Sunday, June 23, 2013



Funny thing about Datil New Mexico is that we have gone through here twice last year and 4 times this year! Always just kinda blew through town, thinking a blink and it’s done! This is our 4th visit this year and finally we have the details on Datil!  First of all, it is pronounced DA-TIL, rhymes with rattle! Like the big snakes they got around here. DATIL !
Well, seems we ran out of some milk, bread, cereal and eggs! We have been camping a few more days than originally planned. We asked the camp host here at Datil Well campground where we could find a store so we could resupply our cupboards. All we had ever noticed in the rush to get through Datil was the blinking light and the gas station in the middle crossroads of town.
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Basically, this is what you glance at as you buzz through town without blinking!  HOWEVER if you read that sign closely, it says: “Eagle Guest Ranch, Café, Grocery, Motel, RV Park, Gas.” and in the blue section with the yellow letters “RAIN BABY RAIN”! So it ain’t just a gas station, in case you blinked! This is the whole danged town on one corner!
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Pretty cashiers and long shelves fully stocked with all kinds of food goodies, soda pops, beer, ice cream, deer heads and would you take a look at the rattle snake skin hanging on the wall to your left!!!  It must have been 20 feet long and big around as your leg! Sheeeeeesh!
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This grocery store has everything from Asprin, to Jack Daniels, spagetti sauce to snowshoes? Yep, that’s a snowshoe on the wall, and another view of that rattle snake skin!
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Now off to the right of the grocery store is the first dining room. Yes, I said first because there are TWO dining rooms here!
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The first dining room has a big, beautiful old rock fireplace to grab your attention, complete with a huge long horned steer over the mantle! If that doesn’t grab your attention, maybe the javelina on the left or the goat on the right will make your eyeballs perk up! Chuck and I ate 2 of the best ever ribeye steaks there on Friday night! HUGE! Probaby a good inch+ thick and it covered our plates! Chuck managed to finish his but 1/2 of mine came home with me! I even ordered a slice of the homemade very berry pie to go.  Oh Man Oh Man Oh Yum, I actually managed to take a photo of it before I gobbled it all up! Before you ask: blueberrues, blackberries, raspberrys, cherrys!
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There is also a full bar for your pleasure……. and home made ice tea……. to wet your whistle!
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Chuck got his good ice cold beer just before dinner!
Look how frosty that beer glass is!
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Last night when we were there, both dining rooms were packed! AND we got some good bluegrass music too!
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The Lost Howlin’ Coyotes were in town to entertain and they were good!  Lots of foot stomping and hand clapping going on in Datil NM last night, let me tell you!
Then we get home to The MotherShip and there’s that big old SUPERmoon coming up at the sunset. I handed Chuck the camera and he came up with the beautiful shots below!
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We have really enjoyed our visit to Datil this time. Glad we took the time to explore this tiny town. Full of good, honest, hardworking, FRIENDLY folks! We sincerely hope you won’t blow through this town like we did the first few times. Datil is worth a second look! We didn’t realize until last night that there was a second RV park in town with 32 full hook up sites, conveniently located right next to that wonderful little café with the amazing home cooked meals! Datil is on Highway 60 west of Socorro and about 70 miles east of Arizona!
We hope you enjoyed your visit!  Geri, Chuck, DoogieBowser and Radar reporting from The MotherShip!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Boondocking in the White Mountains of Arizona

We had been planning a trip to Arizona anyway, but this Silver Fire as seen from our front yard was not a wildfire to ignore! It was over 80 miles away, but still very imposing!

We packed The MotherShip, filled our bird feeders and headed off to Arizona!

Our first stop is only 2.5 hours from Truth or Consequences, but it is a great little boondocking campground at Datil Well, just off Highway 60 west.
$5.00 a night for non-geezers and $2.50 a night for geezers! It gives us a chance to "settle in", put things in proper places. Seems we always leave in a bit of a frenzy, so having a nice cool place in the mountains to stop and re-organize a bit makes it nice!


I have always been a fan of boondocking, tucking myself away in some corner of my world, like I spent my early camping days. Chuck.... not so much. He has always preferred campgrounds. But I think RVSue and I have changed that idea a bit. Datil Well is step one... It's a campground BUT it's dry camping! NO UTILITIES, but they have good clean pit toilets and a place to refill your water jugs.

Last year, we took our first positive step towards boondocking more often!

We had a big metal box welded to the frame of the MotherShip!

 We then installed our Honda i200eu generator and 2 propane tanks.  Chuck had the generator converted to propane because he didn't like the idea of carrying gasoline around with us everywhere!

Propane is definitely the way to go for us, it lasts a very long time. We are still on the little tank and it has been a week now since we left home!
After we left Datil Well, we went up to I-40 and camped at Homolovi State Park near Winslow AZ.
$25 for full hook-ups. We wanted to fill our water tanks and use their dump station. I understand the ruins there are worth the visit, but we got there late and left early.
One sad note, as we got close to Flagstaff, we saw an elk doe carcass on the road. I have been wanting to see an elk for years.....  but not this way. Bummer!
Finally we got to Sheilah and Chuck's home in Paulden. They have quite a farm going there! BIG garden and fruit trees and bee hives and lots of yummy things from the garden. I am sorry, we were so into visiting after so many years.... I forgot to take pictures! But Sheilah decided to try and make Navajo Pizza like we had in Bluff Utah. Her daughter Alana came to visit with her two sons so we got busy in Sheilah's kitchen.  Sheilah made the frybread while Alana and I loaded on the tomato sauce, cheese, onions, avocado, asparagus, & elk meat! YUM!
All 7 of us pigged out on amazing Navajo Pizza!
If any of you would like to learn how to make fry bread, here is a link to an earlier visit to Shiela's kitchen where she taight me how to make frybread!
When we left Sheilah and Chuck's great company, we headed to Camp Verde to meet our old friend John.
We went to a very fancy campground where John used to workcamp! Distant Drums come complete with pool, spa, laundry facilities, and gym with a high price tag too! Distant Drums was $39 per night but well laid out and a fun Casino across the way!  John tried hard to get off work... but as it turned out, none of his co-workers would cover for him at his current workamper job in Apache Junction and (as much as we love you John)we didn't want to get involved in Phoenix traffic or heat! So we left Camp Verde after one night of leaving the Yavapai Apache some of our hard earned $$$ at the Casino!  We headed east down highway 260 through the mountain towns of Strawberry and Pine on to Payson and Star Valley. We ended up in a beautiful pine forest in the White Mountains.
We are tucked away comfortably, lots of room to play!  We took Young Road off of highway 260 and within the first few miles found this lovely site!
 Doogie Bowser and Radar love being off leash and raising the dust level in the forest!

I think they would both add a huge hip hip hooray for being free of campgrounds into FREE campgrounds!

In fact, it's so nice here, at noon temp is all of 74 degrees, the trees are gently blowing in the breeze and we have the whole place to ourselves! We have decided to stay one more day!  YaY!
So that's it from the crew of the MotherShip, Geri and Chuck with our K-9 kids DoogieBowser and Radar!  I sure hope we boondock like this more often!  Thank you RVSue for being such a good influence! For those who have never read her blog...   take note!  She writes a fun blog about her life choice of life, living in a Casita and boondocking full time!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Leaving RVSue and Utah too!

I have been working on this blog for several days, BlogSpot is not co-operating! It is not letting me resize my photographs like it usually does. Grrrr!
Therefore, if you want to see the photos full size, PLEASE try clicking on it and the photograph should come up. I apologize and IF I can figure this glitch out, I will come back and resize all the images for you!
Leaving RVSue and Crew and Utah!
We had a great time.... checking out all the restaurants!  LOL! Sue loved our favorite from the Twin Bluff Cafe, Navajo Pizza - A normal Italian style pizza placed on top of Indian fry bread! Yummy!
Chuck loves this! Can you tell?
We spent 3 days at Sand Island with Sue and then moved up to Cadillac Ranch in Bluff Utah. Two of our good friends, Tim and Diana manage this campground. It's small, a bit close together, but we have never been sorry we stopped here. Cost is $25.00 per night with FHU (full hook ups) a nice shower and laundry onsite and the views are wonderful!

This year we had a special treat at Cadillac Ranch, near sunset, a flock of white face black Ibis flew into the pond at the park! Unfortunately I did not have the 300mm zoom lens on.... but you get the idea!
 Chuck and Sue visited the Bluff Fort while I dogsat for Bridgette and Spike!

Both Bridgette and Spike were overjoyed when Sue came home! Separation anxiety? Not much!
Sue isn't much for posing, but then neither am I, so we both snuck a quick snap sneaky photo of each other!
Can you spot the lizard on this tree?

If you look close below, I have outlined him in red!
He/She/It was 10 to 12 inches long!
We overnighted in Chinle again, in the Cottonwood Campground at Canyon de Chelly National Monument.  The road from Bluff, Utah to Chinle is just jaw dropping beautiful! It looks totally different
depending on whether you are headed nort or south on Highway 191.  On this day, we hit the scenic roadway right after a rainstorm had passed over. Wet rocks are much more colorful than dry rocks and it was amazing!

This above shot was the beginning of a steep downhill curve and I was yelling at Chuck to slow down and still managed to snap this image through the window! The one below is just layers of colors dressing the earthmother! Shot this one out the passenger window.

 Below is the storm that had just passed over, giving the rocks their colorful beauty!
Always remember when driving on any Native American Reservation, it is open range... horses, cattle, sheep, goats ALL have the right of way. Please drive accordingly!

Datil Well Recreation Area Campground

We discovered this nice campground just off of Highway 60 in western NM. Just a mile or so out of
the town of Datil and down a short dirt road you will see the Visitor Center and campground on your left!
 A whole lot of history happened around here!
There area scenic mountains all around the campground area,
The sites are well spaced with a lot of foliage spaced in between. There will be $300,000 worth of improvements taking place here this year. The only problem we had was finding a level area for the MotherShip but we were assured that leveling the sites was high on the list of repairs as are showers. The pit toilets were nice though.
There are well marked hiking paths throughout.
We liked it so well, nice and cool temps, we stayed 3 nights and with our geezer pass it was $2.50 a night!
$5.00 for those of you too young for a geezer pass.
However, Radar was missing RVSue and the crew and so were we! It was a fun week.
We will be heading to Arizona to visit some good friends in the next few weeks. I promise a good blog!
Meanwhile that is it from the MotherShip Crew: Chuck, Geri, Radar and DoogieBowser! Thanks for stopping by!