Saturday, April 7, 2007

Are You a 99%er?

Yesterday was moving day for us from Arizona to Utah. Our route took us through Flagtaff, AZ, then north through Monument Valley.

If you have never driven through Monument Valley, we recommend it! The Navajo Nation bills it as the 8th Wonder of the World, and while I don't know about the validity of that claim, the monoliths are spectacular.

My comments today concern the trashing of America...especially along the roadways. Highway ditches are full of plastic bottles, cans, plastic bags, and just about every other type of trash you can think of. Many states are poor about providing trash cans along the roadways, and I figure about 1% or less of travelers just toss out their trash instead of disposing of it properly...after all, who cares? Obviously state governments don't!

It appears that some states would rather pay prison guards, buy fuel for transportation, pay for the wear and tear on equipment, and whatever other supplemental costs are involved in trash pickup along roadways instead of putting in a few dumpsters. On our RV camping trip to Alaska last summer, even 100 miles from the closest town in Canada, you could find a roadside trash barrel.

Wake up Americans! You want the best services, but nobody wants to pay for them. You can help states and our country out by taking your trash to a proper waste facility, and the money states save on that might be used in a manner that will benefit you directly!

Are you part of the 1% that causes the rest of us to waste our time picking up after you or fixing what you screwed up and left behind? I hope not!

RV Camping Home

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Old Route 66

Yesterday, we promised to give you some more information about our free RV camping site.

The above picture was taken from the middle of the old Route 66 highway. This old alignment of the highway is approximately 3/4 mile from I-40, so there is some highway noise at night. This meadow was used during construction of I-40 as a construction yard, and you can see a topo map image of this area at

There are several shade trees in the meadow, fire pits, and a lot of dead wood piled up around to make the campfire lovers happy, and is in the USDA Kaibab National Forest. This forest consists of over 1.6 million acres, and ranges in altitude from 5500 feet, to over 10,400 feet, and includes 4 wilderness areas. This camping area's altitude is 5865 according to our GPS.

As you walk along the old alignment of Route 66 here, looking in the ditch along the old cracked asphalt roadway, you will see thousands of rusty old cans. We wonder if this was an early day "rest area", or if the cans could be from the I-40 construction.

The old roadway is now called the Old Route 66 Mountain Bike Path. We've seen no bikes, but several vehicles seem to be exploring the area using the roadway as access to more distant locations. You can read more about Route 66 and it's history here...

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Free Campsite - AZ I-40 exit 151

Exploring for RV campsites can be a lot of fun. It's important in our opinion to know where public lands are, and we've found that Topo 6.0 by DeLorme is an excellent recreational software package that you can use with a laptop and GPS unit to find public lands.

After wandering around the forest and finding a couple of large flagstone quarry sites, we came across old Route 66. Our topo program didn't call it Route 66, but this section of the historic highway is now the Historic Route 66 Bike Trail. More about the campsite tomorrow.

To easily get to this campsite with any size RV, exit Arizona I-40 exit 151. Go north. You will cross a cattle guard, and the road either heads into an open meadow, or gravel road #6 takes off to the right. Go into the meadow and find a spot. There are shade trees around, several fire pits, and a decent view. If you continue all the way through the meadow, you can camp next to the old highway. Don't head cross country as there are short tree stumps and rocks, but there are several access "roads" to campsites. There is room for lots of RV's here, but right now, we're all by ourselves. This is an ideal overnight camping area.

RV Camping Home

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Private Campgrounds

Yesterday we moved from our desert boondock camping site to higher altitude as it is getting HOT in the southwestern deserts. We planned on an early stop in the day to explore for a good boondocking spot, but because we couldn't get into the dump station at the Flying J that we stopped at for fuel, we decided to get an RV park to dump and fill fresh water, and use as an exploration base camp.

We had stayed in the RV park about 3 years ago that we chose to spend last night in since we had enjoyed our previous stay, but things changed a bit since our last visit. If we had checked, we would not have come back! (Look at Ash Fork, AZ)

I never considered that a place could go downhill so much in 3 years. Broken playground equipment, trash and broken glass, and just in a general state of disrepair. We won't be back.

The moral of the story? Even if you have camped at a private campground before, you shouldn't expect the same conditions next time. It's one of those "buyer beware" situations...check reviews of places you want to stay before you make a reservation or just pull in for the night if you may be very glad you did!

RV Camping Home

Monday, April 2, 2007

Saving Money At The Pump

Today was moving day for us. We've been camped in the desert of Arizona all winter, and we're ready for a change of scenery. Since we've just been drifting around all winter, we havn't bought diesel for "Gozer" (our motor home) since January, but moving a couple hundred miles required fuel.

From past experience, we had come to expect the lowest prices from a Pilot fuel station north of Lake Havasu City, AZ, but in the last couple years I've gotten in the habit of checking for fuel prices along our route, and I'm glad I did this morning before we hit the road!

Checking the website, I quickly found the price at our usual Pilot fuel stop to be $2.899 for diesel, and only 50 miles up the road at a Flying J truck stop, diesel was listed at $2.699. We filled up at the Flying J, and even saved an additional $.01 per gallon by using our "Real Value Club" card from Flying J. The card is free, and you can get information at...

I don't know about you, but I sure don't mind mind saving $10.50 on my 50 gallon purchase.

Sunday, April 1, 2007

Wild Animal Attack!!!

We awoke this morning to strange sounds coming from the front of our motor home. I got out of bed and looked through the windshield, only to come face to face with two of the biggest Grizzly bears I've ever seen.

I ran back to the bedroom for my gun, as the sound of breaking glass chased me through the motor home. I grabbed the autoload Colt 45, spun around and saw a bear climbing in where the windshield had once been.

We're lucky that the digital camera is nearby so we can get a picture of the bear before things get really messy...

I pull the slide on the 45, take careful aim, and...

April Fools!!!