Saturday, September 20, 2008


Let's see... when I last posted, we had been enjoying our stay in Santa Fe and our hike at Bandelier National Monument... and now we are roasting in Tucson, Arizona. Why? Good question!

Odel has an appointment we need to keep in Tucson on Monday morning, so we finally were forced to leave the wonderful weather in Santa Fe for a quick trip down to the lower, hotter elevations. Our first day's drive was a bit over 200 miles, and we had a beautiful day for it. All easy freeway driving, not much traffic, with great views of arid mountains, mesas and big, puffy white clouds mushrooming up in the sky.

AND... we bought 50 gallons of diesel fuel for just $3.75 per gallon! Last time we paid under $4 per gallon was in March, so it was a thrill for us. I don't know what is going on with diesel prices, but we LOVE it. Even here in Tucson, the price is under $4/gallon.

We arrived at Lakeside RV Park (read our review and see photos here) in Elephant Butte by early afternoon. "Lakeside" isn't accurate, though it is but a short walk to Elephant Butte Reservoir (top photo). This is one of our favorite desert parks - beautifully landscaped, perfectly maintained, spacious and friendly, it seems to improve each year. They honor Passport America, too, which means 1/2 priced campsites.

We took a 10,000 step walk through Elephant Butte State Park (across the road from Lakeside) before we left in the morning, leaving around 11 am for a stay at the Elks Lodge in Willcox, Arizona (we thought). On the way, we took the shortcut between I-25 and I-10 through the town of Hatch, home to the best chiles grown in the USA. I took this photo out the side window as we breezed through town - those are chiles drying on the roof, which was a common sight in Hatch.

Around 2:30 pm, when we hit Willcox, the temperature was in the mid- or upper-90's. Whoa! We're not used to this! The Elks Lodge only had 30 amp power, insufficient for our two A/C's.

Only another 40 or so miles west, in Benson, was one of the Escapee RV parks, with 50 amps of electricity at the sites. Even better, our friends JoAnn and Doug are staying there, so we continued on. By 5 pm, we were relaxing with our friends in the shade of the rig, catching up on "How We Spent Our Summer" and reminiscing about the lovely, cool weather in the Rockies.

We were up EARLY this morning, out gettin' our steps circling through the RV park. A quick trip to Safeway for supplies and we were back on the road for a short drive to the west side of Tucson. We are back at Justin's Diamond J RV Park (read our review and view photos here), our third visit. Last time we were here, this past winter, the place was packed, every space full. Look at it now! I don't think 10% of the spaces are occupied... because it is still blazingly hot here!

We were settled in, with the A/C's chugging away, by 11:30 am, and then off to Costco. Our cupboards were about as empty as they get. Now the freezer is stuffed with goodies for grilling, we have a fresh watermelon cut up and cold, plenty of cold white wine...

It was still in the high 80's when we grilled our dinner, but unexpectedly pleasant to sit outside and watch the early sunset (Arizona doesn't observe daylight savings time, an excellent idea in this climate!) while Luna rolled in the dirt, stuck her paw down rodent holes, and sniffed every shrub thoroughly.

As I write, it is 9 pm and 80 degrees. Tomorrow is forecast to be 97. Looks like we'll be out on the trails EARLY!

No comments:

Post a Comment