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Camping at Sun River

We made it to Sun River

sunny 75 °F
View Aunt Verna's 100th & Grandkids Trip 2019 #2 & Grandkids 2019 Trip 1 on Miss Chris's travel map.

We made the best of our weekend in Seven Feathers swimming at the pool, taking walks along the stream behind our RV and walking down to the casino store to buy ice cream. The playground wasn’t much to write about and we didn’t spend much time there. Emilio was so anxious to get to Fynn but he did well with our stop.

On Monday morning we got a call, the shop found that a fuse had gone out and the truck was ready to go. We couldn’t believe it, such a simple fix.
Clayton and Jen left Lost Lake that morning as there were no hookups. Their fridge had lost power when the battery went out, they ran out of water and needed showers badly. We all drove straight to Sun River.

Sun River is a resort town and we camped close by at a private RV park, Thousand Trails. The RV park has a pool, kayaks to rent for the river and games for kids. Sun River has a small amusement park with bumper cars, jump houses, miniature golf and a climbing wall.

For 2 days, Tues and Wed it was just Dale, Emilio and I along with Clayton’s family with Zoey, Fynn and twins. We took the kids to Sun River 1 day where kids did lots of jumping, drove bumper cars and then made a stop for ice cream. Back at the RV park the kids would swim in the pool and try to catch frogs at the river. One day Clayton rented a kayak and he and kids took turns paddling and catching frogs.
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Bekki arrived on Thursday with two more grandkids, we went to Bend and spent time at the river there. The playground was large and gave the kids lots of options. The walk to the river was beautiful and made for some photo opportunities.

Fynn and Emilio have never spent much time together but they got along so well, like the best of old friends. But it was also good for Emilio to have his other cousins to himself before the rest of his siblings arrived.
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The week went by quickly and on Saturday morning we had to say goodbye. On to the next adventure.

Posted by Miss Chris 21:10 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip travel oregon camping living rv family_travel rv_travel grandkids_trip rv_adventures 2007_gmc_sierra 2007_gmc_2500 sun_river Comments (0)

Not the Way to Start a Trip

Right away we had a breakdown

sunny 75 °F
View Fall Trip 2019 & Aunt Verna's 100th & Grandkids Trip 2019 #2 & Grandkids 2019 Trip 1 on Miss Chris's travel map.

Having worked all winter and spring we made plans for a trip with the Jag and an elaborate plan for grandkids trips. Note the plural!

We had a great plan to include a trip with our 6-year old grandsons to the Oregon coast and 1 for the 10 and 9-year-old granddaughters to Yellowstone National Park. Our 12 and 10-year-old grandsons would be busy this summer with swimming and a visit to their mom’s so we would need to figure out another trip for them at a later date. We even had a little trip planned for our 4-year old grandson to San Francisco.
Our plan was to drive to Northern California and pick up 1 grandson, Emilio, then drive to Oregon City and pick up the 2nd one, Fynn. We’d take them to a Safari Park and a beach day.

We would then drive to Lost Lake and meet our youngest son and family. From Lost Lake, we’d all go to Sun River for a week. Our oldest son’s family would also meet up with us in Sun River and from there we would take our youngest grandson, Jasper to San Francisco for a 2-day stay.
It worked out that Emilio came to our house prior to our departure so we headed straight to Oregon City. We spent the night before Oregon City at a rest stop and figured we be at our youngest son’s house by 1 pm. Fynn was ready to go and couldn’t wait for us to arrive and Emilio could hardly wait to pick up Fynn.
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About 10 am we stopped for fuel at Seven Feathers in Oregon, a place we normally stop. Unfortunately, when we started to get back on the highway, the truck wouldn’t shift out of 1st gear. Mind you, this was a Friday.

We got off the highway and stopped so that Dale could check everything out. Some local guys came by and suggested that we go to an auto shop just down the road. The mechanic tested the car and it pointed to the transmission control module. He suggested that we drive the truck back to the Seven Feathers Campground, unload the 5th wheel and bring the truck back. He said it would take about 1 week if the transmission had to be sent out. UGH!
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We drove to the Seven Rivers Rest Stop and called AAA who gave us the names and phone numbers of the approved mechanics in the next town, Roseburg. We called the shops and one told us to call the AMCO shop, that he sent his employees’ there for training. We appreciated his honesty. The AMCO shop said to have the truck towed there, he would order a control module and start on it Monday.

We soon also realized that we needed a place to have the RV towed. AAA said to have it towed to wherever we and it would be safe. I started calling RV parks and my daughter-in-law was calling them as well. There were no spaces at any parks in Roseburg. I then called Seven Feathers, right next to us and after working on a site for several minutes they found one. We could stay for the week if we had to.

In the meantime, while all these phone calls were taking place, a lady who had parked beside us took matters into her own hands. She couldn’t get her mirrors to work so we showed her the button to set them and mentioned that our truck was not shifting. She then pointed at our truck and commanded Jesus to fix our truck. We started the truck as per our mechanic at home to see if resting had helped and the lady was so happy as she was sure that she’d healed our truck. As resting didn’t help we went back to the rest stop and called to make verify with AAA to tow both the truck and trailer. The lady seeing us parked again and me on the phone, came over to our truck and laid her hands on the hood, then prayed. Oh, we of little faith, we didn’t even bother to talk with her, we only laughed. We wondered why she needed our help to get her mirrors working.

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The truck was towed to Roseville and the RV was towed into the RV park next to us and poor Fynn and Emilio were not happy.

Posted by Miss Chris 16:09 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip travel oregon camping living rv family_travel rv_travel vehicle_breakdowns grandkids_trip rv_adventures 2007_gmc_sierra 2007_gmc_2500 Comments (0)

Mesa Verde's Long House

A hike into the Long House

sunny 40 °F
View Fall trip 2018 on Miss Chris's travel map.

Tuesday morning, we had a fairly early hike, and with the drive up to the Mesa, another 45 minutes, made our departure time even earlier. I was a little concerned that there might be ice on the road as it was only in the 20’s but roads were clear.

For those who haven’t been to Mesa Verde, the mesa drive is so beautiful. There are pull-outs that look over the valley, pull-outs that look over the canyons one each side, and in some stretches, there is a drop off on each side with only the road visible. I found myself looking for ruins in alcoves within the canyon walls.

For this day we had a hike into a site we’d never visited before, “Long House”.

“Long House” is a different hike, 2 hours in total which includes the tour of the site, most other hikes only last 1 hour. The hike itself is easy at first, level and paved, but down into the site, the trail consists of steep switchbacks. It wasn’t so hard that we had to stop too many times on the way out, but, we wished we would have brought water.
https://www.nps.gov/meve/learn/historyculture/cd_long_house.htm

The ruins are appropriately named as the alcove is long with the site stretching along further than others do. The ranger led us thru the site walking to the rear to see the seep spring, pointing out where the people collected their water. We reflected on how the community must have interacted at the site, possibly gossiping or exchanging ideas while collecting their water or keeping the chaos of children’s games from muddying their water. Coming out of the site the ranger pointed out a hand print on the top of the alcove.
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Going into the sites gives one the sense of going back in time and the rangers are knowledgeable and give us a chance to reflect on those who went before us.
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We are looking forward to going back.

Posted by Miss Chris 11:00 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip hiking mesa_verde grandkids grandkids_travel rv_travel grandkids_trip rv_adventures gmc_truck gmc_sierra long_house Comments (0)

A Little Time in Balcony House

A walk into Balcony House in Mesa Verde


View Fall trip 2018 on Miss Chris's travel map.

Instead of playing in New Mexico on Sunday morning, we drove off to beat the storm. At least we hoped we were beating it. We wanted to get to Mesa Verde in Colorado where there was no rain in the forecast.

Driving north we always love driving by the “Earthship Homes” in New Mexico and someday we will stop so I can shoot photos of the fun homes. We know we are on the right road when we pass by the homes.

As we started over the pass we discovered that snow had already fallen, fortunately, the roads were not slick. It did snow for a bit while driving but mostly we left it behind after the pass. We did see so many beautiful trees in full fall colors and I was having Dale stop every few minutes so I could shoot more photos. He probably thought we would never get going.
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We got into Mesa Verde after dark, and it was really dark. If our truck lights had gone out we would have been goners as part of the road is on a steep hillside. This must be one of the darkest places on earth. We found the campground and backed into our site, hooking up to electricity. We were so happy for electricity as it was below freezing and the heater quickly made our RV warm and toasty.

I had looked online earlier and found that only 2 tours into ruins were available and that this was the last week of the tours for the year. We couldn’t buy tickets online but rather had to go to the Visitors Center to purchase them.

First thing Monday morning we drove down to the Visitors Center, got a Jr. Ranger book for Zaya and tickets for the 2 hikes available. One hike was for that afternoon and the other for Tuesday morning.

Monday’s hike was for Balcony House. I was looking forward to this hike as we go thru a tunnel that was used by the Ancestral Pueblo people. Kids could stand up in part of the tunnel but most of us were forced to crawl. This is also a great site as we could walk in areas where they walked and worked. https://www.mesaverde.org/files/uploaded-images/2013BalconyHs_English.pdf
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I had taken photos years ago in Balcony House but lost the negatives and gave the original photos away as a gift so I was so happy to be able to shoot photos again. I didn’t take the tripod but did carry my big camera for better photos.

Zaya was a little concerned about climbing the 30’ high ladder but after doing so wasn’t afraid at all for the others. But I was just a little worried when she was scrambling up the toe-holds etched into the cliff to the exit. She had to stretch her legs to get from one hold to another, then stopped and turned around to talk. I told her to keep her eyes on where she was going. I have no idea how I was planning to catch her if she fell and, since I was right behind her, I couldn’t shoot photos of the toe holds but did turn around and shoot one looking down the cliff. YIKES, how the ancients went up and down carrying babies, food or what have you, I have no idea!
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Once again, the Jr Ranger program opened up opportunities for Dale and me to learn more. We visited the pit houses on top of the mesa, learning how they were built and how people lived. We noted the foundation walls of a village around the excavated pit homes. As with our other Jr. Ranger events we had to read every word of every sign with Zaya but again learned so much.
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As the mesa top is open 24/7 we could take our time with our only worry being to leave by the time we wanted dinner. We were cold and tired when we returned to the RV but so happy with our exciting day.

Posted by Miss Chris 12:52 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip hiking mesa_verde grandkids grandkids_travel rv_travel grandkids_trip rv_adventures gmc_truck gmc_sierra balcony_house Comments (0)

Santa Fe and Taos

Food and fun in Santa Fe and Taos

sunny 75 °F
View Fall trip 2018 on Miss Chris's travel map.

From family we started on our way down I-40 west towards home, that is, we headed westward, with a side trip north to Taos.
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We needed to go to Santa Fe and Taos for supplies: more fresh roasted green chili, fresh ristrias, fresh ground chili powder, and fresh food from our favorite restaurants.

We stopped at our favorite Santa Fe restaurant, Maria’s, for tamales, enchiladas and soul food. We had fun introducing Zaya to Sopapillas with honey, something she didn’t know about. Zaya, after trying one, then set her mind to finding the best sopapilla in New Mexico. However, she also decided that she wanted to live inside Maria’s, but unfortunately for her, we did not allow her to stay behind.
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From Santa Fe. we drove onto Taos where we had an RV site for that evening. We’d planned to stay in Santa Fe but because of the balloon festival, there were no sites available. It was fine as we were happy to go directly to Taos.

We are in love with Taos, the chili sauce, Caribe style, out of this world!!! Dark red chili sauce with the smell of pure chili, made from red chili pods. And green chili sauce made from chopped roasted hatch green chili, sometimes with added sautéed onions and garlic.

We planned our days around the food, late breakfast at Taos Diner, Christmas style and dinner either La Cueva or Orlandos. Zaya commented that none of our favorite restaurants had a fancy entryway.
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We spent part of 1 day back in Santa Fe, drinking hot chocolate chili elixir at Kakawas and eating chili spiced brownies, visiting the earliest house and of course, another dinner at Marias.
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We heard that snow was forecast and decided to head out earlier than planned. We had more miles to go, some over passes and didn’t want to get caught in bad weather. Until next time our chilies will have to last.

Posted by Miss Chris 14:52 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip taos grandkids santa_fe grandkids_travel rv_travel grandkids_trip rv_adventures gmc_truck gmc_sierra Comments (0)

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