Wednesday, October 11, 2017

October 9 - 15, 2017, NE, KS, CO, NM

Tuesday, October 10.  I got ready for the day and hit the road with a destination of Grand Island, NE and the local KOA.  Before I got to the KOA, I did a search for hair salons, read a few reviews and walked into Linda's Salon.  I was so desperate for a haircut, I just couldn't wait any longer.  Jill had planned to give me a cut before I left their house, but kid stuff and work stuff just kept getting in the way.  So Kim gave me a decent haircut and I left there feeling much better.

I checked into the KOA and they put me in a tiny little site with a beautiful tree at the end of a road, right next to a corn field, all by myself.  It wasn't total seclusion because there were other RVs coming in through the day that were not far away.  The bath house was new and sparkling clean and the hot shower felt really good.  I had some dinner, walked Frisco and got ready for bed, then watched an episode of The Ranch before turning in.  The temps were supposed to drop to the mid thirties overnight but my little heater kept me toasty warm all night long.  It was 38 degrees when I woke up.  Brrrrr!

It was a slow start to the day and it was after 10:00 before I was on the road, but I had only 200 miles to get to Goodland, KS.  I'm glad that I didn't make a reservation because I got to thinking that my final destination (to meet up with Tom at his sister's house in Peyton, CO) was only another 150 miles from there.  Maybe I should just push on.  The deciding factor was arriving at Goodland before 1:30 in the afternoon and I was only looking at another 3 hours.  I texted Tom and he said I would be great if I arrived early and that there would be a parade waiting for me.  Whaaaat? And there he was, as I turned the corner, broomstick in hand, marching as if he was a baton twirler leading a parade.  I could do nothing but pull over, clap my hands and laugh, and offer him a ride.  What a goofball!

So here I am, parked and hooked up at Joyce and Burrall's Shady Acres, next to Tom's RV for the next few days.  We have full hookups and a view of the airport hangers and a sky full of planes taking off and flying over throughout the day.  We went to Colorado Springs to Rock Bottom Restaurant for dinner and I had a delicious burger and fries.

That's Lily in the photo, Frisco's new best friend.

Saturday, October 14. It was nice to wake up on Wednesday morning and not have to drive on again.  We didn't have much planned for the day, so took a couple of nice walks, hung out with Joyce, took a nap, and had a nice relaxing day.

Thursday was different.  We were headed for the Pike's Peak Cog Railway station in Manitou Springs by 10:00 so we could catch the noon train.  Got there a little early so we had some time to walk and window shop the main drag - it's a quaint little old downtown with several mineral spring fountains scattered along the main drag.

The train ride was very pleasant, it was a beautiful day and warm when we started out at the station at an elevation of about 6,000 feet but it got colder and colder as we went up the mountain to the summit at 14,100 feet.  There, it was 30 degrees with a chill factor of 15.  Needless to say, we didn't spend much time checking out the views, instead going indoors to shop and have a hot cup of coffee and a donut.  When we got back to Manitou Springs, we found a place to park and headed out for a bite to eat before going back to Joyce's.

Friday was spent just hanging around, going for walks, doing some car and camper cleanup, and making some plans for the next few days.

Today was grocery shopping day, as we needed supplies to make dinner for Joyce and Burrell tonight and to stock up on a few things that we might need for the next few days of travel before getting back to Mesa.  I decided to make Ben and Jill's pasta, Italian sausage, bread and wine.  Dinner was fun - we sat and talked the whole night, had lots of laughs, then went for a nice, long walk.

Sunday, October 15.  Its hookup and departure day but it was after 11:00 before we pulled out. We both wanted to flush out our tanks good and clean up before pulling out. We said our goodbyes and headed south on I-25 to the NRA Whittington Center just south of Raton, NM.

What a beautiful place this is - 33,000 acres, covers 52 square miles with elevations 6,300 - 8,400 feet.  The road to the campground passes several different shooting ranges (skeet, several types of rifle, high power, black powder, and several others) - all face a northern exposure so shooters never have the sun in their eyes.  The campgrounds and cabins are on the opposite side of the road.  The campsites are all full hookup pull-through sites with at least one Piñon Pine tree on it.  Us and a few other RVs are the only ones here.