View from the top of Old Man of Coniston hike in Lake District National Park, England.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Preston, Lancashire, England.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Wyke, West Yorkshire, England on May 29th!

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Best thing we ever did

Someone asked a question on a facebook forum as to what was the best RV modification/upgrade that you have done. Well, the best thing we ever did was to add solar panels to the roof and a decent battery system to the motorhome. Given the cost of a new RV, I can't figure why they don't come with solar panels and a decent battery system right from the factory. But, of course everybody has their own idea of how much electricity they need, so I guess it's better kept as an aftermarket installed option.

We love being self sufficient for electricity! That's what allows us to sit in one spot like we are now without having to listen to the daily drone of a generator.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

We were right...

This is a very quiet peaceful spot to hang out for a few days. That could change today and tomorrow as they fill the big hot springs pool, but even if it does get a little busy, it won't bother us. We enjoy seeing people out having fun.

It turns out that this place is very busy during busy season. I was talking to our host yesterday and he said that when Semana Santa (Easter holy week) begins, the place gets as many as 800 visitors a day.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Back to the countryside!

We walked to the market one last time before leaving Dolores Hidalgo yesterday morning. Picked up a kilo of fresh tortillas for 12 pesos ($0.96 CAD), and a kilo of lean ground beef for 140 pesos ($11.20 CAD).

We hadn't asked for the price ahead of time, since ground beef has never been that expensive. But 140 pesos per kilo for ground beef is getting up there. Had we asked in advance, we probably would have shopped around a bit.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Lunch at the local market

We went for a walk around town. Dolores Hidalgo (pop 55,000) is not a huge place and we really didn't have a plan on where we were going, we just simply walked the streets until we got hungry enough to stop for lunch.

And what a great lunch we had!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

We should be safe here!

We're normally up between 6:30am and 7:00am. So yesterday was the one day that we tried to get up a bit earlier than normal, and it was 7:20am by the time we looked at the clock. So much for early.

Not that it really mattered. We try to get an early start on travel days, but we were only planning on going 35 kms (22 miles) or so. And we had Trish and John coming over at 10:00am to take advantage of a ride in Sherman up to the small city of Dolores Hidalgo (pop 55,000).

Anyhow, everything worked out without being rushed.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Time for a change of scenery

We've been here four nights, so it's time to move on. Trish and John are coming over this morning and we're all taking a drive up to the small city of Dolores Hidalgo (pop 55,000). It's only located about 35 kms (22 miles) north of where we currently are, so it won't be a long drive. Just enough for a change of scenery!

And we heard from our friend Chris over at Living and Boondocking in Mexico who said that you can stay overnight in the parking lot of the municipal auditorium there, so we're going to check that out since it's located very close to downtown.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Everybody needs a day off

And yesterday was ours.

We simply hung around the RV park here. I puttered about the motorhome and cleaned the windows. Ruth did some hand laundry and went for a little walk around the park. We played some yahtzee and backgammon and just relaxed.

We even had an afternoon nap!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

A little tour of where we're staying. And a dinner invite!

The first time we arrived in San Miguel with the motorhome, there was a hotel and RV park right on the outskirts of town. A year later, that property had been sold and shut down with big plans for development, but it now sits as just an empty lot. There is also a trailer park right in town at the tennis courts, but it's for rigs under 26 ft and even then it's fairly crowded.

The only other trailer park option is the San Ramon Hotel and RV park about 5 kms (3 miles) outside of the town, and that's where we are now.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

A fun day with new and old friends. And a puppy!

Peter and Shelagh came up to our spot outside the El Charco de Ignacio Botanical Gardens at about 10:00am yesterday morning, and we locked up Sherman and walked across the road to the entrance.

They've done quite a lot of work here since the last time we visited in December of 2012. And the price hasn't changed...still 40 pesos ($3.30 CAD).

Friday, January 22, 2016

Nice town, except for the gringos...

Two weeks from today we meet up with the Mexico RV Caravan that we will be leading for a month from Guanajuato to Melaque on the Pacific coast. We're excited about this new opportunity and looking forward to sharing our knowledge of RVing in Mexico with a group of new people.

Right now, we are staying on the outskirts of San Miguel de Allende in the state of Guanajuato. This is our third time visiting this area. It's a nice little city (pop 140,000) with a beautiful central plaza and one of the most photographed churches in all of Mexico.

The only problem we have with the city is the number of expats.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

I have to admit, I was a little nervous. Twice.

We knew that we could park overnight at the Botanical Garden near San Miguel de Allende, so that's the direction that we were headed. But instead of taking the busy highway between Queretaro and San Miguel, we decided to take the back roads and perhaps we would come across another overnight spot along the way.

I checked out the road on Google Streetview, and the paved section looked quite nice...but there was a 7 km (4 mile) stretch of unpaved road. That particular section doesn't even show up in our Guia Roji Mexico Map Book, but it is there on Google maps.

So, how bad could it be, right?

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

You win some, you lose some...

We're pretty good at finding decent (and sometimes great!) overnight spots when we're traveling in the motorhome. But ocassionally things just don't work out. Of course when we end up in a spot that's less than stellar, it's always only for one night.

We like to check out different possibilities though, and we had read about a hotel north of Queretaro that had an RV parking area. In fact, at one time, the Juriquilla Inn had space and hookups available for up to 70 RVs!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Only one problem...

Only 7 kms (4 miles) away from the historical central area of the city of Queretaro is a 2,000 year old pyramid. With the remains of a 140 year old house sitting on top of it!

We figured out which local bus would drop us off nearby, and paid the 8 pesos (65 cents CAD) each for the bus fare. We got off, still on the main road, and walked the rest of the way.

Considering this pyramid is not very well known, it's a fairly impressive sight!

Monday, January 18, 2016

First impressions

We've been in Queretaro for over a week now, and it seems first impressions rang true again. We seem to be able to get a feel for a city on the very first day. Here it is a week later, and we still think that Queretaro is a nice city.

And it helps with beautiful sunny days. We decided to go for a walk yesterday morning, and we first headed down to the big Almeda Hidalgo park which had been closed when we tried to go there the other day.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

What can you buy for one peso?

First of all, we were originally planning to stay here in Queretaro for one week. That week would have been up this morning. But we're not quite feeling ready to leave yet! And it's still almost three weeks before we have to be in Guanajuato which is not that far away.

So we've decided to hang out here for another couple of days or so. The only drawback is that it's cutting into our overnight budget. At 250 pesos ($20.75 CAD) per night, we won't be here that much longer!

We were scheduled to pick up our new curtains yesterday at 1:00pm, so we couldn't stray too far.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Great views from the highest freestanding piece of rock in the world!

Peña de Bernal (The Bernal Rock) is officially the highest monolith in the world. This freestanding piece of rock rises 433 meters (1,421 ft) above the town of Bernal in state of Queretaro about 60 kms (36 miles) west of the city of Queretaro.

So yesterday morning, we took the local bus from the hotel where the motorhome is parked to the main bus terminal. It cost 8 pesos ($0.66 CAD) each for the local bus ride. Then, 44 pesos ($3.60 CAD) each to cover the long distance bus to Bernal.

Friday, January 15, 2016

A good day with new friends!

Long time blog readers Peter and Shelagh are from Vancouver, Canada but they are renting a house in nearby San Miguel de Allende and we invited them to come visit us here in Queretaro. So yesterday morning, they hopped on a bus and came to say hello!

While they were on the bus, we walked over to the bus station to meet them. But the Queretaro bus station is not that close to's actually on the eastern outskirts, so we had a good five km (3 mile) walk to start off our day!

Thursday, January 14, 2016

If you have to ask, you can't afford it.

We woke up to rain yesterday morning and simply stayed in the motorhome. Ruth made a big pot of pea soup and we had that for lunch before going out. By that time, the rain had stopped, but it was still overcast and fairly cool for the rest of the day.

Ruth had a list of buildings that she wanted to see, so off we went.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

New curtains for Sherman

Back at the end of September while still in Swift Current, Saskatchewan, Canada we had bought new front curtains for Sherman. Just the material though...which still needed to be sewen into curtains.

The old curtains are just that...old. Twenty years old! Plus, they let through too much light, both when the sun is shining in, or when we are inside at night you can tell from the outside when there is a light on inside. This new material we bought is specifically made to block the light.

Yesterday, we set out to find somebody to make the curtains for us. Easier said than done!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Good first impressions of Queretaro

Beautiful blue sky sunny day yesterday, with a high around 23C (73F). Pretty much perfect.

Queretero (pop 800,000) has to be one of the cleanest Mexican cities we have visited. And apparently it's also one of the safest, as we have read in several publications. That probably has something to do with the fact that there are a lot of good jobs here, with a lot of international companies, and a more educated population.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Arrived in the city of Queretaro

Got up a little earlier than normal yesterday morning because we promised the caretaker at the university that we would be gone by 9:00am. He had said that he would be back to open the gate at 7:00am, but I kept checking and the gate was still closed. Eventually, around 9:00am I went looking for somebody to open the gate, and there was the caretaker on his way to do exactly that.

I asked him where he learned his English and he said that he had lived in Texas for about five years when he was younger, and that he probably hadn't spoken English in about 10 years!

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Another adventure in Mexico!

We woke up to fog yesterday morning and had wanted to get an early start. But we decided to wait it out, and so it was almost 9:30am by the time it burned off and turned into a beautiful blue sky.

We crawled our way out the three kilometers or so back to the main highway, and heading in our direction the road soon turned into a construction zone.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

I wonder where we'll end up tonight?

Sure enough, we decided to stay put, relax, and just enjoy the view from where we are parked. We're in no rush to get anywhere, so when we have a nice beautiful spot like this we might as well enjoy it. But, we are heading out this morning...don't want to overstay our welcome.

We did go for a walk for an hour yesterday though. Beautiful area.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Another great overnight spot...

We got off to a bit of a late start yesterday and it was almost 10:30am by the time we left our spot at the marina near Valle deBravo. Not a problem, because although we didn't know exactly where we would be overnighting, we knew we weren't going far. The goal is always to plan to be parked up by 2:00pm. That way, if you have problems you have lots of daylight hours left to fix them.

And so we began the steep climb out of the valley. The road out goes from 1,750 meters (5,750 ft) to 2,600 meters (8,500 ft) in about 50 kms (30 miles).

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Time to move on...

We've enjoyed the past three weeks here at Valle de Bravo. It's one of our favorite places in Mexico. But, Mexico is a big country and we like  to explore and see what else is out there! So today, it's time to move on.

No idea where we're going to end up tonight. We're heading towards the city of Queretaro, which is only about 250 kms (155 miles) away, but we're taking the back roads and we don't know what we're going to come across.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

A big giveaway to start off 2016!

We've hosted quite a few giveaways over the years, and it's always fun for us to see one of our readers win something. Last year Motorcycle House, one of the largest online motorcycle supply companies helped us give away a beautiful leather jacket.

This year, we're starting things off even better!

It's always an adventure...

We decided to do another day trip yesterday. Can't just spend our time lounging around when there's so much to see and do in this area! Our friend Paco had told us about a waterfall near the town of Ixtapan del Oro, about 44 kms (28 miles) from where we are staying.

One of the things we love about Mexico is that you don't need a car. It's relatively easy in most places to get where you want to go using collectivos and buses.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

For rent near Valle de Bravo

This is our fourth time staying here at "Nautica Las Olas de Valle"...a marina on the opposite side of Lake Avandaro from Valle de Bravo. It's located in between the communities of San Gaspar and El Arco.

From the time we first arrived in December of 2010, we were welcomed by the owner Santiagao (nickname "Chago") and his family. Later, we also met some of the other regular visitors who have now also become friends.

The marina is a family business, and Santiago has slowly expanded the boating base of operations to include camping and rental accomodation.

Monday, January 4, 2016

RV'ing in Mexico. An informational forum...

There have been a couple of online forums that I've followed over the years regarding RV'ing in Mexico. But one of them only had a few regular posters, and the conversation regularly digressed to items regarding the perception of "safety" in Mexico. I got tired of it, and found what I thought was a better forum. And it was, for a while, but now it has gone way downhill in my mind, to the point where it's not helpful.

Someone said "if you're not happy, why don't you start you own forum?"

So I have.

Back to work!

Well, for most people in Canada and the U.S., today marks the return to work and school as the Christmas and New Year's season comes to a close.

Here in Mexico though, holidays continue through to January 6 which is Three Kings Day (Dia de los Reyes). So things don't return to normal here until Thursday this week when the kids return to school.

And we've decided that will be the day we move on.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

What's the strangest thing *you* saw yesterday?

We took a little day trip to Avandaro yesterday. There is a park near there and the Velo de Novia (Bride's Veil) waterfall. We had done this trip 4 years ago, but it was at the end of February and there wasn't as much water as there is now, so we wanted to see it again.

Plus, being a Saturday in the middle of the holidays, there would be a lot more people and sometimes that makes for a better atmosphere in itself.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

December Expenses and 2015 year end financial review

Considering that we explored Colombia for the first two weeks of the month, and we had some travel related costs to get back to Mexico and the motorhome, it was a fairly reasonable month in the expense department.

December came out to a total of $1,567 CAD. For those of you who think in USD terms, simply subtract about 25%.

Friday, January 1, 2016

The last few days...

First off, let  me clarify yesterday's post.

Yes, we will be picking up Helen and Tony at LAX (Los Angeles International Airport) but that doesn't mean that Sherman will be going into the city, or that we will be spending much time in LA itself.

In fact, we're likely going to rent a car and actually pay for Sherman to stay at one of those RV "resorts". Something around Palm Springs maybe!