“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page” – Augustine
We finally got the camper fixed and it was time to leave the beautiful neighborhoods of Portland. Even the dogs have it nice in the city of roses. We left the Columbia River RV Park and started to head toward Florida, knowing that we were going to have to travel faster than we normally do because we were leaving 10 days later than our plans and have reservations on the Gulf Coast. Usually we take our time and have time to do some “piddlin around.”
We did take some time to visit a few of our favorites sites that were along the way and hopefully catch up with a few of our RVing friends, too. We pointed the GPS in the direction of one of our favorites, Moab UT.
The base for exploring Arches and Canyonlands National Parks is the town of Moab, UT. Also, Dead Horse Point State Park is nearby and it has beautiful scenery as well. If these are not on your bucket list, they should be. Moab is also very popular with those who have off-road vehicles and bicycles. If you visit the most popular spots be prepared to have a lot of company. These wonderful places are no longer a secret and even scoring a campsite in a private campground can be a challenge. Fortunately, we had discovered a place we really liked outside of town that has very inexpensive dry camping. We headed straight to Ken’s Lake Campground bypassing the more expensive and booked private campgrounds. While there is not much of a lake, the views are beautiful and it not far from the places you will want to be.
We wanted to visit some areas that we had not explored before like the La Sal Loop Road. The road climbs to over 8000 feet and has beautiful views of the valley. Traveling counter clockwise you will travel along the Colorado River not too far from the entrance to Arches National Park. We made a point to visit Arches on our way back to the Bighorn.
We always wish we had more time to be in this area and will have to come back when we can stay for an extended period of time. We need to be heading east so we only stayed for a few days this time. By the way, September and October are good times to visit as it is not as hot as it is during the summer season.
Since we starting full-timing, we also discovered and joined the RVillage.com website. It is like Facebook for the RV community. It has friends, groups, messages, etc. Using this site makes it easy to keep up with the new friends that you make and learn from the various groups on the site. Plus, if you have any doubt as to how many people are on the road enjoying the RVing lifestyle, this site just reached one million users! If you still have doubts, a half a million RVs were built last year alone.
Because of RVillage, we realized that there were several of our new friends who we could visit with on our way south. This definitely was a delightful plus for us. We enjoyed “catching up” with friends that we have met from all over the country. This trip we got together with Deb and Ce in Caldwell, ID; Glenn and Marsha in Aztec, NM; and Peter and Sally in Lakewood, NM.
While spending a few days near Glenn and Marsha, we were able to do some sightseeing in the Northwest area of New Mexico. The yellowing cottonwoods were especially beautiful this time of the year as they provided a splashes of color against the desert background.
We visited a well known trading post on one of the Navajo reservation areas. The Toadlena Trading Post has countless woven rugs and a small museum.
The well done exhibit space has numerous rugs from known artisans in the area. Each example represents months of work and painstaking detail.
These priceless works are guarded and displayed in a large vault adjacent to the museum space which is adjacent to the store itself. This historical preservation is well off the beaten path. I doubt we would have ventured out there had it not been for the fact that it was one of our friends’ favorite places near Aztec, NM and they took us to see it.
On our way back into town we drove to the notable Shiprock formation. This volcanic plume that rises over 1500 feet is formed by the vent of an active volcano. This majestic tower created over 30 million years ago is legendary in Navajo culture. It is located near the town of Shiprock, NM.
We thoroughly enjoyed sightseeing with Glenn and Marsha and also spending time with our Rving friends.
There are so many wonderful places to visit in these United States. We are still amazed when we meet folks who have “seen all they want to see.” Each town, especially the smaller ones, have a wealth of places to explore. We feel so lucky to be able to visit some of them.