December 3, 2012

The RV Rolls On: One More Trip Before Year's End

R.T. (road trip) the RV



Even though it was late November, Betty, Bailey, and I were still able to take a quick trip in R.T. our RV. We don't have to worry about freezing temperatures or winter-proofing the rig. True, a trip to Flagstaff or the White Mountains would be a little too risky. Temperatures up north are in the low 20's at night and snow has already fallen. But, in most of the state, day time highs remain in the 60's and 70's: perfect for a few days away.

Since our schedule for the first few months of 2013 looks like we will have to stick close to home, we decided to squeeze in a two night getaway to Dead Horse Ranch State Park while we still could. Located in Cottonwood, about 2 hours north of Scottsdale, this is a great place for people and dogs! 

Bailey is so hooked on RV travel already that as soon as we open the gate to the side yard, she makes a fast dash for the RV door and makes it clear she wants to go. Once inside she instantly settles down on the coach and seems to urge us to hurry up and get moving to our destination. When it gets a little chilly at night, she finds an old Indian blanket is perfect for snuggling next to us.

Those 4:30 AM trips outside for her potty needs are rather chilly, but she is worth it.
Dead Horse Ranch Park is a tremendous combination of desert trees and bushes, three lagoons for fishing, picnicking  or just walking and talking. The RV sites overlook the lights of Cottonwood, and high on the hill, the artist community of Jerome. There are several miles of hiking trails, an abandoned settler's cabin, and beautiful sunsets.




 





From our dining window we also saw Tuzigoot just a few miles away. This is the site of an ancient pueblo perched on top of a hill. Originally there were 110 rooms spread over three stories. The first building was constructed by the Sinagua people  around 1000 A.D. The site was abandoned about 1400 A.D. 

Today, Tuzigoot is a National Monument site that allows visitors to walk through the remaining rooms and explore the history of the original residents.

Our time was spent hiking, reading, editing photos, planning our next few trips, and figuring out how best to store everything in R.T. Sleeping until almost 8:00 am was an unexpected treat. With temperatures inside the RV around 50 degrees when we first woke up, my job was to dash to the thermostat and turn on the furnace...no reason to get up until things warmed up. 

We may not be able to head out again for awhile. But, the memories linger.


Bailey and Dad walking together right after lunch



26 comments:

  1. Nice post Bob. I might not be able to do it myself but I can live the experiences through your and RV Sue's trips.

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    1. Vicarious travel! Glad you enjoy riding along.

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  2. Ditto that. These blogs are wonderful for that.

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    1. Thanks, Rian. Good Monday morning to you.

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  3. Sounds like a lot of fun. We're not RV'ers, though; instead, we're looking for a retirement place of our own. So far, what we've seen looks too much like the abandoned settler's cabin.

    P.S. Would you ever take your RV up Rte 89A from Sedona to Flagstaff?

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    1. That cabin has fabulous views of Jerome and Tuzigoot, but has a serious draft problem.

      No, I would not take 89A from Sedona through Oak Creek Canyon to Flagstaff. The road is too narrow and twisty for me to feel comfortable on it. The final hill out of the canyon is much too steep for a 30 foot RV. But, in a car it is a beautiful drive.

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    2. I get freaked out in a CAR going up 89A.

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  4. The photos are beautiful, Bob. Clearly Betty is enjoying the new sights and vistas RV is opening up for you two. And how fun for you both that Bailey has taken it to R.T. so quickly as well. By the way, would love to see detailed photos of the inside of your rig should you be so inclined to share some here.

    Regarding your trip planning - I think I previously mentioned RVParkReviews as a good resource for campgrounds and RV Parks, and another one is TripAdvisor. And don't forget about Google Earth - you can zoom in and actually see down to the individual campsite level. Very cool.

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    1. Inside photos...good idea.

      We are very happy Bailey likes R.T. It would have made owning an RV very difficult if she had not liked it.

      I use TripAdvisor but I will take a look at RVParksReviews. Thanks, Tamara.

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  5. So glad Bailey is as into it as you are. Makes it much easier I'm sure. The photos are gorgeous!
    b

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    1. Except for wanting to go outside at 4:30 in the morning, she has taken to R.T. very nicely.

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  6. You're lucky not to have to winterize your rig at this time of year. We have just done so, with our 5th wheel. We are busy preparing for a 1500 mile trip in a week's time, from western Canada to your beautiful State. It takes allot of planning to be so far away from home for 3-4 months, and downsizing to a much smaller space can be a challenge. Oh, what lengths we "snowbirds" will go to, to escape the ice and snow! This is only our second winter "going south", but we had a great adventure last year, and also made many new friends in our RV park. I feel very fortunate to live right next door to the beautiful USA, where most people have been so welcoming and friendly to new comers.

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    1. Come on down! It seems like half the state is occupied with folks from Canada and the Midwest every winter. Our economy thanks you.

      Yes, living in 300 square feet or so for several months is probably quite a challenge. But, since you can be outside most days, you have plenty of room to stretch out.

      I hope you have a safe trip and enjoy your time in our backyard.

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  7. Nice destination for your short trip. And beautiful photos!

    29 days until we leave for Arizona. But who is counting? That would be me, up here in dark and rainy Washington State.

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    1. You have had a real stretch of storomy weather with another biggie coming in soon. We are still in the mid to upper 70's with no real rain for several months. You will enjoy.

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  8. Looks like a peaceful experience - just before the Holidays get hectic. Nice idea.

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    1. We hosted everyone for Thanksgiving, so we needed a break from all the cooking and cleaning. The park was probably only 20% full so it was nice and quiet.

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  9. That sunset doesn't even look real. Wow. And Bailey looks cuter than ever. So glad that you and Betty are enjoying your new RV life.

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    1. Fall, winter, and spring time sunsets in Arizona can't be beat. That vibrant red appears almost every night. It wasn't photoshopped either!

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  10. Between you and Tamara RVing, I may have to rethink my plans for retirement! Looks like a great time! Bailey is absolutely adorable!!!

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    1. If you had asked me a dozen years ago if I'd ever own an RV I would have said, absolutely not. Perspectives and interests change.

      Bailey thanks you! Her 11th month birthday is Monday.

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  11. when you get bored with the desert you should come out to the South Oregon coast and watch the storm waves along the coast...or go crabbing!

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    1. Betty and I love the Oregon coast. In fact, during last summer's trip we spent several days in Newport and Florence. We have also been there during winter storms...very exciting.

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  12. Hi, Bob. I enjoy your posts, especially those on traveling with Bailey. My husband and I have often done the hotel routine with our 4 beagles (we are now down to 3), and we are also very familiar with the 4:30 trips outdoors. It is a lot of work to travel with our dogs, and to find a place to stay with them, but I travel easier in some ways, not worrying about how the dogs are back at home. And they love to go with us, too.

    We haven't yet tried the RV life yet, as much as I want to. Maybe 2013 will be the year we will get a rig and head on down the road.

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    1. Bailey has gotten to the point where at home she can wait in the morning until we get up. I guess the RV experience is new enough that it makes her a bit more nervous, hence the early bathroom calls. Over time we expect that to cease.

      Next summer we are driving a car up to Oregon to spend 3 weeks in the Portland area in a friend's condo so there is no need for the RV. That will be the first time we have Bailey in motels over the several nights it will take to drive back and forth from Phoenix. I'm sure we will have to make adjustments.

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