Another year of travels past and now its time for adventures new... so here I come Western USA for the first time .
It will be a six week trip altogether meeting friends old and new and 2 of those weeks with the "girls" in a BIG RV again.
And of course Beeny comes too.
May 22nd 2013
A wildlife update is needed methinks. If I have seen one Californian Condor I have seen a hundred - well I think thats what they are - big wing span, red heads - soaring on thermals all along the coast from California to Oregon ... and there I was on a windy headland looking at some lighthouse when these 4/5 birds almost flew over my head - pelicans I thought. There have been so many stopping off places along the route (I have driven 880 miles since San Fran now) I have lost track of which bit of coast line is which. I had lovely sunshine + blue skies the first 2 days - and when I say the road hugged the coastline and was bend after bend up and down I mean it - for ... read more
May 19th 2013
Sad it was to leave my girls - I can say we shed a few tears as we loaded up my rental car and I drove off leaving them to catch their flight back to the UK. We have had a most wonderful time together. And we had had a whirlwind 3 days in San Fran - we all fell in love with this beautiful city - in spite of it being cooler then we expected and very windy. Movies of California always make you think the weather is just perfect ... but I guess that's not the reality. Suz had researched what to do and the Top Ten and we left it to her to sort us out for the 3 day plan. Immediately we got a hop/on/off bus with a 48 hour ticket which ... read more
May 18th 2013
Contd..... Chapter 2. Two days driving about 700 miles to get to Yosemite and what a drive it was - we climbed up to the Tioga Pass and this was a high mountain road( 56 miles)looking down into deep valleys....but the road was wide, well maintained and not scarey to drive ( have been on worse roads in France!!)we were above the snow line and you could see why this road had only been opened 2 days earlier. We passed by meadows, rushing mountain rivers and streams, waterfalls - these mountains are massive white granite with smoothed tops - quite stunning...and beautiful rock. Hodgon Meadows campsite ( I had booked it ages ago - and you need to because otherwise you don't get a site) was on the Western side of the park so we had ... read more
May 18th 2013
There has been so much to do - sights to see and otherwise no wifi - so I I sometimes don't have time to write the blog. For our last few days is Sedona we had wonderful sunny blue skies with early morning views of Balloon rides going over our resort ...Sedona really is a lovely town , and some great restaurants including The Cowboy Club where went twice and tried rattlesnake, fried cactus as well as buffalo meat loaf, buffalo pot roast and steak...and the pork ribs were to die for. ..they also did pretty good cocktails - I blame the girls for introducing me to Dark and Stormy!! We had booked up 2 tours before we set off for the Grand Canyon trip - so one day it was 2 hours in a Safari ... read more
May 12th 2013
After the Grand Canyon - one might be disapointed with the next stop - but no we were not. When we started planning this trip I bought a huge map of WEST USA and put red stickers on all the places I wanted to go ... then we got real about the distances and time factor and Suzanne said she wanted to go to Grand Canyon and Monument Valley and so we said anything else would be a bonus....well we have had lots of bonuses already. So everyone has probably seen Monument Valley in the movies John Ford westerns like Stagecoach, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, The Searchers were all filmed here as well as Thelma and Louise...so you think you have an idea of what it will be like but everytime we come across some ... read more
May 11th 2013
We've done it - the Grand Canyon. We travelled from Sedona to Flagstaff -where we stopped at a Downtown Diner for pancakes and french toast and blueberries with half a gallon of maple syrup- we then took the Old Fort Valley Road, avoiding a busy highway....a great route with beautiful pine forests and snow toped mountain views. When we stopped at Valle we filled up the gas ( see I am talking american already)and got our Grand Canyon Park pass and so at the entry gate to the park we could sail on through pretty quick. I did book our campsite ages ago ( just as well as they are all full) and so we got straight into it ...parked up and in no time armed with shuttle bus maps we got going for the South ... read more
May 6th 2013
Last two days in Vegas went by in flash- Suz and Tracie flew to join me on Thursday and there was lots more walking up and down the Strip day and night to see the Bellagio Fountains ( 3or 4 times), Caesar's Palace not to mention the volcano at the Mirage...and for those of you who havent seen my FB page the great news that my $10 stake ( whch Richard had sent me- saying I had to make a bet) was turned into $100 on the roulette wheel at Caesars Casino !!!! Nobody was more surprised than me - I followed Pat's advice and stuck to one colour - and RED kept coming up...I also had a hunch when to quit before I lost it all again. I can see how people get hooked on ... read more
April 30th 2013
Well what a contrast!!! from quaint old cowboy smalltown Colorado mountain scene to this place. I love the Americans - they are friendly and polite and pretty outgoing in a very nice way .... they reallly do give good service....AND if they havent got it on their doorstep then they invent it and here we have Las Vegas. I am just amazed at the scale and opulence of the hotels - the money which has been spent - the colossal number of rooms available ( 3000 - 6000) in some hotels. And no stinting on landscaping even though we are in the desert. So on The Strip we have New York next to the Pyramids, Paris and Bellagio ( Lake Como) near the Roman Forum of Caesar's Palace - not to mention the canals of Venice ... read more
April 26th 2013
Hiya All. Keep those comments coming please. Well these last few days have been lazy days - partly due to the fact that I was going to hike a trail up at McClure Pass but it turned out that I was above the snow line when I got there and I needed skis not hiking boots... so I had a leisurely drive down the pass - found a babbling brook , a field with horses surrounded by mountain peaks and thought it was a good picnic spot. I passed up on the hiking. It is quite lovely driving around these mountain valleys with very little traffic - Carbondale is a quaint town - with neat stores and houses - nothing brash or garish about it. And the folks here seem very friendly and polite - they ... read more
April 24th 2013
After a brekki of a short stack of pancakes ( that was actually the smallest portion I could get and it was massive) - we set off to Canyonands Nat Park which is not far from Moab. We entered by the northern entrance - this really is like a wilderness - as far as the eye can see mesas, and canyons for 100 miles and more. The Green River and the Colorado have carved out these canyons and rocky plateaus. Water and gravity have cut into the flat layers of sedimentary rocks forming mesas, buttes, fins arches and spires. The 2 main canyons of these rivers meet and form what is called " Island in the Sky" so you are driving on top of this looking down into the plateaus and canyons...oh and there are a ... read more