2014

Harrah’s

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We started our day going to the outlet mall. We didn’t get here last year so we had to do it this year for sure. The stores were on the second level and the shops were placed in a circle on the floor. Lot of empty stores too. We found a great sale at Carters for Kids and bought Lucy some winter clothes. It is so much fun shopping for little girls! I did find some great bargains for Christmas presents.

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Lucy getting brave in her 9 months!

 

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We were getting hungry so thought it was time to eat something. We had decided we were going to go to Harrah’s “Fresh Market Square Buffet” for Thanksgiving so we thought it would be good to go have lunch there to make sure the food was good.

We stopped at the desk and got our “Players Card” to get $$ off our meal. Well, they don’t do a lunch buffet past 1:30 so we had to eat in the Beach Cafe. It was delicious so we thought we would be safe to have Thanksgiving there.

We stopped to play the slot machines. Dale lost his money and I came home with all my money plus three extra dollars. Ha! Big winnings. We were really trying to get points to get a free buffet but the guy who talked to me didn’t say you need 25 levels! That would be $100 put in a machine and we aren’t the best gamblers to spend that kind of money. It was hard using $10!

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We saw a big banner on a building outside the main doors to Harrah’s saying that Guy Fieri was putting in a new restaurant. He is one of our favorite “Food Network” people. It would be fun to see him in person if he comes for the opening but we won’t be here then.

I did get an appointment for a Pedi and a Mani (birthday present from Dale) at the spa for next Tuesday. We got to walk by the pool and we took a small walk on the beach.

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Harrah’s is the happening place!

PS. We did have Thanksgiving dinner here. As we stood in line with a hundred other people, Anita told us that her neighbor said this was the only good buffet in Laughlin. And it was delicious. All of it. We had turkey and all the trimmings down to the pumpkin pie. We also had a choice of pizza, sushi, many seafood dishes, ham, prime rib, scalloped potatoes, veggies of many varieties, and a dessert station that could be a meal in itself. A very delicious meal with food that was top grade. We do have to come back for dinner or breakfast. It was worth the $17 we paid. A very happy day and thankful day with friends.

Did I ever mention that life is good and I’m trying to live in each moment!

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One Hike

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We finally decided to hike on the trail made from Davis Dam to Laughlin. Don Laughlin donated the money needed to put in this 5 mile “walk.” to the dam. The road above the dam is closed to traffic so one can walk across the dam.

Walkway across Hwy 95
Walkway across Hwy 95 to Las Vegas

We parked Miss Scarlet above the dam and walked across the dam and down the hill to the park. The path was all pavement so we were disappointed as we like to walk in dirt! We hiked a mile and a half before we realized we couldn’t make the complete 5 miles before dark. So we turned around and got in a good 3.5 mile hike.

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We got a late start so we couldn’t go all the way to the walkway and back before dark. It was a great hike along the Colorado River.

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Davis Dam

 

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Riverside Casino boat that goes from the casino to the dam. The tour includes a narrative of the history along the river.

Oh, just a side mention. This was my birthday. Yup, 66 years young. It was a great birthday!

That evening we had a birthday dinner with Anita and Bud at Chili’s. We decided on their special – 2 for $20 and it was delicious. And so much the better with friends.

Again, seizing the moments in life and being very thankful and blessed for life and this crazy RV lifestyle.

 

Having Too Much Fun!

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We have been here 10 days already and we are having a blast.

We have been hiking, shopping, eating and gambling. Not to mention enjoying the blue sky and sun and warm weather. Every second of the day is incredible.

One event we took in was the Country Superstars. There are about 8 or so people who can look and sing like real starts. Our show included Merle Haggard, Tim McGraw, Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson. We had seats right on the stage.

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s you can see, drinks were delivered to the table which was kind of nice.

 

Tim McGraw was out first and sang us some of his popular songs. Merle was out next and really didn’t do a thing for us. Then came Dolly and she was the cutest thing. Willy, for me, was the best. He looked like Willie and sang like Willy and made us all laugh. He even sang to Dale and me! We had a great time singing along and clapping with the beat. It was hard to stay seated, but couldn’t move if we wanted too. The band was great too.

 

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Dolly with Anita and myself.
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Anita was swooning!

 

 

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Oh, yes, he could make anyone swoon. I told him I was supposed to pat him on the butt (per Dolly) and he said, “You wouldn’t be the first.”

 

 

Willie gave me his red handkerchief while on stage and told me to put it on.
Willie gave me his red handkerchief while on stage and told me to put it on for the photo.

We had a lot of fun this night and were glad we went even if they were fake. They gave us some good entertainment.

Life is very good!

 

 

Finally Made It To Arizona!

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The wind followed us all the way to Bullhead City, AZ. At first we had a tail wind which was good. Then heading east out of Barstow we had a cross wind and that isn’t good. But we made the 300 miles to Katherine’s Landing Campground. This is a Forest Service Campground and $5 a day. Water and a dump are available. The sites are quite nice and big. Al, the host is very congenial and keeps everyone in line! The campground also has washers and dryers on site so don’t have to run into town to find a laundromat.

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Plenty of sun to keep us powered up!

Morgan and I took a hike the other day and took these photo’s.

klThis is Katherine’s Landing. It is on the Colorado River – Mohave Lake. There is a marina, motel, store, restaurant, Boat Repair and a mobile home that looks like summer homes for boaters and fishermen. There are many house boats, some very big and they all look like fun. We saw only one sailboat but sure there are more in the summer. Dale wants to rent a speedboat, so we may have a trip up the river in our near future.

colorado-riverGoing up river from the marina and Davis Dam.

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A very co-operative lizard that stood still for a photo shoot!

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Our campground is at the base of the mountains. Only one loop is open and the campground across the street is closed also. This is a popular campground this year. Nearly full every night.

We are about 7 miles from Bullhead City. It is nice being out of all that traffic and busy days for others. One problem we have faced is the time change. Arizona is in Mountain time and Nevada is in Pacific time zone. Nevada is just across the bridge and river into Laughlin!!! We adjust.

Life is good in the sun and warmth. We feel very blessed by our Lord.

 

Lone Pine, California

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We were planning how we would get to Bullhead City, AZ from Reno, NV. We had two choices – go through Vegas or go down 395. No contest. 395 is one of our favorite roads to travel. The scenery, lakes, and mountains win out over big cities. We decided to go to Lone Pine and boondock in the Alabama Hills, which is BLM land. One can stay there for 14 days and get to pick the spot where you want to park.

We chose to stay just off Movie Road.

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Lone Pine Peak is the big mountain in the photo of the Sierras. Mt Whitney is off to the right with the pointed mountain.

Our days, as you can see, were full of clear, blue skies and in the 60’s. It did get cool in the evenings and early mornings. Morgan and Annie loved being outside and free.

We stayed 5 days in excellent weather. The wind did start-up our last evening. Some at 40 mph that rocked the trailer pretty good.

We hiked around the trail to the arches.

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The China Naval Basin was near by and so we got to hear jet noise. Greatest sound.

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The views here are incredible.

We drove up the Whitney Portal Road to where the trailhead for Mt. Whitney begins.  The trail is 11 miles up to the top of the mountain. The increase in elevation is like 6000 feet. It was quite chilly up there at 8000 feet.

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Waterfall coming off the mountain.

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Morgan on the bridge crossing the creek.

The next day, Dale took off early to hike up the trail. I sat in 60 degree weather at the trailer watching a storm come through the mountain. Dale did say it snowed on him. He kept to his 8 mile hike but would like to come back and do the whole trail. I took the day to sew and enjoy the suns warmth.

We took in the Lone Pine Film History Museum while here. The theme of the museum comes about because of all the “B” westerns that have been filmed in the Alabama Hills. We were quite pleased at the content of the museum. Wasn’t cheesy at all.

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Remember these good guys!

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The museum had a display for the movie “Tremors.” I had a good laugh remembering when I first saw this movie with Kevin Bacon.

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We bought a movie when we were finished walking through all the displays. “Seven Men From Now” with Randolph Scott. It was fun seeing where we were camped on film.

The museum also sold  a book with maps to the sites from the old movies. So we trekked off in the hills to find each and every place where the chosen films were made.

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The grave site in “Rawhide.” Filmed in 1939.

Next stop was this cliff where wagons fell into the canyon in “How the West Was Won.”

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There are way too many movies made here to list. Roy Rogers started is film life here. Get a list here. Some of “Iron Man” was filmed here and had the suit Robert Downey, Jr. wore in the first scene. A great place to visit.

After having lunch at the Lone Pine Cafe and Bakery (great, great food) we decided to do some Geocaching. I think we found 5 or 6 caches in the hills. It was fun to find them but also do some rock climbing and see other parts of the hills. lp15
The Face.

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An old mine. Saw several of these in the hills.

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Found it!

lp1Morgan and Dale had a good time too.

The museum has a “Western Film Festival” during Columbus Day weekend in October. I think we will plan to attend on our way south next year.

As always, our stay here was another adventure that made us happy and content. This RV life – is good!

Headed for the Tetons

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After leaving our camp at Madison Creek, we had to go all the way around the park due to a road closure below Old Faithful. Therefore, we were able to get a good look at Yellowstone Lake!

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As we were driving around this lake, I got to thinking, “We haven’t seen a “herd” of buffalo at all.” Literally, around the bend and bam….

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Our travel time to the Tetons was not a long one after leaving Yellowstone. Probably aout 28 miles. It seemed like the two parks were connected!

Our friends, the Kings, clued us in to a boondocking spot from “Days End” and we found it near the little town of Moran along the Buffalo Forks River.

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campsite

This campsite was about 30 miles from Jackson Hole, so not real convenient to “going to town for a loaf of bread.” We did spend a day there, getting gas, groceries, doing laundry and having lunch.

As you can see, the mountains are beautiful. We stopped at a pull out and got a great picture of the mountains and the Snake River.

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Woke up to this one morning.

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This is a beautiful place and I am so glad you took the time to enjoy God’s creation so far from Oregon!

Life is great! God gives us blessings we don’t even realize!

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Yellowstone National Park

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I have been absent from posting to the blog! We were in Yellowstone National Park and didn’t have phones or internet. Then we moved on to the Tetons and boondocked so had spotty phone service.

Our mileage to Yellowstone from Bozeman was like 90 miles, so it was an easy days drive. We stopped in W. Yellowstone, MT to check out RV parks and see what the town had to offer. RV parks were $33/day to $45/day full hook-ups. After careful thought, we left the trailer in W. Yellowstone and journeyed into Yellowstone NP to see what the Madison campground had. Not many spots were open but we did find one that we could fit in and get sun so signed up for it. Back to W. Yellowstone to get the rig and grab some lunch. Lunch was a disappointment at the Old Town Café. They couldn’t even cook a decent hamburger and fries. Oh well.

Dale went ahead of me to the campground and as I was driving the 45 mph all these cars were stopped on the road. That, as we learned, is “animal spotting.” So I got off on a turnout and found out an elk was busy eating on an island in the river.

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This is a Bull Elk and had an impressive rack. My phone gave him 2 butts!

I also saw my first Bison.

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Our campsite was perfect, except hard to get the TV set up. Too  many trees. But that was okay because we were so tired after a day of traveling over the park. We had to put the dog food in the trailer because a momma grizzly and her cub wandered the campground at night.

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Our first day out included drives off the main road, rivers, waterfalls, mud pots, hot springs, geysers and fumaroles.

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Geyser Basin

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basinAs you can see here in this photo, dead trees. Vegetation just can’t grow with the very hot water in the thermal areas.

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We walked many a boardwalk to look at all these. I easily got in my 10,000 steps.

Our goal for the day was to see Old Faithful. Being at it is so late in the year to be visiting here, most everything was closed. The only buildings open were at Old Faithful. The Visitor Center and Snow Lodge were a gift shop and a grill were open. The lodge had dinners but we were home before then.

When we got to Old Faithful we had phone service. I text by daughter, Lesa, who is in Germany to get on the internet for the web cam at Old Faithful. She did and we shared the moment when Old Faithful went off. This made this moment so very special for me.

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On our way home we took another off-the-road drive and found this geyser. People were around it and we kept driving. However, the thing went off so I stopped to get a photo. The height of the geyser’s cone tells us its age. Usually 1″ is equal to 100 years. This one was taller than Dale.

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The next day we went to the East side of Yellowstone. Called the Canyon drive we travelled up and up. Elevation hit about 8000 and we saw some innovative person work.

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This part of Yellowstone is called the “Grand Canyon” of Yellowstone. Oh my gosh, was it ever beautiful. This is one of the places that “you just had to be there” kind of moments. Yellowstone was the first national forest in the United States in 1872. It became a model for other national parks. Aren’t we fortunate this grand place was saved.

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This is the Upper Falls. They had hikes to the Brink of the falls which is where the water goes over the falls. I went to both.
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Yellowstone River at the Upper Falls.

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This is the Lower Falls and the yellow dot is where I hike down 600 feet to stand on a platform on the Brink of the Falls. Due to the elevation and the almost straight down walk…I was out of breath.

 

 

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This is the canyon colors and the photo doesn’t do it justice. It was so pretty. We were on the other side of the canyon at the top at Inspiration Point.
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This is taken from Artist Point. God’s creation here was so incredibly beautiful.
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This is the Yellowstone River going east down the canyon.
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At the Brink of the Lower Falls.

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Dale hiked the 5 miles from Inspiration Point to Artists Point. Mostly paved trails. We didn’t understand that other than being handicapped accessible.

From here we drove south to some mud pots.

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dragonsmouth

On the way back home, we saw a bunch of cars off the road, parked and people out of their vehicles. We learned that this is an indication of “animal sighting” and we stopped. Look what we saw.

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A grizzly bear was playing in this field. He wasn’t far off the road but paid no attention to everyone. He was just doing his thing!

The next day, our last in Yellowstone, took us back to Old Faithful and hiking around behind it to many hot springs, geysers and Morning Glory.

 

 

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A clear warning on the path to Morning Glory.

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Star Pool

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Morning Glory

 

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This is the most famous pool. Due to people throwing stuff in it, this has clogged up the springs. This lowers the temperature and allows other organisms to grow and change the color.
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I forgot the name of this geyser on the right. It is said that it formed around a tree.

On our way back from Morning Glory we came upon this in Firehole River beside Riverside Geyser.

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And she/he kept coming. So we boot scooted out of there.

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After our hike, we hit the grill for lunch. Great burgers and salad.

 

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Ceiling decorations. A busy place.

 

It was a great day for us. The sun was out and the day was in the high 60’s. Actually, the weather was excellent. Cold nights and mornings but nice during the day. I enjoyed this adventure and I still have that smile.

Life is sooooo good. God’s creation is just breath-taking.