Saddle Campground, New Mexico

On July 23, 2017 we arrived at Saddle Campground near Cloudcroft, New Mexico. This was one of our few one night stays, but we wanted to get back to high altitude, where it is cooler, and begin our journey west towards home. We didn’t have mixed feelings about turning towards home, we simply wanted to keep traveling.

While heading up towards Cloudcroft, road signs repeatedly warned us about steep canyon roads and the difficulty they pose for trucks. Our experience was that New Mexico over warns motorists, but I guess it is better to be safe than sorry.

Saddle Campground is at 9000 feet and when we pulled in a thunderstorm was brewing. We leveled the trailer and left it connected to the truck. I always use the front trailer jack to lift the truck and trailer to simplify the sway bar connection, but I had never done it to level the trailer for an overnight stay with the truck attached. It seemed to work great with no noticeable degradation to the jack.

I started a fire so we could cook brats for dinner before the heavy rain came. We cooked and ate watching lightning and listening to the thunder rumble its way up the mountains and through the canyons. Not much rain fell and we enjoyed a nice cool evening. The campground was sparsely populated and the sites were reasonably well spaced. There were plenty of trees for shade and beauty. Our site was a pull through that had a nice table and fire ring just down the hill. It seemed like a great place with much to offer in the area. We plan to return someday.

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Carlsbad RV Park and Campground, New Mexico

On July 20, 2017 we arrived at Carlsbad RV Park and Campground in Carlsbad, New Meexico. We arrived in time to check-in, park, hookup, and cook dinner. It seems funny calling parking with 100 other RVs hooked up to utilities camping, but it’s as close to camping as it comes near Carlsbad Caverns.

While the RV park sort of setting is not my idea of a great camping experience, the Carlsbad RV Park and Campground was clean, the staff was helpful and friendly, the pool was refreshing, the dog run was acceptable, and the park was quiet. It made for a good base of operations to see what we came here to see, the caves.

The next morning we rose early and left the trailer at about 7:30am to get to Carlsbad Caverns early enough to make our reserved cave tour at 8:15. While in Colorado we made reservations for a tour of King’s Palace. We would have loved to tour other parts of the cave, but other reservable tours were full. In addition, several of the other more strenuous tours require participants to be 12 years old or older. We’ll come back.

When we arrived at the park I took a look at my watch and was very unhappy that we had missed our tour time due to a time zone change. My phone confirmed the time. We went into the visitors center to see what could be done. It turns out that while we were in New Mexico we were up high on a plateau overlooking Texas to the south. My phone, and therefore my watch were getting their time information from a Texas cell tower broadcasting central time. We were early and happy!

From within the visitors center we took the elevator down about 800 feet and joined our tour group. The tour of King’s Palace was about 1.5 hours long, was interesting and quite beautiful. These caves were formed differently than others we’ve been in and learning about the process was interesting.

After our tour of King’s Palace we took the self guided tour of The Big Room. It was easy to get to because it’s simply another path leading out from the cafeteria / gift shop area 800 feet below the surface. The Big Room is well named, it is huge having an area equal to that of 14 football fields. The trail around the room is smooth, easily traversed and has many signs yielding information. The decorations are quite spectacular and when you take into account the sheer number of them, it is quite amazing. The trip around The Big Room took us about 1.5 hours, but that included several stops for pictures and to admire the handy work of God.

After our tour of The Big Room, we got in the five minute line for the elevator back to the surface. We were glad to have done this early in the morning because evidently later in the day the wait for an elevator can be as long as two hours.

At the surface we shopped at the gift shop and headed back to Carlsbad for lunch at Angie’s Mexican Restaurant and a peaceful afternoon.

On July 22nd we returned to Carlsbad Caverns and hiked down the Natural Entrance. We had been told that this is difficult, hot and a tough hike. It took us just 50 minutes and was none of the above. It was easy, but frankly less interesting than the other two tours. It was fun and worth doing, but not as decorated as the other parts of the cave. As you continue down you make the transition from full sunlight, to a partially lit area to complete darkness. Amazing to think that someone long ago found this entrance and struggled through the darkness to map a considerable amount of the known cave.

If we had this to do over again we would do things a bit differently. We would reserve more guided tours, but we would also do what we did in a different order. We would enter the Natural Entrance at 8:30 when it opens and walk down for the King’s Palace tour at 10am. After the King’s Palace tour we would walk around The Big Room and take the elevator back to the surface. This would give you a great sense of the cave in one day. It also allows you to enjoy the Natural Entrance without comparing it to other more spectacular parts of the cave. In addition, the guided tour before The Big Room would help you appreciate it even more.

At dusk we sat in the amphitheater and watched the bats emerge from the cave. It is interesting how they come out and circle in the entrance as they climb. When they reach the top of this “bat vortex” the leaders head south while more bats join the vortex at the bottom. This continues for 30-45 minutes until they’re all gone. Nice experience.

On Sunday July 23rd we attended the Carlsbad Ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It was nice to worship with the saints in Carlsbad. After church we hooked up the trailer and headed north to Roswell, New Mexico to see the International UFO Museum and Research Center. We knew we were nearing the museum when we saw aliens. 

One must visit the museum if you’re driving through Roswell, but I wouldn’t go out of my way again to see it. In fact, I wouldn’t cross the road to see it even if I found myself in Roswell again. The name alone is a stretch, but after you enter and pay your fine for being dumb enough to enter you’ll see nothing more than what you’ve seen on TV, in the movies or on the cover of the National Enquirer.

Having not been abducted by aliens we decided to drive west from Roswell towards Cloudcroft, New Mexico. We figured a trip back to 9000 feet would be cool and refreshing.

Along our path we came across the Tom and Pam Runyan Ranch. This is simply a family run petting zoo, fish farm and market on the side of the road. We stopped and petted animals, admired the huge trout in the ponds and bought a few edibles. I think we would have fished in their ponds, but you had to keep what you catch and we were on the road. It was everything I could do to keep my wife from grabbing those beautiful big trout. This was a beautiful spot that made the pain of the UFO museum fade and made the remainder of the day better.

We continued west towards Cloudcroft and arrived at Saddle Campground in the late afternoon. We had time to get settled in and then watched a thunderstorm blow through. It was cool enough to wear a light jacket and that was awesome!

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Agua Piedra Campground, New Mexico

On July 18, 2017 we left South Meadows Campground at about 8:30 in the morning and headed south to Agua Piedra Campground, located in northern New Mexico. This stretch took us about 4.5 hours.

The Agua Piedra Campground is located off of Highway 518. You enter the campground by crossing over a small bridge that crosses the Pueblo Rio. There are three main areas for camping. The first area is where the camp host and administrator, whatever that is, camp and was quite full of RVs parked pretty close together. The next portion of the campground is made up of two loops, A and B. Loop A is closer to the Agua Piedra Creek and is reasonable for RVs. Loop B is up a fairly steep hill, the sites have small pull-ins, and is best for tent campers. We chose site 25 in loop A because it was large enough, easy to back the trailer into and away from others. The site was right on the creek and had a very nice fire pit and table setup. There was also a water spigot just to the east of our site.

My wife and I setup the trailer, got our son comfortably situated and went fishing. On the Agua Piedra Creek my wife caught several two inch fish, but all I caught was some shrubs, bushes, tree limbs, etc. She nearly always out fishes me! We followed the creek down to its confluence with the Pueblo Rio and then walked up this larger stream. There were many beautiful holes and we each caught several reasonable fish.

The next morning we arose and travelled to New Mexico River Adventures near Dixon, New Mexico on Highway 68. There were quite a few people at the meeting place, but the three of us ended up on a raft with our guide, Cody, and a former guide, Karen, along for the ride. Cody was great and Karen was crazy in a fun way. The river wasn’t high, but the rapids were still fun and just the right size for our skill level. The Rio Grande was warm and comfortable to swim in. We’re use to cold Utah rivers and were pleasantly surprised when we were invited to swim and found it surprisingly enjoyable despite its color.

Along the way we stopped on the shore and had a snack / lunch consisting of watermelon, chips, salsa and Oreos. The salsa was great and the chips really hit the spot.

While we’re away from the trailer on adventures like river rafting, visiting national parks, etc. we put our dog, Leo, in a kennel in the trailer. We ensure the day will be cool, open windows, etc. to keep him comfortable and safe . While he’s not a big fan of being caged up, we figure its better than returning to find screens torn, furniture ruined or doors scratched. He seems to do just fine.

After our river rafting experience we returned to the campground, our son watched movies in the trailer and we went fishing on the Pueblo Rio from the campground bridge upstream. We caught many Rainbow Trout between 12 and 14 inches in length. We were using our Euro Nymphing rods and some olive green colored nymphs. It was great fun.

The next morning we travelled to Taos, New Mexico. Everything in the town is constructed and decorated to look like a pueblo. This includes small stores, houses, churches, etc. Even the large Smith’s grocery store follows the style. It actually all works well because they strictly keep to the look. It’s clearly a tourist sort of shopping mecca, but was fun.

Our primary purpose for visiting Taos was to see and explore the Taos Pueblo. The Taos Pueblo is an area of Taos where the original Taos Pueblo people settled and where they still live in much the same way they did more than a thousand years ago. Some of the Pueblos are over 1100 years old and people still live in them. They don’t have electricity or indoor plumbing, but because of cell service they have Internet connectivity. While we were there they were performing maintenance on the church. They were simply mixing the local dirt with water to make mud, included some straw, and smeared it over the existing structure where there were cracks. It was interesting watching their technique. From the appearance of the dirt street in the vicinity, the mud they put on the buildings regularly erodes away with rain and wind.

We took a guided tour, enjoyed learning about their unwritten language, enjoyed some of their food and bought a few souvenirs. Our son purchased a dreamcatcher and asked for a picture of it with its creator. It is now proudly displayed in his room and stretches from nearly the ceiling to the floor.

After Taos we headed back up the canyon to our trailer. We put everything away, hooked up the trailer and left at about 12:30 for our next stop, Carlsbad, New Mexico. As we headed to Carlsbad we saw a scene that seemed to repeat each time we headed to a new location. In the direction we needed to travel there was a thunderstorm on the horizon. The weather was quite good for most of our trip, but it was as if we were guided, we simply had to follow the dark clouds.

As we drove south through New Mexico I started to realize there was absolutely nothing to see between Las Vegas, New Mexico and Carlsbad. It is amazingly flat, arid, and boring.

We arrived at the Carlsbad RV Park and Campground at about 7pm. We pulled in, hooked up to the utilities, and started the AC. We didn’t turn the AC off until we left three days later. We were excited to visit Carlsbad Cavern National Park.

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South Meadows Campground, Colorado

On July 14, 2017 we departed Trappers Lake, Colorado and headed towards the Pikes Peak area. Without Internet connectivity we simply headed back down the canyon on Highway 8 and hoped to get connectivity before we had to make decisions with serious consequences. We travelled back through Meeker, Colorado and gained connectivity soon afterwards. We headed south on Highway 13, east on I-70, and then south on Highway 9 through Alma and Fairplay, Colorado.

The route we chose had a tremendous amount of beautiful scenery. The Colorado Rockies are quite amazing. We wound our way up and down passes and at Hoosier Pass, on the Continental Divide, we reached an altitude of 11,539 feet above sea level. We passed through Alma, Colorado which is the highest incorporated town in the United States at 10,355 feet.

After passing through Alma, Fairplay and a few very small places we headed nearly due east to Woodland Park. We arrived about 7pm, started looking for campgrounds and realized our tactical error of arriving on a Friday night. We began this adventure with the plan of moving on Mondays and Thursdays, but here we were a couple of hours from Denver, in July, on Friday night, looking for a campsite. We tried a few places northeast of Woodland Park and found them full. We headed north towards Denver and came across the South Meadows Campground. We expected it to be full, but just as we were headed up the highway the campground host popped out of the woods at the entrance of the campground on her golf cart. My wife rolled her window down, while driving, and yelled to the host inquiring about availability. The host yelled back that she had one left and it was just the right size for our rig, we pulled in.

We arrived at site 49 about 9pm and found it to be a bit tricky to back into. A couple of men from a nearby campsite came to our rescue, jumped in the cab and put our trailer in the spot. I’m sure they were being helpful, but I also think they were trying to get us settled so the rest of our neighbors could get settled as well. One of them made the comment that it was a pleasure to drive my wife’s truck, we get that a lot. We ate dinner about 11pm and called it a day!

When we awoke Saturday morning we indeed found the campground full, but the sites were well spaced and wooded. We headed to the Laundromat and poured an amazing number of quarters into washers and dryers. While washing clothes I made arrangements to take the Pikes Peak Cog Railway to the top of Pikes Peak. We were very fortunate to get a few of the last tickets for the 4pm trip; there was no other availability for over a week. Before our trip up the mountain we went grocery shopping and did a few other errands.

We’ve driven to the top of Pikes Peak before, but we’ve always wanted to take the cog train. From the platform you take your assigned seats in one of several railway cars. The three of us faced uphill and we sat across from three others. There wasn’t a lot of room, but it was tolerable.

Most of the trip up is quite steep and well in excess of what traditional trains could climb. This is made possible by the cog rail in the middle of the track the entire way up. The diesel engine engages on this rail and literally pulls the rest of the train up. This is not a speedy process and the train seems to go up and down at about 10 mph.

The trip begins in a forested narrow canyon with a stream and a couple of little waterfalls. It then climbs onto the mountain and the views into the distance begin to appear through the trees. The climbing continues beyond the tree line into tundra covered meadows. Beyond this you come to boulder fields near the top before the trip terminates at the peak. At the top you get a chance to get out, stretch your legs and spend money at the gift shop. At the top you are at 14,115 feet above sea level and the views are spectacular. The clear refreshing air makes the whole trip worth the money, time, and effort. After just a few minutes at the top you are requested to board the train for the return trip down the mountain. It’s unfortunate that you don’t get to change seats to the other side or even face the other direction on the return trip. What you see on the way down is precisely what you saw on the way up. This makes the return trip a bit boring, but the time goes pretty quickly and is tolerable.

On Sunday morning we attended the Woodland Park Ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. After church we spent some time in a Woodland Park park to plan the remainder of our trip and decided to reserve some cave tours at Carlsbad Caverns.

When we returned from worshiping the campground was nearly deserted and remained so for the remainder of our stay. We really enjoyed the campground. The few neighbors we had were quiet, the hosts were great and the sunsets filtered through the tress were inspiring.

On Monday we drove to the Manitou Cliff Dwellings. It’s interesting, but quite small in comparison to other cliff dwelling such as those in southwest Colorado or New Mexico.

We also drove through the Garden of the Gods Park. We decided that for those traveling from the east this park would be a lot more interesting. This would be a great introduction for those new to red rock. The red rock is beautiful, but for those of us from Utah, Arizona, Colorado or New Mexico there are lots of other places with a lot more majestic red rock. We’ll skip these last two attractions in the future.

On July 18th we left South Meadows Campground and headed south to New Mexico. Our next stop was Agua Piedra Campground northeast of Santa Fe, New Mexico.

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Trappers Lake, Colorado

On July 11, 2017 we left Starvation State Park at about noon and drove nearly due east. We drove through Meeker, Colorado and headed up into the Trappers Lake area on Highway 8. We eventually turned right onto Highway 8a. Just after the turn we took a dirt road to the west and found a very nice spot for a few days of camping. This was the first time we had truly boondocked rather than staying in a campground.

We arrived at our private spot about 6pm, cooked dinner, fired up a generator and watched the latest Power Ranger movie as a family. Beautiful drive and an easy to get into spot. For an exact location of the places we have camped see the Where We’ve Been page. I have made my best effort to drop the pins on this page in exactly the spots we’ve camped. While this area had several great spots, we only saw one other car during our stay and they headed down the dirt road to the trailhead. It was quiet, peaceful and beautiful.

The next day we drove up the canyon to Trappers Lake Lodge where they helped us buy two Colorado fishing licenses. It turns out in this Internet age, small stores no longer sell fishing licenses because there is no margin and you can buy them online. They did let us come behind their counter, use their computer and print our temporary licenses. The folks at the lodge were friendly, sold the basics you may need, served food, organized horseback trips, and rented boats, toys and cabins.

From the lodge we drove a short distance to the Trappers Lake Trailhead. There are no roads to the lake because it is in a designated wilderness area. We hiked a quarter of a mile to the lake through sunshine, rain and hail. Yes we experienced all that in just a quarter of a mile. We arrived at Trappers Lake which was stunning. The lake is located at high altitude, in a wilderness area and surrounded by lovely mountains.

Walking around the lake a bit led us to the dock where the lodge’s rental boats were tied up. While at the lake we tried fishing from the shore with no luck. We decided that we’d rent a canoe the following day and try again.

At about 10 am the next day we repeated our trek up the canyon to Trappers Lake Lodge, collected a couple of paddles and life jackets and headed to Trappers Lake. The three of us got in a canoe and I set my fly line out the back trolling while my wife and son fished as I paddled slowly around the entire lake in a counter clockwise direction. I ended the day having caught two fish. My wife had two on and brought one all the way in, but it was the biggest fish of the day, a 16 to 20 inch Colorado Cutthroat. It was not only long, but it was fat and well colored. A beautiful day of fishing.

We returned the canoe at about 3pm after surviving quite a bit of rain, lightning and thunder. I’m always a bit concerned with 10 foot fly poles in a canoe out in a lake with lightning all around, but we survived yet again.

After fishing Trappers Lake we drove to a pretty little lake called Scotts Lake and gave it a try. We had no success at all. We could see lots of small fish jumping, but not even a bite for our efforts.

We returned to our trailer and cleaned up. While washing the dog under the outside shower we found a dead mouse in the wash basin. Later in our trip we found his best friend chewing on stuff inside the trailer and had to buy traps. We’ll keep a few traps on hand in the future. Evidently these little guys like trailer camping as much as we do.

We spent some time in the evening contemplating our next move. We decided to leave this area in the morning and head southeast towards the Pike’s Peak area. We didn’t have any connectivity in this area so we decided to go in that general direction and fine tune our decisions while driving with connectivity and the availability of Google Maps.

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Beach Campground, Starvation State Park, Utah

After leaving the Washington Lake Campground, we headed to Heber City, Utah to run a few errands. We had no definite plans for the remainder of our adventure, other than to visit Carlsbad Caverns. With that goal in mind and being in need of a dump station, we headed east to Starvation State Park.

When we arrived an hour and a half later and with the day coming to an end, we asked if there were any sites left at the Beach Campground. We ended up in site 16 for two nights and enjoyed the stay. While site 16 is not on the beach it is away from other campers and was a peaceful spot to rest and relax. The site had water and electric hookups. The electricity was appreciated because the temperature at Starvation State Park in July necessitated the use of air conditioning. This was the first time we had used the AC in the trailer and while it doesn’t cool down quickly it is eventually refreshing.

On Monday we invited one of our daughter’s family to join us at the lake for a day of swimming and fun. The three grandsons and their parents were a lot of fun to interact with. At the end of the day we fed them and sent them on their way. It was the last time we would see family for nearly a month and was an emotional farewell for me. There were many times during our trip where we mentioned how fun it would be to have family with us.

While at Starvation State Park we had great cell connectivity that allowed us to take care of a few things online, including determining where we would next stop. We determined to head to Trappers Lake in Colorado.

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Washington Lake Campground, Utah

On July 2, 2017 we arrived at Washington Lake Campground in the Uinta Mountains of Utah. This was our second stop on our summer adventure and we were here from the 2nd of July to the 9th of July. As the map indicates, we travelled nearly due south from Idaho down to Utah and then east up into the Uinta Mountains. Washington Lake is at an elevation of 10,000 feet and is one of hundreds of lakes in this area.

We have camped in these mountains many times over the past 30 years, but this is our first time in a trailer. The Washington Lake Campground is much more developed than our previous stop and we’ve always thought it would be good for trailer camping. Each site is paved, has a table, fire pit, and a dutch oven cooking table. The campground has a host and well maintained pit toilets. The sites are also much closer together than they were at Pole Bridge Campground in Idaho. However, our site was easy to get the trailer into and the neighbors never bothered us.

One feature this campground lacks is water. There are no water faucets in this campground and while there are faucets a short drive away, at Lost Creek Campground, it was inconvenient. Fortunately, we carry several six gallon water jugs that we filled several times and brought back to the trailer. Without these we would have had to move the trailer after four or five days.

The lakes in the Uinta Mountains are typically small and sometimes you stop and wonder whether what you’re looking at is a lake or a pond. However, Washington Lake is a rather large reservoir that has plenty of room for the many visitors that enjoy it. Fishing is moderately good, children and adventurous adults find the water warm enough to play in, and kayaking or non motorized boating is entertaining. The scenery is breathtaking!

Nearby lakes include Crystal Lake, Ponds Lake, Lily Lake, Trail Lake, Wall Lake, and Hope Lake. Trial Lake can be reached by vehicle and has a very nice campground associated with it. It was closed the week we were there due to snow delayed cleanup, but we managed to get our bicycles around the gate and enjoyed riding in a deserted campground. The other lakes can be reached by trail. My wife and I with three sons, two daughter-in-laws, and two grandchildren hiked from the Crystal Lake trailhead to The Notch. The hike included beautiful scenery, nice weather and a reminder that summer comes late at nearly 11,000 feet, snow. The younger crew couldn’t pass up building a snowman in July, and here it is.

On the way to The Notch, the crest of the pass, we stopped and played at a very small high meadow lake called Hope Lake.


The children had fun playing in the water and catching waterdogs and tiger salamanders. We’re going back next year to have the children collect a few salamanders for our backyard pond. Utah law allows the collection of up to 50 specimens and the children will love seeing them in and around the pond.

From The Notch the view was amazing. We could look back and see several lakes. The hike back was a little warm, but overall it was a great day.

On Saturday of our stay, my son and I went to get water for both of our trailers. On the way back we noticed people parking a very long distance from the trailhead due to the Saturday crowds and a lack of close parking. We stopped, gathered a small crowd into the back of the truck and took them up to the trailhead. Each trip for water resulted in another small group getting a ride to the trail. Who knew our adventure would include starting a shuttle service.

On July 9th we said our goodbyes to family and headed to our next stop. However, we didn’t actually know where our next stop was. We drove down the mountain to Heber City, Utah and ran some errands. We couldn’t find a dump station and we knew we wanted to head east, so we headed to Starvation State Park to use their dump station. After arriving at the state park we asked if they had any sites available, and after receiving a positive response we decided to stay a couple of nights.

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5 States, 31 Nights, and 4200 Miles

On June 29th, 2017 our family of three hitched up our trailer and took off on an adventure. We travelled to 5 states, camped for 31 nights and put 4200 miles of road behind us. My wife and I thought it was great and our 11 year old son thought it was “good”. However, I view a “good” rating from him as a positive sign. It means he liked many of our activities and likes us, both good things!

We travelled to Idaho, Utah, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona. We learned a few things along the way:

  1. We’re glad we didn’t select a trailer larger than the one we did, 27′. Small trailers have fewer campground limitations, they’re easier to pull up steep mountain passes with tight switchbacks, and into and out of tight gas stations. When we buy another trailer, we’ll purchase the smallest one we can be comfortable in.
  2. We love having a solar panel on our trailer and are now glad we purchased only one. When the sun is out, the one panel fully recharges the batteries by early afternoon. For fall or winter camping another panel would be nice, but the cost of a second panel is equivalent to the cost of a generator, which is mandatory even in the summer when you might experience multiple days of cloud cover. One solar panel means you’ll seldom need the generator, but when you do you have one.
  3. While camping in a trailer you have several scarce resources: electricity, propane, fresh water, and limited holding tank capacity. With a solar panel and backup generator electricity is not very scarce. In the summer propane seems to last forever. Our trailer has two 30 pound tanks that hold 7 gallons of propane each. In 31 days of camping we went through both bottles. We have an 80 gallon fresh water tank and it lasts three of us nearly a week. Our experience has been that the gray water holding tank is the most limited resource. Nearly all of the fresh water we use goes straight down the sink and shower drains and fills this 40 gallon tank in 4 or 5 days. We could of course be more conservative, but …
  4. We chose to purchase two 2kW Honda generators that can be connected in parallel to generate enough power to run everything in the trailer, including the air conditioner.  One of these generators is sufficient to run everything but the AC and we never used both on our adventure. We did connect one of them periodically to watch a movie or play a video game on the large TV. The generator was quiet enough that we locked it to the front of the trailer and it never bothered us inside. While we chose the Honda, I later found that Costco offers a very similar Yamaha generator for half the price; I should have looked!
  5. We’re glad we chose a trailer over a 5th wheel because I really utilized the bed of our truck for extra water, fuel for the generators, firewood, etc. I’m sure we would have loved a 5th wheel, but any fear we had about towing a trailer has dissipated.

When we left we had some trepidation about traveling in New Mexico and Arizona in July. However, both states have significant mountains and associated national forests. We stayed above 5000′ in elevation nearly all of the time and enjoyed reasonable temperatures, seldom if ever exceeding 80 degrees. The one exception was our three day stay in Carlsbad, New Mexico. While there we chose to stay at the Carlsbad RV Park and Campground, and while this isn’t our idea of camping, the facilities were clean, the staff was friendly and helpful, the pool was simple and refreshing, and most importantly we had electric hookups that allowed us to run the AC nearly 24 hours a day.

Our adventure was amazingly fun and relaxing. As we headed home on the last day we passed the I-70 East ramp and I just wanted to take it and continue our summer fun. The next few posts will describe each of the places we camped and the fun things we found to do there.