At the border, entering the "country" of Transnistria. Photo taken December 8, 2016.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Tiraspol, Transnistria...the country that doesn't exist.

Where are they going next? Northern Moldova. Arrive December 11th.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Heading north!

Which it turns out is not such a good idea.

Our plan was to spend some time at  higher altitudes and get out of the desert for a while. You know, fresh air, pine trees...that sort of thing.

So yesterday, we drove from 2,100 ft to our current location at Payson, Arizona at around the 5,000 ft mark.

It was a nice drive, and we enjoyed seeing some trees again as we got close to Payson.

Our last view of Roosevelt Lake.

Along highway 87 near Payson. Look! Trees!

We found a parking spot near the old downtown and went for a walk. Found the visitors information place, and talked to them about free camping in the area. There's a lot of opportunity, except some areas at higher elevation are actually closed for the season and don't open until April.

We knew that it was going to be colder up here, but it's still nice during the day. We can deal with it going a little below freezing at night, Especially now with our Mr. Heater Buddy!

But we were advised of the long term forecast, which to be perfectly blunt...sucked!

A little bit of cold is one thing, but when it comes along with rain, wind, and snow (yes, snow!) and it lasts for three to five days...well, it's time to get out of Dodge!

So we spent quite a bit of time trying to figure a plan...and so tomorrow (Saturday), we're driving down to Mesa (a suburb of Phoenix) where the weather won't be perfect, but at least it won't be perfectly miserable. Plus, we're going to be able to tell you about our first Boondocker's Welcome experience! So, as much as we hate to backtrack, we think the extra couple of hours driving is worth it. After all, this is why we have wheels!

We stopped in to Walmart here in Payson to do a little grocery shop, and Ruth bought a whole chicken on sale for $3.28. We drove over to the Mazatzal Casino and asked if we could park for the night. Yep, you're allowed to stay for 72 hours. Plus, their players club gives you $10 of free play, so we'll go in and use that up before we leave.

Ruth, and our $3.28 chicken!

I know, Ruth is extraordinary. But, she says there is nothing complicated about doing a complete roast chicken dinner (with stuffing!) while dry camping in the parking lot of a casino.

Delicious roast chicken dinner from scratch!

This casino has a great free wifi connection that we get from the inside of Sherman so we downloaded the new episodes of Survivor and Amazing Race, and watched them last night with our Mr. Heater Buddy keeping us warm as the temperature dropped.

Yesterday's drive, 53 miles (90 kms).



28 comments:

  1. Your chicken roast looks delicious - made my mouth water ..YUM!

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    1. Thank you Leslie, sorry you couldn't have joined us. Maybe one day we will make it to your part of the world and I will cook you dinner.

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  2. We have done that too, heading north and higher altitudes we did a couple times. Few Years ago we were in Bullhead City area, was cold and windy in February, planning on going over to the west coast and make our way to BC. Got tired of the cold so cancelled that idea and headed back down south to to southern Arizona and California, much nicer. Then made our way to Georgia.
    Like Ruth says nothing at all difficult cooking a full meal while dry camping, looks wonderful. Love the chicken prices in the USA too. We have picked up a 12 lb turkey for $8.00 a couple times in the fall and cooked in our oven (just barely fits).

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    1. I remember the post you did on that turkey and I couldn't believe the price. Glad that it was just able to fit in your oven.

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  3. I still think she's a miracle worker! Grace (in Tucson)

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  4. I think Ruth works magic when she cooks. Every time you show us what she has cooked, it looks delicious!!!

    We are in Mesa. If you like craft beers, you will find a gillion places to enjoy a glass or two.

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    1. It helps that I enjoy cooking! :-)

      We are headed to Mesa today so who knows maybe if the weather is good we can arrange to meet and do a hike together. As for the craft beer, Kevin likes beer but not me.

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  5. yep,had a feeling you would head back south... we are going to hunker down in Tucson and let this next system pass before moving on...

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    1. Headed south but just a little ways. We will stay in the Mesa area for 4 or 5 days and hope the the weather north will improve by then. Still it is better then the weather up in Canada so we aren't complaining. It's nice to have a home on wheels.

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  6. Sounds like you are all set. Gorgeous looking food and Ruth even looks very happy preparing it.

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    1. Thanks Sherry, I like cooking, at least most of the time I do!

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  7. It looks like just about everybody is cold! We are only 3 miles from mexico and the next two days might be in the high 70's. But at night we have been in the 20's.....

    we did a roast turkey breast tonight.. yummmmmm

    Kareninthewoods and Steveio
    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~
    (Blog) RVing: The USA Is Our Big Backyard
    http://kareninthewoods-kareninthewoods.blogspot.com
    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

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    1. Wow, that is chilly at night. It wasn't that cold at night when we were there a few weeks ago. Bundle up!

      I saw the pictures of your turkey dinner on facebook and it looked good too! :-)

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  8. Yep, chicken dinner looks good but Amazing Race is the best and we enjoy Survivor too!

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    1. Looks like both Amazing Race and Survivor are going to be good this season! Sure wish we could participate in the Amazing Race. :-(

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  9. We're sitting in Apache Junction and the weather is not looking good but that meal sure does :-)

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    1. The weather may not be looking good at Apache Junction but it will certainly be better than up here. We are headed for Mesa for a few days.

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  10. I see no difference between cooking in sticks and bricks or motorhome. Actually, I have enjoyed cooking more since we started our fulltime experience. Love having everything right at my fingertips.

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    1. Agreed! My only issue with cooking in our motorhome is the lack of counter space, in ours it is pretty much nonexistent but I always seem to manage. :-)

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  11. WOW that chicken dinner looks great! Now I can't wait to get a whole chicken and cook it!! So you baked it rather than use a convection oven/microwave? Curious, how long did it take? Would it take longer in a convection oven? Too cold here in the Carlsbad area. Looking forward to continuing west tomorrow.

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    1. Thank you Debbie!

      Yes, I roasted the chicken in our RV oven (propane) and it took about 1 1/2 hours to cook. It was about 4lbs. I have no idea how long it would take to cook in a convection oven/microwave as we don't have one in the motorhome. We removed our microwave oven about 5 years ago because we only used it as a breadbox/snack cupboard unless we were plugged into electricity which is very rare for us.

      Hope you are able to find some warmer weather.

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  12. If you want to maximize your chance of good weather in jan-feb never got to Payson. Its a beautiful place but not until mid April.

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    1. We don't mind cooler temperatures, so as long as the day time temperature isn't below freezing and it isn't windy and wet then we are ok with that. At the moment though a cold front is going through with wind and rain or snow and that is what we don't want, it means staying holed up in the motorhome. We like to hike so even with jackets on we would be happy in cooler temperatures. Hopefully the rain/snow will move on quickly and we can head back up that way.

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  13. I agree with David, you don't want to be up in Payson until late March, early April. There's lots of boon docking along the Control Road about 13 miles north of Payson (just north of the Rainbow Bridge). The best spots are about 3-5 miles in, a bit of a washboard ride for a big RV. So you might want to go to Control Road via Houston Mesa Road just north of the second round about after Home Depot. That road is paved all the way to Control Road and lots of great places left or right, but there are more trees west of the T. Once you get into June-September, then you'll want to camp up on top of the rim above Control Road, that's about 7200 ft, very cold and roads closed this time of year.

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    1. Thanks for the heads up on the boondocking areas around Payson. We think it is a great place for free camping with lots of options. We don't have much choice with the weather as we need to be heading north but for the moment we can head to slightly better weather but soon we aren't going to have no choice and will just have to deal with the colder temperatures. It's the wind, rain or snow that we don't like!

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