Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Big Horn Sheep

Although Ken and Faye (the party animals from Colorado) have traveled extensively, they had never been in the desert, so we followed Ralph and Jerry in the RZR to Box Canyon in my Jeep. On the way out of the canyon, we came across one of the largest herds of Big Horn Sheep I have seen. There are people in the park, who have lived here for years, that have never seen Big Horns in the wild and Ken and Faye got to see them their first time out. With that kind of luck, I think I should take them to one of the local casinos. Photos are courtesy of Ralph as I misplaced/lost my small camera.

Click on photos to enlarge

Here are the real desert animals

Friday, September 17, 2021

Nighttime Visitor

Something has been pooping all over my carport and moving my mouse traps without tripping them. In order to identify the culprit, I setup my trail cam and here is what I captured...

Sunday, September 12, 2021


The monsoon rains this summer have caused all kinds of critters to emerge from the desert. Normally, there are very few insects here, but we are currently being plagued by everything from small "no-see-ums" to millions of moths...

Two days after I had the Jeep washed
(click on photos to enlarge)

I have even trapped three mice in the last month...

First mouse I have seen with a hairy tail
After looking at some Internet photos, I now believe this may be a pack rat

Sunday, September 05, 2021

Friday, August 20, 2021

Heading Home

I am cutting my summer trip short and heading back to the Arizonian tomorrow. I have not had any success in getting a contractor to come out to give me an estimate for repairs and I want to make sure that section of the roof where water could enter is patched before another storm arrives.

Update (8/22/2021): Arrived home safe and sound. No damage inside park model. 😀

Update (8/30/2021): Finally found a contractor to repair the carport awning. He indicated it might be a couple of weeks before he could get the needed materials due to the widespread wind damage in the area. 😟

Update (9/8/2021): It has been a frustrating process, but the carport awning has been repaired. 😀😁😂😃😄

Tuesday, August 17, 2021

More Storm Damage

I received a text message this morning informing me that a severe storm had swept through the Arizonian last night doing extensive damage to the park and my carport...

I have filed an insurance claim and am currently waiting on the adjuster to get back to me. In the interim, I am trying to arrange for someone in the park to clear away the loose debris to prevent further damage (another storm is expected tonight) and to see if there was any damage to the park model itself.

Keith, whose carport was damaged back in July, called to say he lost some more panels. He also indicated there has been so much storm damage in the Phoenix area this summer that it could be quite a while before we can get someone out for repairs.

Update (8/18/2021): Mike was able to remove the loose aluminum panels that could further damage the park model. He sent me some photos and this one concerns me most as it appears water could enter the home if they have another severe storm with heavy rain and wind...

Click on photo to enlarge

I am currently waiting for three contractors to return my calls so that I can get an estimate and a date for them to begin work. The good news is I have spoken with the adjuster and she has already cut a check for the repairs.

Friday, August 13, 2021

Rimrocker Trail

The Rimrocker Trail connects a bunch of individual roads to make one continuous 160 mile trail from Montrose to Moab. We drove as far as where it intersects Highway 141 before heading back to the campground. Click on photos to enlarge.

I would have done this trail but I did not have a bucket

Old mine on the side of a cliff

Imagine commuting to work here every day

Overview of the canyon with the Hanging Flume

Monday, August 09, 2021

Woods Lake

We took a Jeep caravan to Woods Lake, a picturesque mountain lake west of Telluride...

Sunday, August 08, 2021

Smoky Mountains

No, I am not writing about the Smoky Mountains in western North Carolina, but the mountains here in the Montrose/Ouray area. Yesterday and today, smoke from the wildfires has blanketed the sky. Normally, you can see the San Juan Mountains about 30 miles from the park, but now I can just barely see the outline of mountains only a couple of miles away...

Click on image to enlarge

Saturday, August 07, 2021

Flamingo Swingers

Last night at dinner with friends, I learned that a flamingo outside a RV is a sign that the occupants are "swingers". Well, I have always known that my neighbors were "party animals" but this came as a bit of a surprise...

Ugly Side of RVing

Sunny sent me some photos from friends who experienced an engine fire that totaled their motorhome. Fortunately, no one was hurt and they were able to save the motorcycles they were towing.

Wednesday, August 04, 2021

Yankee Boy Basin

Some of Ken's friends wanted to drive up to Yankee Boy Basin, a very scenic trail in the San Juan Mountains south of Ouray, Colorado, so we loaded up the Jeeps and headed to the mountains...

Tailings from an old mine

White water from all the rain

Getting ready for lunch with a view

I won't say Dave is cheap but occasionally, he lifts one or more tires off the ground just to save the tread...

Monday, August 02, 2021

Centennial RV Park

My site at the Centennial RV Park opened up yesterday so I moved from another park about two miles away into a space between Ken & Faye and Dave & Bev. The mature shade trees and lush green grass make it a great place to camp...

"Happy Camper"

For the first six months of this year I did not see any significant rain in southern Arizona. For last two weeks it has rained at least part of every day in New Mexico and Colorado. Unfortunately, some of the areas where wildfires destroyed the ground cover this summer are now experiencing severe flooding. The good news is some parts of the southwest are beginning to recover from what has been described as an "exceptional drought".

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Grand Mesa, CO

Ken, Faye, Dave, Bev and I drove up over Grand Mesa (the world’s largest flat-top mountain with over 300 lakes sprawled across 500 square miles) to have lunch at the Wagon Wheel...

Great food with great friends

It has been a while since I have seen temperatures this low

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Ice Maker Repair

A couple days ago, the plastic tube that supplies water to the Norcold ice maker developed a pinhole leak. I tried covering it with electrical tape to no avail. Fortunately, there was a valve that allowed me to turn off the water so I could continue to use the refrigerator.

Today, I took the tube to a RV dealer and was told it would take 2-3 weeks for the parts and the shipping cost alone would be $23.50. Much to my surprise and delight, I was able to find everything I needed to fix the problem at the local Ace Hardware for $1.12. Once I had the right parts, the repair was quick and easy. I am now back to making ice just in case I need to rehydrate with a little Wild Turkey American Honey Bourbon.

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Montrose, CO

Arrived safe and sound in Montrose without the engine light coming back on 😀. My favorite party animals, Ken & Faye, are out painting the town red tonight which is a good thing as it is going to be a race between me and the chickens to see who turns in first.

FYI - On Sundays Rib City offers a full rack of some of the best ribs I have ever eaten along with two sides for only $14.99. If you still have room for dessert, I highly recommend the key lime pie 😈.

Friday, July 23, 2021

Gallup, NM

I am in Gallup, New Mexico working my way to Montrose, Colorado. I did not intend to leave the Arizonian this early but the park had another power outage and you do not want to be in southern Arizona this time of year without air conditioning.

Yesterday, out in the middle of nowhere, the RV's engine light came on. Not knowing what the problem might be made for an anxious drive into Gallup. The good news is I was able to get an appointment for this morning at a diesel repair shop less than a mile from where I am staying. 

According to the mechanic, the "engine light was caused by an inactive code and had a count of 1 (first time recorded), cleared code and ran regen; completed regen and no codes retained". Although I am delighted I can continue my journey, I am a little concerned that he could not explain what caused the malfunction. I'll just have to hope for the best. While waiting for the RV to be repaired, I used my pocket knife to do some wood carving...

PS - if you like Native American jewelry and trains, Gallup is your kind of town.

Saturday, July 10, 2021

Storm Damage

Last night about 10:00 p.m. a severe thunderstorm with high winds rolled through the park damaging several park models and knocking out power. I was fortunate that my property was not damaged but my friends, Keith & Jayne, were not so lucky...

The worst part of the storm for me is the loss of electricity. Salt River Power estimates that our power may not be restored until 8:00 p.m. this evening. The forecast is for a high temperature today of 108 F so I will be firing up the generator in the RV &/or going to the mall.

Update: It occurred to me that I had a 6,000 BTU window air conditioner stored in the RV, so I dragged it out, hooked it up to my Honda 2000 generator and now have some cool air for the park model. It will not cool the entire unit but may be enough to keep me somewhat comfortable in the living area.

Sunday, June 27, 2021

Back Home

I returned to the Arizonian a little earlier than planned. I simply ran out of interesting things to do in the Show Low area and was getting bored. Fortunately, the temperature here in the valley had dropped down to a balmy 105. The forecast for next week is in the 90s with a reasonable chance of rain which is greatly needed. July is typically the "monsoon season", but they did not have one last year which contributed to the area's severe drought. 

My next eye injection is the middle of this month which will give me plenty of time to prepare for my trip to Colorado in August and Utah in September where I am looking forward to some off-road adventures with friends...

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Government Closing Campgrounds

As if it was not tough enough finding available campsites this summer, the U.S. Forest Service and Arizona State Land Department have started closing public campgrounds here in the Southwest due to wildfires. It is a frustrating time to be a RVer.

Wednesday, June 09, 2021

Petrified Forest

About 40 years ago I visited the Petrified Forest National Park with my parents. I figure the park probably depends upon repeat customers like myself so I plan to return in another 40 years.

My older cousin, Chris, used to wrestle these things

Petrified tree trunk

Can you spot the old fossil in this photo

Sections of the park remind me of the Badlands in South Dakota

There is a path that allows you to hike around the these mounds

Tuesday, June 08, 2021

Fool Hollow Lake

Although Show Low is a nice town with great summer weather, there is not much in the way of outdoor activities that I find interesting. If you do an Internet search for "things to do in Show Low", the Fool Hollow Lake Recreational Area is generally the number one pick, so I checked it out.

It's a small lake (particularly, with the severe drought we are having here in the southwest) that allows swimming, boating, fishing, hiking and camping (92 hookup sites and 31 non-hookup sites all of which were full). It is a great place for families and friends to gather on the weekends. 

In looking at a map, everything I think I would like to see will require a long drive out of the area. One of the reasons I chose to spend a month in Show Low was to see if this might be my future summer home to escape the heat down in the valley. Now, I am not sure I want to spend 3-4 months here.

Monday, June 07, 2021

Now Hiring

Everywhere I have gone the last month, there have been "Now Hiring" signs at most businesses. Here in Show Low the situation is so bad that all of the restaurants I have frequented have had to reduce days and/or hours that they are open. It's a sad time in this country when our own government makes it more attractive to be on the dole than work for a living.

Update (6/10/2021): Out of curiosity, I looked up unemployment compensation for Arizona and found it to be $47,396/year. At this rate a couple would collect $94,792/year for sitting home doing nothing! No wonder people do not want to go back to work.