Monday, October 27, 2014

Nellis AFB FamCamp

 It's hard to believe we've been here a week already. I've been so busy playing catch up, I haven't posted much about our stay here yet. Now, I'm not one to post about every campground we stay at, as for the most part a campground is a campground is a campground, all basically the same.

 However, if we run across someplace extra nice or unique, then we like to share our find with others. The Desert Eagle RV Park here at Nellis AFB is one of those places.

 What makes this place different than your average military campground you ask? Well for us it's the size of the sites, these are by far the largest sites we have ever been in.

Then along with the size of the sites, the park itself is very well kept up and clean. The facilities are well kept and the staff is very friendly and accommodating. The park is actually the old mobile home park, which accounts for the size of the lots. I know this park is not available to all, but if you have access to military campgrounds and are passing through the Las Vegas area, this is the one to stay at. They do take reservations and fill up pretty quickly during the winter months, as you could imagine.
Other than that, we've just been relaxing and getting some of those, oh so fun domestic chores done. That's it for now, just wanted to tell you about this little slice of heaven outside of Sin City. See Ya Next Time.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Lucky Strike Mine Trail, Mt Charleston, NV

 In the desert foothills of Mt Charleston, just outside Las Vegas, NV lies the Lucky Strike Mine Trail. This 4x4 trail heads north off Hwy and deep into the desert. The trail lets you know right from the git go, this is a 4x4 trail with a steep loose rocky ascent.

 Once you make the short climb from the hwy, the vastness and desolation becomes reality.

 The trail takes you over several hills and deep into many valleys along with few miles of dry wash just for good measure.

 Decent into a dry river wash.

 Decisions, Decisions? Being out alone, I took the better trail to the right.

After several miles, the trail began to get a little to dicey. Being out alone I chose to head back out, not that the Liberty couldn't handle it, but better with more than one vehicle. Better safe than sorry, and the day was getting on. Sheryl wanted to stay in today, so it was my opportunity to venture off for a while as I needed my backcountry fix. With any luck I'll head back out to finish the trail, just have to find another adventurous soul here in the park.
That was todays adventure, be it a short one so, stay tuned for more and get out off the beaten path, it's amazing what you mite find.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Monument Valley, UT.

 Our first day in Monument Valley, we entered from the south along Hwy 163 out of Arizona and entered San Juan County UT.

 Even the views outside the Tribal Park are stunning.

 We got ourselves checked into Goulding's RV Park just a few miles away from the Tribal park itself. We arrived without reservations, so were put in a 4 spot area just outside the main RV area. We still had full hook ups and an even better view out our front window.

 A few days later and it was off to Monument Valley and the sights we had come here to see.

 Once inside the park ($20.00 entrance fee) you are greeted with this amazing and iconic view. We checked out the visitor center and museum and then were off on the 17 mile self guided backcountry loop. The road is pretty rough in places but any high clearance vehicle would have no problem. Matter of fact we saw several small cars on the loop, we hoped they were rentals, again glad we have a Jeep.

 Ok, enough talking, I'll leave you with a few shots of our trip around the park.

Another great day out. The entire southern Utah area is just amazing. Yes I know, it's just another desert to some, but if you can make your way out there, the landscapes can be magical.

Ok, finally caught up with the blog from our time in the Monument Valley area. We are now (as I may have said before) at Nellis AFB in Las Vegas. We'll be here until the 3rd and there's lots to explore out here (besides the strip) not our cup of tea. So stay tuned for "Las Vegas" off the beaten path. We'll see you then.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

A Drive Amonst the Gods

 Valley of the Gods, UT that is. Another one of those amazing places that we didn't realize was so close to Monument Valley. Valley of the Gods is similar (although not as impressive) as Monument Valley, the main difference is VoG is on BLM land (as opposed to Tribal land) and therefor not as restrictive. You are required to stay on the marked trails, but can hike and camp most anywhere and of course no entrance fees.

 The roadway starts out mundane enough, just your average drive through the desert from either direction.

 But the farther in you go, the more scenic it becomes.

 Then the next thing you know, your right in the middle of some of the most beautiful landscapes you have ever seen.

 The road (trail) is 17 miles of dirt and rock connecting UT 261 and US 163, approximately 30 miles north of Monument Valley.

Monument Valley in the distance.

What a great day out and definitely a must see/do if you are in the area. Like most off the beaten path areas, a high clearance vehicle is recommended and depending on the recent weather, 4 wheel drive may be needed.  But if you can make it, do it, you won't be sorry.
Ok, another check mark on the bucket list and a lifetime memory. Thanks for coming along and we'll see you back here next time for our trip through Monument Valley.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Couple of New Items added to the Blog

I spent today working on a couple of new Items for the Blog. The first is a link to our previous Blog, you can see it in the upper right corner above the about us section. The previous Blog takes you back to the beginnings of our fulltime adventure and then some.
Next, I went back an applied labels or tags to each blog entry since the beginning of this current one. This will make it easy to just click on a item or location that interest you and see all the related posts (such as Florida, and see all we did in Florida). You will find all the links located below our Facebook link. I hope this helps in some way to everyone who visits our page. Again, thanks to all that visit and follow along on our Fulltime RV journey.

The Moki Dugway along Utah Hwy 261

 While exploring southern Utah and checking the maps for places to go, I ran across this squiggly little line in the road, but didn't think much of it. The map cautions of a steep grade but that was about it. I had also heard of this area from some reading I had done, but it really wasn't on my radar of someplace to check out.

 That was until I left Goosenecks State Park in search of the Valley of the Gods road and ran across this sign which immediately peaked my interest. My first thought was, now that's my kind of road, so I just had to check it out.

 All the signs were right, this road is steep, narrow and one lane in many places as it switch backs up the cliff face gaining 1100 feet in just 3 miles.

However, once you start up you are rewarded with amazing views and they just keep getting better the higher you go. There is a turn out near the top from which you can see what seems like forever.
The Moki Dugway is on State Hwy 261 just north of Mexican Hat and connects with Hwy 93 to the north. So if you happen to be out this way and think what a great short cut to Hwy 93, think again if your towing or driving a large vehicle (Motorhome).
In the second to the last shot you can see a dirt road heading off into what looks like nowhere, however that is the site of our next adventure, but you'll have to stay tuned for that one. So until then, we'll see you next time right back here for more adventures in Southern Utah.

Friday, October 17, 2014

A Mexican Hat and Some Goosenecks

 Ahhhhh, we are here at Nellis AFB in Las Vegas with good wifi and my back is starting to calm down enough to sit at the computer for a bit. So, let's play catch up. We spent 4 days in Monument Valley, however after our arrival I noticed there were several other places I had been wanting to see, which were actually pretty close.

 One of the sights was Mexican Hat, a small town of 88 here in southern Utah. The town get's it name from this unique rock formation just outside of town. It's much larger than any photo can show, but you get the idea as this sombrero shaped rock balances precariously on it's narrow base. One of those thing you wonder just how much longer it will be around. Ok, maybe not the most interesting sight, but still pretty cool to see.

 The next sight on the list of things to see was Goosenecks State Park in southern Utah.

As you can see, Goosenecks gets it's name from the tightly snaking San Juan river in this area. The park is basically a large parking area with dry camping allowed anywhere. However the views take center stage here. From the edge (no guard rails) it's a 1000' drop strait down to the river and can actually give you a bit of vertigo. There are two small areas that do have a barrier to keep you from tumbling over the edge, but for the most part you can walk up and stand right on it. If you happen to find yourself there, watch you kids and pets!!!

We'll be staying here in Las Vegas until the 1st, the park itself is probably one of the nice military parks we've been to. We are both not gamblers and have no desire to hit the strip. however there are plenty of natural wonders in the area to explore, so we'll be hitting those up for sure. Thanks for following along and we'll still be playing catch up for the next few days, so stay tuned for more!!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Did it Again.....Dang It!!!

Well it seems while unhooking to leave Monument Valley yesterday, I tweaked my back pretty good. We did leave and made it into Williams AZ, where we had plans to visit the Grand Canyon. Woke up today and things were worse, to the point of I voluntarily went to the Urgent Care (ok, with a little prompting from Sheryl) Needless to say the Grand Canyon trip was a no go, we do leave for Nellis AFB in Las Vegas in the morning. We'll be at Nellis for a couple of weeks, this will give me a chance to heal up, recover a bit and hopefully venture out for some adventures. I'll also get a chance to catch up on the blog. So once again, stay tuned and I'll be up and running again soon. 

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Monument Valley, Utah

We arrived in Monument Valley yesterday after a bit of a rocky start (more on that later). We had planned on staying at the Tribal Park Campground (no hookup) but after some discussion we decided to stay at Goulding's RV Park w/full hook ups, just down the street. We have several day trips planned so this is just a quick glimpse of things to come. So Stay tuned and we'll update as the wifi allows.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Early Navajo Pueblitos

 Yesterday, Sheryl and I went out in search of some early Navajo Pueblitos (small above ground masonry structures) out on BLM backroads. These Pueblitos date to the late 1600s to early 1700s. Most were built on cliff tops and took some hiking and scrambling to reach.

 This Pueblito had four rooms with the only entrance being from the roof top. The roof of this one is over 300 years old, hard to believe when a little wind storm destroys todays modern roofs!!!

 This Pueblito know as the Hooded Fireplace Ruin, for the unusual fireplace and dated to 1723.

Perched up on the cliffs helped keep them safe and easy to defend against the raiding Ute tribes from the north.

Sheryl spotted many pieces of broken pottery around each site. (yes, they were placed right back where there were found)

Some even built up on large boulders for max protection.

Should you be in the area and want to see out these, the arches and or the petroglyphs, remember these are located deep in BLM land and a high clearance 4x4 vehicle is required.

Our time here in Aztec has come to an end, we'll be heading to Monument Valley in northen Arizona/southern Utah tomorrow. Don't know if we'll have much in the way of internet access for the next few days, so check back and see if were here.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Aztec's Arches

 One thing Aztec New Mexico is known for is the number of rock and sandstone arches within it's vicinity. There are 220 plus arches, with most located deep in BLM land. The city publishes a pamphlet on a few of the larger ones, so Sheryl and I stuck out to find some. We found however that even though The BLM maintains the land, they don't really maintain the roads, so once again thank goodness we have a Jeep!!!

 I won't bore you with the names of each arch but they are located within fifteen miles of town.

 Even with fairly detailed directions to each, they can still be a challenge to find.

We didn't go out for a whole day, just went out every couple of days to a different area.

We had some good adventures and it helped kill some time, plus they were just really cool to see. Now I'm sure they have nothing on Arches NP, but they are still fun to find and see.
So, should you be passing through this part of New Mexico, stop by the Visitor Center, pick up a pamphlet and go hunt some down.

Thanks for following along and we'll see you back here again.