City where we attended a 4X4 rally.  It was a great chance to make new friends, and have a great visit with old friends.  Now the word "old" simply refers to how long we have known these friends rather than their age.  

The week started off cool and rainy and not very pleasant.  That, though turned out to be a blessing as the rain settled the dust on the trails, cleaned the dust off the plants, and made the wild flowers burst to life.  It seemed to have rained a lot but there was very little evidence of this in the washes.  Each day became warmer, the skies cleared and we had wonderful weather.  I will try to tell about our week in some pictures that I took.
Check out the bird

We took a trip to a cabin which was about 10 miles out into the desert.  The road out was fairly easy but rough (washboard).  The amenities were amazing - beds and mattresses for four (bunk beds), a veranda with various chesterfields and armchairs, an outdoor bathroom, horseshoe pit, large barrel.
Lawn ornaments

There was even a little friendly competition

 Gerry went on a hike one day through Sara's crack.  As you can tell it is a very narrow opening through the rocks.  On the left you can see where they had to cascade down some slick rock.  After crossing one patch of water (apparently it was quite cold), they had to find an alternate route as the next water was rather deep.  They did manage to clamber out and up onto the top.  They then walked down to Lake Havasu.  According to the gps that one of the fellows had, the round trip was 7.8 miles.  He definitely felt that he got his exercise for the day.

The show of flowers is amazing.  The beavertail cactus is particularly amazing with the number of blossoms open.  And the brittle bush along side the trail is very showy.

Many of the trips have a variety of scenery - from washes, to canyons to mountain tops.  the views are often spectacular.
I must apologize for posting so late this week.  As I had tried to post many more photos, the format eluded me.  As a result, I spent way too much time trying to do something that wasn't to be.

Until next week, take care.  

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Good Bye California

This week was moving week again.  We left the Fountain of Youth (looking much younger), and have headed towards Lake Havasu City.   Since we left mid-week and weren't scheduled to be in Lake Havasu until the weekend, we had some quiet time near Parker, AZ.

Early in the week we did a little touring and found the stone cabin.  While the cabin itself was still standing (at least the walls were), you could see where someone had tried to burn the timbers which held it together.  Then we were speculating what the rooms were used for.  The big one (about 8' x 10') was definitely the kitchen as there was a firepit of sorts.  While we can't imagine living in something like that it probably was a great shelter in it's day.

We also found a lake which apparently used to be a fish hatchery.  The lake still has some really big fish (catfish we're told) in it.  They would come right near the shore in search of food (the bread we had saved for them was still on the counter) and they sure did muddy up the water.  There also were tons of little fish that came looking for food.

Then we found a source where the hot water comes out.  The water is too hot to put your hand in it so we can understand why it has to be cooled to be used for the swimming pools.

Our time at the Fountain of Youth was up so we went over to Parker.  There we camped just outside of town in a area that was quiet and with mountains on one side and a view of the town and the Parker Strip along the Colorado River on the other - very pretty at night.  Fortunately it wasn't very sandy because yesterday, when the wind howled all day, it was relatively clean rather than everything being covered in a fine sand grit.  And the sunsets were lovely.

The weather is not promising to be very nice early this week and it looks like the weatherman is right.  Right now - mid afternoon - it is 16C and raining.  That does mean that our off-roading week will start by being dust-free.

I hope everyone has a great week.

Here is Mr. Robin - just waiting to be able to head north!!