The Other Arizona

 Posted by at 1:30 am  Nick's Blog
Jul 112017

Three blog readers have asked me how we are tolerating staying in Terry’s sister’s fifth wheel trailer in the middle of an Arizona summer, and wondering if it is even safe to do so, given the limited insulation and barely adequate air conditioners that most RVs have.

Down in the desert it would not be much fun at all. But we are in the other Arizona. A lot of people are not aware that the White Mountains in Arizona’s high country along the Mogollon Rim is a completely different world from the deserts that cover most of the state. While it can easily reach 120 degrees in the desert, here summertime temperatures usually run from 75 – 85 degrees in the daytime, and nights cool off very nicely.

The Rim country stretches east across the central part of the state and is home to the world’s largest Ponderosa pine forest, many beautiful lakes, and even a couple of excellent ski areas. The highest point in the state is 12,633 foot high Humphreys Peak, located eleven miles north of Flagstaff. The fishing is excellent, and wildlife ranges from tassel-eared Albert squirrels and wild turkeys to antelope, deer, elk, black bear, bighorn sheep, Mexican gray wolves, and mountain lion.

This was home to us for many years before we became fulltime RVers. I owned the weekly newspaper and Miss Terry ran a commercial glass shop before I kidnapped her and stuffed her into a motorhome to hit the road.

This is the country that inspired my Big Lake mystery novels, and I mention many local places in the series. In fact, in the first book in the series, Big Lake, I have a scene set at Hon-Dah Casino, which is located right across the road from Hon-Dah RV Park, where we are staying. And the casino gets mentioned in at least one other book in the series, Big Lake Burning.

Here is a picture of Dani’s trailer, our home while we are here, and below it is the meadow directly behind her RV site.

And here are a couple of pictures from around the RV park. Is it any wonder that both Dani and Terry’s parents have annual sites here and never take their fifth wheels back down to the desert?

My daughter Tiffany is doing great and was released from the hospital yesterday. She was worn out and went right home and to bed, so we didn’t bother her. We want her to get all the rest she can. But today we’ll go check up on her and spend some time together if she is up to it.

Thought For The Day – We all have that one friend you have to say “Be nice” to before you introduce them to somebody new. Quite often, I’m that friend.

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  12 Responses to “The Other Arizona”

  1. We are so thankful and relieved that Tiffany is recovering. Thank the Lord. I was just imagining what that trip was like crossing the country trying to get to her as fast as you could and trying to keep updated on her condition all the way. It must have been very tough. But, as they say, I guess all’s well that end’s well.

    We’re so happy you got the miracle your daughter needed!
    Ray & Carol

  2. Sounds like a lovely area, Nick. Happy to hear your daughter is doing better, such a scare. South of Tuscon there are also mountains near Bisbee and Sierra Vista that stay quite cool. The also have what they call ‘ micro-climates’ full of green vegetation and abundant wildlife, reminding me much of my home state of PA! You are right, there IS another Arizona to be explored. 🙂

  3. Big Lake’s not burning I see. Great to hear that Tiffany is doing well.

  4. So glad you were able to get there to be with your daughter and have a comfortable place to stay. We first met you at the elks lodge there 3 years ago. Have a good stay. We hope you don’t feel the need to hurry back home to Florida.

  5. WOW, Home, That is just wonderful!
    Jan and Greg

  6. Thank God for answered prayers. I’m so glad she’s well enough to go home. Now maybe you and Miss Terry can relax, unwind, and enjoy visiting with family.

  7. Wonderful news to hear your daughter is doing so well she was able to go home.
    As to “the other Arizona,” I thought it was common knowledge Arizona used to (and maybe still does) have lumber as one of its main products. Not all Arizona is sand and sun glare. The White Mountains are beautiful as is the Mogollon Rim.

  8. Tiffany sure is strong will just like you Nick. Glad to hear she is home.
    God Bless

  9. Glad to hear Tiffany is doing well…we have been praying for her! Also, that you have a nice spot there while visiting…

  10. So glad she is home.

  11. Glad Tiffany survived and is no longer in the hospital. I could read your relief. Nice that you could hangout among the Showlow RVers. We need to visit the OTHER ARIZONA I have heard (and read) about. Hope your travels back to Florida are calm and trouble–Tasha.

  12. I love that part of Arizona.Some of my family has a place close to Springerville/ Eagar area but in the mountains there.

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