Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Canyon Lake, TX, New Mexico and Utah

Holy Cow!!! It's already the 14th??? We're almost to Salt Lake City!! Okay, but let me tell you what's been going on. I have to warn you though, it's a long one.

We went to Canyon Lake in Texas the day before we left San Antonio on the 8th. We're just looking for options for when we return in the winter. We have reservations at Lake Braunig for 2 months in Nov and Dec but wanted to look around for some other places. We don't want to stay in the same place for the whole 4 or 5 months that we're going to be there. Canyon Lake has an Army Corp of Engineers park that is really nice. Nice BIG sites and almost all have a view of the lake. You're only supposed to be able to stay for 2 weeks but we talked to the camphosts there and they said it's not enforced in the winter. They LOVE winter Texans! That's funny cuz living in Florida we hated the winter Floridians (aka New Yorkers). LOL

Hmmmmmm, really??

Lots of deer here

Waiting for dinner?

After we left San Antonio we drove to Big Springs, TX just for the night. Pretty uneventful trip which we really like but, good grief, Texas is sooooooo boring to drive through. Pretty much all we saw were cows, windmills and oil derricks.

We left Big Springs and drove to Amarillo. Boy, was it windy. We actually thought about staying put for another day but decided it wasn't really THAT bad. I got on the RV Dreams chatroom that night and asked about places to stay in Gallup, New Mexico where we were headed. I got a resounding "DON'T STAY IN GALLUP" from just about everybody in the chatroom that night. Linda suggested a casino with a RV Park so we looked it up online. It's called the Sky City Casino. $25 a night and a $5 free slot play for each of us so it would end up costing only $15. Casinos usually have pretty cheap, good food too so we called and they said they had plenty of room so no need for a reservation. We pulled in and boy, did they ever have room. There was probably about 50 sites and only 3 rigs at that time. Another rig pulled in later but that was it. We unhooked and drove over to the casino because the "shuttle" was pretty much nonexistant. We each got $100 to play with and I imediately hit a 6 spot Keno machine for $400!!! WOOHOO!!! We were thinking about staying here for a few days since we drove so far but in the morning we decided to move on.

We got on the road by 10:00 and made it to Gallup where we headed north on 491 through the Navajo Indian reseration. It was only a two lane highway so Rod was pulling over a lot to let cars pass since we only drive 55 mph due to the price of diesel. As a car was approaching Rod started to pull over a little and when he looked out the window he saw smoke coming from the rear tire of the 5th wheel. We had a blowout!!! We got off the road and checked the damage. The tire was pretty much shredded. We have a spare but no way to jack up the rig. I called our insurance company because we're covered for tire blowouts. Since we were in the middle of nowhere it took quite a bit of effort by the guy at the insurance company to find someone to come out on a Sunday (and it was Mother's day). He finally called the Navajo police and they referred him to the Shiprock police which was about 75 miles away. He called me back and told me that they were also looking for someone. I talked to the dispatcher in Shiprock and she told me she would call me back. Apparently she couldn't get through on my cell so the Sargeant called and said he was sending an officer out to check up on us to make sure we were okay. What a nice guy! The officer showed up and said he would check back on us later to see if anyone had come to change the tire. FINALLY after 4 hours someone from Farmington came and had the tire changed in about ten minutes. We drove to Farmington and stayed the night as it was getting dark. The next morning we went to Discount Tire and had all four tires replaced. Ouch!! Even though we've only been in our rig for about 5 months it sat in storage for 2 years while we were waiting to sell our house. We feel much better now with new tires. Whew!! What a day!!

Bad news

We finally got on the road at about 11:00 in the morning and headed for Moab, Utah. Oh my gosh, what a beautiful place. We stayed at a KOA in Moab and man, was it packed. It was so cold when we got there. We got all set up and then the skies opened up and it poured down rain. How nice that it waited till we were done.

After the rain

The next morning we headed out for Arches National Park. I had been looking forward to this for so long but since it was so cold we decided to just drive the park road and not get out to hike. Most of the arches you could see from the road. Delicate arch was about the only one you couldn't see from the road. What a gorgeous place. All I could say was, "Oh my gosh"!! over and over again. We are going to come back next year and hopefully do some hiking. We drove through the campground and saw the little "house" that Howard and Linda lived in while they were workamping here for a few months. The campground was full, full, full. Apparently it's always like that. I can't see how those people can sleep in tents with the temps getting into the 30's at night. It's sure not for me.

Baby arch at bottom, the smallest arch in the park

Wilson's arch named after a local pioneer

This is called the Three Gossips

This is called Balancing Rock. Someday it WILL fall

This morning we left Arches with the intention of driving straight through to Salt Lake City. It was only 235 miles away. Our reservations at the Pony Express RV Resort are not until tomorrow so we decided we didn't want to drive through Salt Lake at 5:00 in the rush hour traffic and ended up stopping in Provo at the KOA. This is about the most primitive KOA we have stayed at. No wifi and no cable tv. That's not an issue for us since we have satellite tv and internet. We raised the aerial antenna so we could watch the local news. Tomorrow we only have about an hour to drive so no alarm and no rushing around to get out by 9:00. It's going to be so nice to see the kids and grandkids. We're going to be staying there for two whole months. What a treat!!

Utah landscape is just so amazingly BEAUTIFUL!!


Joe and Sherri said...

Well...where do I start? You did so much! Congrates on the $$$$$ at the casino. Sherri and I plan on stopping a few times on the way to Branson. We would both love to go to Arches to hike but we are not boondockers. We like the FHU... real spoiled LOL. I guess if we had to we could give it a couple of days. Greay Post today ...Keep them coming

Joe and Sherri

Debbie & Rod said...

Thanks for the comments, guys. We're not into boondocking either. I don't want to have to pay attention to every drop of water I use and I definitely needed my electric blanket in Moab. :)

Randy & Terry said...

Well, I'm caught up now! We were in Canyon Lake back in 2006 and just loved the area. We stayed in a nice Passport America park run by a young family. Texas Hill Country is just great. Really enjoyed the blog and look forward to more! Check ours out at guilertravels.blogspot.com. Hope to see you on the road.

dreamjosie said...

Found your blog from the RV Dreams Forum. Saw that you recently stayed at KOA in Provo and didn't like it much. Another mile and a half down that same road is a lovely treed campground called Lakeside with superfast WiFi (free), great people and a pool that just opened for the season, and Good Sam discount. (We just spent the weekend here, leaving tomorrow.)

We find KOA's overated and overpriced and have not stayed at one in over a year. May I suggest you check http://www.rvparkreviews.com/ when looking for campgrounds. We find the reviews and comments invaluable for staying in areas we are not familiar with.

Enjoy fulltiming!

Jo Wishnie