Dallas to Las Vegas 2017
Trip relocating from our stoarage at Denton, Dallas to Las Vegas
22nd September to November 11th. Unfortunatly we were time restricted for this trip and we would have lked to have taken 2 – 3 months . Consequently we found it very tiring and felt we should have done more.
Wow – this was a welding company’s vehicle turned into a hot rod. Amazing vehicle but not possible to photo well as in a taxi to Denton storage.
Lake Selma Bowie.
Temperatures in 90 F but water cold! Hardly anyone overnight.
Flocks of TVs (turkey vultures) diners!.
Only $5 night no hook up:)
Well worth the extra few miles instead of using the city site.
Hamblen Pass named after the man who made a rough track down the pass and saved everyone about 130 mile trip. Pull off high above away from road, quiet and great views for free overnight stop.
Note: 4 trucks top left all being pulled by one in front have their front wheels mounted on the leader of the pack.
Yes Alan has been wearing shorts since arrival having only done so for one day in the UK’s so-called summer of 2017!
Actually … We only stopped for 1 night. Free of charge!
What a great spot at Hambledon Drive with peace and quite.
Then the skies darkened and the rain started. Boy did it rain. Time to go said Flat Eric
Still more rain filling up what was a muddy arroyo. This was a good example of all the warnings you see about flash flooding.
Amarillo, Texas was the place we were making for to do our shopping – including a new tyre for the back right which was getting low on the tread … We had managed to damage the wall in the first week we had the RV in 2015!
After shopping we headed for Fritch Fortress about 25 miles of Amarillo on Lake Meredith
Windy but beautiful and yes free again in the National Park.
Free water and dump station as well.
Flat Eric seems to be enjoying himself and insisted we stayed for a couple of nights.
Fantastic free sites next to the lake with picnic bench, fire pit and sun shade.
Nearby are the famous Alibates Flint Quarries and there are Ranger lead tours available.
Wild flowers at lake Meredith
So back to Amarillo and finish the shopping – wood for shelving in Colleen’s wardrobe and also shelving above the main bench cupboards to finish off from last year.-
Then of course we had to stop at the Cadillac Ranch. A bit of a disappointment with so much rubbish lying around the place. It was turned into somewhere where you take a can of spray paint and do what you can’t usually do. Even the straw bales in the field were painted
Located a couple of miles east on the side road where you join the Interstate was an RV park with some carefully preserved Cadillacs out front – wish we had taken photos of them too.
Headed on towards Santa Fe New Mexico and the first stop is Pecos just to the south East where the Pueblo Indians lived in peace until the Spanish turned up 1640 and then returned in 1680 with their priests and eventually causing total unrest.
Historic Pueblo in the Pecos Historical National Park was very good.
All campsites North of Pecos said 24ft for RV’s on Allstays (the main app we use for finding campsites) but having gone in the Pecos Ranger Office told there was plenty of sites for 30ft!
So we stayed in the Southern part of Santa Fe National Forest a few miles up the road up from Pecos even though only one night. There was free dispersed camping before it but we were uncertain after all the rain and we wanted tarmac below us. Only people in the site 🙂
riving up through Santa Fe we were pleased to see the style of the buildings. Made to appear as traditional adobe – we even saw a petrol station and a McDonald’s like it!
The Home Depot in Santa Fe – (like a UK B & Q) All dressed up for Halloween.
Looking for a “foot bridge” south of Taos and North of Santa Fe. Look carefully bottom picture to the left. Only 2 wires left now to the hut on the far side and a loose plank of wood! Wonder who would use this?
We went to Pilar next where the indigenous people started their revolt against the Spanish. Massive road works on the main road and missed the turn off at first following the convoy vehicle through it!
Stayed at the 3rd campsite on the river. They are all BLM (Bureau of Land Management).
Stayed 2 nights. The first 2 sites up the river were not so nice and very crowded – probably as electric hook ups existed which so many people need!
Great spot next to the river and plenty of sunshine for our solar panels.
Bottom point of this map shows where Pilar is.
We went from there to the Rio Grand Gorge bridge point A which was erected in the 1965 for Highway 64. It is 650 ft above the river and 2nd highest of its type in the US – 3 span bridge. It was known as the road to nowhere as they could not afford to build the highway to the West at the time!
Next onto point B, Wild Rivers and then Chalma, point C.
The open road in New Mexico
Camping at 7500 ft at the Wild Rivers Recreation Area on BLM land. Again no problem with our 30ft RV even though they say less – except one site. 4 campgrounds on the land and we stayed at Monsoto.
We did the 7 mile walk down to the gorge, along and back up again. Marked as moderate … except the way out as hard. It took us 6.5 hours and the way up 1.25 hours to do 0.8 mile! Both very shattered and Colleen’s knee very bad before we even started the way up. High winds climbing up and on our hands and knees creeping around one bend in fear of being blown over the edge!
Beautiful place where the Red River meets the Rio Grande
Taos which is famous for being the home of Kit Carson for a very long time.
Looks very much a tourist trap as well!
Having crossed into Colorado with signs of “No Snow ploughing between 19.00 and 05.00” we had an engine fault come up reducing our speed and we kept down to 30 mph for hours for safety. This road was incredibly bumpy as soon as had crossed the State line. Finally in a small place Manassa a garage read the fault on his machine – a faulty accelerator sensor unit. He reset it as the nearest Ford spares from were a long way to the North. We could deal with it when we reached Las Vegas.
This road was incredible bumpy!
Stayed overnight at the first pull off just north of Chama and then went on a fabulous steam train ride on the Chama, New Mexico to Antonito, Colorado railway with a lunch stop half way (over 1000 ft). 6 hour trip including the ride back in a coach. Rained for the first couple of hours but yes we were stood out in the open converted carriage (why else would we buy rainproof ponchos?!). Saw lots of “chase cars” following the train with steam buffs filming and one guy continually appearing on the track ahead videoing as we went past!
Do not remember steam trains producing so much black smoke though!
Onwards the evening we got off the train and found a spot next to the road before Pagosa Springs. Dark when we stopped but even in daylight it was good place … we chose away from a possible boulder fall! (The week before a boulder had fallen down hitting the coach returning with train passengers from Antonito)
Free dump station at a Giant petrol station – fuel the best price in the area.
Made a bad mistake arriving at Arches National Park on a Friday evening when we know weekends are difficult to find places to stop but we had decided to push on to get there as somewhat behind our “schedule”. Ended up on a BLM overspill area at Big Bend campsite up the gorge 11 miles away from the National Park entrance.
Visited Arches next day which was very crowded. We had to use the RV to drive all over the place as the roads too bad for the bike. They are in the process of being repaired during the nights all summer/autumn and there were a lot of loose stones … not good for 2 wheels.
Leaving Arches we went to a BLM dispersed free site to the North – very rough ground. In the morning we were up early to Canyonlands National Park where we manage to secure a site in the National Park this time:)
We were just in time – 30 minutes later it was all full up! Stayed 2 nights and went around on the bike even back to the visitor centre at the entrance to the park. Good time had.
Went to the Ford dealer in Moab for the accelerator sensor which he ordered overnight so we stayed at Pack Creek commercial site there and had mains electric for the first time this trip.- However, the wrong one had been ordered, so at 08.00 when the garage told us, we decided to press on. Next dealer Las Vegas the way we are going.
ovely drive through Monument Valley, New Mexico. Whilst impressive to seeif you had come up for a day trip to here only we did not find it up to our expectations with all our traveling.
Navajo Monument National Park (also free camping!) We decided we have been travelling too much and needed a good rest. So stay for 5 nights – at the campsite!
Rafting the western end of the Grand Canyon with the Hualapai Indian tribe on the Colorado River , the trip starts at Peach Springs,AZ
What a fantastic day particularly once our helmsman new we were up for it!
Those who only went in shorts and T shirts frooze in the cold Colorado River. Us oldies were the only sensible ones!
Next stop after the great rafting experience was the Grand Canyon National Park. At first we stayed in the forest just outside the boundry boondocking for free. We had made a reservation in the Grand Canyon for 7 days.
Warnings eeverywhere and by the Rangers about Elk being very dangerouse an dthey can stamp and break your leg very easily. One day w ehad probelsm getting to the RV water filling station as they were all around the leaky tap connection.
Fantastic views. Incredible to see so many idiots on the dges having there photos taken. Lots pf people fall to their death.
Ok Sunset Point con. The su n sets behind you away from the canyon.
Great walks around the rim.
Colleen of course found a ice cream shop!
The end came and we went to Las Vegas the day before we were storing our RV to make sure we knew where to go and all was booked OK. We then went back out to Lake Mead Recreation Area and stayed at the Las Vegas Bay campground for a night and sort out the RV for putting in storage the next day.
Another fantastic trip with great memories and at the time we did not know we had now come across the Lake Mead Recreation Area where we would spend many happy days in the future.