Monday, April 7, 2014

Tucson to Denver and Some Snow!

Thursday 3/27

Last class at Tucson Yoga this morning and our regular stop at Food Conspiracy. Back home I did some work on the brown bag presentation. Received an e-mail this afternoon asking me to postpone the presentation until May 2015. We had run into a scheduling conflict. It was originally scheduled for May 13th, but we signed up and paid for the Escapee’s Escapade in Elkhart that week without realizing we already had a commitment. The History Center tried to reschedule, but it did not work out.

Blackhawks got shut out by Boston tonight, the slump continues and there are only eight games left in the season. They are pretty well guaranteed to make the playoffs, but at this point their chances do not look very good. Once again they started really strong, dominated the first ten minutes and just could not get the puck in the net in spite of numerous chances. Don’t know what it is, but something needs to change soon!

Friday 3/28

Usually our morning walks in the desert are between 1-1/2 and 2 miles (we do 2 miles a day at home on pavement). We did not get in a long hike or a climb this year, mainly due to us both fighting colds in January and February - prime hiking time - so today we decided to go a little longer. We ended up only doing 4 miles as it was getting a bit hot. We went out through Tucson Mountain Park (if you look at the map on this link Desert Trails is right there at the "D" in San Joaquin Rd., so you can see how easy it is to hike into the park) to the Ironwood Picnic area and then circled back to the trail out of the park.

We found another flowering cactus in the BLM land less than 200 yards from our door
and then we saw that the Saguaro right behind us here in the park has bloomed.

This one is in the BLM land:

This saguaro is about 40 feet behind our trailer:

As you can see it has quite a few buds as well.

On the way into town we saw that the one on Kinney Rd. now has three blooms and four or five more about to burst:

Lunch for the last time at Beyond Bread, we only needed one more visit on the frequent customer program to qualify for an award, which turned out to be a free loaf of bread that had to be redeemed before the end of May. Good thing we got the last one in before we leave town.

Blackhawks continued their slide tonight, losing 5-3 to Ottawa! In the last week they have lost three out of four games, two of them to two of the worst teams in the league. They are self-destructing. 

Saturday 3/29

More cactus blooming in the desert, too bad we are leaving as it looks like a good year for cactus blooms.

Watched F1 qualifying this morning and then we started getting things put away and packed up. spent a couple of hours doing that, then we went to BK Tacos one last time for lunch.

Today was Karen’s birthday, they invited us to join them along with her brother and sister-in-law at Silver Saddle Steakhouse. We had a nice evening and a really good steak dinner.

Sunday 3/30

Morning walk and then we watched the F1 race, which was certainly more entertaining than the hockey game later in the afternoon! The Hawks continue their slide, played on of the worst games in recent memory, lost Jonathan Toews to what could be a significant injury on an apparently legal but seriously cheap hit. This team is crumbling before our eyes. Some commentators are saying it is exhaustion - between playing late into the summer last season and then sending 10 players to the Olympics. Of course the guys that got a rest during the Olympics have done very little to pick up the slack.

Packing up day. Our neighbors next door left this morning so I was able to load the car without having to move the truck. Did it in the morning as there was a bit of cloud cover. Then I spent the better part of an hour trying to get corroded water hose couplings apart. Had not run into that before, must be something to do with the new hoses I bought in Denver last Nov. I broke the Y fitting I use on the spigot trying to get the hose off, still have the broken part in the hose fitting. Then the coupling between the two hoses under the trailer needed Lime Away to get them apart. Had to soak the ends on CLR to get them cleaned up. Serious PIA. Glad I looked at them today instead of tomorrow morning when we wanted to get going.

Nancy did a laundry and then after it was dry I disassembled the clothes rack and loaded the bikes on the back of the trailer. While I was packing up outside Nancy spent the time packing cupboards and dishes.

We have everything except last minute items pretty well packed up, so we can get on the road early tomorrow morning. We lose and hour right away since we are still on Mountain Standard Time here and Denver is an hour ahead of us. Hoping to make Albuquerque tomorrow evening.

Monday 3/31

Got off to a good start this morning. Gary came by with Margo to wave goodbye. We were on the road shortly after 8 AM and the weather was good all the way, even had a slight tail wind most of the way.

Had lunch at a MacDonald’s in Deming before taking a state highway to cut across to I-25 at Hatch.

Stopped in a rest area along I-25 and there was a gentleman under the back of his motorhome. I walked over and asked if he had the tools he needed, as I carry a pretty comprehensive assortment. Turns out he had a good set of tools, but nothing SMALL enough to get to the bolts on his pressure relief valve, which was stuck open. Got out my set of 1/4” drive sockets and got him one that would work and he got his system fixed, at least temporarily. In the process of moving to park behind him I managed to tangle with a post along the edge of the rest area and put some paint from the post on the end of the bumper we replaced last winter! Bummer, looks like I will be able to clean it up pretty well except for a few scratches.
Made Albuquerque right at 6 PM, tuning onto I-40 and stopping on the access bridge! Took us 25 minutes of stop and go traffic to go 9 miles west to the RV park, Enchanted Trails. Nice little park, not as fancy as American RV Park right across the highway where we stayed in the fall, but half the price since it is a Passport America park. A little bit of highway noise, but not bad.

After setting up we ran over to Cracker Barrel for dinner, had not been to one since we were on the road in November, used the gift card that Emily and Gregg gave us last fall. Warm enough tonight to keep the vent fan running in the bedroom as we have been doing for a month or so in Tucson and about 4 AM we both started sneezing! Worse for Nancy than me, but something obviously started pumping out pollen during the night!

Tuesday 4/1

Easier day planned today, 250 miles to Trinidad, CO so no hurry to get going this morning. Stopped at the Cracker Barrel North of Albuquerque for breakfast and Nancy was very disappointed to find that they have discontinued regular oatmeal throughout the chain!!

Uneventful trip over Raton Pass, fairly windy all day, but from the Southwest so we had a bit of a tailwind again.

Sure love this truck, no stress at all over Raton Pass, 7,835 feet above sea level. Maintained an easy 50-55 MPH in 9th gear going up and easy descent in 9th with the engine brake.

Arrived at Trinidad Lake State Park campground at 3 PM and settled in. Decided not to unhitch since we were nice and level and no real need to fully set up. Pretty windy this afternoon so we were doing a bit of rocking, but no big deal. We are sitting at 6,835 feet in the campground.

Weather is supposed to be good into Denver tomorrow, but the forecast is for snow Wednesday afternoon and evening!

Found out a few days later from a post on one of theRV forums that we were fortunate to stop in Trinidad. Another RV'er, who had spent the night before just North of Santa Fe reported that the winds on the Colorado side of the pass were really fierce, causing problems for some RVs, and then they hit a massive traffic jam going through Colorado Springs caused by a tappers block for a North bound accident!

Wednesday 4/2

Uneventful trip on into Denver, weather was good, but a bit windy - no issue for us. Arrived at Cherry Creek State Park about 1:30. Our purchase of an annual Colorado Parks Pass last spring has paid off well. It cost $70 and saves us $9 a day while we are here! Because we bought it in early April 2013 we got 13 months use out of it. Between April 2013, last fall and this month we will have spent 45+ days!

No reservations, so we needed to do the two days at a time renewal dance. After we were situated Nancy went on line and found that there were no reservations for our site and that we could book it starting Saturday. So I went on-line and booked it for 10 days starting the 5th. Good thing since I had to stand on line for 20 minutes Friday morning to renew for the one night - not the most efficient process! Of course there were two park rangers standing there whistling Dixie while the volunteer on the desk worked her butt off!

Stopped by Connie’s house and then the three of us walked over to Emily’s, she was out at the park with the kids so we walked over there to join them. Wow! The babies have really grown, double the size they were when we were here last fall. Miles had turned into a little boy. After a few minutes he turned to me and said “Where’s your truck?”. Dinner with Connie and Laurie.

Thursday 4/3

Woke up to 8” + of heavy wet snow! It was raining as we came home last night and the forecasts proved to be right. Finally got to use the nice collapsable shovel I have been carrying around for years!

Family had things going on today, so we hunkered down and relaxed. Went over to Connie’s house late in the day and shared a pizza with Connie & Laurie. I am coming down with a cold, so I need to avoid the babies for a couple of days.

Watched the Hawks win in Minnesota tonight, they put out a better effort tonight.

Friday 4/4

Took Nancy over to Connie’s office this morning as they had some work and shopping to do. I came back home to rest and see if I can throw off this cold.

Miles is spending the night at Connie’s and Nancy is staying there as well. I am staying home to watch the hockey game and keep my cold away from there. Hawks put together a pretty good effort tonight and won. Things are looking up a bit.

 Saturday 4/5

Over to Connie and Laurie’s for a home made French toast breakfast (Laurie is a great cook!)

Ran some errands and then spent some time with the family, looking after the babies while Emily and Greg ran some errands.

Later we went to Tag Burger Bar with Connie and Laurie for dinner.

Sunday 4/6

Stayed home to watch the F1 race, which turned out to be the best and most exciting race we have seen in a couple of years. The new cars have really upset the status quo in F1 and some of the back marker teams are running up front. We recorded the Hawks game to watch later.

Went over to Connie’s and then to Emily and Greg’s where they made a really nice dinner for all of us, they really out-did themselves! Then Laurie supplied delicious home-made ice cream for desert.

Back home late we watched the Blackhawks beat St Louis, they really seem to have found their legs again in the last three games - three games left to the playoffs, fingers crossed!

Monday 4/7

Stopped at Costco for Nancy to get a prescription filled, then we drove up to the North side of the city to make a quick stop at Hammond’s Candies. Did not take the tour, which we have done before, but we did stock up on candy and candy canes. Stopped at Whole Foods, a Car Quest and large bicycle shop that we had seen on the way, Bicycle Village. I have been looking for new biking gloves. Could not find any I liked, but asked if they had any string-back gloves like my old, old ones. Not in stock, but they could order them! And they were cheaper than anything else I have looked at her or in Tucson.
Back to Connie’s for dinner, Nancy made a delicious chicken and peanut salad.

No comments:

Post a Comment