from the wind.
at Cottonwood campground at Navajo Dam NM state park. Tuesday the wind
has come up with dust storms and very low visibility.
Alerts claim gusts to 55 mph. Not a day to be on the road so Monday we
signed up for a couple more days.
do plan to hit the road on Wednesday and head east.
a post on RV.NET ... OK my current plan is to go from Farmington
on US 64 and then go up US 84 to Pagosa Springs and next on US 160 over
Wolf Creek Pass to Alamosa.
stay on US 64 and go north at Teres Piedras (west of Taos) and go north
on US 285 to Alamosa.
would you take.May 11
reply was... IMHO, easiest route would be to stay on US 64 to
Chama, then take State Route 17 north into Colorado to Antonito and then
US 285 to Alamosa.
I got to thinking about it and Route 17 it is.
have driven it before without pulling the 5er when camped in Chama on a
day trip. It has some big switchbacks but I would rather take switchbacks
slow than long straight downgrades. On Switchbacks I can go real slow.
for today we went to Bloomfield to do laundry (it has been awhile) needed
propane and to gas up for tomorrow.
had gone to this one before. One of the largest and cleanest anywhere.
Terry was being funny and
refused to smile or look at me for the picture. I was giving him
guff as this was the very same pump he had trouble making work years ago.
He said my card doesn't work and that I would have to take it inside. I
said do I have to get out and show you... just flip it over and it will
work, just like last time. It worked this time and he didn't like.
Next Terry story of the day
was after we got back to the campground. We discovered Terry left our jeans
and towels in a dryer. I was playing with my new Droid and hadn't paid
any attention. Terry right now is on his way back to get our stuff.
This is a 25 mile one way drive from Bloomfield to Navajo Dam. I called,
they were still in the dryer, and they will hold them. I even got a low
cell signal to make that call. So Terry with tail dragging went on
on his way back to get our clothes. It will be OK as he doesn't have to
cook tonight as he is going to pick up a couple of KFC dinners.
Oh and if you are in Bloomfield,
NM and need propane it is only available at Desert Rose RV park (east of
the high school by several blocks), But be aware they are only open form
9 to 1 and 4 to 6. But the price was right @20 for 7 gal. We had to go
back after we had done the laundry don't ya know.
More about connecting
to the world while on the road.
a post on
forum in the Technology
Corner section where the topic was Air
Card vs MIFI
links lead to Wikipedia Encyclopedia to explain what each is about.
expand on the possibilities...
fulltime and have a Hughes (Datastorm) satellite on the roof of my RV.
Goes up and finds the satellites all by itself. Have a LNB attachment so
I can get HD DirecTV off the same dish. I get 350M rolling usge in 24 hours.
(If I use some bandwidth and come back later I'm back up to full availability
again) Look at it as if the usage bucket is constantly filing as I use
from it. That is way more than double the 5G you get a month from wireless
air card. It costs $79.95 I get unlimited downloads for 4 hours late at
night to download anything I want. Movies etc. Can set up auto download
program to do this. AND I don't need a wireless signal in the outback camping
just open sky. This is a must for me.
did a download test at testmy.net and got 780Kps. down. I can go up to
1 M. Sure sometimes it can get slow.
I just got a new Droid Incredible smart phone with unlimited data (internet
access) costs $30 a month above my old cell phone cost. BUT I can teather
it to my laptop or desktop and use it (unlimited) if I'm parked under under
a tree. And if no cell service I can still go WiFi off my dish with the
the bottom line is by upgrading my Verizon cell service to a smart phone
and paying $30 more a month I get unlimited 3G service) for my smart phone
and if needed laptop or desktop.
Verizon cell service lists my service as email and unlimited internet access
why get a USB air card or Verizon Broadband Access Connect when you can
a smart phone and teather it to your computer for 1/2 price. Now sure if
you only want to turn the Verizon Broadband Access Connect
and off when needed it could be cheaper for you.
wanted to share the options out there.
the deciding factor for me was the unlimited data (internet) for $30. Not
the usual $60 for just 5G of bandwidth.
reply on the forum was...
both a Verizon Air Card and a DROID. I just spent a week in a marginal
reception area, where I tested the Droid against the Air Card connected
to an external Wilson Antenna.
DROID with a 10 foot USB extension cable, placed to get best reception.
The DROID always matched the Air card with an external antenna.
was alway faster then the Air Card
Now that's the kind of
news I like to hear about my just purchased "Big
I will try to get back to
life in a campground on Sunday as we watch the weekenders pack up and move
out. They are having fun and good for them. We just stay out of their way
knowing we will have all this to oursleves on Monday.
Parting shot... Terry playing
pyro yesterday... We did sit out and have a nice fire.
So today with one of my new
Weather Apps. I get an Alert about a Fire Warning for northern NM on Monday
as low humidity of under 15% and 20 mph winds could make for possibe
fire events. Guess I'll have to keep an eye on Terry.
Slugs of the blogging
at the date... and no posts. What is wrong with us?
is wrong is we are in vacation mode, not traveling each day but having
fun in a real campground not in a RV park. Just enjoying being in San Jaun
River territory in the high county of NM. The weather has warmed up, still
a bit breezy, but not bad. We are expecting the campground to fill fast
today for the weekend. Makes for good people watching, me thinks. It was
slow during the week. But then it will be crowded for fishing.
went fishing a couple days and caught good sized trout... He never comes
back with pictures. He sez how do you take a picture when standing in the
middle of the river holding a pole and a fish. And since he is a catch
and release kind of guy he doesn't bring them home either.
got off my butt and got on the phone (we are getting cell service on the
low end if you stand on your head on the picnic table) and called NuWa
in Chanute, KS. We have a screw starting to work its way up in the
kitchen floor and if not corrected it will pop through the linoleum flooring.
This is the second one that has done this. They have to drop the underbelly
and drill out the screw and fill the hole with liquid nail. Not a big deal
but it needs to be done.
I called and Darrel in NuWa service and said he just had a cancellation
and the date he offered was perfect. May 20th right on our schedule. I
need the rear axle on the trailer aligned as both rear tires are starting
to wear a little more on the inside edge. So he hooks my up with the large
Ford truck dealer in Chanute that can do that for us. They are right across
the street from the free city RV park where you can stay when getting work
done on you trailer at NuWa. This is going to work out, if I'm not careful
and screw it up somehow. It is always a pleasure talking to the people
at the NuWa Hitchhiker factory. They don't look at it as... What do I need
from them, But how can they help us! It comes across on the phone and when
you hang up you have a smile on your face.
that's all set up. I was putting off calling, as I didn't know our travel
time frame and I hate to be on a schedule and HAVE to be somewhere on a
certain date. But this is OK.
the truck in for service on Wednesday at High Country Chevy in Axtc, NM.
Oil change, that kind of stuff. Another place with great customer service.
But before our appointment there, we heading down to Farmington, NM to
must know that means it's time for a "Big boys and their Toys" buying
called ahead the day before and they had what I wanted in stock. If bought
online wouldn't ship tile after mid month. And in my cae to where? Did
my research online and knew what I wanted. I had been putting this off
as in telling myself... You don't need one. But this just came out and
I deserve it, Don't Ya Know. What the mind wont do...
cell phone... Not just any cell phone like I have now, a Droid Incredible.
That's it name Incredible.
had looked at the orig. Droid only online, not in person, when they first
came out, but now with this latest just released marvel I was hooked.
now the real reason no posts. I have been busy learning how to use it.
This is a whole other encounter with a FRED.
with this is, would believe more fun than blogging.
built in GPS it knows where we are so we can get the latest weather and
radar when on the road.
and navigation unbelievable. Just say what you are looking for and it brings
up maps in the area with, like campgrounds etc. with ratings and links
to their web site. Bing a bang. OOPS now that's a Microsoft thing isn't
it. Stop that talk, since this is a Google based machine.
the NPR app. and GPS it can find the local station and brings up the feed
to that one with just a couple of clicks. With the Pandora app or built
in FM radio I can plug in my FM wireless transmitter and not have to use
head phones. Droid uses the mini plug headset cable as antenna for FM use.The
FM transmitter below works fine as antenna. Or for big sound use the mini
out to the mini input of my big portable XM radio boombox. Come to think
about it why would I still want XM radio. I have been on special $5
a month rate for years with XM. I love getting NPR on the Droid. XM just
doesn't have the NPR news programs. We can't get NPR FM broadcast stations
many places we camp.
The built in Droid speaker
is more than loud enough to lay in bed in the morning and lsiten to the
NPR app on its own.
removable battery, and micro SDHC slot. I got a 4G card but it can take
The new Droid has POP3 email
so I can use any of my hosting servers emails and and not just Gmail or
Internet access (unlimited
3G data) for $30. I know I already have satellite internet in the RV but
now if we park under a tree I can teather the Droid to my netbook or desktop
and be online. Or it can use my WiFi if we are out of cell range.
I like switching the Droid
to WiFi so I can by bringing up in the browser the local IP addresses of
my satellite dish controller and wireless router. I can fine point the
DataStorm Hughes satellite dish on top of the RV via the smart phone to
adjust the DirecTV LNB receive levels. The DirecTV LNB is also mounted
on the internet dish. Cool me thinks.
The wired thing is done in
the canyon in this campground I get only extended cell service (if that)
but do get Verizon 1X or 3G data service. I thought I would be stuck just
looking a the smart phone or burning my WiFi bandwidth on it out here,
but I can actually use it on the 3G network with unlimited usage. I love
I had orig. thought a while
back of getting a iPod and using it over my WiFi. Boy am I gald I waited.
This is a whole lot different than my first Commadore 64 computer of so
many years ago. Both were just as exciting in ther own time.
You did have one of these
didn't you? Remember the big floppy drive that was in short supply do to
Or using a tape recorder
to input code. This was cutting edge.
Anyway might have a little
campfire later after Terry comes back from fly fishing. Think it's cheep
steak and corn on the cob done on the grill for supper later. Bill
Maher on HBO after that. Just ruffling it in the outback of northern NM.
for next week.
went for a day trip around the area and drove through the campground. It's
Sunday afternoon and the weekenders were packing up and leaving.
For fulltimers that's the time to loop the campground and gather up the
left behind firewood don't ya know. You have never done that, right?
The weather is to clear up
and be nice next week so we plan on having several campfires.
So extra firewood will be
welcome and used.
Later on a side channel of
the San Jaun river we spotted this heron. Cool.
Each doing our
went to Ab's Motel
and Fly Shop on Friday afternoon to get the fishing report and a fishing
Lic. was $61 for a year for a NM for non-resident. $30 for resident both
include all the stamps.
later checked out the river and said the hatch was a late one each day
so he would not have to get up early on Saturday to go fishing. And you
think I believed him? He did do his thing about 12:30 PM and returned about
3 or so. As he came in he stated that he now remembers why he doesn't go
fishing on weekends. When he got to his favorite spot he was the second
one there but when he left, there were 12 cars in the lot at Simon Canyon
center top in the picture.
NM State Parks Cottonwood campground is center left in the above graphic.
(File photo from Ab's web
I did my thing that I had been putting off. I went through and screened
the pending blog listings for ww.hitchitch.com
and added only six new ones. Getting more fussy in my selections. Have
a few left over I'm still thinking about. Still have to weed out the older
ones already listed that are not being updated. Then wait for the emails
complaining that you removed my site. Me thinks, if you don't post you
campground is busy and some are outside with kids running around. They
must be locals who think this is warm weather after their cold winter.
For us 55 ° is still not sitting outside weather. Wonder if we are
spoiled, NAH... When they have to go back to work next week it is to warm
up to the mid 70s. My kind of weather. Sorry for them who will miss it.
Move day in-between
we go up at Lone Rock rec area at Glen Canyon it was cold. Ya the wind
was a cold front that moved in. We got going and it was not that
hard a deal as we were still hooked up. Truck to 5er. Off we went and drove
and drove. We blew by Monument Valley thinking have done that so next time
maybe. It was cloudy and windy still (mostly a tail wind) (we could see
the sand drifts across the road from yesterday) and a spit of snow at times
and the temp readout in the truck rear view mirror was reading about 44
outside. We thought we should get to Navajo Dam today as if we got there
on Friday we might not get a campsite.
It was a long day and we
lost an hour when crossing over into NM. We got to NM Navajo Dam
State Park, Cottonwood campground after stopping at the Farmers Market
in Bloomfield. A great food store with great prices. When in the area we
always stop there.
As we drove the loop most
of the sites were taken and I knew of only a couple that we could get satellite
service out of as we have stayed here many times. I thought I saw
as we entered a couple of end sites that were open. So when we got back
around the loop. we found site #2 open. The site I remembered would work
for satellite service. The last site that was a non reservation site available,
and it was open, just for us. The best site me thinks and we can have it
for 21 days if we so desire.
(I drive and Terry
backs) so I waved my arms and got him into the site. He drives me nuts
as he backs at a snails pace. We used to use two way radios but gave
up on that. Just stay so he can see me in the rear view mirror and do hand
signals. Before we unhooked, leveled, or put out the slides we deployed
the dish to make sure it could get access. It worked... after a second
deploy through a small tree and we moved a couple of feet forward for better
line of sight. That little sucker we have to lock onto for internet is
22,500 miles up in the sky so at times it can be a chore. Now we
are online with a great signal. And DirecTV HD service. We are happy
campers. We started to have snow flurries while setting up, and now our
heat pump is putting out wonderful heat. The paid site tag is on the post
for at least 4 nights at $14 each night. We have landed. NM parks lets
you stay for 21 days at a crack. And this is one fine campsite. See the
covered picnic table.
Now to see if the trout
fishing is doing anything. Terry lives to be able to do his thing with
his fly road. This is a world class trout fishing river. Read more
about it at The San
Juan River Fly Fishing site and see their
map of the river. Note to all: Cell service is very iffy
here in this canyon campground. It has never worked well for us in the
past. So email is the thing. Hint.
The big blow did
arrive, a tad bit late.
go up and it seemed calm sunny and warm, so we got our email and I download
the USA Today to read.
gave our Wep security WiFi code to a nice young couple who pulled up next
to us, to also get out of the wind, so they could get on the internet using
our system. They are here from Switzerland. We had a great chat with them
and they used our access to use Skype to call back to Europe and were thrilled
to be able to do that from ther laptop via our WiFi.
you can be sure by early afternoon the wind did fire up and hit us full
force. We took down the Sat dish and unhooked the truck from the 5er and
headed to Page to gas up for an early departure tomorrow. Of course we
stopped at WalMart. I got a some new shorts and shirts. We got back and
they had opened up the entrance station so we showed my Senior Pass and
paid $5 for camping here tonight.
seemed as if the winds were dying down after we watched a couple of DVRed
shows, so we put up the dish but as I type this at 8:30 PM AZ time
the winds have kicked up again. We have recorded American Idol and other
shows so we may stow the dish very soon after I upload this. Opps. Terry
just yelled Leno and Letterman were just starting to record. so we shall
see if we can get them on DVR before the dish is blown off our roof. We
only most times watch their monologs so if it gets bad I will shut it down.
The wind has died down a bit for now so we shall see. Seems we get a blast
and then it calms down for awhile.
wind should die down by morning and we shall be on our way. Did I say it
was 80 today. Strange as I thought this was to be a cold front moving through.
Oh I guess right now would be a good time to upload this or all this is
for naught, as you will not see any of this post.
Staying put for
the big wind to come.
was for the most part getting ready for the the the big wind to come. The
forcast is for a big storm expected for Wednesday.
moved from our edge viewing spot and loaded up with potable water to give
us balast. We hunkered down behind a rock pile on the upper level of the
Lone Rock Rec. Area.
the day wore on other RVers moved up from the beach area to this higher
shall see if we are protected with winds predicted to gust to 70 MPH.
in so many times like this we were able to meet our RV neighbors who were
gathering, as in round up the wagons in times past, coming up from
the beach, to servive the upcoming storm on this higher landing.
Day trip to Page.
got my Quarter Pounder fix at Mc Donald's. I screwed up and said # 3 instead
of # 2 meal. So when Terry brought the food to the tabel Isaw I had ordered
a DOUBLE Quarter Pounder. Now if you are on the Atkins diet that may be
good but that was a whole lot of beef. Tasted good and Yah I ate it all.
Terry had a Big Mac meal and we both had fries loaded with all that good
awful salt they pour on them . That should do us for several weeks of fast
food me hopes.
waddled off to explore the area. Drove by the Lake Powell Navajo
Tribal Park Antelope
Canyon and on down to the Antelope Point boat marina. Later we stopped
for propane at a little Solar Power place that sold more than just sun
power, but propane also. It was about $19 in Q this winter and up
here is was $23 for 7 gal. not bad me thinks.
The very friendly guy, even
said he sold solar in Q in 2000 so knew the area. Right next to his sales
place was his pontoon boat up on blocks. See the car underneath it. Makes
for a nice garage don't ya think. Boats are evwrywhere in Page. This is
a city possesed with the Lake. The city was created to build the dam to
make the lake after all.
If when in Page and you need
propane or a solar fix he is at the insection of HW 98 and Bia- 20 on the
south side of Page. Right where you trun left to go to the Antelope Canyon
on HW 98 when going south out of Page.
On the way back to Lone Rock
we took the lower 5 mile drive through Wahweap Rec. Area. Just had
to show my Senior Pass and my drivers lic. at the entrance station and
we we good to go.
We stopped at this view
stop. Terry enjoying the view.
We didn't make it to the
the John Wesley
Powell Memorial Museum in Page today but of course I
it that way.
We will have time for all
that as the weather is about to close in on us.
A STRONG SPRING STORM WILL
IMPACT NORTHERN ARIZONA WITH VERY STRONG WINDS ON WEDNESDAY. STRONG WINDS
WILL DEVELOP OVER NORTHERN ARIZONA LATE MORNING AND LASTING WELL INTO THE
EVENING HOURS. SUSTAINED SOUTHWEST WINDS OF 40 TO 45 MPH WITH GUSTS OF
55 TO 65 MPH ARE POSSIBLE.
Don't think we can outrun
it as Weather Watcher sez Tuesday is going to be windy also. Not sure where
we could run to as we were heading to Monument Valley. Bet the wind will
be there also. Without any protection. So we will have to hunker
down and maybe move the 5er to back it into the wind. Our back end has
no windows and is solid. There is a rock pile we can move behind right
here to give us some more protection. The dump station is also right beyond
the rock pile so we can fill up on potable water to give us more ballast.
It's what you do when you
live in a RV. You pay attention to the weather. But I do know I will have
to store the Internet, TV combined satellite dish due to winds that
strong. It all depends if the wind is blowing against or side ways across
the dish. That's the sad part me thinks. Might just have to go to WalMart
in Page and get the Avatar movie just out on DVD Blue Ray. We have not
seen it yet. We were isolated in Q all winter and didn't make to Yuma to
see it. I got a Blue Ray player free when we got our new Sony LCD TV and
have not used it, but for only one DVD. What a waste, this might the the
time to put it to use.
We shall see. At least
we are not in the southeast and have to worry about the storms that they
all just went through. We still have to go through Kansas Toto in May and
me doesn't like that thought at all. Then land In Iowa for a couple of
storm filled months.
where we are at right now. DataStormUsers
map ID 98
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