Our Travel Blog

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Driving Miss Donna - what does this mean? Whenever I want to go somewhere, if Don is home he will usually drive. He always says he is driving miss Donna! This blog is for our travels, usually with our truck and fifth wheel trailer, but sometimes in our other wheels. When we are not vacationing check in for updates, although less frequent, about our life at home and our wonderful family:)

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Weekend in Vegas

The Eagles concert on March 23 deserves it own post!  On Saturday morning we left the trailer at the camp in Davis Park and headed to Las Vegas for the Eagles Concert.  It was so fantastic! 
We decided to stay right at the MGM Grand, where the concert was held.  That was quite an elegant decision on our part, and a little selfish, as we thought it would allow us to partake and have no concerns about driving, taxis or other efforts to get home after.
The room was very modern, and very comfortable.  EXCEPT the smoke detector went off at 3:00 a.m.and we had to call maintenance.  But they were efficient, changed the batteries and back to sleep we went.
We attended the conference with Phil Stagg and Therza, as well as Tammy and Dean form Okotoks.  Although we only live a town away from Phil and Therza, life keeps getting in the way and we haven’t visited in over a year.  So we decided to meet for an early dinner, meet Tammy and Dean, and catch up.  We chose the Rainforest Cafe in the MGM, and the food was sooooo good.
The Eagles Concert was all you could hope for.  I don’t know why the newer performers can’t figure this out.  The band came on stage, no warm up groups, no introductions, stood at the microphones and started singing.  From the Seven Bridges Road to open with, to Desperado as the last song, 2.5 hours of strong performance.  They did not miss one old song we wanted to hear, and did not add anything new that the audience didn’t know or want to hear.  It was worth every penny to see them in such an amazing venue!
Thanks to Phil and Therza, I stole photos off their Facebook pages…
Vegas Eagles ConcertVegas Drinks
And thanks to Phil and Therza for joining us, and the great visit!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Our Favourite Nevada Town

After leaving Stewart's Point, we headed to the Laughlin area, specifically Davis Camp, technically in Bullhead City, Arizona.  Laughlin, NV and Bullhead City, AZ are actually across the river form each other.  Laughlin is essentially the entertainment area, and Bullhead City the residential and “normal” community.  By normal I mean it hosts full services such as any small city…
We really like the Davis Camp park, it has a reasonably priced service sites, along the Colorado River, and allows an opportunity to explore the desert, play a bit in casinos, and just generally enjoy the area.
We followed our typical Laughlin pattern this week, relaxing in the a.m., discovering new places through the day, and a bit of happy hour and gambling in the evenings.  To ensure we reached our 10,000 walking steps a day, we made sure we walked the Laughlin River Walk from start to finish everyday.  This is a boardwalk that connects all the casinos except for Harrah’s, and is about an hour and half walk.  In the hot evenings it is a welcome stroll as the breeze from the river hits you.  And of course the reward is a beverage and a game or two!
Lae Mead for Blog
This picture is of the southern part of the Lake Mead Recreation Area, and shows the areas we discovered this trip.  Although it may not look like it from the map, each trip in to the water area takes2 or 3 hours, depending on the road, etc.  The reward in every case was either a marina, with full commercial services and campgrounds, or in some cases like Princess Cove, a secluded and small open camping area.

Kite Surfing at Katherine's Landing
Burros at Temple Bar

A Lovely View at Lake Havasu

A crowded beach on Spring Break, Lake Havasu

My Favorite Desert Flowers - see the quarter?

This is typical of the roads we have travelled
A picture doesn't show the numerous cactus along the highway to Phoenix

Not sure why I can't seem to align these photos, sorry!

Until next time - have a great week!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

And just like that…

You wake up and it’s Saturday!
To say this week has flown by will make it sound like we were up and at it every day, going places and seeing things.  But no – we did get up every day, and we did meander a bit, but otherwise when you are in an extended break away from home, things go a bit slower.  It takes time to find the rhythm of slowing down and enjoying what’s around you.
So that is what we did this week.  Along the way we enjoyed some spectacular sights and a few hikes, walks and stops for an ice cream or beer.
It was a relatively short jaunt from Saint Georg’s to Stewart's Point, on Lake Mead.  It is part of the Lake Mead National Recreation Area.  If you are looking for us on a map, you need to locate Overton, NV.  Tuesday was spent catching up on news with Ivan, the winter traveller.  This is a gorgeous spot to camp in, and Don and I are quite good at dry camping, or boon docking as it is called here.  Although we don’t have elaborate charging devices as we typically don’t do this a lot, we are able to sustain our battery and water supply for a week.  After some initial struggles with batteries last year, the new ones are at top performance, and our water supply has never been an issue.  Showers, dish washing, etc. has never ran us dry.  I always say it is because when I was growing up I had to carry water from the well.  Trust me – that teaches conservation!
Wednesday it was time to do some exploring, and we drove off to see what trails we could find within the park.  We stopped at Redstone picnic area, and explored the trails there.  We also drove to see Echo Beach, another marina area in the park.  Every day has been around 30 above, so that limits us Canadians as to how much time we spend outdoors walking in the sun versus sitting in the shade practicing beverage tasting.
Thursday as we were getting our thoughts together for the day, someone said Vegas.  I am one to jump at that word and embrace it.  Visions of the outlet mall immediately formed in my head, and this story is called Driving Miss Donna!  Vegas is about an hour from our area, so off we went.  The outlet mall didn’t have a lot going on, although it was busy.  A few quick stops at my favourite stores, a new Fossil watch (haven’t worn a watch in years, but this one is so cute) and off to Costco we headed.  Can never pass up a chance to shop at Costco, cheap liquor and all.  The samples were also above average this visit, as was the price of wine.
Friday I was in withdrawal from fast internet, so we headed to Overton MacDonald's to catch up, and maybe have some ice cream.  Alas, their internet was not working, so we had to visit the official ice cream store, which advertised internet.  At a 15 minute limit and slow feeds, it was rather bleak.  Oh well.
Our last official day at Stewart’s Point, we decided to drive some of the roads around the area, and see if there were any other choice boon docking sites.  Along the way we stopped at a “unique” rock garden that someone built somewhere at some time.  Ha ha.  There are a few photos below and all I can say is bizarre, but in it’s own way cute…  We also drove in to check out Callville Bay Resort and Marina.  The view was great, and the beer and wings in the lounge even better!
So today we leave Stewart's Point for another year, and head to another favourite destination – Laughlin.  We will be there for a week, and I shall report back on our activities as the week nears an end.  As a teaser I will tell you we are going to a concert in Las Vegas on Saturday night!

Just a note for anyone who blogs, uses Live Writer, etc. - This year I printed our blog into a hardcover book for Don, and any Windows Live Photo albums printed as a shuffle, not showing the full photo.  So I blog in Live Writer as we travel, then add the photos in blogger.  I would appreciate any other ways bring identified.

Also - it appears the reason my photos have trouble loading is the fine pixation of them, so after saving them to a more froendly web version all went well.  I assume that is caused by having a Nikon professioal camera?

In order of the photos - a rock garden, a rock arch, cactus, and more rock - there's a theme happening!

Monday, March 11, 2013

And the adventure begins...

Saturday morning saw us up and at it early.  We were on the road by 6:00 am, hoping that all reports were correct and there would be no snow to slow us down.  Everything went our way and we pulled into Idaho Falls about 8:30 pm.  Walmart had a site with our name on it, and although we expected to stay in a hotel the first night, it was not necessary, as the trailer was a balmy 10 degrees before the furnace even went on.  Cheap I am - no way 8 hours of sleep is worth $150 when you can have your own bed.  Walmart allowed an opportunity to stretch our legs, then we climbed into bed with our E readers.

Sunday was another fantastic day for driving, with the skies so blue and sunshine all around.  Although in the Salt Lake City area it was evident that snow had fallen the day before, the highways were dry and clear. 

We arrived at our first destination, St. George Utah, at about 4:30 pm.  First stops after plugging in were Costco and Walmart for groceries.  We visited the Golden Corral for their buffet, and headed home to call it an early night.

Today we explored a few areas, and found a great little hike in Johnsn Canyon.  It was short and T Shirt weather, much to our enjoyment!

We visited the local AT&T store where Don loaded up data on his internet stick and I made the big purchase of a US smartphone and data package.  Smiles all around!

The sunshine on our faces makes it a little easier to be away form home, and this is just the beginning.

Tomorrow we are headed to Stewart's Point in the Lake Mead area.  Until posting and photo time again, take care!

Friday, March 8, 2013

March–In Like A Lamb

Well now that I said that I can barely remember March 1.  Here was my last week of February and first of March.  Tuesday I bussed to Fort Mac, to work there on Wednesday.  Wednesday I flew to Calgary to work in Cochrane on Thursday.  Thursday I flew to Fort Mac to FINALLY have some down time and celebrate Connor’s 1st Birthday!  Don was in Peace River, and after a quick stop at home, joined me Friday.  Connor’s party was Sunday afternoon, and then we travelled home together.  Don had to work in Peace River on Monday morning.

This week was spent prepping for the trip, and finished off with today working in Rocky Mountain House.  Don finished a day early in Peace River, and had a remote start installed in the truck.  Oh yes, amid the flurry of February he purchased a new truck.

We are leaving for our spring vacation tomorrow, and our first destination is Saint George, Utah.  It will hopefully be warm there, we can open up the trailer, pack it with groceries, etc. and start the vacation. 

I’ll let you know how that goes!