Saturday, October 22, 2016

300 miles

Or something like 300 miles. 
 I was headed to El Paso, Texas.
I made it into Texas, exactly 1 mile into Texas!
I guess the campground is in Anthony.
Anyway, we left Tucson early for today's drive.
It's a good thing as we drove into the Mountain Time Zone and it was an hour later there! 

The road was very hilly for a while and there was actual grass
-not a lot but enough that a few cows were spotted.
Not far from Tucson we stopped at the Texas Canyon Rest Area.
Normally, I wouldn't stop so soon but there was something here to take photos of 
and a safe place to take them!

Pretty interesting rocks!

Mountains in the distance too!
There have been mountains in the distance nearly all day and on all sides.
Not really high mountains like Montana (I miss them) but a break from this:

Although there is a lot of vegetation here and in someplace it was quite barren.
I saw some areas of obviously planted TREES.
At first I thought citrus but they seemed too large.
There is never anyone to ask as you drive down the road!
Sometimes you get lucky though.
The last batch I saw had a truck parked at the end of the rows-The New Mexico Pecan Co!
Solved that one.
Then there were the dairy cows.
I know what a black and white Holstein looks like.
 I might not know a Guernsey or a Jersey but I know a Holstein!
There were hundreds of them hanging out in paddocks.
Must have been some big dairy operation but 
I was not lucky enough to spot a sign!

The last picture is of part of Organ Mountains National Monument behind Las Cruces, New Mexico.
This monument is in three parts which we drove right past!
That's Interstate 10 right down the center.

Friday, October 21, 2016


Today I visited The Mini Time Machine Museum of Miniatures here in Tucson.  Lots of fine art miniatures and the Fairy Tree was super cute.  Also lots of manufactured things like Department 56 North Pole Village-Of which I have a few pieces.  I enjoyed it. I read the blog of Casey Rice  which is always fun thanks to Tessie and informative-lots of how to's.  She did a lot of restoration on doll houses etc for the museum.

After that I hunted down another quilt shop and a yarn shop, came away from both empty handed.  Which is fine.  Then I stopped off at a garden center, just for grins.  Almost came away with a kumquat tree though.

The big excitement for the day came when I got gas in the truck at QUIKTRIP!  First one I've seen since I left home!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

A Different Forest

Did you notice?  I got the Moon!

Quinn and I took a drive, part of it was a dirt road adventure!
We left our RV Park and headed west to Tucson Mountain District of Saguaro National Park.
The park is in two sections one on each side of Tucson.
It was a gorgeous drive up the Gates Pass road through Tucson Mountain County Park.
Lots of Saguaro along the way.
The Saguaro is the largest cactus in the U.S. Standing up to 30 feet tall.
On the way up I had the thought (I know strange-I had a thought!).
What I was looking at was a forest. 
A forest of Saguaro.
A forest where each "tree" was totally visible.
See what I mean?

The cactus grow clear up to the top of the mountains-check out the right hand edge of this photo and you'll see some standing against the sky.
Six species of rattlesnakes live in this forest!

This is how the arms start!

The tree in front of the saguaro is a Palo Verde, literally the Green Tree.
It has the greenest bark I have ever seen and tiny-I mean really tiny leaves!
It is the state tree of Arizona and acts as a nurse tree for saguaro cactus by creating shade.

The mountains in the distance. From our dirt road adventure.
The mountains here aren't really in ranges they just sort of Pop here and there!

This wasn't a really long trip and we started early as the daytime high temperatures here are still in the 90's.
So after dropping Quinn off at the trailer I visited a Quilt shop, of course!
Bought a few fat quarters then went to a yarn store where I finally found the needles I needed for the knitting project I bought in Dillon!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Playing Catchup, Again!

I've been in San Diego, CA for 6 days with this girl and her parents!
We were busy, busy, busy!
So to catch up.
We spent three nights in Yerma, CA doing not much of anything.
I did go to the outlet mall but didn't buy a thing.
Always wonder why I bother, I'm not a Coach girl or any other big name brand for that matter.
Then we drove to San Diego.
That requires driving around Los Angeles, not through for which I am grateful as just driving around wasn't fun and I will not do it again.
Also, air quality was horrible and I'm sure I drove through smoke from a big fire!
I really can not imagine why anyone would live there!

To encapsulate the rest of the week:
we dined out, a lot!
Quinn and I went to the dog beach, twice.
 We would have gone more but there were high tide warnings.

She does love the sand.

That's her, the smallish one in the middle!  
She isn't fond of getting wet.
She got sideswiped by a wave once and there was sheer terror on her face!
The second time she willingly got her feet wet but mostly ran on shore while the other dogs ran in the water!

I walked on the beach with Steve, Candice, Nora and Tina after dark at La Jolla Shores.
I always try to make it down there.

Looking east.
We drove up to Julian for apple pie!  
Then back through the National Forest.
We took a little hike there! 
Part of which was on the Pacific Coast Trail.

I went clothes shopping with Candice as my personal shopper!
Yikes, I get sticker shock!
I did buy some new, dressier clothes though.
(I still need more though.)

Then yesterday we turned the truck to the EAST and began the long trek home. 
We went up and down mountains until we hit the flat.
Passed a National recreation site of golden sand dunes.
Hit the INS vehicle stop where we chatted with a nice young man from Washington, MO.
Drove through more boring scenery than I could name on worse roads.
Everything in Ceili was a disaster!

For the first time this trip I did not unhook the truck and we stayed only one night in Gila Bend, AZ

Both of these photos from our huge campground.

The desert is hard.
Evidence of that fact is very common.

Tonight we are in Tucson, AZ where we will stay for three nights and see some sights, take some photos, etc.

I can tell you I could never live here.
I would miss the green.
I already do.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Where am I now?

So, now that you been told all the fun stuff in Utah how about you hear what's happened since?
I left Cedar City, UT in the morning wearing a shirt and warm sweater as it was 30 degrees.  My hands took a long time getting warm from hooking up!  Hit the Interstate headed for Las Vegas, NV.
The only remarkable thing about that is the Virgin River Canyon which is actually in Arizona.
I think I might have mentioned, once or twice, my aversion to pulling the trailer in heavy wind.  There wasn't a big wind on moving day but there were all these signs about heavy crosswinds in the canyon-anticipation can be exhausting!  In Nevada there are mountains, all around.  Nearly bare of vegetation and only scrub in the valleys between.  One thing though, without vegetation the layers of sedimentary rock are quite visible and they are all at an angle from Tectonic plate shifts.
I really try to find things that are interesting but it's a challenge in the desert!

We arrive in Las Vegas in the early afternoon, our campground just to the south of Nellis Air Force base and the Thunderbirds are practicing which reminded me of Larry and all the open houses on the bases where he was stationed. One thing about being near an AF base is that it is really noisy during the day! But very quiet on the weekends and at night-one or two planes might land or take off but it you hear a lot of planes being scrambled you'd better get up and see what's happening! It was 80 degrees, we hadn't seen 80 degrees in a really long time!  Quinn is not happy!

I'm not a gambler-not opposed to it necessarily, I just find it boring-so the three days were spent finding dog parks (to run those little sheltie legs) and quilt shops.  The campground had a dog washing station so Quinn got a bath and a good brushing before we headed out on the next leg of the trip.

We left Las Vegas Sunday morning at 9:30am.  I got on the interstate and stayed in the right hand lane as I'm slower than the cars.  I never changed lanes but when we got out of Vegas I was in the far LEFT-HAND lane!  Traffic was horrible-all the way to Yerma, CA where we are parked now.  Nothing to do here except read, do laundry etc until we move to San Diego on Wednesday.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Parowan Gap

For our last outing in Utah we did something different.
We drove out into the flat (mostly) to Parowan Gap to see the petroglyphs.
The gap between the two sides at one point had a river running through it 
and was used by early peoples as a traveling aid.
As well as a meeting place - apparently much visiting between groups.

The rocks on the sides of the gap are covered with petroglyphs.
They have been documented and studied-it seems pretty extensively.
One person studied them as cryptology and felt that they were symbols for sign language
that a great many groups understood.
There are other petroglyphs that share the same markings in other areas, so that makes some sense. 

The markings here are thought to have been made by a farming group called the Fremonts
about 500AD.
Both modern day Utes and Hopis claim some relationship to the Fremonts.
Anyway, on to the Petroglyphs!

This is called the zipper.  
One scientist believes it to be an astrological symbol relating to the many Cairns found in the surrounding area.
Plus on the summer solstice the sun rises directly in the middle of the gap.
You can read much more detailed description here.

See the Alien under the round spot?
Personally, I think it looks like one of the Hopi Kachinas.

I took 57 photos at the gap-there were petroglyphs everywhere.

I don't know maybe we're all making too much of it and it was just bored children writing on the wall.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Cedar Breaks

After we left Bryce Canyon we went back along Rte 12 to US 89.
Oh yeah, had lunch-fried chicken and cherry pie!
Turned left and drove up to Utah 143, or perhaps it was a county road who knows?
Many signs on this paved road about how it wasn't suitable for vehicles over a certain weight or length.
I don't really know how long or how much weight my truck carries but I was pretty sure they meant bigger than a pickup!
The one that would worry me the most was the "No snowplowing after dark" and one that left me feeling like they might not get around to plowing at all!
Happily, it was a beautiful day and no flakes fell from the sky!
We drove past beautiful mountain lakes, without a single waterfowl in sight.
Hum, guess they've all gone south for the winter.
Through wide meadows.
Beside Aspen grove.
Beside more of the Black Rock Desert.
Through a very large flock of sheep-on both sides of the road,
sometimes ON the road-wonder when they bring them down from the high country
Some cattle still up there as well.
Again you don't feel as if you are doing any real climbing
but in the back of your mind is still that very large hill you drove up!
Knowing at some point you really have to go down.
You turn into Cedar Breaks Monument and drive some more
without really seeing anything but trees.
Finally, there's a pull off.
And walking out you see what is called The Amphitheater.
Bowl shaped.

The two photos are of the amphitheater.
Then you go on to the Visitor's Center.
By this time I'd driven more miles than I wanted to think about,
was so tired I really didn't care
and still had that big hill to go down!

On the way down that hill I saw the breaks from the bottom!
No place to stop and take a picture-dang it!
I have on more than one occasion this trip wished for a Dash-Cam!
I see amazing things and don't have the opportunity to take pictures.

Finally, we arrived back in Cedar City.
Fell into bed about 8pm!