Thursday, February 24, 2011

Tucson, AZ to Camp Verde, AZ

(Camp Verde, AZ)  Wednesday evening, I had salmon out for dinner but then Ken decided we needed one more outing to our new favorite Mexican restaurant, Los Nopales, before leaving Tucson. 

I’m especially glad we decided to venture out, since, on our way out of the campground, we were surprised to see the German friends we’d met a few days earlier.   You see there is a story here.  Several nights earlier when we were returning to the campground after dark, we were flagged down by a couple standing by the campground office.  As it turns out, it was a couple from Germany, Guido and Esther, who had just arrived at the campground and were confused by the notes on self check-in posted on the office door. 

We were surprised that this couple was travelling by themselves in a 35 foot Hurricane motorhome that they picked up in El Paso.  They had never driven anything like this and were brand new to the whole RVing experience.  I stayed at the office with Esther while Ken took Guido in the jeep to check out sites in the dark, knowing that options were limited for motorhomes.   After they filled out the registration, we went on to our rig and then Ken walked over to be sure they could get backed in to their site in the dark, something even he, as an experienced motorhome driver,  has trouble doing.

We found out from our time talking with them that Guido’s father had moved to the US and runs an RV park in El Paso and apparently also rents out motorhomes.  He  invited them to come visit and then turned a rig over to them telling  them to have fun exploring for a week or so.  These two brave young folk were on there way to Las Vegas the next day.

I know how timid Ken and I were when we first got the motorhome.  We really limited  our travels until we had a chance to learn all the complexities of these houses on wheels, I can’t even fathom having our maiden voyage in a motorhome in a foreign country!!

When we got up the next morning our new German friends had already vacated their site, so, sadly, we figured this was yet another interesting couple we meet on the road that we’d probably never see again.

Then, lo and behold, Wednesday evening, there was the Hurricane again, parked three sites down from us!  Seeing us drive by, Guido and Esther hopped out, waving, and happy to see us as well.  We invited them to come eat with us but unfortunately they’d just finished,.  So, instead they said they hoped we might get together for a beer when we returned.

Sure enough they came over and we had an absolutely wonderful evening getting to know each other.  They had some really cool weather around Las Vegas and so had some back because they really liked it here in Tucson, especially since it was warmer and they had been having intermittent issues with electricity and heat in the rig.  

I love meeting new people, but its extra special when its a couple that is so obviously out for  fun and adventure, and excited to try new things.


Esther and Guido, if you are reading this, we hope you have really safe travels back to Hamburg.  Be sure to let us know when you are coming back to the US because it is always a fun time when Germans and Americans can get together with Mexican beer!!  We will be sure to have plenty of cold Dos Equis!

Thursday morning, we waved our good-byes to Esther and Guido as we headed out of Tucson Mountain Park at about 9 am. 

This park has only 30 amp electric and no water or sewer hookups,  no shower house, and a 7 day stay limit.  We turned off our water pump and limited our use of our fresh water tank to showers. With regular trips to the water spigot  and judicious recycling and distribution of our grey water we made it comfortably for a week without water or sewer.  We’ve made it 10 days boondocking in the desert on our tanks but then we were really limiting showers, cooking and dishwashing. This time we followed more of a regular routine, knowing ,worst case, we could pull up the jacks, pull in the slides and drive the two blocks to the park dump station. I’m glad to know that we can do electric-only sites for a week without giving up our normal lifestyle.

About 1/2 hour in to our trip, Ken brought the trip computer to my attention.  The good news was that we were getting 13.5 mpg. 


The bad news was that we were headed in to the mountains so we ended up with 10.5 by the end of the trip.

Once again we enjoyed 200 miles of awesome scenery.




Ken was glad to finally get past the Phoenix traffic and the 6% grades and pull in to the office of the Distant Drums RV Park.


When I called all the Passport America sites were taken until Saturday.  Instead we are going for next best which is a weekly rate of $195. 

We’re very happy with the site we were given since it’s on a corner with a view of the mountains.


The two shots below are from our patio.



We’d read on RVParkReviews that the casino across the highway had great meals for $10 and so that was our travel day dinner.  Once again the reviews were spot on. Ken and I both had  a great garlic chicken chowder followed by very tasty pasta dishes and garlic toast for less than $20 with the players card discount.

It’s suppose to get below freezing tonight here so we have our electric heaters on and are snuggled in for the night.

Hugs, C


Anonymous said...

I love the Verde Valley. Just down the road from that Casino, my folks had a home just on the edge of town. Pretty area.

Emjay (new to you reader)

Beth said...

Welcome to the Verde! Brace yourself for a late winter storm coming our way...possibly even snow! Send me an email if you'd like some local recommendations wyliewanderings at gmail dot com.

Anonymous said...

So nice to hear from some bloggers here at the Distant Drums! We are here too.
Just found your blog but will be following along.
Enjoy the area. Much to see and do.
Don't forget to get to Sedona!