Tuesday, January 02, 2018
WE ARE HOLD UP IN RODEO NEW MEXICO AND TODAY WE HEADED OVER TO PORTAL AND CAVE CREEK ARIZONA FOR A FEW HOURS
Aside from some nearby fireworks at midnight we transitioned from 2017 to 2018 in our usual rather sleepy manner for that time of night.
NICE TO BE BACK IN THE HISTORIC SHADOW OF THE CHIRICAHUA MOUNTAINS
Had a problem publishing my blog Sunday night and it wasn’t until Monday morning that Kelly was able to track down the issue and resolve the problem. We were using a nearby WiFi signal and it was struggling to post my blog. Finally it quit altogether. Kelly put us back on Verizon this morning and my post eventually published. Verizon is slow and a bit spotty here where we are in the San Simon Valley but at least we are connected for the most part,
While tracking down the connection problem Kelly came across another problem we hadn’t been able to figure out and resolved that one too. We have 20 Gigabytes a month with Verizon and for some unknown and shocking reason we used up 18 of those Gigabyes in only 9 days. What!!!! Turns out it was my fault again. First night on the road when I uploaded my photos from camera to computer a thing came up from Google asking me I would like Google to back up my photos. Without thinking about it I said Okay. And that was the problem. Google Photo proceeded to back up thousands of photos and of course that killed most of our Verizon Gigabytes. Kelly un-installed that Google Photo App this morning!! A similar thing happened a year ago after I had opened a Flicker Photo account. It chewed through our Verizon Gigabytes like a buzz saw through soft butter while on the road.
OUR SITE AT MOUNTAIN VIEW LODGE RODEO NEW MEXICO
Okay back to today and where the heck are we anyway. Rusty from Rusty’s RV Ranch near Portal New Mexico directed us 7 miles south to Rodeo New Mexico where we found the Mountain Valley Lodge and RV Park. Holy Smokes we’re in another RV Park. What!! But this Park I think was made just for us. Only 5 sites with 3 available and we are the only ones here. Huge bonus for the boon-docking Bayfield Bunch.
THAT’S US TUCKED IN BEHIND THE RV PARK SIGN
SO NICE TO SEE HOW WELL KEPT THIS LITTLE RV PARK AND LODGE ARE
SO MUCH LOVE THE SOUTHWEST COLORS
LIKE THIS HOMEY OFFICE ENTRANCE WAY
Soon as we pulled in we liked the looks of this place and it was obvious the owners took pride in their small Park. The colors, the landscaping, and the lay-out. A very comfy cozy natural Southwest look to it and we both felt comfortable here. The Park is simply down home and friendly and Dan the owner reflects that touch. Before I tell you any more about the Park let me show you a few photos.
SPECTACULAR VIEWS OF THE CHIRICAHUA MOUNTAINS AS CAN BE SEEN BY OUR HEADER PHOTO
WE NOTICED THIS PARK HAS GREAT REVIEWS
ALTHOUGH RIGHT ALONGSIDE THE HIGHWAY THERE ISN’T MUCH TRAFFIC ON THIS ROAD
BUBBLING WATER AT THE TOP OF A WATERFALL
THE POND HAS KOI FISH IN IT
Sun was up over the horizon before we ventured out on our morning walk. Highway 80 runs North and South through the town of Rodeo New Mexico with 99% of the town being on the East side of the highway so it was the East side we walked. Nothing open in town, not that there is really too much to open here anyway.
A LOOK AT RODEO FROM ONE OF THE FEW BACK STREETS AND THOSE ARE THE CHIRICAHUAS IN THE BACKGROUND
GOTTA LOVE THESE OLD STONE WALLS
KELLY HAD A LIVELY STEP GOING THIS MORNING
THESE TWO ENDED UP PLAYFULLY CHASING EACH OTHER ALONG THE FENCELINE
THE RODEO CAFE WAS CLOSED TODAY BUT WE ONCE HAD BREAKFAST THERE A FEW YEARS AGO
OH-OH KELLY’S CHECKING OUT SOME LOCAL REALESTATE PRICES
HEY THAT’S OUR MOTORHOME UP THERE
The Southwest is so radically different from where we live in Ontario Canada and it is that big difference that has attracted us here year after year. Everything is different. The people, the towns, the scenery, the plants, the birds, everything. It is that major change twice a year that we find invigorating although the last couple years we have been slipping a bit. We talked seriously about staying home this winter but now that we are here we can’t believe we had even remotely considered that.
ON OUR WAY TO PORTAL AND THE CAVE CREEK AREA THIS MORNING
THIS NEW ‘SKY ISLAND RESTAURANT’ IS NOT YET OPEN
HEY THERE’S A NICE ONE AND IT’S FOR SALE TOO
Back at the rig after our early morning walk Kelly fixed us up some peanut butter and jam sandwiches and we were into the Jeep headed off over to Portal Arizona about 8 miles away. Portal is another one of the many favorite places we have been to before and absolutely love coming back. We stopped at the widely known and well loved Portal General Store and split a yummy breakfast Burrito in the tiny 6 table restaurant in back. This is another one of those iconic little places that began in the past and still retains that oldness about it.
PORTAL’S LIBRARY AND POST OFFICE
ONLY GAS PUMP IN TOWN AND I THINK IT’S BEEN OUT OF GAS FOR A FEW DECADES
STONE WALLED OUTSIDE EATING AREA
YEP THAT’S THE PHEEBS
I’VE SURE TAKEN ENOUGH PHOTOS OF THIS CAR OVER THE YEARS
WHEN KELLY AND I WERE HERE BEFORE WE SAT WHERE THE COUPLE ON THE LEFT ARE
THIS TIME WE HAD A TABLE IN THE CORNER AND LEGEND HAS IT THAT JOHN McAFEE (ANTI-VIRUS SOFTWARE) FREQUENTED THIS PLACE FOR MORNING COFFEE AND NEWSPAPER READING WHEN HE HUNG OUT IN THIS AREA
IT’S THE ONLY PLACE I’VE EVER SEEN WHERE YOU HAVE TO WALK THROUGH THE KITCHEN PAST THE COOK TO GET TO THE BATHROOM….IF YOUR THERE SOMETIME TRY IT OUT
Headed off along the Cave Creek drive and marveled again like we always do at the wondrous scenery. This area is a world renown birders paradise and people come here from far and wide in search of the Elegent Trogon.
This area is also host to one of the most scenic little campgrounds we have ever seen. It’s called the Sandy Flat campground and it is where we would be right now if our rig would have fit into one of the small sites. But, we’re just too long so all we can do is go there and wish we had a shorter rig. The silence here between the towering overhead mountain cliffs is overpowering. There are hiking trails here as well but we have never been on them. For anyone traveling I-10 between Lordsburg and Wilcox I would highly recommend a side trip to Portal Arizona and a drive along Cave Creek. You will always remember it if you do.
SUNNY FLAT CAMPGROUND
ONE OF THE SANDY FLAT SITES
THIS SMALL CAMPGROUND IS SURROUNDED BY TOWERING MOUNTAIN CLIFFS
MAYBE WE DIDN’T SEE ANY ELEGANT TROGONS BUT WE DID GET TO SEE A FEW MEXICAN JAYS
CAMPSITES ARE NOT CROWDED ON TOP OF EACH OTHER
We wandered around for awhile but our gas gauge was down to a quarter tank and the nearest gas station is in the little burg of Animas 14 miles to the East. Having decided to extend our stay in this area we figured we had better head over to Animas and pick us up some gas.
ROLLING FURTHER ALONG CAVE CREEK ROAD
THE CREEK BED IS FAIRLY DRY
KELLY CHECKS OUT ANOTHER HOUSE FOR SALE
CANDID PHOTO OF KELLY PEERING OUT HER WINDOW
AN OLD CONCRETE SWIMMING POOL AND WHAT THE HECK IS THAT IN THE TREE
WELL IT’S AN ORANGE SQUIRREL OF COURSE
AND SOMEONE LEFT THEIR COTTON BALL PINE CONE CHRISTMAS DECORATION BEHIND
On the way back from Animas on highway 9 we turned south on 80 in the direction of our RV Park. Along the way we drove into a place we had scouted out a few years ago. John McAfee of internet anti-virus fame has a history going back to this area and years ago built an 11 million dollar complex here that is now basically abandoned. However the property has been sold but we didn’t see a sole anywhere as we drove around in there. Back in November of 2009 I included some links and photos I took at the complex. That post is HERE.
JOHN McAFEE BUILT HIMSELF A MOVIE THEATER AND CAFE’ ON THIS SITE
THESE CEMENT SLABS ONCE HAD McAFEE’S ‘AIR STREAM’ TRAVEL TRAILER FRIENDS PARKED HERE
FOUR AIRCRAFT HANGARS FOR McAFEE AND HIS PALS TO STORE THEIR ULTRA-LIGHT AIRCRAFT
WASHROOMS AND SHOWERS FOR THE AIR STREAM FOLKS
IT IS REPORTED JOHN McAFEE SUNK OVER 11 MILLION INTO THIS PROJECT
It was mid afternoon by the time we got back to the rig and we were both beat. I took Pheebs for a walk but that was about it for the day. In the morning we’ll get some more snacks ready to go then drive over through Portal and head for the little settlement of Paradise. From there we’ll see how far up the eastern side of the Chiricahua Mountains we can go. We don’t intend to go over them and down the other side although we have done that a couple times in the past using two different routes. The one tomorrow and another one further south running through Rucker Canyon on the other side. Quite often these roads are closed due to winter snow so we’ll see if we can find any snow to make a couple snowballs out of.
I took some photos tonight around the grounds here at the Mountain Valley Lodge but I already have too many photos in this post so I will try to get the night shots in Tuesday’s post……………….
GROANER’S CORNER:(( Three retirees, each with a hearing loss, were taking a walk one fine March day. One remarked to the other, "Windy, ain't it?" "No," the second man replied, "It's Thursday." And the third man chimed in, "So am I. Let's have a coke."
On New Year's Eve, Ann stood up in the local pub and said that it was time to get ready. At the stroke of midnight, she wanted every husband to be standing next to the one person who made his life worth living. As the clock struck - the bartender was almost crushed to death.
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I agree Al...the colors, plants, buildings and everything else about the west draws us in too! It was love at first sight and the one area we long to return to as well! Beautiful day...so happy you and Kelly are enjoying it all. Awesome picture of Kelly!ReplyDelete
Al, the sandy flat link took me to a place in California.ReplyDelete
Thanks for noticing that Barney, your right it did lead to a campground in California so I've taken the link out.Delete
I love the coverage you give us readers of the areas you visit. I have been around that area but never through it. That will change this year. Thank you.Delete
I have been enjoying the southwest flavour as well. Thanks for such a great and informative post. I've put that on my list of places to visit in the future.ReplyDelete
A wonderful area to explore as you have done before love your photos. I believed it is Sunny Flat Campground 3 miles from Portal.ReplyDelete
Bobbie and I found an Elegant Trogon while hiking a wash just outside Portal, from a campground. Beautiful bird. I didn't manage a good photo so she bought the Trogon T-shirt in Portal's gift shop. :) That's one out-of-the-way place, for sure.ReplyDelete
Box Canyon Mark
‘Hold’ up, ‘Held’ up, ‘Holed’ up �� and no fillet of sole at McAfee’s LOL. Photos are awesome! Care to share the rate at your little RV spot?ReplyDelete
Wow! Your photos looked great. Loved the one of Kelly. You two really know this area. That RV park is much prettier than the parking lot I'm staying in here in Douglas.ReplyDelete
Great photos as usual Al. I love that area and those small towns. It must make you shake a little when you catch Kelly with a local real estate listing in her hands. I admire both your abilities to take a place and turn it into a much improved house/property.ReplyDelete
On your data and those photo backups ... I agree and have done the same thing on Google Photos. I don't use it. As far as Flickr, I use that every day to backup the photos I take during the day. The FIRST TIME you upload your photos, like you found out it soaks up data faster than drinking water. But after that large file is loaded, uploading 50-200 photos per day takes around a point 5 of MB per picture or 50Mb per 100 photos. They don't condense the photos either.
Good to see that Kelly found where that 'data leak' was. Always concerning when on a limited plan like I have.
Your photos sure capture the flavour of the great southwest. Nice to travel vicariously through your camera.ReplyDelete
What a beautiful post, today, Al. It's obvious where your heart is! Welcome back to the southwest.ReplyDelete
Such a cute campsite you found and your Kelly is so beautiful. You're a lucky guy!!ReplyDelete
What wonderful pictures.ReplyDelete
You guys always find the greatest places.I know you guys are loving being back in the SW.I had the same trouble with google handling photos, with Picasa I think, several years ago. It updated itself then proceeded to backup our photo collection to ...wherever. Next day our ATT data limit was exhausted. And of course it was the start of the month. Maybe we can meet up with you guys if your headed Benson, or wherever, way. For lunch or a hike. We are here til the 15th.ReplyDelete
Thanks for the information on Sandy Flats CG. You made our decision of where to make our first extended stop for 2018, easy. It's been bow freezing for three days at Cranes Mill, near San Antonio. Looking for a warm place now, more than ever.ReplyDelete
Pictures are amazing.ReplyDelete
Pretty neat to see the BB discovering a place we visited last winter, that's a real switch! lol. We stayed at Sunny Flat for several days and loved it, and visited Mt Valley for their laundry and showers.ReplyDelete
Love the pictures....stunning.... But especially the very last littleReplyDelete
house with the old buckboard. Is it part of a old ranch?
A newer larger house sat not far away so I'm guessing it's an original old house hat has been looked after over the years. The buckboard in the photo is the same one as the first photo,Delete
Happy New Year to you three ! The third photo from the top is stunning Al. Nice job. K~ReplyDelete