Driving across the rez to a new camp

Monday, April 14

I delay moving camp another day to give the weather time to settle down.  It’s chilly and windy and I want to stay inside the Best Little Trailer.  Making a pot of coffee and a pan of oatmeal doesn’t heat the interior enough.

Time to turn on the Wave 3 heater! 

Soon Bridget and Spike are snoozing, stretched out with no covers.  Online I purchase another Dick Francis book.

It’s toasty inside.  Between reading my Paperwhite and attending to my blog, the day lazily moves along.  Around 3:30 it’s warm enough to enjoy a walk up the lane to a look-out and back.  Later I cook spaghetti with green peppers for my supper and the crew has ground beef.

I attempt to write a blog post.  The connection drops frequently so I close up the lap top and get back into my book.  Tomorrow we’ll break camp.

Tuesday, April 15

The day starts early — 2:40 a.m. to be exact — as Spike and I step outside into the semi-darkness and cool, piney air for his potty run.  Oh, this is the night of the eclipse!  I whirl around and there it is!  I run back inside, grab the camera, and take this shot.

1-DSC03618The light creeps across the moon.  The part of the sphere in shadow is a dull red.

“Okay, Spike.  C’mon, boy!  Hurry up!  It’s cold out here!”

We sleep well and wake refreshed.

By ten a.m. the sunshine is bright and the day has warmed considerably.  I do a final walk-around before we pull away from our camp in the forest.  I don’t see anyone else camping here until a short distance before the forest road meets Highway 89. . . another Best Little Trailer!

1-DSC03619 - Copy Across the desert plain we go, northward on Highway 89.

1-DSC03621 - CopyI travel at a speed between 58 and 60 mph on this road.  The speed limit is 65 mph which means we’re passed frequently by those going 70 mph.

1-DSC03622 - CopyThis is a good day for driving and towing — no wind, clear skies, no glare.

1-DSC03623 - CopyAll these road photos were taken through the somewhat dirty windshield.  We pass several makeshift stands where Navajo jewelry is sold.  I don’t wear jewelry so I don’t stop.

1-DSC03624 - CopyA good day for driving but not so good for photos.  The “paint” of the rock cliffs is muted.   We pass Native American settlements of small boxy homes and cone-roofed, multi-sided hogans.

1-DSC03628 - CopyI pull over for a little break. 

Spike must’ve been sleeping because he seems dazed.  Maybe it’s the strange surroundings.  We drive about 60 miles to Tuba City (Highway 160).  Another 70 miles or so we will reach out destination  — Navajo National Monument.

1-DSC03625 - CopyThe scenery changes as soon as we turn onto Highway 564 to drive the nine miles to the monument.

1-DSC03633The crew and I camped at the monument last spring.  Hardly anyone was here.  This is Easter week . . . could be a lot more people. 

1-DSC03635Several cars are parked at the Visitor’s Center.  Probably day people, here to hike the trails.  

1-DSC03636The more scenic campground, Canyonview, is not open for the season.  We camped there last spring.  I drive around Sunset View Campground’s taking a look at the 31 campsites.  Good!  Only two other RVs here and one tent. 

I find a pull-through away from the others . . . and we’re home!

1-DSC03637On the campsite side of the BLT, there’s a picnic table and grill surrounded by pinyon pine.  The temperature is perfect.  I walk the crew on-leash around the campground.  When we come back to our site, I set up my camp chair by the table and the three of us relax before heading inside for a late lunch.



Thank you very much.

This entry was posted in Arizona and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

145 Responses to Driving across the rez to a new camp

  1. Suzi in MD says:

    Always a great day with a new RV Sue post 🙂

  2. Susan in Dallas says:

    First! Now back to read

  3. lindale says:

    Wow, we also watched the red moon here in the Sierra Mountains. It was great to see.

  4. Sue,

    Your “day’s work” sure beat mine – installing utility room cabinets and moving furniture. Want to trade? 🙂

  5. Pauline from Mississippi says:

    I love looking at the scenery. A few times I have seen things on National Geo and said…Hey, Susan has been there!!! I recognize it from her pictures. You have the perfect dogs for your life. They love the travel, are so well behaved and seem to be so well suited for your life.
    Love you!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Pauline,

      I have the reverse experience. I go somewhere and remember seeing it on National Geographic or some similar place. You’re right about the crew. They get on my nerves at times, but they really are good about travel, new people, new places, always changing scenery. They know when we’re moving camp and settle down for a long nap.

      Love you, too!

  6. Wickedlady says:

    You probably answered this in other posts but I must have missed it. How do you find all this great places to camp?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I look at public lands in my Benchmark atlases. When I find something that looks interesting, I go online and research it. Without the Benchmarks, I wouldn’t find these places. That’s why I recommend them.

      • Joan Spivey says:

        Sue, How many Benchmark Maps do you have?

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          All of them. Rusty gave me Oregon. That was my first one. When I realized their value to me, I invested in the rest (see carousel below). They’ve paid for themselves in free camps of the kind I prefer.

  7. Diann in MT says:

    Glad you got a shot of the eclipse. Was up a couple of times last night following its progress. I really had to wonder what all the hoopla is about. Lunar eclipses are unusual in that they don’t happen very often, but they DO happen whether some folks attach mystery to them or not. I can certainly understand how ancient, less informed societies attached doom and gloom stories to this natural occurrence. Afterall, it was kind creepy looking! LOL
    Nice campsite, Sue. Enjoy your stay!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Diann,

      I’ve never paid much attention to eclipses and other celestial phenomena. It was Spike’s doing that I caught this eclipse. I never would consider staying up for it. I’m surprised that the photo came out as well as it did. That thar moon is a long ways up thar!

  8. weather says:

    Glad you didn’t encounter wind on the drive to your new home. The heavy cloud cover obscuring my sight of the eclipsing red moon,had I not known from your reply that you were catching it on film,would have left me very disappointed .Now seeing your great photo I realize this view surpasses what I would have seen anyway,so I’m doubly glad and grateful about the whole thing,including the wishing game you invented for us all.
    You’re just fun!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, weather,

      I’m glad I waited to cross the flat plain until today. The past two days were too windy for me. I’m happy that my moon photo came out well enough to post.

  9. Teri in SoCal says:

    Heck, I really enjoyed today’s photos. Because if not for these photos this is what I saw today:

    1. My desk – And the wood paneling in our office. Lovely.
    2. The dental hygienist that worked on my lower left teeth today. Perio scaling and root planing.
    3. My desk, again.

    And I missed seeing the red moon last night, and I’m so glad you posted a photo!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Oh, Teri,

      I’ve had days like that . . . stuck in an office all day or under that big light with my mouth wide open. . . It’s more fun driving across the rez on a beautiful day!

  10. Wickedlady says:

    The hoopla was all about the color which does not happen with every eclipse.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Oh, Teri,

      I’ve had days like that . . . stuck in an office all day or under that big light with my mouth wide open. . . It’s more fun driving across the rez on a beautiful day!

    • Grace says:

      Wickedlady, I didn’t know that. Drat, and I missed it. Can you explain why the color was different this time around? Grace (in Tucson)

      • weather says:

        only the rare eclipse when the moon is full refracts light so just the red in the spectrum is left visible

  11. Kitt, NW WA says:


    I was also up around midnight checking on the moon, unfortunately our sky was somewhat obscured by clouds, leaving only a ghost of the moon. I would love to have had a clear night to have been able to enjoy the complete show. My husband thinks that who ever plans these celestial events needs to plan them for earlier in the evening! This was way past our bedtime.

    What magical places you find to live! Your photographs and words always do such an excellent job of creating, then sharing the atmosphere of your camp. They pull me through space and time to a spot nearby to sit, feel the sun on my face and hear the breeze in the pines. Ahh…

    Thanks again,

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Kitt. I agree with your husband. I don’t even stay up until midnight on New Year’s Eve any more.

      It’s my pleasure to share the places we pass through and live in. I’m glad you come along with us!

  12. Rita from Phoenix says:

    I slept through the eclipse but I love the shot you took of the red moon. Do I see Spike standing under Elephant Legs? I love Navajo Monument.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Rita,

      They do look like elephant legs. Is that what they’re called? He looks so tiny in that photo.

      Navajo Monument is a special place with a timeless beauty. I see pinyon pine and bursage out my window as I type this… lovely against the coral-colored sand.

      • Sidewinder Pen says:

        I went to Navajo Monument last spring after reading about it on your blog (I was traveling on the 89 detour down to Flagstaff, so it fit in perfectly). It was my first RVSue inspired camp spot. I just loved that upper campground (I don’t typically love campgrounds, either). What a spot!

        Of course the lower one without crowds is nothing to sneeze at either, even if the upper is nicer 🙂

        I can’t wait to start heading north (have a few things to take care of before I can, so I’m baking in low-altitude AZ, while imagining piney woods, cool nights and blankets).

        • Sidewinder Pen says:

          Meant to add that I was up last night and saw the eclipse. It was at just about the same stage as you show when I first saw it. For some reason it never occurred to me that I could photograph it! I thought the red color (or something about it) made it look so three-dimensionally spherical, like a jaw breaker floating up there.

          • rvsueandcrew says:

            Wonderful imagery, Pen… “a jawbreaker moon.” 🙂 Did you walk the Sandal Trail?

            • Sidewinder Pen says:

              I take it the Sandal Trail is at Navajo? I didn’t do much there except hang out and enjoy it from the rig, plus a short walk, because I was on my way to an appointment in Flagstaff. Rolled in just before evening and then back out the next day (that was when the 89 detour routed one fairly close to the monument). Definitely worth more than just a quick stop in future though.

  13. Mike from MN says:

    Hi, Sue,
    Great picture of the moon, you got a better shot than I did up here.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Mike,

      I didn’t see the total eclipse. It was already gaining light when I saw it. Not bad for a point-and-shoot camera operated by a point-and-shoot photographer!

  14. Willow says:

    Home is were the heart is…and in your case Sue, your heart is with the BLT plus you have a new view out your window whenever you want. You have chosen a wonderful life for yourself and the crew. I love your new camp area. I went outside last night and watched the eclipse it was beautiful and fun to think of all the people who were enjoying it with me. I’m happy you and Spike watched it too.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Willow,

      Yes, my heart is with the BLT. I remember wondering if I’d feel “at home” living in a travel trailer. Now it seems silly that I ever wondered that. Bridget, Spike, and I are as “at home” on the road as we’ve ever been.

      If’s fun for me to think of all the people enjoying my blog with me.

  15. Timber n' Rusty says:

    Well your rollin’, rollin,’ rollin,’ right a long Sue. Hope the temps are great. Most place’s don’t open till May 31st up north, that’s what a friend told me a while back. Did ya finish your tax stuff? Timber says Hi to you all, he’s not looking for ya any more, since I got him a new toy that squeals, Oh Noooooooooooo when he jumps on it, It’s a Oh No Bill stuffed toy that’s dressed like the small puppet on SNL and he hasn’t torn it up yet. Mikey , I think he likes it ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,Rusty

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Rusty,

      Good idea to get Timber a new toy. The temperature here is what I call “pleasantly cool.” Not cold enough for a coat… long sleeves. Yes, the taxes are signed, sealed, and delivered… and paid!

    • Funny, Rusty! “He likes it! Hey Mikey!” A Mr. Bill toy, great! 😀

    • Rattlesnake Joe says:

      Hi Rusty, Glad to hear from you. Every dog I ever had loved a ball in a sock as his toy. I use to buy small stuffed animals at garage sales and give them to Buck my 100 lb Irish Setter/Black Lab mix. He would love them until he tired of them and then have fun tearing the stuffing out of them. Hope life is good to you, we love hearing from you.

  16. Alan Rabe says:

    I can’t even count the number of times I’ve seen the vista coming out of Flag north on 89. It’s a door to another world. Looking forward to the journey north.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      The landscape changes dramatically from Sunset Crater going north. All of a sudden you go over the rise of a hill and there’s the flat plain spread out before you . . . and as you go, the spectacular cliffs and hoodoos and mesas appear. It truly is “a door to another world.”

  17. Sue,
    I’ve driven US160 dozens of time and never knew of this monument. When you’ve been there before I thought you were north of Kayenta. Another new place for me to check out via RVSue!
    I love that drive on the Rez. Wonderful in spring with the contrast of snow and red rocks.
    Peace, from the Knomad (soon to be)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi,, Robert,

      Do come to Navajo National Monument. It’s a hidden gem. There’s a 28 foot length restriction which is kind of confusing… At the turn onto the road here, the sign says no RVs or trailers longer than 28 feet. Okay. The BLT is 17 feet. (PTV and BLT are 34 ft.)

      When you enter the campground it says no vehicles longer than 28 feet. Well, does that mean we’re too long? My advice to anyone with a rig like mine (TT with van towing it) or anything “borderline length,” is to come in the off-season in order to find a site long enough.

      • My interpretation of that is no single vehicle should be more than 28′. Maybe because of problems turning? The PTV & BLT are two vehicles so I can’t see a problem and if anyone gives you grief, you can use that story and stick to it! 🙂

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Your explanation sounds good, Carrie. Most of the sites are small, too. Only a few accommodate the 28 foot sized rigs. We fit in the site, but just barely.

  18. Cinandjules (NY) says:

    Glad Spike had to pee! Nice photo!

    How high are those elephant legs? Weird how they are “cut out” and not near other rock formations. Love the scenery.

    I see the stabilizer on the BLT is down.

    It rained like hell last night..it is currently snowing. Rivers are above flood stage…one more road closure and we will be land locked.

    Enjoy your evening.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      How high are the elephant legs? Very high. Spike is your reference. 🙂

      Gosh, your weather is bezerk! Glad you have a boat. It may come in handy if you want to go to town.

      Have a good night.

  19. Marsha in MI says:

    No eclipse here either, just more snow and cold.

    It’s funny when I hear people use the term “rez.” It was part of my vocabulary growing up because my maternal grandmother lived on the Stockbridge Reservation in Wisconsin. Most of the kids I grew up with in Milwaukee didn’t even know there were still reservations in existence. City kids!

    We’ll have to get some Benchmarks for our upcoming retirement travels. My husband gave notice today. So looking forward to heading out without deadlines. We can return home when we’re ready.

  20. Ladybug says:

    I was awake at the right time, but because of the weather I couldn’t see the eclipse. We got heavy rains yesterday, and woke to snow this morning! Didn’t stick, though.

    Spike sure does make those spires look tall!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Sorry you’re experiencing more bad weather, Ladybug. (And where are you please?)

      The crew comes in handy when I want to show the size of what I photograph. Next to the elephant legs are rock formations almost as high. They have serrated sides . . . ridges like steps. Children in the 7-10 age range were climbing and playing on them while mom (I assume) and another woman were selling jewelry at the base.

      My heart lurched at the sight of them playing on the ledges, then realized they weren’t flat-lander children. They were very agile as they played around, jumping from one ledge to another. I wanted to take a picture, but Native Americans don’t like being photographed and I’m a guest at their home (the rez).

  21. We want to look at jewelry along the way, but don’t wear silver, or have much time, so don’t usually either. We went inside one store near the four corners and we loved a silver belt buckle for Todd and asked how much? $500! For a belt buckle! It was gorgeous. Still there I’d bet.

    So cool you got to see the blood moon! And got pics! Nice!

    Weren’t you tempted to put some of the ground beef in you spaghetti? I love green peppers too!

    You’re the best Sue! I might not be around much again, back to coding I go,
    hi ho, hi ho…

  22. Cinandjules (NY) says:

    Just giving you a heads up in regards to Moab, Utah. 2014 Escape Trailer Rally is May8-11.

    15 trailers in Gold campsite D.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I assume Gold is a campground? Oh dear, I hope we’re not going to be caught in a web of people . . . Nothing against Escape people, just people in general and in groups.

  23. Illinois Jane says:

    Sue, thanks for the picture of the eclipse! I wouldn’t get up especially for it either. My nature call didn’t come until 4 so I missed it. My neighbor said it was red and sure enough.
    Enjoyed the travel scenery, too. It’s getting greener!
    Jane (there, now I’ll quit messing with my name)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      It’s so nice to be able to place a reader in a location. Thanks, Illinois Jane!

      The first “road pic” above is blond grass. As you drive northeastward across the reservation the vegetation increases and is greener. I love floating across the landscape on a good road watching the gradual as well as the dramatic changes. My photos don’t show the vast expanse in all directions.

  24. Marilu Paulson says:

    Hi Sue,
    I just saw a BLT being pulled by a white van up the Whitney Portal road outside of Lone Pine on highway 395! If I didn’t know better I’d have thought it was you. The Owens Valley is beautiful and we just did our first boon docking in many years near Bridgeport. I think you have spent time here if my memory serves me. It was a gorgeous site. We were too lazy to get up and look at the moon so I’m glad you and Spike were up and about. What a beautiful photo. Navaho Monument is an amazing place. Enjoy!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Marilu,

      I couldn’t recall the town of Bridgeport. Looked it up on Wikipedia and see it’s in Mono County, east-central California. We didn’t camp there exactly. We did camp at Glassy Creek nearby. Beautiful country . . .

      Happy boondocking!

  25. CheryLyn(Oregon) says:

    Enjoyed seeing pics of the moon, windy and cloudy here last night.
    Every time there is an eclipse I am reminded of my first view of one. My 84 year old granddad calls me at 3am, insists I get up, go outside and watch the eclipse! He loved everything about nature (not to mention was a night owl). He was so much fun.
    What a major change of scenery from pine trees.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Your grandfather loved nature and wanted to share it with you. The simple act of calling you to make sure you saw the eclipse shows he loved you very much.

      Change of scenery… oh, yeah. We went from saguaros of the Sonoran to juniper-and-grass country to piney mountain forest to desert plain and now we are camped high above red rock canyons. All in a month’s time… What a way to live!

  26. bobg says:

    Apropos of nothing in particular, I got a new phone today. And while I was looking for a good cover for it, I ran into this item that reminded me of you and the crew. Remind you of anyone?

  27. Sherry in Oregon says:

    Thanks for the tips, Sue … I went online & purchased a couple of the Benchmark Atlases … my hubs is an old-fashioned guy who likes the feel of maps & atlases, a real map freak AND he’s the hardest person in the world to buy a gift for … his birthday & Father’s Day are coming up & a couple of nice gifts are on the way now …. and they let me use PayPal to purchase them … Thanks again!

    • Marsha (MI) says:

      Sherry, my husband is like that too. Real map geek. The entire cabinet over the cabinet where the microwave is supposed to go in our Casita is mapland, plus the ones in use that we keep in the cab of the truck. Good idea about buying them as a gift because, yes, he is also difficult to find gifts for.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Great gift idea! I assume you bought them through my blog and so I thank you, Sherry.

  28. Rita from Phoenix says:

    BTW love your caption ‘driving across the “rez”‘ LOL We natives refer to our reservations as ‘the rez.’ Yes, we call the rock formation Elephant Legs. Pinions fall in the camp ground every four years. One late fall I tent camped next to RVers. As I was crawling around on hands and knees picking pinions one curious RVer came over and want to know what I was picking up….I told her ‘gold.’ LOL Later after I roasted a pan full, I shared some with the RVer…she’d never eaten a pine nut. She didn’t say whether she like them or not but I love them in my salad and eating them like peanuts.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Interesting, Rita. I’m not sure I’ve eaten a pine nut either. . . at least not a roasted one. I think years ago I used them in a blue cheese dressing recipe.

      The land provides, eh? As long as you know what to look for . . .

      • Marsha in MI says:

        Are they the same pine nuts you can buy at the stores to make pesto?

        • Rita says:

          Yes. You can also find it at Costco although they are not as tasty as the fresh picked and roasted nuts. Costco doesn’t have them roasted.

  29. Gorgeous eclipse photo, Sue; very good of Spike to wake up at just the right moment. Ohhh for the scent of pinion pines. Jim’s from Texas & he pronounces it “pin yon”. Enjoy your day.

  30. Abase says:

    I love your finance reports, please keep posting them.
    How do you find places to dump black tank and fill water tanks?
    I love your blog and hope you continue for years to come.
    I’m on a 3 year 8 months count down. It sounds so far away but it is what it is.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hello, Abase,

      Welcome to my blog! Good to see you here. . .

      Thanks for the feedback on the finance reports. I intend to catch up as soon as I get to a place with faster, steadier internet connection.

      I find dump stations and places to fill water tanks by doing the following…

      Go to dump station websites (do a search for “dump stations” and you’ll find them)….. The dump stations are listed by location.

      Ask other campers… “Where do you dump around here and get water?”

      While driving through a town, keep an eye on the entrances of RV parks. Often I find at least one that sells propane, dump station/water spigot use. Some state parks let you pay for dump/water only– You don’t have to camp there. Also, go to Washington state.. The rest stops on the interstates have dump stations! How nice is that? 🙂

      Sweet of you to wish me many more years . . . Best wishes to you as you plan and prepare for your own life on the road!

  31. Bill & Ann says:

    Missing the West Coast while exploring the East. Oh my. Good pictures.

  32. DesertGinger says:

    I love your photo of the eclipse. That was the last night here for my friends Sheila and Scott who came out to Tucson to help with my remodel of my new little house. they worked their behinds off! That night we drove out to the Saguaro National forest to be on a hilltop and get a better view. And it was great! We took pictures but I’m not sure any were as good as yours. Sheila and Scott left yesterday to drive back to Mankato, MN, and my friend Terii is still here till Saturday. We finished with the painting and flooring, and now it is time to try to cram all my belongings into this tiny space (less than 400 sq ft). It is challenging, when you are still at home in your big space (over 2300 sq ft plus 3 garages) to estimate what will fit in your new tiny space. I gave away, or threw away so much! But I think I still have too much. More weeding out is happening, and I have already found the local Goodwill store. Still, my tiny place is looking very cute. My new next door neighbor came over last night and was very impressed! Meanwhile, we have been hanging out in my carport, my new ‘temporary’ living room. It is so nice to be in a warm place. It snowed last night in NY, while I was sitting in my carport enjoying balmy breezes. Yahoo!

    I am very inspired by your photos of Navajo Monument, and thinking that would make a nice road trip. I’m getting so many good ideas from your blog…and I’m here and can go anywhere in the west! Life is good.

    By the way, Spike is looking fairly agile in the pics. Hope he is doing okay. My little Chloe woke up one day with a terrible eye infection, but we saw the vet and got medication, and she is on the mend. Our little friends are just so precious, aren’t they? I’m a bit of a loner too, and she is such a companion for me.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Ginger,

      I wrote you a very long reply but it won’t post.

      MESSAGE TO READERS: I may not be able to reply and post in a timely manner for a few days. Every online action takes forever! The crew and I are camped along the San Juan River near Bluff, Utah, with rock bluffs (of course) all around. I only get 1-2 bars here. I’ll try to find a restaurant in Bluff that will let me blog while I eat. Last time we were here I blogged in the PTV alongside a road. Not fun.

      I want to tell you about today! An incredible trip, entering Bluff from Hwy 191 . . . Hope my pics are good… Please carry on without me. I’ll try to check in soon!

      • weather says:

        thanks for putting us at ease while we wait to hear about that incredible trip,your pics are always good and worth waiting for,enjoy the riverside 🙂

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Hi, weather,

          It seems I’m granted a few minutes now and then when I’m able to post a small amount, enough to respond to a few comments. Thank you for your kind words.

      • R. (Western Colorado) says:

        I added one more details to my name to let you know I’m in the western part of colorful Colorado. Our lives are full of surprises. I’m in UT right now and hiking, tent/camping along rt. 95 . We suppose to get some rain but if not I’ll be in a few days near Bluff seeking out amazing places to hike. If you see Subaru with CO license plates, dirty tired hiker driving it just wave or let your crew bark their heads off. I’ll be staying away from people until I get to take a shower. It is a little too cold for an outdoor shower.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Hi, R.,

          You shouldn’t have any difficulty finding “amazing places to hike.” This area is spectacular. As for staying away from people because you haven’t had a shower, I find that people stay away from me when I haven’t had a shower. It’s nice to have a crowd part to let you through. Try it! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Ginger,

      I’ll try again! For a loner you have plenty of company — friends and neighbor — to help you with your new place. I’m happy you are pleased with your much smaller home. You deserve the award for Greatest Downsizing Ever!

      Yes, you are in an excellent location in Tucson to take great day trips. The warmth of southern Arizona must feel good after living in snow and cold a short while ago.

      I hope Chloe’s eye is better and she’s enjoying her new home. I know you are!

  33. Patricia from Florida says:

    Hi Sue
    I have been fulltiming for about a year now. Love my 1978 22 ft Argosy Airstream. I spent the last 4 years fixing her up. One of the last pieces to the puzzle is to get solar installed so I can camp wherever I want. And I want to install it on my truck as you have done. My question is, how much did the solar installation cost? I have had estimates as high as $4000. for a 200 watt set up. Please tell me you got it done cheaper!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Patricia,

      I bet your Airstream is a beauty and fixed up how you want it. No, my solar system didn’t cost $4,000. I don’t have the figures totaled as it was done in pieces by different folks. . . Have you accessed the solar pages from the header?

    • Alan Rabe says:

      Hi Pat. It depends. Do you already have house batteries and an inverter and all you need is the solar side then yes it is way too high. Look online for kits. If you already have the electrical system and all you need is solar then it isn’t all that hard to do. Figuring out how to mount it is the hard part. I’d give you a website for great kits, but it ain’t Amazon and she who must be obeyed doesn’t like it when we drop competitors websites on her blog. 🙂 🙂

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Just state the website in a way that doesn’t make a link and then the Amazon robot won’t notice. 🙂

        • Cinandjules (NY) says:

          And she who must be obeyed………..OMG you made me laugh!

          Ya sell that house yet? You can come up now…the snow is gone! (I think) if you see that Punxsutawney dude feel free to put the pedal to the metal! Don’t swerve…you’re liable to over correct! 🙂

    • Mick'nTN says:

      $4K is not out of line if you get a professional job.

      • Mick'nTN says:

        Patricia in Florida . . . Boondocking instead of $20 / night RV park would pay for the system in 200 days.

    • rvsueandcrew says:


      See the comment made by Mick’nTN below.

      (I removed a spam and it caused his comment to drop lower. Why, I don’t know.)

  34. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    Hello Sue and Crew!

    So glad that you were able to capture an awesome picture of the Blood Moon! Richmond VA had rainy weather and heavy cloud cover, so once again, I missed out seeing and photographing a cool moon. Thanks, Spike for waking up Sue at the just the right time! I agree with one of your other readers who said that the moon was extra full, because of all of our wishes.

    Yesterday was a dark and gloomy day with heavy rain. To top things off, we had 1/2 an hour of sleet last night. Crazy weather! Makes reading your blog and seeing your pictures even more special! Who needs Calgon to “take us away” when we have RVSue and her Crew to transport us to a beautiful, peaceful place?!

    A couple days ago someone asked if Bridget and Spike like to eat veggies. My vet has recommended low-sodium canned green beans and canned pumpkin (just pumpkin, not the pie filling) as a meal supplement. Just replace a small portion of their meal with either veggie. Gracie loves both and considers it a treat! Give it a try – worst case scenerio, you might have some extra veggies for yourself. If Spike and Bridget like the green beans and pumpkin, it would help to trim your raw meat budget a bit.

    Thanks for sharing, Sue – happy travels! Wishing everyone a wonderful day!

    • WTXCal says:

      Hi Denise,
      I was telling Sue about the green beans that all my dogs have always loved. These have always been fresh raw green beans. As with humans, the fresh veggies are much better for the dogs. Good luck and have a wonderful day.

      • Denise - Richmond VA says:

        Hi WTXCal,

        Oh yes, fresh veggies are so much better than canned or even frozen. I am looking forward to the farmer’s markets in the area to be opening soon to share their bounty! The freshness of produce at the grocery store can sometimes leave a lot to be desired. Hope you have a wonderful day, too!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Denise,

      Fresh green beans and canned pumpkin got a paws down from the crew. I tasted the pumpkin and can’t blame them for hating it. I’ll try carrots next.

      On a positive note… Bridget ate beef liver! I had to cook it first and slice it up in tiny pieces for her.

      You have a great evening!

      • Denise - Richmond VA says:

        Good morning Sue,

        Spike and Bridget have a taste for the high life! Who wants vegetables when Sue will give us raw meat?!

        Gracie will eat just about anything. She will sit on my feet while I am preparing a meal, just waiting for something to fall off the counter or cutting board onto the floor. I have a container of grape tomatoes on the counter – she will sit and stare at the container. “Maybe I can will that container to jump off the counter….I’m sure Mommy would not miss it!”

        Glad to hear the Bridget has aquired a taste or beef liver – yeah!!

        Have a great day!

  35. mockturtle says:

    What a great shot of the eclipse! It was too cloudy here [in WA] to see it. 🙁 Thanks for sharing it with me.

    I love Benchmark atlases, too. I now have WA, OR, CA, NV, ID, NM, AZ & UT. 🙂

  36. Grace says:

    Hi Sue,
    Hi Sue, I want to thank you for something you do that I haven’t seen other bloggers do. When you turn off the main road to your new campsite, sometimes you take a photo. For wannabes like me, that is so helpful because I can go to google map’s street view and double check that I’ve got the right turn off. Then I note the GPS coordinates and know that I’ll be on the right track when we’re out wandering around. I sooooo appreciate you sharing your sites with us. Someday I’ll get through your trip north and mark those locations, too. You can bet I’ll be following along this year. You’re the best! Thank you so much! Grace (in Tucson)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Grace. I’ll try to remember to show entrances of camps. Sometimes I can’t take a photo because it’s not a safe place to do so, like turning off a busy highway.

  37. Rattlesnake Joe says:

    Sue I think you have influenced more people than you know with your BLT and PTV. I often spot a set up like yours as I drive down the highways. I look for your roof solar set up to tell me if it’s you 🙂

  38. Hi Sue,
    Technical question. Do you have odd looking email addresses on non-active followers? I have one that looks like it’s from Poland! And a few other weird ones.

  39. R. (Western Colorado) says:

    I just made a comment but it looks like disappeared or maybe it went to some peculiar place among many great responses you get from your flowers. Enjoy your life and amazing scenery along your drives in UT.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, R., you, too!

      • R. (Western Colorado) says:

        Sue, would you please remind your followers that this weekend (April 19 and 20) all national parks, monuments, historic sites have free admission. Thanks
        Is Navajo National Monument your favorite park where you wouldn’t mind to return often?

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          No, Navajo NM isn’t my “favorite park” because I don’t have a favorite! It’s a beautiful place and I will return to it as long as I move from AZ northward. It’s the only place I’ll camp when crossing the rez. (I’m not interested in joining the crowd at Monument Valley.)

          There are several national parks we haven’t visited yet.

          The park that comes closest to being my favorite isn’t a national park… It’s Custer State Park in South Dakota.

  40. Cinandjules (NY) says:

    Technical question….

    Do you get condensation inside the BLT? I’m reading that long term occupancy is frowned upon due to condensation issues. Just wondering if that “issue” is just on paper or applicable in real life.

    Do you always have a window open or the fantastic fan open or on?

    Inquiring minds want to know….the real deal! Your expertise is greatly appreciated.


    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Cinandjules,

      Twice I’ve tried to post a reply!

      I’ve had condensation on the windows on cold mornings when I’ve made a pot of coffee or boiled water for tea. It hasn’t happened often and when it does, I wipe off the windows and life proceeds . . . 🙂

      My guess is the people who have condensation issues camp in areas of higher humidity, like east of the Mississippi.

      I usually have the fantastic fan vent in the ceiling open, unless it’s windy which makes it rattle. One window is usually open a half-inch to accommodate the cables coming in from the Wilson antenna and the XM radio antenna. We very often sleep with a window wide open, unless, of course, temperatures are low.

      When the propane heater is on, I open the fan vent and the bathroom window, leaving the door propped open halfway. This works well because we get ventilation without a draft.

  41. Barbara says:

    Where did you get the info regarding the Escape Travel Trailer rally? I was curious, as their website shows the rally in British Columbia, June 6-8.

    • Cinandjules (NY) says:

      On the Escape trailer forum. The one in May is at Moab Utah and is limited to 15 trailers. The one in BC is 100+ trailers.

  42. Larry M from the PacNW says:

    I see from your list of recurring 2013 expenses that you’re using McAfee, and it’s costing you $6.58 a month. I once had McAfee, until it let a really deadly virus slip by. It cost me $200+ to get the problem fixed. The Geek Squad at Best Buy switched me to Kaspersky (included in the $200). I’ve never had a problem since, and I love Kaspersky. But, the real benefit to you would be that you could buy the Kaspersky 2013 version for $17.99 for a years use. Don’t worry about buying the 2013 version. There is zero difference between it and the protection you get from buying the 2014 version. The “difference” is all marketing. You get the SAME protection!! Personally, I ALWAYS buy the older version.


    I always enjoy your blog!! Happy Trails!!

    Larry from the Pacific NW

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Larry,

      I don’t have a lot of confidence in McAfee having heard negative reports similar to yours. I signed up for lack of knowing what else to do and not having the motivation to research the subject. (It’s difficult to read about site security when a gorgeous world is outside my door!).

      I appreciate you doing the work for me! I like the idea of dropping a recurring expense and that software sounds like a good deal.

      (Note to readers: I cannot convert Larry’s link to one of my Amazon links at this time. If you shop Amazon, please use another one of my links to satisfy the greed that lives within me.)

      I’ll have to wait until I have stronger signal to look at the link, but I definitely will do so. (This camp is in a “bowl” with high, rock sides.) If I forget, feel free to remind me. 🙂

      Nice of you to drop in with this information for me and my readers. Thank you.

      • Larry M from the PacNW says:

        You’re welcome Sue. 🙂

        There’s a few things I think you should be aware of with Kaspersky (why don’t these programs come with instructions on their use, and settings?).

        First, after installing, go to lower right of the program to “Licensing” and enter your Licensing code following the apparent instructions.

        Second, go to “Settings” on lower right, then to “Additional”, then to “Update”. I have a fast quad-core computer using a Comcast fiber optic connection. So, I have the program set to automatically updating every 4 hours. However, when I’m hooked up in any other way, I have the update setting set to “Prompt for permission to install before downloading updates.” Downloading updates will cause most computers to… S_L_O_W ….. D-O-W-N….! So I recommend only doing it when you don’t want to do anything else for 15 to 30 minutes.

        Third, I like to establish a password to prevent any outside source from adjusting Kaspersky’s setting, or turning it off. You do this by clicking on “Settings” down in the lower right, go to “General,” and look for a button like “Set Password”, or “Change Password”.

        Of course there’s lots of other “Tweaking” you can do to the program, but this covers the basics. 🙂 I leave most of the rest to Kaspersky’s default setting.

        Happy Boondocking!

        Larry from the Pacific NW

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Wow! I do appreciate you taking the time to write out all these instructions, Larry. That update information is especially important because I’m sometimes in locations where simply opening a website will take 20 minutes (like here!). Thanks again.

  43. Mel says:

    Hi there, Mel here (formerly of Carson City NV – now in Frisco TX)… not sure if you know but Tioga George is posting on his blog again,,, I know he was an inspiration to you & he had stopped his blog last year for personal reasons..anyway, he had a heart issue while driving on March 15th, totaled Ms Tioga on Interstate 5 near Bakersfield…he is in the Bakersfield area recovering from open heart surgery – this is per his latest posts… just thought you would want to know… Take care – still following your blog… great as ever!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Mel,

      Long time, no see! 🙂 I hope you are enjoying your new home in Texas. I’m glad you still follow my blog, even if you don’t always have time to read the comments. (Kidding here — We discussed Tioga George’s accident, surgery, and recovery previously in comments.)

      Thanks for sharing the information though, as there may be Tioga George fans who haven’t heard.

  44. Cat Lady says:

    Got this from Amazon update on my Ming Chair Order:
    “SHIPMENT UPDATES VIA TEXT: Your package is currently not eligible for ‘Shipment Updates via Text’. Only Amazon fulfilled packages are currently eligible.”

    Does this mean you won’t get credit for the sale?

    Cat Lady

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Cat Lady,

      I’ve already received the credit. I wondered if that was your order. Thank you very much!

  45. rvsueandcrew says:


    R. (Colorado) reminds us that this weekend (April 19 and 20) all national parks, monuments, historic sites have free admission.

    Those of us with a senior pass always get in free, of course. Maybe this is a good weekend for you to take some younger family members or friends to a national park.

  46. Patricia from Florida says:

    Thanks Mick n TN. That is a good way of looking at it. The $4000. quote comes from a very well respected source.

  47. Lacy says:

    I found a way you can have air conditioning this summer for VERY LITTLE moola! I saw it and thought it would be perfect for tent camping or for boondocking 🙂



    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Lacy. I can’t look at the video right now. I see it’s from Kim Komando, tech guru. Her website is a great resource.

  48. Geri Moore says:

    HOORAY! You are in our favorite part of the world! The hub of all the greatest Utah sights to see! Don’t forget your Navajo Pizza or blue corn pancakes!!! Hard to imagine it was a year ago we had agreed to meet up there for our goodbyes as Chuck and I headed east for new adventures and as you still explore the west! Not really a goodbye exactly, more of an “happy trails to you until we meet again…. ” as per Roy Rogers and Dale Evans! LOL! Cadillac Ranch RV probably wouldn’t mind letting you use their WiFi !!! Nancy and her husband are pretty nice folks!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Geri,

      I know you will enjoy seeing pics of the area again. I may skip the blue corn pancakes this time, but a Navajo pizza calls my name. It was fun seeing Bluff for the first time with you and Chuck. I’ve driven to a place where I can post. I’ll be a bit behind for a few days but will catch up eventually to real time.

  49. search says:

    I have read so many posts on the topic of the blogger lovers except this article is genuinely
    a good paragraph, keep it up.

    Also visit my web site search

Comments are closed.