Travels with Bentley

Travels with Bentley
Bentley - our Heartland Bighorn

Thursday, April 6, 2017

March 27-April 1, 2017 - Caballo, NM; Santa Rosa, NM; Alanreed, TX; Norman, OK and Home

March 27-April 1, 2017 - Caballo, NM; Santa Rosa, NM; Alanreed, TX; Norman, OK and Home.

I am putting the last of our return travels in this one post since they were mostly just that, stop-overs on our return home.  There are quite a few pictures though.

Monday, March 27, 2017 - Caballo Lake RV Park, Caballo, NM

We were packing up this morning before we walked over to say goodbye to Glenn and Marcia, but they stopped by before we could head that way.  Marcia had a doctor's appointment this morning and they wanted to tell us goodbye before heading out.

Not too long after that we pulled out and headed toward Deming, NM.  Dean had asked Glenn about some of the roads he might take to head north to catch I-40 back into Texas and Oklahoma.  Glenn told us that we could head northeast at Deming, NM on NM26 and then catch I-25N to Caballo. Other than being windy our drive today was very uneventful.  It was a beautiful day and I took a few pictures along the way.

Scenery along the way.

City of Hatch, NM Water Tower

I wish I had known they would have so many life size interesting characters in Hatch.   I only managed to get these few.

The Rio Grande - it has rained here!

More scenery along the way

Taken from the door of Bentley - if you enlarge this you can see Lake Caballo.

The Caballo Lake RV Park was located north of Caballo Lake.  We did not visit the lake this trip.  We were pretty tired from our drive today.  We left the campground at 8:41 this morning and arrived here at 2:30 (Mountain Time).  This was a nice park owned by a very nice lady who invited us to attend their daily Happy Hour at 4:30.  She provides snacks for the guests which we thought was very nice. Once we had set up, I immediately began working on the blog to finish the post on the Escapade.  It was a little after 5:00 before I knew it.  We talked about going on up to the Happy Hour but we were both hungry by then and was ready to chill out for awhile.  I made a baked potato which we added steamed broccoli & cauliflower and pulled pork to.  Yummy!  Since we haven't watched much TV the past few days, we turned it on to find out "Dancing with the Stars" was on.  We enjoyed watching it and by the time it was over we were ready to hit the sack.

We had full hookups at this park.  We did have to pay our electric which was less than $2.  We felt that was very reasonable as we did run our electric fireplace.

Tuesday, March 28 - Santa Rosa Campground, Santa Rosa, NM

We left Santa Rosa a little after 9am this morning and continued on I-25N to US60W and at Encino we took US285 N to I-40E.

We dodged storms a good part of the day.  We ran into a few rain showers but you could see areas in all directions of us were getting some very heavy rains.  We give thanks to God for keeping his hand on us and directing the storms around our travels.

We were at a rest stop when I took this picture.

You can see what we believe was a funnel in this picture and the two below as it began to dissipate.
 At one time we thought we may have seen a funnel cloud off to the west of us.  We watched it for several minutes and it finally began to dissipate and eventually dissolved.  It was a considerable distance from us.

5th wheel accident.
 This 5th wheel was pulling a trailer with 2 motorcycles.  The truck pulling the 5th wheel, fortunately broke free from the 5th wheel or it might have rolled as well.  We think this happened shortly before we saw it as there were no emergency vehicles on site, however since several had already stopped to assist we went on rather than create a traffic hazard.  You can see all of the left lane and a portion of the right lane was blocked.  At first we thought it was traveling in our direction but when talking with people at our overnight stop in Santa Rosa later, it appears they crossed the median and ended up here.  They were able to see the ruts in the median area where they left the road.  What a ride that must have been!  We pray the people were not injured.

After we arrived at the park we set up in a light rain and it was cold!  Our site had a lot of water standing on it and again I failed to take a picture.  I really did not do well taking pictures of our sites on this trip.  I need to do better for future reference of the parks we have stayed.

Sleet.  It was cold when we arrived in Santa Rosa.
Dean ran into the Auto Supply Store to get DEF for the truck.  It was sleeting when we pulled up and you can see it on the windshield here.

Afterwards we took a ride by "The Blue Hole".  Here's an explanation from Wikipedia:  The Blue Hole of Santa Rosa is a circular, bell-shaped pool east of Santa Rosa, New Mexico that is one of the most popular dive destinations in the US for SCUBA diving and training. We visited here about 8 years ago, on our way to Sedona.  It was raining too hard for me to take pictures without getting out and walking to the Blue Hole, but you can read about it and see it here.

We drove through town and discovered a Dairy Queen - we might have to visit there later.  We've not been to a DQ in a long time!

We returned to the campground and since it had quit raining we decided to try out the restaurant onsite here at the campground. They serve BBQ and a few other items.  While we turned on the heat in the RV before heading up town it wasn't quite warm enough for me yet, so this gives it a chance to be comfortable when we return.  I had brisket, baked beans and a baked potato.  The meat had nice flavor but it was difficult to cut with a plastic fork on a plastic plate.  Dean had the chicken fried steak.  It was microwaved but he said it was okay.

When we walked back to Bentley we had neighbors - a couple with a Heartland Big Horn.  The gentleman was outside and I told him he sure had a nice looking RV.  He said I was just thinking the same about yours.  We visited with him and his wife, who joined us outside for about 30-40 minutes. They are from Ontario, Canada.  They were in Arizona for two months and now are headed home via Memphis (Elvis) and Nashville (Grand Old Opry).  They are meeting family and will spend sometime there before making the last trek home.  The weather forecast was predicting some serious weather out that way so we pray they missed it and had a safe trip home.

When we returned from getting the DEF and our tour of Santa Rosa, there were 4 RV's in the parking area waiting to check in.  When we left after having dinner there were 2 or 3 more and several more came in before we finished visiting with our neighbors and went inside.  Our neighbors told us that traffic was backed up for awhile while they were trying to get the RV that overturned back on its wheels.  I'm sure glad we made it through before we got stopped.  It was so cold and rainy.  The campground was almost full by the time we went to bed.  I think alot of them ending up stopping here due to the traffic being held up.  They were calling for storms on ahead of us and it made sense to stay here where no severe weather was in the forecast.

After we checked out Bentley to see if he had warmed up yet, finding that he had, we headed to Dairy Queen for a little ice cream.  I know, who wants ice cream when it's so cold out - just a couple of nuts like us.  It sure was good though!

It started raining before we went to bed and it was still raining the next morning when we got up.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017 - Allenread Travel Center, Allenread, TX

The campground was pretty full of rain puddles this morning.  Fortunately Dean did most of the work of getting us hooked up while I took care of the inside and we pulled out of Santa Rosa Campground a little after 8:30am.  We moved ahead another hour by the time we reached Allenread at 2:30pm.

Today's ride was nothing but rain.  Fortunately though it was never heavy, and never got to a drizzle that is such a nuisance to drive in and keep the windows cleared, just a nice steady light rain - but again it was cold all day.

A picture out Bentley's back window after we arrived.

A picture as the sun was sitting about 8pm.
 Alanreed Travel Center is literally a spot just off the road.  There is a small store, post office, and office for the adjoining hotel and RV sites.  It was in a grassy/rocked area.  I prayed it was a good solid location and we wouldn't sink - and we did not.  The wind blew very hard the rest of the evening and I was thankful we had full hookups and a nice warm place to be out of the weather.  We slept great though.

Friday, March 30 and Saturday, March 31, 2017 - Norman, OK

We were in no rush to leave this morning since it was still pretty cool this morning when we left at 9:30am.

I took a few pictures as we neared Amarillo.  I remembered seeing the leaning water tower, the large corss and of course, Cadillac Ranch on a previous drive through this area.  I doubt anyone is going to visit the Ranch today - you can see how much water is standing and it is still pretty cool outside with the wind blowing.

We arrived at the Cleveland County Fairgrounds in Norman, OK around 1:30pm. Almost every site was full here and we were lucky to get one of the last spots - along the fence row out of the direct wind.  Once we were set up we had a bite to eat and I cleaned Bentley.  He's not had a good cleaning since we left home and the dust from all of the wind is more than I can take so it had to go. Afterwards I rested for awhile before sending a text to our Heartland friends, Orville and Barbara. We are meeting them for dinner tonight.  They will come to Bentley and we'll follow them to a restaurant nearby.  They arrived around 5, and we selected Zio's Italian Restaurant.  We had never been to one before and we both thought it was quite good.  We would definitely try it again.

The waterways are full this morning.

Cadillac Ranch

Large Cross

Leaning water tower
 We had a great visit with Orville and Barbara and stayed a good hour after our meal was finished visiting.  Orville just had knee surgery about a month ago and is still recovering.  They are hoping to drive down to our Heartland Rally near Ketchum, OK and at least spend the day, possibly overnight at a motel, in about three weeks.  They are signed up for the National Rally in June so we look forward to seeing them at both rallies soon.

After we left we drove through Norman a bit, found a place to buy fuel for the truck, and returned to Bentley for the evening.  Tomorrow we have some things we want to do here in the area.

The weather was a little breezy and slightly cool but a very nice day overall.  We are glad to be out of the rain and stormy weather.

This morning we decided to eat breakfast out.  I checked Trip Advisor and the top breakfast spot in Norman is Ozzie's Diner - located in the airport terminal in Norman. I thought it was really good and Dean liked it well enough.

After breakfast we drove north to Oklahoma City to Camping World.  Dean needed a part for Bentley - I can't remember what it was but I think something to do with the black tank.  I enjoy looking around, but after checking everything out we left with only one item.

We headed back towards Norman and made a stop at Lowe's to look for a lazy susan turnstile for a game Dean is making for Misti's Project Prom committee.  We found what we were looking for and then headed to Sam's.  There are a few things we really like and the prices at Sam's are worth buying in bulk for these items.  We also like to look at new items on display in the store when we visit if we have the time and today we did.

When we returned to Bentley is was past 1 and we had our leftovers from Zio's for lunch.  They were just as good, if not better today.  We pretty much just lazed around for the afternoon.  Dean was getting bored so I suggested we check out the movies in the area.  The Werner Theatre said the new movie with Morgan Freeman, Michael Cain and Alan Arkin, "Going in Style" was showing at 6:00 so we rushed around to get to the show in time to see it - only to find out I must have been looking at coming attractions as it does not start until next week.  Wow, what a disappointment.  We stepped back and talked a bit and finally decided on The Shack.  It was better than I expected.  It had a really good message regarding forgiveness.  We returned to Bentley and headed to bed not too long after. We are such night owls!!

Tomorrow is the last leg of this journey.  It's been a great time.  We so enjoyed spending time with old friends and the new friends we met along the way.

Just past the city limit sign in Oswego.

Home is just up ahead.  Aren't the redbuds beautiful?

 We will be heading out again in two weeks to attend two back to back rallies in the Grand Lake Area so we will return soon!

March 25 & 26, 2017 - Benson, AZ

Saturday-Sunday, March 25 & 26, 2017- SKP Saguaro Co-op, Benson, AZ

Saturday, March 25, 2017

We took our time getting around this morning as we were not in a big hurry since we only have 39 miles to travel.
We saw this train of nothing but engines along the way!
We are relocating to Benson, AZ to the SKP Saguaro Co-op for two nights.  Prior to the Escapade the Co-op only had boondocking (in other words, no electric, water or sewer) spots available.  We are hoping there might be some openings now, but we are prepared to boondock if necessary.  We left Pima County Fairgrounds at 10:25am and arrived in Benson at 11:46am and Yes, we are boondocking for two nights.  The good side of this is - it is cheap!

Once we arrived at the campground and were setup, we ate lunch, and then we took a walk to the very back row of RV's where our friends Glenn and Marcia are parked.  They leased a site for 6 months and have been here for the winter.  You might remember I mentioned they were also at the Escapade and they encouraged us to stop here on our way home.  They were home and we visited for awhile before Glen took us all for a ride in his ATV to the top of the hill behind the campground.  The Saguaro Co-op is laid out in tiers up the side of a large hill.  Behind the campground is another slight hill that provides breathtaking views of the mountains and valleys.  Here are a few pictures I took while we were in the park and at the top of the hill.

View from the front of our site near the top of the hill in the campground.

What a beautiful view these folks have of the valley and mountains.

See the hill behind these homes - we rode in the ATV to the top.

My grandson Jaxson would love this railroad community one of the residents built in his front yard.

Our view from the top of the hill, behind the campground, where we rode to in the ATV.

Another view.
They also gave us a tour of their beautiful community center here in the campground.  It is very, very nice providing a gym area, a large room to play games or cards, plus they had several tables set up with various jigsaw puzzles in process.  They have a full kitchen and a large meeting area, as well as a nice laundry facility and bathrooms with showers.  I was intrigued with what I thought were counters in the large meeting room, only to find out they were actually on wheels and storage for their tables on the backside.  Here is a picture.  What a great idea!

Sorry this picture is a bit blurry.  It works great for a serving area, but when it is pulled away from the wall, it is perfect to stack the tables in, out of sight!

This is similar one they made for storing their folding chairs.  I think each door is a different section to keep the chairs more organized so they are not falling when you remove only a small number.  Another great idea.
We went to dinner with Glen and Marcia.  We had a couple of places we were going to try but they were full with people waiting to get in, so we tried Jule's Family Restaurant.  The food was pretty good however we have had better service.  For those of us ordering a salad, we had to remind the waitress we had not yet received it after the meals were delivered to the table, I never did get the mustard or ketchup for my hamburger, and we had to ask twice to get containers for food to take home with us.  I think there was also some waiting on our drinks as well.  Then we had to wait and wait for our ticket and I think the guys finally just went to the register to pay.  There is entertainment at 7:00 this evening back at the SKP campground community center and we were in a bit of a hurry to make it back for it.  We drove straight there upon returning and had just enough time to run to the restroom before finding our seats.

Beautiful sunset in Benson, AZ. as we returned to the campground after dinner.

The show was pretty good, but I was so tired at times I had trouble keeping my eyes open.  In no time it was over and Glen and Marcia dropped us off at Bentley.  Tomorrow Dean and I are traveling to Tombstone for the day.  Dean loves westerns so it's right up his alley but I'm looking forward to it as well. I was thinking of my Dad who I believe would have enjoyed this visit as well.  I was glad that we didn't have to walk back to Bentley - everyone walks with flashlights here at night due to the snakes.  They like to lay out on the warm roads once it starts to cool off, so walkers beware!!

Just a word on the lack of hookups here - we do not have solar power or an inverter but boondocking is not impossible.  You might remember we did this for a full week last March in Florida.  We managed just find and was able to use all of the important electrical items we needed - we just used them when the generator was running - for instance drying my hair, watching TV, running the microwave, etc.  It worked out well for us.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Our drive to Tombstone was uneventful and this sign welcomed us.  Sorry for the glare!

T. Miller's Tombstone Mercantile & Hotel

Birdcage Theatre

Some of the old buildings in Tombstone.
Old Tombstone
Gunfighter's Hall of Fame
Depiction of a miner's shack
What a funny looking cow girl - I didn't know sunglasses were a thing during the Tombstone era!
I told Dean to act like he was talking to the prisoner - and his hands were going like he was telling a really tall tale!

This miniature golf course was in Old Tombstone, and there were beautiful views from here.
Our next stop was to watch a reenactment of the Gunfight at the OK Corral.  Here is some information that was posted throughout this establishment.
Interesting read.
Location where the shooting took place.

The guys in black and white are the good guys - we were supposed to cheer them.  This included the Earp brothers as well as Doc Holliday.  The guys on the left not in black and white were the bad guys.

Jesse James and Billy the Kid

After the shootout - Doc Holiday in the middle/
Big Nose Kate's Saloon - where we had our lunch.  I had the reuben sandwich and fries and it was great.  

This was a popular place and the food was surprisingly VERY GOOD.

My wonderful husband giving me the evil eye for taking his picture.

This place was hopping, the food was great but it was a bit loud with so many people - the musician (above) sang some great songs.
Tombstone Courthouse

Beautiful circular staircase


Interesting article about the only time Geronimo was photographed.
County Treasurer fulfilled many roles.

The Earp brothers and Doc Holliday.

The gallows behind the courthouse

Tombstone's Founder and how Tombstone was named.
I've mentioned this before but my sister is the County Treasurer in our county so I always look for things that might interest her.  
Fire Station

Horse drawn wagons readily available to give you a tour of the town.

Beautiful flowers were blooming.

I'm not sure what kind of tree this is but I thought it was pretty - unfortunately the guide wires were in the way.  It was a beautiful day.

And of course I'm always interested in City Halls, and this one is unique.
This concludes our tour of Tombstone.  When we left we decided to drive on south towards Bisbee, NM and take the road back to the northwest through Sierra Vista and the return to Benson via I-10. Here are a few pictures from our drive.

We enjoyed this ride.  The mountains and desert were beautiful in their own way.  

The Horseshoe Cafe - this was our first choice for dinner and while we didn't get to try it, we do hope to have the chance to return in the future to try it.  There was quite a few people waiting to get in - so I hope that's an indication i'ts worth returning for.

Benson's Visitor Center.
After we returned I  made a pizza that we cooked out on our grill in our cast iron skillet.  We really love cooking them like this - gives a nice crunchy crust.  After we had cleaned up after dinner and did a little preparing for our leave in the morning, the sun was already beginning to settle.  Arizona does not participate in daylight savings time so it still gets darker earlier than at home.  I sent Glenn and Marcia a note about stopping by to say goodbye before we leave tomorrow.  We ran the generator as late as we could and watched a little TV, then checked our phone messages and Facebook until time to head to bed.