(this is Tuesday’s post)
A few days ago after arriving here in the Sedona area we received an email from a blog reader nearby. Victoria has been following our blog for about 3 years now & she along with husband Phil are currently camp hosts at DEAD HORSE RANCH STATE PARK in Cottonwood. We arranged a get together at Randall’s Restaurant this morning for breakfast. First, Randall’s is a great place to eat. Readers know I am not a foody person but I must say we all really enjoyed out eats. Even Kelly & she is the picky one in the family. I had a ‘Breakfast Sandwich’ which in Canada we would call a ‘Toasted Western’. Victoria & Kelly had Indian Fry Bread Tacos while Phil had a Rancho Nuevos whatever the heck that was.
CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT BIG PLATE OF FOOD, I JUST CAN’T IMAGINE A HUMAN BEING EATING ALL THAT & NOT EXPLODING ALL OVER THE PLACE
Phil & Victoria are an energetic hard working full timing RV couple who travel around the States in their truck & fifth wheel volunteering & work camping their way along. In 10 days they leave for Florida & this summer they are hosting a camp job in Barr Harbor Maine. They have also hosted in Jackson Hole Wyoming as well as other places. What a treat it was to meet them. Lots of exuberance, lots of excitement. They reminded me of myself a very long time ago. All the best you guys & once again…..thanks for breakfast:))
From Cottonwood we headed east on highway 260 to check out a few boondocking sites for return visits to this area. And oh yes we will definitely be heading back to Sedona. This is our second trip here & we have barely scratched the surface of things to do & places to see. Thanks to readers for sending in all their suggestions. Impossible to get around to them all but when we return again probably next winter we have a file of trails & Jeep roads to search out. And we won’t be coming on a long week-end next time!!!!!!! By the way I do have a post about the last time we were in Sedona back in November of 2007. I just read it & it’s obvious I took a big liking to Sedona even back then. You can read that post HERE & you can see my photo album from that time also at OUR DAY IN SEDONA.
LOOKS LIKE THIS ‘THOUSAND TRAILS’ BOONDOCKING AREA ON # 260 WOULD BE WAY TOO CROWDED FOR US
NORTHBOUND ON I-17
Our next destination was MONTEZUMA WELL. Had my fingers crossed it wouldn’t be too crowded with people on a week day. Guess I wasn’t squeezing my fingers together tight enough. Not too bad when we first arrived but little did we know an inbound large tour bus was on it’s way.
Short walk to the large well & it was easy to see 3 cliff dwellings right away. However I could not get near the reader boards for people in front of them. Not a good start.
YOU WILL HAVE TO LOOK CAREFULLY FOR THE DWELLINGS
We hiked down a set of stone steps to more dwellings below near the water. Kelly had Pheebs on a leash but had difficulty with the leash tangling up & people going by. Had it not been for all the people I would have found this a very peaceful place.
HEADING DOWN THE STEPS TO SOME RUINS
CLIMBING BACK UP THE STEPS HAD US PUFFING
Again I had to do some selective photography in order not to have baseball hats, Bermuda shorts, walloping large sunglasses & Hawaiian shirts in most of my pics.
Hiking back up the stone steps we nicely made our way around a gap in the people making our way down another set of stone steps to a beautiful pathway near a river & a narrow foot wide man made thousand year old water canal.
THIS HAND DUG WATER CANAL IS ESTIMATED TO BE ABOUT 1000 YEARS OLD
PARK RANGER SAID THIS WAS THE OLDEST SYCAMORE TREE IN ARIZONA
The sound of running water just added so much serenity to the quiet scene. And then all hell broke loose as the large tour bus’s occupants came pouring down the stone steps behind us filling the narrow path with noise & chatter. A Park Ranger at the trails end sat explaining the history of this place but by that time I was surrounded by crowding tourists & the true ambience & meaning of where I was became lost & I just wanted to get out of there. And that’s what I did by heading back up the path to put some sanity distance between me & the crowd of people. Pheebs & Kelly followed shortly thereafter & we were soon on the road again.
I JUST HAD TO GET OUT OF THERE
Now, I have a little mis-conception I would like to clear up which I may have created. My grumbling about crowds of people does not mean people do not have a right to be there. Not saying that at all & never have. Of course they do. I’m just generally always grumbling about our seemingly bad timing. Many people like myself prefer to visit places & especially old ruins, ghost towns, etc as close to their natural state as possible that’s all. I/we don’t bemoan the fact of people being there…..just not when I/we are there. And I think many people understand that & would prefer to do it that way as well. Nothing to do with anyone not having the right to be anywhere & everything to do with our personal knack for poor timing. For example we should have been at Montezuma Well when they opened the gate first thing this morning. Poor planning on our part…….
There was a time when I was a part of those crowds & made just as much noise if not more than everyone else. There was a time when human noise never bothered me a bit & being in a crowd of people seemed normal almost…. even enjoyable sometimes. But there was also a time for me when times changed. I have no idea when it was, it just happened so gradually I never suspected it of creeping up on me as stealthily as it did . I shake my head more often these days now & think to myself, Al…..what are you going to do about these changes if you can do anything about them at all. Okay, enough of that & let’s have us a look at the Pheebs day………….
SHE FINDS A GREEN PEPPER BEHIND RANDALL’S RESTAURANT THIS MORNING
PUT’S SOME SMOOCHES ON THIS LADY’S LITTLE PUPPY & SCHMOOZES WITH THE PARK RANGER AT THE MONTEZUMA GATE
MAKES ANOTHER FRIEND ON THE TRAIL & WAITS PATIENTLY WITH KELLY FOR SOME TOURISTS TO GO BY
SHE’S JUST A HAPPY LITTLE DOG ALL DAY LONG
Once clear of Montezuma Well we again picked up the quiet road leading through Cornville & Page Springs.
THIS IS THE ‘UP THE CREEK GRILL NEAR CORNVILLE WHERE WE HAD HOPED TO GRAB LUNCH MONDAY…SENATOR JOHN McCAIN HAS BEEN KNOWN TO POP IN HERE
We stopped at some large outdoor bubbling ponds for a walk at the PAGE SPRINGS FISH HATCHERY. How peaceful & welcomingly quiet here. Enjoyed seeing the water, the Ducks, & the Killdeer. And green grass:))
A FISH HATCHERY FELLOW WORKS AWAY AT CLEANING ONE OF THE LARGE PONDS
We were back at the rig before 1:30 & I was just happy to sit down with my computer & music to relax. People stress just really wears me out. Kelly took the Jeep & headed for old town Cottonwood where she remembered a lot of nice shops from our last time here back in 07.
Liked Nick’s ‘Exit Strategies’ post over at the GYPSY JOURNAL this morning. It’s about the day when all of us at one time or another will one day have to hang up the RV keys & come in off the road. Whether Fulltiming or Snowbirding, decisions will one day have to be made. Nick asks, ‘So what about you? Have you thought about what you’ll do when the time comes to hang up the keys? What are your plans?
Our fresh water tank is about empty so with all things considered we’ll be heading back to Congress in the morning. Sure we could take our water jugs into town for re-filling but our black tank’s getting up there a bit too so it’s off home we go in the morning. Of course if we had a bigger rig with bigger tanks we could stay out longer but of course there are always the trade-offs, the pros & cons, & the indecisions. We are still finding our Class C on the small side & we are still trying to adjust to that. I know we don’t have a leg to stand on when I think of all the RV couples traveling & living in their much smaller Casitas & travel trailers. And loving it too. Like I said before, we have a really sweet little 26’ rig here but I think having our 33’ Class A for 6 years really spoiled us. Say, anybody out there with a nice 33 or 36’ Class A wanting to downsize to a like new 2011 26’ Winnebago Access Premier Class C?? Nawwwww, I didn’t think so:))
GROANER’S CORNER:(( A skeptical anthropologist was cataloging South American folk remedies with the assistance of a tribal medicine man who indicated that the leaves of a particular fern were a sure cure for any case of constipation. When the anthropologist expressed his doubts, the medicine man looked him in the eye and said, "Let me tell you, with fronds like these, who needs enemas?"