Sunday, September 25, 2011

We’re in Las Vegas, NV


Sunday, September 25, 2011                                                                                                                                           Lorraine’s report

Just think, in three months it will be Christmas Day, time has sure been flying by quickly. Hello from sunny, hot Las Vegas, NV, 1000 Trails. When we got in yesterday the thermometer on the coach said 100 degrees. We have gone from the high mountain temperatures of the mid 80’s during the day, lows at night in the 40’s to high 90’s with the low of 67 degrees here in Las Vegas last night. And I love being in the lower altitude, it was hard to breathe up higher; I guess your body just has to adjust slowly over time, more time than we gave it. Sure glad we had the oxygen.

So this week has been more of the same, chores, packing up, moving and sightseeing. We left Jacob Lake on the north rim of the Grand Canyon last Sunday and moved to Bryce Canyon RV Park about a 3 hour drive. Thanks again Brad and Dolly for driving so far to meet us and spend time with us.

Chuck set up and washed the bugs while I did the inside. We rested a short time so he could cool off and we headed out to drive on Route 12, reported to be one of the most scenic routes in the USA. We were not disappointed. Every area of that drive was each unique in its own way, the vistas breathtaking and the colors unreal.

The road took us up through the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument with its petrified forest close by, the Dixie National Forest and the Boulder Mountains where we were at the highest we have ever been on this earth; the car GPS said 9750 feet above sea level. The narrow roads with the sheer drop offs was pretty scary; sure glad the wind wasn’t blowing that much. We ended up at Torrey before we started back west, then south to go home. It was pretty dark and late, 8:45 pm, by the time we got back to the rig. We stopped by a Subway, one of only 2 open places there in Panguitch, for a sandwich to bring home to eat.

The next day we started off to see Bryce Canyon mid-morning. I have to agree with Dave and Sandy. This park was the most spectacular of all the parks we have seen in Utah, with its Hoodoos, Fins, Monoliths and many colors of red rocks, cliffs, canyons, etc. It’s hard to describe so much beauty and colors and shapes; this park needs to be experienced in person it’s so unbelievably beautiful. We loved the first 3 stops after the visitor’s center the best; Sunrise Point, Sunset Point, and Inspiration Point. You could see people hiking on the trails beneath you. This was truly a unique experience!

That night Chuck needed O2 all night, the park was so high.

The following day found us off to hike up to see the Mossy Cave and waterfall. This was about a half mile hike up a steady incline. But to see the waterfall was well worth the effort. From there we went looking at all the tourist traps, I mean shops.

When we got home I put on a pork loin roast for dinner with baby red potatoes. I then went back into town to look at the several shops we missed. I didn’t find anything we needed. Returning home, I kept checking on the roast in the microwave. The timer on the microwave went off, saying it was done. Well low and behold the roast wasn’t even done, so I put it back in to cook more. Come to find out the microwave is broken. The turntable won’t turn and I can’t even heat water in it. We need a new microwave convection oven, since I don’t have any other oven to cook with, and only two burners on the stovetop.

Also forgot to say that back at the Four Corners last week, I dropped my Nikon Camera and broke it; I’ve had to use my old Cannon this past week for taking all the pictures, since there are no camera shops to fix it or buy a new camera. Bummer.  I needed O2 that night.

We left Bryce Canyon area and went down to Hurricane, UT the next day to the Willowind RV Park. This was a really nice RV Park, grass, 50 amp etc. and we were back in civilization. Chuck did the windows and I set up inside, we then drove to find a car wash, the whole car was so dirty you couldn’t see out the windows. We found one, the little gal did a bang up job of washing it before it went through the machine-one less job for Chuck-yea!

We found a DQ for burgers for dinner, then drove into St. George to see that town. This was a really big town, lots of everything there, including a huge Mormon Temple.

The next day we headed into Zion National Park. We stopped by the visitor’s center, and we asked about driving through the park. You see, they encourage everyone to take the shuttle buses in the park, since Zion is the most visited park in Utah over all the rest. Well, I told the ranger Chuck’s doctor had given him O2 and we didn’t feel comfortable carrying it so he gave us an all park driving pass. This meant we could drive anywhere in the park.

We loved Zion Park and I think it is second on my list of best parks in Utah after Bryce. I felt like I was in the holy land by where Moses came down the mountain with the 10 Commandments in his arms. As I said before, all the parks in UT are unique, this one invoked a feeling of being in a sacred place.

We got home by 3:45 and rested, Chuck was taking me to dinner to the Texas Steakhouse in St. George for our anniversary. We enjoyed a wonderful dinner there and headed back home to watch the GOP debate. What a wonderful day we had. Thanks to all our family and friends who sent their good wishes to us.

Friday we took off and rested; I fell asleep on the couch watching an afternoon movie.

Saturday we were off to Las Vegas. It was a great visit to the national parks, but I didn’t like the feeling of not being able to get enough air into my lungs, they hurt, even with the O2. Vegas was hot-100 degrees when we got in.

So that’s it for me…Until next time….



9/25/11                                                                                                                                                                              Chuck’s report 

We’re here in sunny, HOT Las Vegas.  Our friends Richard and Sandy were planning on flying down to meet with us but they will be unable to make the trip, bummer.  Guess we will just have to have enough fun for all of us, let us know how you liked it, ha. 

We started the week off with a rare travel day on Sunday.  We left Jacob Lake, the stopping off place for visiting the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, and headed out for Bryce Canyon.  We elected to stay at Ruby’s RV park, just a few miles out from the entrance of Bryce Canyon National Park. 

Because we had a short travel day, we decided to drive one of the most scenic drives in the US, at least according to some.  We were not disappointed for sure, with all the different types of scenery we really enjoyed it, from the desert with all the rock formations, up in the mountains to almost 10,000’.  We drove through what just might be the largest stand of Aspens I’ve seen, large trees when I’m used to seeing much smaller ones.  All in all, a very nice drive although it was much longer than what I thought it would be, we didn’t get back to the coach until after 8 pm, a long day of driving. 

Next morning took off to explore Bryce Canyon.  This National park is set up with lots of  stops along the way with the overlooks just a short walk away, in most cases.  We decided to drive vs. ride the free shuttle so we could keep our own schedule and ride the shuttle on our next trip the next day.    We think that was a great decision as we were able to stop at places the shuttle didn’t and were able to park closer too. 

The only negative I would have about anyone visiting this park would be the altitude, otherwise this is probably our favorite National park in Utah.  The rock formations are varied and spectacular with all the colors. 

Next morning we took the advice of the waitress we talked too at dinner the night before and hiked out to a waterfall.  All these formations were formed by rain, freezing temperatures, running water and of course, wind.  It was different to see a stream with a waterfall out here in what looks like a desert but there it was, and cold too, as Lorraine found out. 

We like to visit the downtown of these small towns, never know what you might find.  We didn’t find anything too special here in Panguitch but enjoyed the look around anyway.  Lorraine stopped in a couple of the stores but couldn’t find anything she just had to have so we returned back to the RV park.  There are lots of visitors to this area and the shuttles and tour buses stop here so there is a large tourist shop here.  We managed to find a couple of items here but didn’t break the bank too bad. 

Wednesday we drove into Hurricane, UT, our planned stop to visit Zion National park.  Once we got set up, we drove into town to explore it a bit, a nice town we both thought.  Later we drove into the much bigger town of St. George, found the Mormon Temple and drove around it.  It’s pretty hard to miss the temple here as it may be the tallest structure in town. 

Thursday was our anniversary, can you imagine anyone putting up with me for 39 years?  We toured Zion all morning, another great National Park. This one has very large, high mountain type formations that you see from the bottom vs. from the top like most the other parks, sort of like driving on the bottom of the Grand Canyon vs. seeing it from the rim. 

All of the parks we visited while in Utah are different but all are worth seeing.  We spent almost a month in Utah and could have spent longer and seen more.  We need to return to see a couple that we missed, most notable Monument National but that will be for a different trip.  This is the first time we headed South for the winter and didn’t go down the Oregon Coast or follow I-5 and we are really glad we got to see this part of the country.  There are sure lots of things to see and areas of this great country to visit.

Friday we changed our plans and just stayed around the coach all day, I think we made a short trip to town but that was it.  We both sort of needed a day off, we’ve been acting like tourist, on the go each day. 

Saturday we made the trip to Las Vegas.  We had never come down I-15 before, once again there were many sights to see, mostly the rock formation and mountains.  It was a nice drive and we were rewarded with a view of the city in the distance with a storm above it.  We saw some lightening but we were never in the storm, just saw it way off in the distance.  I heard parts of the city got a good soaking, they needed it. 

After we got set up, I walked outside and found our water hose had sprung a leak, off to Wal-Mart for the repair parts.  We got back and I fixed the hose and then we went out to dinner and of course we had to give the slots a try.  Let’s say we had a good dinner and leave it at that, ha. 

Once we got here to 1000 Trails, I asked to be assigned to a site with 50 amp service, there aren’t too many here.  There weren’t any available but they put us on the waiting list and said we would probably be assigned one on Sunday morning.  Well, this morning we waiting around for them to tell us it was ok to move and finally I walked up to the ranger station and asked about our chances.  Seems we were going to be assigned a spot but the guy that was in it didn’t check out by 11:00, I guess he had some problems.  Anyway, Lorraine finally went to the swimming pool and I started getting things ready for the short move.  Finally about 1:30 or so he pulled out and we moved over. 

By now it was pretty hot, probably near 100F and we both were hot and tired by the time we got set up.  So here it is, late in the afternoon, I’m writing this and watching a football game.  I guess I should add the pictures and get this posted.

We are scheduled to stay here for the next two weeks then are planning to go to Parhump for a week.  I’m sure we won’t have as many pictures to post for the next three weeks or maybe for any of the posting for the remainder of the winter.  I don’t know how many pictures Lorraine took over the past month but it’s over 2500 I know.  That makes it harder to pick out which ones to add but I do my best. 

Part of the drive from Jacob Lake to Bryce. 

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Red Rock Canyon, just off the turn off to Bryce. 

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Part of the drive on Highway 12. 

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Bryce National Park. 

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On our walk to see the waterfall. 

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The water was too cold for Lorraine to put her foot in it, just her hand here. 

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On the road towards St. George.  

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Here is the Mormon Temple in St. George. 

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Inside Zion National Park. 

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We are enjoying our anniversary dinner. 


On the road to Las Vegas. 






That’s Las Vegas with a storm moving over it. 


Ok, that’s enough, I'll get this posted now.  Until next time - - - - -

Thanks   Chuck