Saturday, June 26, 2010


After my refrigerator stopped working in Santa Fe I pulled into an RV repair shop to have it looked at. After $110.00 and over an hour waiting to see if the repair job worked, I was confident that it did, and I headed north to Colorado. I stopped at an RV friendly Wal-Mart in Alamosa to stock up on groceries and spend the night, only to discover that the fridge was NOT cold!! I cried a few tears into my room temperature beer, then come up with Plan B. Plan B was an RV repair shop in Alamosa. Well, that didn't work out very well, so I headed towards Colorado Springs. I am now at the Camping World just south of The Springs. I found a very helpful and friendly Repair Dept. employee, told him my sad story, took him out to my trailer so he could check it out, and lo and behold, the burner is staying lit. So, I'm hanging out at Camping World for a few hours to see if the fridge starts to cool down. If it doesn't, I will probably stay here until Monday when they can get me into the repair shop. If it does work, I'll probably head north a little and wait around for my motorcycle appt. on Thursday. Or, maybe I'll try to get that appt. moved up a bit.

As much as I like to plan things out, looks like I'm having a big opportunity to see if I can adapt to unforeseen circumstances. So far, the room temperature beer is the hardest part.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Santa Fe

I arrived at my destination in Santa Fe and discovered I was looking at the wrong building, and the ever important parking lot, on Panoramio. If I had paid more attention to my directions to the location I would have figured it out before I arrived. So, the parking conditions aren't quite as nice as I was expecting, but I guess it will do. It is close and convenient to all the errands I have planned for tomorrow. I just hope that if it does rain in a few days, like predicted, the dirt lot won't become a mud bog. I might drive up to Hyde Memorial State Park and check it out and move up there if it looks appealing. But after yesterday's stay at a State Park I've had enough of other people's eye irritating campfire smoke!!

It's windy and warm, but hopefully those conditions will improve soon.


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Let the adventure begin!!!

People often ask me how do I decide where to go on my summer travels. Well, sometimes I decide to join up with my RV Club the WINs - Wandering Individuals Network. Sometimes I just do my own thing, going to motorcycle rallies and visiting friends. This year I'm doing the budget plan. I got out my Elk's Lodge books and Moose Lodge pages and looked up the lodges that offer free, cheap or donation RV parking. I plotted them on the map and the ones that are in cool temp/high altitude spots made the short list. I tried to throw in a few motorcycle rallies, WIN club stops, my favorite Montana Brewery, and beautiful mountain passes to ride.
I use the Internet extensively to search for RV dump stations, Costcos, Petsmarts, pet groomers, the cheapest gas stations that sell diesel, free and cheap camping spots and the very important Verizon phone and Wireless Internet Service Areas. I found that Wyoming doesn't have one Costco or Petsmart so I'll have to anticipate and stock-up on needed supplies before I leave Colorado and head into Wyoming. I have many publications that range from telling me what I can find at every off-ramp along the main highways, where every Wal-Mart is located and which ones allow overnight RV parking and how steep a grade to expect on every mountain pass. I also have Hot Springs books, a Harley Shop guide, and lots of maps.
When I have the dilemma of choosing between two spots, I use "Panoramio" which shows an aerial view of almost every spot on earth, or "" which shows street level views of most addresses. They are helping me decide between two Elks Lodges in New Mexico I am contemplating and two different Harley Shops in Colorado. I'm looking for a Harley shop with a large parking lot where I can unload my bike and take her in for her 30,000 mile service. And one of the Elk's Lodges looks like it has a much larger parking lot and looks to be in a much quieter area than the other.
I try to have a nice balance of quiet, remote spots vs. city spots convenient to shopping. I need an RV dump station about every two weeks, a dog groomer about every 5-6 weeks and an easy access US Post Office once a month to pick up the mail I have forwarded from South Dakota.
At this time I have on my schedule: 2 Elks Lodges, 1 Moose Lodge, 1 VFW Lodge, 4 Wal-Marts, 1 State Park, 1 County Fairground, 2 City parks, 6 free dispersed camping spots, 1 National Park, 2 National Recreation Areas, and 2 BLM areas. Seven of the spots are with the WINS and the rest are just on my own. Fifteen spots are free, and most of the pay spots are $5-$6 per night with one or two from $10-$20/night.
I haven't scheduled any motorcycle rallies but I'm planning to ride my motorcycle over 10 Mountain passes 10,000' or higher, mostly in the beautiful Rockies. And I it looks like I won't make it to the Big Sky Brewery in Missoula, MT this year, but I shouldn't have any problem finding my beloved Moose Drool beer in stores in the states I'm heading to.

Some people pull up to an intersection and flip a coin to see which direction they will go. I guess I'm a planner. I like to plan where I'm going and what I'm going to do when I get there. If something unexpected comes up and I want to change my plan, that's OK!! I will do that. But for now I plan to stick to my plan and head east to New Mexico early tomorrow morning before the wind kicks up, stopping in Gallup for fuel, then continue on to one of New Mexico's beautiful state parks.

See ya down the road!!

Monday, June 14, 2010

My 2010 Summer Travels

The heat arrived in the Phoenix Valley, so I headed for the mountains. I'm up on my little half acre near Concho, in the White Mountains, but since my land partner isn't coming up this summer, I have the whole acre to myself.

Last summer I had problems with my DirecTV receiver box and this summer I had problems with my dish. But with the help of my friend and electronics wizard Jack, I'm getting DirecTV reception with a Dish satellite dish. = )

This is the view from the front steps of my trailer.

Here's a shady little spot where I occasionally have my morning coffee. It makes me feel like I'm sitting right in the middle of a Juniper bush.

Here's Cute Little Bear, welcoming me and my guests.

This is the view looking down the driveway.

I've been spending some of my time working on plans for the rest of my summer travels. Of course my plans, like most RVers plans, are set in jell-o and subject to change at anytime, without notice. As of now, I am planning on heading to New Mexico this coming Sunday. Besides new Mexico the route will be taking me to Colorado, Wyoming, back down to Colorado, over to Utah and down into Arizona as I head back to the Phoenix area around October 8Th.

Microsoft Streets and Trips tells me my route is 2800 miles and would take 6 days, 1 hour and 33 minutes to drive, but I'm going to take my time and spend 124 days (or 4 months) doing the loop. Beside the 2800 miles driving my truck and pulling the trailer, I will probably put about 2,000 miles on the Harley also.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Memorial Day

On Memorial Day I joined about 200 motorcycle riders for Riders USA's 4Th annual gathering at the Phoenix National Cemetery to welcome and thank all the Veterans, family members and friends on their way to the annual Memorial Day Ceremony. I arrived at 6:30 AM and Riders USA members already had dozens of flags flying and there were already dozens of bikes lined up along Cave Creek Road.

World famous photographer George Childress...