Friday, February 27, 2009

Casa Grande Ruins and Apache Trail

Monday we drained the tanks, loaded up the rig and headed to Casa Grande Arizona. It was only about 176 miles so a very easy trip on mostly flat highways. We set up camp and took a tour of the park. Nice pool and a small hot tub with several buildings for meals, games and exercise. The park is nice but has some road noise that we are not used to.

Tuesday we climbed back into the truck and took a day trip out to the Casa Grande Ruins. These ruins date back before 1300 AD and the Hohokam Indians have been traced back to 300AD or as the literature says (300 CE) but that's another story.

What you see below is just a small portion of what remains of the village. They think that the village died out because of water shortage.

It was a hot day to wander around in the sun but we did take a couple of hours to learn a little more about the history of this area.

A cover was built back in the '30s to stop the deterioration of the building from the weather.

Four stories high and over 60' long with walls over 4' thick at the base. It's hard to believe that there is anything left after 700 years.

More of what is left of the buildings and wall of this Village.

Wednesday we woke to another beautiful day and decided to take a trip to the Lost Dutchman State Park and spend some time in the local Superstition Mountain Museum. We spent some time viewing the history of the area inside the museum. Outside was a grand view of Superstition Mountain with old mining equipment in the foreground.

Another view of some of the buildings that are on the Museum property. This area was used for a lot of the old western movies but the town, like so may others, burnt down several years ago. The state park is just a few miles up the road and at the base of the mountain with lots and lots of hiking trails. And, yes there is one that goes all the way to the top. Maybe we will try it later...NOT.

A view of the inside of a old bunk house. Looks a lot cleaner than I am sure it would be with some miners living in it.

What an awesome area with lots of history of the wild west. The loop road (Apache trail) winds by 3 lakes and circles the area of the Lost Dutchman Mine. We spent a few minutes looking but with no luck. (ha ha)

And this is one of the reasons that we decided not to spend a lot of time looking for the mine. This excuse works for us.

Last and final is this for Rich and Debbie. We modified the sign just a little after we looked at it later. Again, that's another story.

We have also spent part of two days geocaching in and out of town. We are up to 15 caches found and need to replenish our supply of trinkets to leave at each site. For those in the know, we have also found two travel bugs and two monuments. We plan to replant the two travel bugs later.
To be continued...

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Kofa day two and more around Salome Arizona

Our second trip into Kofa was another nice day (most every day is nice). We drove to the base of the mountain. If you look closely you can see the end of the road just left of center. The mountain went straight up for several hundred feet. You had to strain your neck to look at the top.

With walking sticks in hand, we headed up the canyon to see if we could find the Palms.

When we got to the viewing area, it was interesting to see the Palms growing out of the rocks. There had to be some water there to keep them going. I think a goat could get up to them but that's about all.

Turning around and looking back west was also quite a site. Off we went to hike down to the truck and head on home. We did stop at Quartzsite and get a set of springs for the screen door of the rig. We also got fuel there for $1.79 a gallon. The sign said $1.97 but the lady who did the update on the system had turned the last two numbers around. (dyslexia, I think) We did go in and tell her about her mistake.

As you know, we went geocaching with our friends Robbie and Alice while in Lake Havasu. This time we headed out into the desert with our hand-held GPS (thanks Charlie) and headed out to find our first cache. We only had to walk about a mile and a half but find it we did.

Michelle had asked us what they put in the caches. Well what can we say except JUNK. We have a stash of a few items that we have to leave and we will take one item. Lots of fun and a good excuse to get out and hike. By the way, Darin and Deanna, there are 50 caches in a 4.6 mile radius of your house, and 6,445 in a 50 mile radius!

Another back country dirt road out in the desert and we ran across a cemetery along the road. No name only crossed sticks and rock piles.

Across the road was a large old mine and this is the remains of an old adobe building on the top of the hill.

Jackie is taking a closer look at the two remaining walls.

On the highway just a few blocks from our park was an old vacant motel. The shadows add some interest to this shot Dick took while out riding his bike one morning.

And just for some more fun, down the road from our RV park is the little town of Hope and when you got out of town this is the sign for all to contemplate.

Jackie is not comfortable with the misspelling in the sign, but it is still funny.

To be continued...

Sunday, February 22, 2009

One year...

Today February 22 2009 is the one year anniversary of this blog, it started with the Blog name coming from our daughter Deanna and a posting about us hiking in the snow and ice. Not any more except where it's warm!!!

Check it out here. We are excited with over 4,300 hits, and we didn't start the counter until a month or two later, so have no idea of how many total.

Thanks to all our viewers and we hope to keep you coming back to follow us and all our travels.

Happy camping,
Dick, Jackie and CC

PS. This is the 106 posting, hope to have more in the coming year.

To be continued...

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Kofa day one..

That would be Kofa National Wildlife Refuge located just south of Quartzsite Arizona. We took a day trip here and traveled the east west road on the north end of the park and it took us most of the day as the road was called "pipe line road" and it was really, really rough, we only needed 4 wheel drive a few times.

We traveled off that road on a worse one for 6 miles to find a working well with a windmill out in the desert. The Jumping Cholla, (pronounced choy-ya) Cactus was thick like weeds we but had to show some of the beauty in nature around here. I don't think I have seen more thorns on any cactus in this area. And they are hard and sharp.

All the white you see are thorns and they must be about 1 1/2" to 2" long.

Not sure if the flower is in bloom or just working it's way there.

Don't get close or you will learn all about the jumping they do. It took 5 minutes to get all the tines out of Dick's shoe (and foot). This happened to both of us at Quartzsite later that day. They must have followed us there. This is one foot you don't want to stick in your mouth.

The Saguaro are just huge, these must all be over 25 feet tall and just down the road from the cholla.

We found a shorter one on the way home.

Check back next week for "Kofa day two and palm canyon hike.
To be continued...

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Future God Dog Parents?

There comes a time in our lives that tough decisions must be made. Like our will and care of our children should some thing happen to us. Well maybe a will. What do we do with all our worldly goods? This week we have been approached by friends who are willing to take on a very big responsibility. We are sure they have talked long and thought hard before approaching us with their request. We have taken quite a bit of time to interview them trying to determine if their request was sincere and that they have the resources to handle such a big change in their lives if they had to.

We cannot make this decision on our own; we feel it’s got to be made by our children. So the question to Debbie, Michelle and Deanna is:

Would you give your permission to let our friends Robbie and Alice Simons be Dog God Parents to CC? They have shown us that they can remember her breed. It took Robbie a little time but with the help of some mind games he was able to remember and repeat it back to us. (CCPP is Chinese Crested Power Puff)

I am sure that they realize another of their responsibilities is to present lavish and expensive gifts on CC’s birthdays and being the life expectancy of a dog is so much shorter, that would be about every 3 or 4 months.

So kids, give us your vote and we will abide by your decision. I know that Robbie and Alice are counting on you. If any of our fans want to vote, please do so but remember only one vote per person. Should Robbie and Alice be the ones to take CC if something unexpected happens to us?
to be continued...

Monday, February 16, 2009

Fireworks and lots of fun in Lake Havasu City Arizona

We left Laughlin Nevada last Monday (in the rain) and headed to Parker Arizona for one night and then met up with friends on Tuesday and headed for a BLM wash to set up camp for about a week. We finally got set up, had horsd’oevres and liquid refreshment around the fire.

On Wednesday the 6 of us went geocaching and found two caches out in the desert. What fun trying to find a small object hidden where it took all of us looking to find. We had to hike about 3 miles to find both and then get back. We kept looking but did not find any snakes. That night we had another fire after dinner and watched the first of 5 nights of fireworks. There is a pyrotecnition convention every year at Lake Havasu City Arizona. Our camp was 3 miles away but we still had a great view and Dick got some good pictures.

Thursday, Robbie, Alice, Jeannie, Dick and Jackie put on our hiking boots and headed out into the desert again. This time we hiked to a mountain range, found a way to get around the mountains and then walked the valley between two ranges. It was over 5.5 miles with most of it without a trail. What a wonderful time out in nature with only the 5 of us for miles. Then rest, dinner and just the two of us sitting looking out the back of the 5th wheel with a nice glass of wine, enjoying another night of fireworks. Dick set the camera on a tri-pod outside and ran the remote shutter release inside so he could get some more pictures.

The mountains in the front are the ones we went around.

A shot just before sunset from our camp.

Heading for the hills...

We came down this hill to get to the valley...

Friday was shopping and running errands. Alice had a visit from her brother and sister in-law and because of the wind we ended up having all 7 of us in our rig for dinner and then we watched the fireworks again from here.

Taken from 3 miles away at our camp.

Also from our camp

and another from 3 miles away.

Saturday we went for another hike down SARA crack and got into a wash that was solid rock on two sides and into an area where we had to slide down the rocks about 8 feet only to find that there was a flooded area that one would have to swim to get through. So with lots of hard work and pushing and pulling each other we were able to get back up and out and walked back to camp.

Saturday evening we went down to the park where all the fireworks are set off. We sat under the most unbelievable display we had ever seen. It was the manufacturers showing the best and newest displays they had to offer. It started about 5:00 and lasted until 10:00 with a 45-minute grand finale. Dick took over 200 pictures just that night. No fire this evening as it was kind of late when we got home (and everyone was cold and ready to be inside

The remaining pictures are just a few of over 200 taken that night.

Sunday evening was another fire after going out to dinner. We watched the final display of fireworks and kept nice and warm around the fire. In bed by 11:00 so we could pack up and head to another destination on Monday.

Thanks Robbie, Alice and Steve for a great week, we sure had fun.
To be continued…

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Anniversary Guy and Joan. And Happy Valentine's Day to all our family and friends.

We'll blog again as soon as we have better service, maybe Tuesday or Wednesday.

To be continued...

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Visit to family

Yesterday (Saturday) we drove up to Kingman, AZ (about 30 miles, straight up, as Dick says, approximately 5000 ft) to visit Gretchen (Jackie's niece), Matt and Mackenzie Hecht. We had a great visit, catching up with Gretchen and Matt and playing with Mackenzie. She is quite an independent little 15-month-old. But a real cutie, don't you think?

We're still in Laughlin, NV, planning to leave tomorrow to go back out in the desert to dry camp with friends. But more on that later. We've spent quite a bit of time walking the "strip" and checking out the casinos. We're not much on gambling (lost $2 tonight playing a poker slot), but it is interesting seeing what the casinos have to offer. And it's amazing to us that in this economy they are as busy as they are.

To be continued...

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Quartzsite, Mexico and Laughlin

We have spent the last 3 days cleaning the rig and truck after about 3 weeks out in the desert. We would clean for a few hours and then go for a walk through the casinos on the short strip or a ride in the truck in Laughlin and Bullhead City. We're doing spring cleaning -- it's a little early but boy does the rig need it!

Before we departed Quartzsite we had one last party. A large television was set up outside with lots of food set out and I think there was a cold drink or two drank during the Super Bowl game. A campfire was started at halftime to keep the evening chill off and a good time was had by all.

Relaxing and enjoying the game was our friend Butch and the Princess of the party (and the entire group site) CC.
As we said in our last posting, we would show you what we purchased for our rig in Quartzsite and Mexico. We looked at close to 10 different stained glass windows and finally settled on this one. This is a view from the outside showing the window and the sign that Michelle gave to Dick for Christmas.

From the inside the window adds a lot of light into the rig and it's sure a lot better than the old plain glass that came with the rig from the factory.

It was time that we got a sign so we could tell people who we are. We had this made in Quartzsite and it can hang over the hitch in the front when parked.

We had an artist in Mexico create this piece of art work on our Directv dish. What a great job he did. We did have to carry this around for a few hours but it's light and we got it home in one piece. And of course now we have to have a special place to store it when we move!

We went for a walk earlier this evening and had to take some pictures of reflections in the windows of one of the casinos. Dick thought it was an interesting view and just had to shoot it.

Another view of the same building. Just for fun.

Just one last shot with the moon in the background.

To be continued...