Well, let me try this again. The last try at this post would not save and publish so I lost it.
We left our lovely forest campsite late on Wednesday morning. My first thought since we actually had an extra day left was to head down to Williams to the Passport America park so the kids could swim and see the railroad museum. A quick call confirmed the news that the pool was closed so that ended that. Next thought was a stop at the Petrified Forest, Winslow, etc.; however, once on the road, everyone seemed to be in travel mode. I called Enchanted Trails in the afternoon to get a reservation and had to leave a message. Apparently their office hours really vary with the virus situation and my timing was probably off too. New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah are on mountain time but Arizona does not do daylight savings time so it felt like we were constantly changing time zones since we were back and forth between them. It was after dinner when we arrived so I checked the office door to see if they left a site number. No site number for us so I just made sure we didn't take one that was assigned to someone else coming in and we got set up. The next morning I stopped at the office and paid for the night.
Our next stop for the night was Big Springs TX. We went back through the less than scenic part of New Mexico and on through Roswell. It looked a bit dark off to the side later in the afternoon but it could have been smoke or dust. Steve and the grandkids got ahead of Helen and I so they were already checked into the hotel when we arrived. it was much too hot for them to stay in the truck. The parking lot was too small for me to park so I pulled up on a little road next to it. Further back it said no parking but there was a semi in front of me and Steve said the driver just checked into the hotel. I was going to fix dinner for us and then look for another place but we were suddenly hit by a strong storm with lots of thunder, lightning, and wind. I called and asked if the kids could just eat at the hotel. Unfortunately, the hotel did not have a restaurant but they quickly ordered a pizza delivery. I fixed Harley and me some dinner. Fortunately storms do not bother Harley at all. I took him out during a slight break in the storm and then we settled in for the night. I figured I would move if I got a knock on the door but otherwise I was not moving in the storm.
The following morning we headed out on the final leg of the trip home. I stopped at Steve and Helen's so they could take their things out of the RV and then headed home. All I brought in was the dog food and the food in the fridge and freezer.
I thought I might have to sleep downstairs on the couch Friday night because I was so stiff but I made it upstairs. Saturday morning I could barely move. Driving my RV is very easy and not tiring. The driver's seat is very adjustable. Sitting in one stop for way too long is what does me in. Steve, Helen, and the kids showed up and cleaned the RV outside and inside. I was really grateful as it was pretty dusty and dirty and it looked great when they were done.
Thoughts about the trip.....
I'm very glad I went. It might be the last long trip with the 16 year old. Both Grandkids were impressed with the parks but Cameron especially enjoyed it. He loved the hiking they did as well as the scenery. He can pretty much keep up with Steve and Helen.
Really glad I am very used to having Plan B and even Plan C as we needed both when the Magnum Fire closed Jacob Lake and the North Rim and even closed Hwy 89a so we had to reroute back around Hwy 89,
I really enjoyed the boondocking, dry camping, wild camping (whatever you choose to call it) that we did. We managed just fine. I have both a generator and 150w of solar. My 5th wheel had huge fresh water, gray, and black tanks. Since I usually travel alone with Harley, I will have to figure out exactly how long my smaller tanks on the Phoenix Cruiser will last. I only used the generator a couple of times. I have an old fashioned aluminum coffee maker that I can use on the stove versus the antique electric percolator I normally use. Hey, it is over 40 years old but works fine, lol. It was cool enough that we didn't need any heat. The fantastic fans with a couple of windows open kept the temperatures very comfortable for Harley and Angus when they stayed in the RV while we toured the parks.
Dave built a shelf in the bottom of one of my shirt closets before I left. Before that I had to keep my pots, pans, slow cooker etc., in the cabinet over one of the beds and it required unloading a lot to get them out. I knew that would not work when we would be cooking for 5 on a regular basis. The new shelf worked out really well and I still had the plastic drawers above it. Good move!
I also put 4 large hooks in the shower so we had a good place to hang towels to dry. There were no wet clothes or jackets but they will work well for that too.
I had a 4x6 woven plastic Buc-cees rug that worked well outside the door to help keep the dirt down inside the RV. It is small enough to fit in an outside storage area so that worked well too.
Of course, I also did some rearranging so that I could fit more things in from the kids. I love the large pantry and the fridge and freezer are a decent size. I left some pillows from the couch at home so that three could sit on the couch recliner. We also used the two folding camp chairs inside so we could all sit in the living area. Morgan and Angus like to sprawl wherever they sit so we had to change those habits but we all fit in when we needed to fit.
I did learn one interesting and embarrassing thing the morning I left on the trip. The RV would not start, actually the key would not turn. I tried both of the keys......no go. Finally called in hubby. Didn't work for him either. Last try and it turned and started right up. Apparently the steering wheel was locked and DH didn't clue me in on that until today. Yes, he is in trouble.
That's a wrap!