Friday, March 30, 2007

Thursday in Moab, UT

We drove to the northern entrance of Canyonlands National Park. The weather was mostly cold, overcast, and snowy. After a full day of hiking and picture taking we left the park and drove back to Moab to have dinner at the Moab Brewery. The food was good but the beers were pretty insipid since they could be no more than 3.2% alcohol. The IPA tasted like Miller Lite with hops.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Wednesday in Moab, UT

In the morning we went to Gooseneck State Park Overlook. This is where the San Juan River has cut deep closely spaced switchback gorges – a truly awesome view. I took a panorama that, though not perfect, shows what the place looks like. Then went to Monument Valley and drove around the self guided valley road taking lots of pictures. After that we drove to Moab, Utah through a mini-blizzard. We stopped at Wilson Arch to take a picture. Then we checked into the OK RV Park and Canyonland Stables just outside Moab. We were lucky to get an RV spot because of the semi-annual Jeep Rally the week before Easter. The spaces are cramped and the smell of horse droppings fills the air, but at least we have a base for exploring the Arches and Canyonlands National Parks.

Tuesday in Bluff, UT

We drove over to the Four Corners Monument and took the obligatory pictures of us spread eagled with limbs in four states. Our lunch was fry bread tacos prepared by a kindly Indian woman in a vendor booth. Carolyn bought some more Indian jewelry and some gifts. Then we checked out some of the historic buildings in Bluff and the Indian petroglyphs at the Sand Island BLM Campground. After that we drove to Valley of the Gods State Park and drove through a 17 mile jeep trail loop. The scenery was similar to that of Monument Valley but on a smaller scale. A strong cold front was coming in and created a sandstorm which reduced visibility.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Monday in Bluff, Utah

We left Meteor Crater and drove to the Cadillac Ranch RV Park in Bluff, Utah. On the way we went through Suset Crater and Wupatki National Monuments. Sunset Crater is a volcano that erupted and left massive lava flows and black cinder piles. Wupatki National Monument contains several well preserved ancient Indian pueblos. We got to Bluff in time to grill some chicken breasts before dark. This is a very remote place Carolyn thought we were going to run out of gas before we got there.

Sunday in Meteor Crater, AZ

In the morning we went on a tour of the meteor crater guided by a cool Navajo Indian. He was very knowledgeable about the history and geology of the crater. I’ve been to the crater a couple of times before but it was Carolyn’s first time (although she had seen it from an airliner). This is the best preserved meteor crater in the world and is about a mile in diameter. It makes the Odessa crater look like a gopher hole. Then we went to Walnut Canyon National Park and hiked down into the canyon to see the cliff dwellings. Then we went into Flagstaff and sampled the beers at Beaver Street Brewing and Flagstaff Brewing. Then we drove to Sedona on a scenic highway and bought some Indian jewelry at the Oak Creek Canyon overlook. We drove around Sedona and took pictures of the gorgeous red rocks and cliffs. Sedona is incredibly touristy compared to the last time we were there. Then we returned to Flagstaff and sampled the beers at Mogollon Brewpub. It is amazing that a small town like Flagstaff can support three brewpubs while Houston has only one.

Saturday in Meteor Crater, AZ

Saturday morning we checked out of Enchanted Trails and drove to Meteor Crater RV Park 30 miles east of Flagstaff. On the way we stopped at Painted Desert and Petrified Forest National Parks.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Friday in Albuquerque

We ate our complimentary breakfast at the Hacienda RV Park and met a couple from Minnesota. We showed them our Casita and they showed us their big Class A motorhome with four slideouts. Around noon we headed up I25 for Albuquerque. We stopped off in Socorro to check out the Socorro Springs Restaurant and Brewery. We had a taster of their eight beers, all of which were excellent. Then we drove on into Alququerque through a heavy, windy thunderstorm. We checked into the Enchanted Trails RV Park which dates back to the 1940's. We've been to Albuquerque several times before so we decided to stay at the park and cook dinner. Carolyn made meatloaf, sauteed mushrooms and mashed potatoes.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Thursday at Las Cruces

We broke camp and drove to Las Cruses and checked into the La Hacienda RV Park. We took a drive up into the Organ Mountains and sampled beers at the High Desert Brewing Company.

Wednesday at Davis Mountains State Park

We went for a hike in the hills around the park. We also drove the scenic park roads and checked out the park lodge which was built in the 1930's by the WPA. Wednesday night we drove to Marfa. We had a drink at the El Paisano Hotel (which was the base for the stars and crew of the movie "Giant".) Then we did a wine tasting at the Luz de Estrella winery. We had dinner at a local Mexican restaurant called Alice's Diner. After that we drove out to the Marfa Lights viewing area and saw some lights that were probably headlights of cars on the highway to Presidio.