Arizona

Unscheduled Trip to Flagstaff

Well, today’s activities were certainly not in the plan book for sure! Neither of us slept well last night so we were both up early. As soon as he could Jerry called Newmar who eventually transferred him to Magnum (inverter) and after a lot of troubleshooting and a couple of hours they finally determined that the 300 amp fuse had blown. We had this happen soon after we got the coach so we were familiar with it. We also knew those fuses were not very plentiful. At that point we went to Page Lumber where they carry RV supplies. They immediately said they didn’t have it but sent us to a marine service. They didn’t have it either but recommended we go to Ace Hardware which apparently is like a Lowe’s, etc. Our next stop was an electrical company. No one had the fuse but everyone could not have been nicer. Kudos to the Page folks.

The recommendation was to go to either Flagstaff or St. George. Before we went however we wanted to make sure that wherever we went had the fuse thus several phone calls ensured. Finally we located a Camping World in Bellemont just outside of Flagstaff that had one. When they quoted a price of $42 I was a bit skeptical because we had been told they cost $100.

After a quick lunch we headed toward Bellemont which is west of Flagstaff, about 150 miles from Page. The ride was uneventful thank goodness but long! Jerry had his earphones so he listened to his audio book but I had to settle for reading a not very good book.

We got to Camping World around 3:00, stretched out legs, bought the fuses (yes, Jerry bought two just in case), got some gas at the Pilot station, grabbed a bite at McDonald’s (I was desperate) and headed back to Page, another 150 miles but with fuses in hand. It was a pretty drive and amazing how the terrain changed from Page to Flagstaff. By the time we got to Flagstaff it was beginning to look like home with plentiful pine trees. Of course unlike home, the remnants of last week-end’s snow was still quite visible. Good-bye Flagstaff. Hopefully we’ll see you again in about 10 days!

As soon as we got back to the Page Lake Powell RV the first order of business was replacing the blown fuse. That was accomplished quickly and voila – everything was in working order again. What a 24 hours. We were both exhausted, both physically, mentally and emotionally. We had planned spaghetti for dinner but since we both ate McDonald’s at 3:00 we weren’t hungry so we passed on the spaghetti saving it for tomorrow night.

We spent the evening washing clothes and uploading pictures from the computer to my Google Photos. Since we most likely will not have full hookup or Wi-Fi at Zion we tried to get everything done tonight. Our plans after visiting Zion are to go to Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada and we won’t have FHU there either so it was necessary to get it done tonight.

We both collapsed into bed and slept like the dead!

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Arizona, Home Away From Home

Great Day and Not so Great an Evening

We started the day off with a hike to Horseshoe Bend. Knowing it was cold and would be so for the remainder of the day we dressed accordingly. In fact I felt like the Pillsbury Dough Boy because of the layers I had on but they worked. I never got cold. In fact I even got a little warm as we were finishing our hike.

Horse Shoe Canyon
The hike is only 1 ½ miles round trip but it is uphill and downhill in sand which makes it more difficult. There were so many people there in January that I can’t imagine what it must be like in season, kind of resembling an ant farm I’m sure. It is a beautiful hike and at the end of the trail we got to do one of most favorite things – scramble over rocks, up and down, over and under.

After the hike we came back to the coach for lunch and then headed out to the highlight of the day, Upper Antelope Canyon. We had booked the tour earlier with Antelope Canyon Tours so we went to their office. After we signed in we sat down and started chatting with a couple and lo and behold, they were from Raleigh and were also RVers although not RVing this trip. They are fairly new to RVing so we answered some of their questions. Despite being on the road nearly four years I still feel like a newbie and boy did I feel that even more in the evening. The guy asked about towing so Jerry told him of our experience towing on a dolly and then told him about four down towing even taking him out and showing him out setup.

The tours were called and we went out and met our guide, Patrick as we loaded into the back of a truck. It was open air but had plastic panels on the side so was not bad at all. We had gotten a blanket from the office but we really didn’t need it. Jerry had the last seat so although it was probably the coldest he certainly had the best view as we traveled over the sandy desert to Upper Antelope Canyon.

Truthfully, Antelope Canyon is one of the most spectacular things I have ever seen and it is all natural, nothing man made. Although January is not the optimum time for seeing the sun rays bouncing off of the walls it was still mesmerizing. I looked up so much that I found myself stumbling a bit to keep my balance. Patrick was a great guide as he pointed out various highlights of the canyon plus often took pictures for us. He had even initially taken our phones and cameras and showed us the best settings to use. I could not possibly describe the unbelievable and natural beauty of this canyon so I’ll just let the pictures speak for it.



After our tour we decided to ride to Antelope Canyon. Imagine our surprise when we arrived at a closed marina. No canyon or hiking there!
What trip to a new town is complete without a trip to Walmart so off we went to pick up a few groceries? Then back to the coach for the rest of the afternoon and dinner and a quiet restful night – WRONG!

We were cooking dinner and then suddenly a pop and all of the appliances went out plus all of the outlets. Then began several hours of trying to determine the problem, posting on RVTips on FB, calling Newmar support and generally troubleshooting all to no avail. Strangely enough we still had lights but then after a loud noise the furnace went off. What to do? Jerry asked me if I wanted to go to a hotel and I suggested just staying there with A LOT of covers on the bed. I just did not want to leave the coach. Eventually the furnace came back on so we had lights and heat and no need to go to a hotel for the night. Jerry thought that possibly there was no power on the post so we ended up moving the RV over one space. I drove while Jerry directed. That was scary! With no chance of solving the problem at night we called it a night and went to bed. As I said we had heat and in 20 degree weather that was the most important thing. Praise God for heat and lights.

Arizona, Home Away From Home

On to Page, Arizona

Well, it happened!

When I started thinking about planning a Southern Utah, Northern Arizona trip for January I posted a question about the feasibility of it on one of our RV message boards. There were several naysayers but one guy, Bill strongly encouraged me to go for it. He suggested many places to go and many things to see but cautioned me to be constantly aware of the weather. When we told people we were going I always added the caveat that we were going where the weather and wind allowed us to go. Yesterday I received an e-mail from Bill asking how things were going so I replied that all was well, we were having a grand time and I hadn’t seen one flake of snow.

Oops – guess I need to update him. Last night just before bed Jerry exclaimed “Gale, did you know it was supposed to snow tonight?” Well no. I had been checking the weather for both Monument Valley (Oljato-Monument Valley, Utah) and Page, Arizona and temps were too high to snow plus the forecast was not showing snow. Well, that changed! We woke up this morning to a snow covered ground. There wasn’t much but just enough to keep us in Monument Valley later than we anticipated. Also, Page appeared to get even more than Monument Valley and roads were not looking good at 7:00 am.

Yikes!
Jerry checked everything out and felt that it was OK to leave so we pulled out separately a little after 9:00. The lanes in the campground were too sloped to hook the car up so he drove on down the partly icy road to the gas station and I followed slowly in the car. Hookup was done easily and quickly and we headed out at 9:23. The highway was fine but it was a little discouraging when we met a snow plow! At least it was going the other way! There was only one stretch that caused concern, at least concern for me. Jerry was listening to his audio book so I knew he felt good about it. For about 20 miles the only clear places on the highway were the car tracks. I just looked down, prayed and then read until suddenly everything was clear and there was no snow anywhere.

Check in at Page Lake Powell Campground was accomplished easily but I was disappointed when they told me that Lower Antelope Trail was closed for two weeks – no reason why.

Sign on the Door
We got set up quickly and then ate the picnic lunch we had prepared for yesterday. I had several things planned for the afternoon mostly centering around Glen Canyon National Recreational Area. Imagine our disappointment when we realized that it was closed due to the government shutdown. Of course, we could enter the area and ride around and luckily we found a park newspaper but since no one was working there was no one to answer our questions or give us recommendations.

Beautiful Lake Powell
We did get a look at the incredible Glen Canyon Dam and then rode on to get stunning views of Lake Powell. Although it was cold and incredibly windy we stopped a couple of times to take some pictures. The lake, one of the largest man-make lakes in North America only covers 13% of the National Recreation Area and it is absolutely stunning. Of course there were no boats on the water but we saw many that were in dry dock and boy were they big! No idea if they were corporate or private or perhaps both but they were huge. In fact one two story pontoon had a circular slide to the water.

We rode back into Page and just rode around the town where we saw poverty and a couple of blocks over beautiful homes right on the water, poverty and privilege only blocks apart. We wound around the corner where we saw church after church starting with a Baptist Church, a Church of God, a Methodist, a Lutheran, a Catholic and some others all side by side.

After riding around for a while we stopped at the car wash and got perhaps the first layer of dirt on what used to be my red car. It was almost unrecognizable when we had arrived as the front up to the windshield was covered, yes covered in ice! I’ve never seen anything like it. Jerry had taken a hose and rinsed it off but it did little good so to the car wash we went. The motor home is in dire need of being washed too but that won’t happen anytime soon.

Tomorrow we are hoping to hike Horseshoe Bend plus we are going on a tour of Upper Antelope Canyon. We had planned to be here four days but changed it to three and now in view of the shutdown continuing at least through tomorrow that may be too long. Unfortunately our next planned stop is another national park.

Back to the campground and a lazy day of reading with popcorn and caffeine!