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Sat Sep 15 to Fri Sep 21- Colorado Springs to Tuba City AZ

Saturday- We drove out of the AF Academy, using the north exit, as it was okay to take the MH out that way. We turned south on I-25 the promptly ran into construction. We have been traveling this route for 8 years, since we first started traveling full time and EVERY time they have had construction on I-25 in this area! Ridiculous! I guess they will never be done….

We continued south through Pueblo and turned west on Hwy 160 in Walsenburg. We traveled thru beautiful scenery, enjoying the views of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

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We started to climb and the MH started to overheat. We pulled over at a wide spot on the side and disconnected the car. We let the MH cool off and then continued to a rest area where we ate lunch. We continued on to the town of Blanca, to Blanca RV Park. We parked the MH in a 50 amp FHU site. We set up and left to tour Great Sand Dunes NP and Preserve.

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We visited the Visitor Center and watched the movie. We stamped our Passport and we are going to have to purchase a new one. I could not find room to stamp and the stamps!

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Below is the walk out to the dunes.

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We drove to the parking lot and walked out to get a closer look at the dunes. We drove up to the Campground, which was completely full. We would not have fit in there anyway!  That was the farthest that you can go without 4 wheel drive. We turned around that returned to the MH. We ate dinner and watched TV.

Sunday- We left around 9 and continued west on Hwy 160. As we were driving we saw signs for 5 acres of land for sale. This was interesting as we saw all sorts of “homes” on about 5 acres in the fields. They were living in old train cars, a caboose, very old trailers, and other assorted shacks. There were no road, electricity, or dump stations. We thought it was interesting.

We traveled thru Alamosa and Monte Vista. We stopped at a rest area and unhooked the car. We are going to be climbing to almost 11,000 ft. at Wolf Creek Pass. I drove the car.

This drive was spectacular! The trees have turned and it was just fabulous! Poor Bob did not get to enjoy it. I could not get a lot of pictures, and I missed the view of the valley. We were now in the San Juan Mountains.

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We arrived in Pagosa Springs. This is a cute little town. We turned into Mountain Landing  RV Park, $46 night for FHU 50 amp. It is a nice park, but has nothing except the sites.

We set up, walked the dogs, and ran into town. It was 1 PM so we stopped for lunch at The Junction restaurant. We ate lunch and went to the Springs. We paid $46 for the two of us. They had 18 pools. The temps ranges from 93 degrees to 110. The 110 was in the sun, so it must has been hotter than that! There was one in the shade, that stated it was 107, but it felt cooler than the 104 pools in the sun.

We laid on some recliners to dry out, then took showers. We returned to the MH very relaxed! We went to dinner at an Italian restaurant called Marconi’s’. We had a nice dinner.

Monday- We were in no hurry to leave. We are only traveling about 60 miles to Durango. This morning Bob saw on the Alfa FB group that a transformer had exploded behind Charlies RV Repair, in Utah, where we were last month. The sparks started a fire. There were 5 Alfa’s there. The owners called 911. One of the Alfa’s had significant damage and the guy who posted had some heat damage. The area behind the facility burned across the block behind the facility almost to the houses on the next block. Whew, fires have followed us all of the trip this year.

The drive to Durango was okay, but definitely not as beautiful as our previous days. We passed through Durango and drove north on Hwy. 550 to Westerly RV Park. $45/night for 3 nights. FHU 50 amp, but we are facing the wrong way. This park has us driving into the site, up to a fence. We pulled up as far as we could without hitting a tree. We went back to the office and said that we could not put up the satellite. I had specifically requested a site where we could get satellite. They said to just back up. We said that we will be sticking out and they said that was okay. So we did. Bob climbed up on the roof while we set up the satellite, and he pulled off some branches ( with permission) and we settled in.

We ran into Durango to check in at the train station. The gal gave us our tickets for tomorrows train ride and gave us directions to the parking. We checked where the parking lot was located. Then we went to Walmart for Karlie’s food. They did not have it, but we found it at Albertsons. We returned to the MH, ate dinner and watched some recorded TV.

Tuesday- We left at 8:30 to go downtown to the train station. We parked and walked over to where the buses would pick us up. There is a track problem. so they had to bus us to the first stop on the train trip. We hopped on a bus at 9 AM, and were taken about 20 miles north. We boarded the train, then waited. We did not leave until about 10:30.

We had chosen to pay a little bit extra for the “gondola” car. This is an open car. There was a roof over us, but the sides of the car were open. We were on the left side of the car heading north. The right side is the better side, and we will be on that side on the trip back.

A woman started talking to us. She is a single woman, who is a full time RV’er. She is from Indian Head Maryland, and lived up the street from us! We did not know her, but her father owned the Indian Head Hardware store and her sister worked there. Bob knew her sister and of course we knew many of the same folks in town. We are going to meet up with her at Quartzsite in January!

The scenery was spectacular, with the trees changing colors. The pictures do not do the beauty justice!

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Best foliage

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We arrived in Silverton, a former mining town. They have kept most of the town the way it was in the past. The first thing we noticed was a large RV park, next to the railroad tracks. They also had a ski hill.

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We de-boarded and went searching for a restaurant. This is not a food Mecca. We found a restaurant with mediocre food and poor service. The restaurant did have a great piano player.

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We ate lunch, then walked around the town until it was time to re-board the train. We had a 2 hour lay over.

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There were a lot less people on the train on the return trip. You could take a bus back. We were in our same seats and so now we were on the left side on the return trip. The light was not as good and I did not take as many pictures on the return trip.

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We arrived back at the buses at about 6, hopped on a bus which returned us directly to the parking lot. We raced back to the MH and anxiously awaiting dogs who really needed to go out! We ate leftovers for dinner, We were very tired! We watched some TV and went to bed.

Wednesday- We did tasks round the motor home, then went into Durango to the Steelworks Brewery for lunch.  Bob had the stout and he was not impressed with it. It had been opened in August, so it was fairly old at this point. The food was delicious. I had a green chili quiche with soup and salad. All were terrific. Bob had a good burger.

We stopped at City Market then returned to the MH. It started to rain in the evening. This was leftover monsoon rains from Arizona. The problem was that we were parked on red soil, which turned to red mud. We had it everywhere, even with taking off our shoes and wiping  the dogs paws. We ate dinner at home.

Thursday-  We left around 9 am. Bob was driving the MH and I was following in the car. We had a high pass to cross, so we wanted to get the MH across the pass. We stopped at a rest area and connected the car once we were through the pass.

We saw Chimney Rock, a National Monument, from Hwy 160. Bob had use Google Earth before we left to see if we could get into their parking lot. We could not. So here is the picture from the highway.

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We traveled on Hwy 160 across to 4 corners. I had been there in 1975, and it sure was different. It is on the Navaho Reservation. They are now charging $5 per person to enter. We paid the fee and parked in the RV parking lot. When we arrived there were two RV’s, when we left there were 10. We ate lunch before we left.

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In the background, you can see the covered stalls. Many had folks in them selling jewelry and other assorted items. The weather has cleared and the temps are in the 70’s.

We continued driving west on Hwy. 160 to Tuba City. We stayed at the Navaho Quality Inn RV Park, $29 FHU 50 amp. We could not get satellite due to a tree, but we watched some recorded movies. We ate dinner at home.

Friday- I had a horrible night. The shingles were itching like crazy. I could not sleep. I even got up and iced the area hoping it would deaden the itching. I also took some Tylenol. Basically, I did not get much sleep.

When Bob woke up I told him I wanted to go to an Urgent Care. The paperwork said if the itching got worse to see a Doctor. So I got the MH ready for us to leave, and I left Bob to drive the MH while I took off for Flagstaff in the car.

I drove into the parking lot of the Urgent care at about 9 AM, I signed in and sat. The receptionist stated that they would be running behind as they only had one Doctor today. They also had a woman who was bleeding come in and they had to call 911. So in all, my paperwork was not processed for 2 hours. Then it was another 1/2 hour before I was called into the room, then 45 minutes until the Doc came in. It took forever!

Anyway, she looked at the rash and did not think it was Shingles, but she looked it up on the computer and decided to treat it like Shingles. So she gave me a prescription for Prednisone. She also gave me a dose of the Prednisone right there. Lovely, that is good for at least a 5 lb. weight gain!

I stopped at McDonalds for lunch and started down the hill from Flagstaff. Bob was already in the site at Paradise at this point. It took me over 2 more hours to get to Paradise. I stopped at a Walgreens and dropped off the prescription. The temp had been 80 in Flagstaff and it was 103 when I arrived at the MH. Yes, it is a dry heat, but it was still hot! The MH took a long time to cool down, as the temp at 8 PM was still 100 outside!

At 4:45 we met up with Linda, Mike, John, and Karen at the Elks Lodge for dinner. We had a great time catching up and a wonderful meal.

We picked up my prescription, which I am to take only in the morning. We returned to the MH, fed the dogs and watched some TV. We went to bed a little early as both of us were exhausted. I also took some Benadryl for the itching and fell right to sleep.

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