Back In Arizona

 Posted by at 12:19 am  Nick's Blog
May 062012

The wind blew hard all Friday night, but by yesterday morning it had died down to just a stiff breeze. We left the Palm Springs Thousand Trails Preserve a little after 9 a.m. and took Interstate 10 east a little over 100 miles to the Arizona State line.

There wasn’t much traffic and it was good road most of the way, so we could relax and enjoy the ride and the scenery.There sure are a lot of rugged mountains in this part of the country.



In spite of the wind that was hitting us broadside most of the way, the new Safe-T-Plus steering control held us right in the center of the lane and I could easily steer with one hand most of the time. Passing eighteen wheelers had no effect on our motorhome at all. I really like this upgrade!

We stopped at the Pilot in Quartzsite for fuel, paying $4.02, four cents a gallon more than we did at the same place on Tuesday. But that was still a lot cheaper than diesel prices in California.

On the west side of the Phoenix metropolitan area, we took the 101 Loop north to hook up with Interstate 17 and start the long climb up out of the Valley of the Sun. It was a hot day, 99 degrees in the desert, and I kept an eye on my radiator and transmission temperatures. I’ve seen a lot of cars, trucks, and RVs broken down along this stretch of highway over the years.

The desert has a beauty all of its own, but everything out here will either scratch, stick, sting, or bite you.



Eventually we topped out, then started the downhill ride into the Verde Valley. This was the first chance to give our new PacBrake a real workout, and I was impressed. I stepped on the brake pedal twice coming down the 6% grade, but that was more my timidity than the PacBrake not doing its job.



I’ve never had to use a runaway truck ramp, and I hope I never have to.

We arrived at the Verde Valley Thousand Trails preserve, between Camp Verde and Cottonwood, about 3:35 p.m., with 340 miles behind us. It was 88 degrees outside, and the place was pretty full. There were only two 50 amp sites left, but we chose a 30 amp full hookup site in the C section. This time of year we can get by without having to use the air conditioner much.

Once we were parked and hooked up, we drove to La Fonda Mexican Restaurant to meet Terry’s sister Lisa and her husband Jim for dinner. They came up from their home in Mesa to get out of the heat for a little while. We discovered La Fonda last year and really liked it, but this time I didn’t care for my dinner at all. Everybody else did, so I guess it was just my choice. I may give them another chance while we’re here, if Terry wants to go back. And since she really likes the place, I’m sure we will.

After dinner, Jim and Lisa came back to the Thousands Trails with us, and we gave them the nickel tour. I think they liked it and afterward we sat outside in lawn chairs relaxing. It had cooled down a lot, and Jim said he could handle a lot more evenings like that.

The super moon rose over a nearby ridgeline and Terry was busy with her camera. She got some good shots too.


This morning we’ll get back together with Jim and Lisa before they have to head back home. We always have a good time with them, and it will be almost a year before we get to visit with them again.

Thought For The Day – One stone can change the course of an entire river.

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Nick Russell

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  2 Responses to “Back In Arizona”

  1. Great pics today… the moon shot!

  2. We really get a kick out of your blogs etc. Wonder if you knew our little dog Taekou passed away last month? Hard time trying to deal with it. We should be on the road soon as I’ve just finished with my tenth operation on the leg! hope to see you at the rally in Sept. Ciao capy

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