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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

9-29 Rio Bravo Campground

I woke up still not feeling too good so Larry decided maybe we should go lower in elevation until I was feeling better. I’ve been sleeping well but I get these coughing attacks, I hope I start feeling better soon. Larry’s not 100 percent yet either. We left Montoso Campground and went to Rio Bravo Campground, which is part of the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument. While driving I slept until we got close to Taos, where we stopped and did a little grocery shopping. Afterwards we continued down the road 35 miles to Rio Bravo. We have stayed at Rio Bravo before and Larry thought maybe we should get power. It has four campsites with power so when we got there we were in luck we found one We setup the Minnie for the night and then we walked down to pay for the night, Rio Bravo is a very pretty campground that has the Rio Grande River running along the back of it. Larry walked Flo by the river to see if there was a place for her to go swimming. He said she could get to the river  but it was a mud pit. I slept most of the afternoon and only crawled out of bed to eat. I’m getting better little by little every day. We had a very relaxing day, Larry read, Flo slept and I slept and did some dot-to-dots.  

9-28 Hanging Out at the Campground

Walking Around Campground
Where the Red River joins with the Rio Grande River

I woke up this morning not really feeling well so we just hung around the campground most of the day. I made cinnamon rolls for our breakfast, after breakfast Larry and I went on a walk from our to La Junta Campground. We didn’t walk too far because we didn’t want to over do it. As we walked we saw a cottontail and a couple of small tarantulas. The path was very easy. Occasionally we stopped and looked at the canyon. When we got to La Junta Campground we saw where the Red River and Rio Grande River joined together. There were a couple trails but I wasn’t feeling too good so we passed on doing them. The La Junta Trail went down 800 feet in elevation for 1.2 miles and had a nice wall and a staircase, which we saw from the campground. We had a nice walk. I was tired by the time we got back and I was glad we didn’t attempt the trails. I slept on and off all day. Larry read a book, Flo kept him company outside and sunned. I went outside once and awhile to keep them company. We had very relaxing day.

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The La Junta Trail

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One of the vistas of Rio Grande del Norte National Monument

9-27 Montoso Campground

Camping at Montoso Campground

I woke up this morning with another allergy attack. I was going to do laundry before leaving Red River RV Park but that didn’t happen. I crawled out of bed earlier than Larry so Flo thought it was time for breakfast. I fed her and then got dressed. When Flo finished breakfast she wanted to go out but I really wasn’t feeling well. So Larry climbed out of bed and got dressed. Then he took her for a walk. While they were walking I climbed back into bed. A little later I got up feeling a lot better and made breakfast. Larry had already taken a shower so I went over and took one. While I was gone Larry straightened up the Minnie. When I got back we finished getting the Minnie ready to move on. Before leaving we went across the street and said good-bye to our new friends from Colorado.

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Beautiful scenery of the mountains with all the fall colors

We really weren’t in any hurry to leave we had until 11 and we weren’t going too far. Our next adventure was at The Wild River Recreation Area. We have been here before but we stayed on the other side. This time Larry wanted to stay on the side that looked over the Rio Grande River. There are three campgrounds and we decided to stay at Montoso. There are only four campsites but it had gorgeous scenery of the canyon formed by the Rio Grande River. Once we set up the Minnie we put our chairs up and paid for a couple of nights then made lunch. After lunch I took Flo for a walk, then I took a nap. It was warm in the Minnie so Larry and Flo stayed outside in the shade. Each site has its own covered picnic table, fire ring and grill. The sites are surrounded with Pinion pines so this kept it cool outside. When it was time for dinner Larry barbecued a brisket pattie for himself and a salmon pattie for me. We ate outside. After dinner we took Flo for a walk and then we stayed outside until the sun started down. We had a very relaxing day.     

Sunday, September 27, 2015

9-26 Funny Hat Dance

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Funny Hats Dance

Wow!!! We have had three fabulous days of dancing at The Red River Aspencade Plus Dances. We have met a lot of wonderful folks. Today was the last day of the event. We started out this morning just hang around the Minnie. We took Flo for a walk around the Red River RV Park. After lunch we went to a Funny Hat Dance, where most of the dancers wore hats and if you didn’t have one someone gave you one. It was a very fun dance even the callers wore a hat. Hunter Keller wore a chicken hat while Jerry Galbraith wore a jester hat. One couple wore a chili hat and the lady had a hard time keeping hers on because it was too big for her. I wore a pizza hat. We had four squares. Everyone seemed to have a great time.

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Wearing the pizza hat

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Hunter Keller and Jerry Galbraith

While Hunter Keller called a couple of tips for the advance dancers Larry and I walked around Red River. We walked through a few shops and through the Folk Festival arts and crafts booths in the convention center. Red River is a small tourist town with shops, cafes, hotels and saloons. The town was set up like an old western town with a lot of cool buildings.

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Texas Reds Steakhouse and The Lodge

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The Community House where we danced the last three days

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A cool door we saw on a real estate company

In the evening went to the closing dance. We had five squares and a lot of round dancers. They served root beer floats and some snacks, cookies, celery, carrots, tortilla chips, salsa and dip. We had a super time. We hated to say good-bye to all the new folks we met. They all said they hope we will come back next year. Both Hunter Keller and Jerry Galbraith are excellent callers. Sally and Bob Nolen did a great job with the rounds. Life Is Good!!!!!!!

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Round Dancing to Sally cueing

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Some of the beautiful outfits the dressers wore

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Sally Nolen cueing

Saturday, September 26, 2015

9-25 It’s My Birthday


I had a fantastic birthday. I started out the day not feeling very well but by noon my allergies were much better. Sharon and Mike came by about 10 and asked if we wanted to go to the Folk Festival. Larry thanked them but told them I wasn’t feeling to grand so I was sleeping in. While they were talking I got up to say hi. After Sharon and Mike left we took Flo for a walk around the park. Red River RV Park has a river that flows on the backside of the park. We walked over the bridge that went over the river and walked through a small neighborhood. As we were walking we met a lab named Daisy, she was seven years old and was white like Flo. Her master was very excited to see Flo. She said now I’ll know what Daisy will look like when she gets old. One thing about having a white dog you really can’t tell how old she really is.

Larry used my Facebook account to tell everyone it was my birthday and lot’s of my friends and family wrote to tell me Happy Birthday. Very nice of them!!!

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The Red River RV Park Office

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The rive that runs behind the park

In the afternoon Mike and Sharon took us to the square dancing workshop. The plus workshop was two hours long and the advance workshop was a half hour. We had five squares for the plus workshop and one square for the advance workshop. We started our workshop with a singing tip and then we worked on a few new moves and plus moves that the dancers were having problems with. One new move was called Fan-the-Boat, where the ends did load the boat while the centers Fan-the-Top. The move was very neat. Another move was Dixie Style to a column, where the ladies did the Dixie Style to a wave and then the men trade, the ladies fold and the men extend to the ladies. You end up in a column. Once we got the two moves down they were cool. The workshop was fun. After the workshops Larry and I took a nap before dinner.

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The Plus Workshop

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Sharon and Mike

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Bob Nolan cueing the round dancers

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Bill and Mary Kaye round dancing

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Round Dancing to Bob

In the evening we went back to the hall and danced for a couple of hours. There were enough people for six squares and a lot of round dancers. Most of the dancers dressed up for the dance. The dance was a lot of fun. After the dance we all went out and had ice cream. This was nice because it gave us some time to visit with other folks and get to know them. We had a fantastic day.     

Friday, September 25, 2015

9-24 Aspencade Plus Square And Round Dance

Red River
Hunter Keller and Jerry Gilbreath

Early this morning (6:00 a.m.) we got a knock on our door. Larry crawled out of bed to check it out. It was security from Buffalo Thunder Casino, he told us that there was some RV parking in the north parking lot for overnight. They let us stay the night last night but if we were going to stay we would have to move. He didn’t stress that we had to do it right away. Larry told him that we were going to leave in a little while. We left about 8:00 and drove around to the parking lot where the security guard told us about. We hadn’t seen any signs last night and even this morning it was hard to find the sign. It was in the back of the lot that had another sign that said no overnight parking that’s why we didn’t see it. So next time we’ll know. 

Red River was about 90 miles from Buffalo Thunder Casino so we got there early. The drive was through a magnificent mountain range. The last time we went through the mountain range we saw big horns but this morning it was later so we didn’t. I slept most of way to Red River. Before checking into the Red River RV Park we drove around Red River. It’s a small ski town with shops, restaurants and a few other businesses. The Aspencade Plus Square and Round Dance Festival wasn’t the only thing going on in Red River, it was having a Folk Festival. After driving through town we checked in. While Larry was checking in our friends Sharon and Mike from Colorado came by to say hi. They were happy that we made it. When we were driving around Larry saw that James McMurtry was going to be at the festival so after we checked in he got on the web and checked it out. He found out that James was playing at a bar and it was way too much money.

Plus dancing to Hunter and Jerry calling

Sharon and Mike in the black doing the Advance tip

After having lunch Larry and I met up with Sharon and Mike and they drove us to the square dance. For the next three days while we’re in Red River there will be a Plus workshop for an hour and a half and an hour workshop for Advance dancers every afternoon. In the evening there will be a dance with rounds in between each tip. This afternoon we didn’t have a workshop instead we had a dance. Hunter Keller and Jerry Galbraith decided since there were only enough people for a square for Advance they would have the Plus dance for two hours and a half hour for Advance with a tip at the end of the dance tonight. This was the first time we ever danced to Hunter and Jerry so we had a great time. There were enough people for five squares. Everyone was dressed casually. After the dance we all went home and took a nap.

In the evening we went back to the hall and danced for a couple of hours and most of the dancers were dressed up. There were six squares and a lot of round dancers. Bill and Mary Kaye were there so they came over and said hi to us. We only danced with them one tip but hopefully will dance with them more tomorrow.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

9-23 Buffalo Thunder Casino

Sandia Peak Tramway in Albuquerque
We woke up this morning and it was raining. Larry had another really rough night and I convinced him to head back home.  When we got to Clines Corner we stopped for lunch. Larry said he was feeling a little better and he really did not want to go home so after lunch we headed towards Albuquerque. When we got to Albuquerque we stopped at Sandia Peak Tramway. Sandia Peak is where people in the area go snow skiing when they get enough snow. We didn’t ride the tram but we watched it go up to the top of the peak. While there we walked through the New Mexico Ski Museum. It was a very small museum with exhibits about the history of snow skiing in New Mexico. Next we stopped at the Bien Mur Indian Market Center, a beautiful building with a lot of Indian jewelry, pottery, paintings, dolls and other crafts for sale. We didn’t buy anything but it was still nice to walk around and window shop. We were actually going to do these things last spring but we ended up leaving Albuquerque a bit earlier than planned, had to go home and take Louise car shopping.
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The tram leaving the depot
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The tram going up to the top of Sandia Peak
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One of the exhibits at the museum
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Ben Mur Indian Market Center

Just outside of Albuquerque is the Sandia Resort and Casino, Larry knows I really like it so we stopped by and I was able to gamble for a couple of hours. I gave the casino $3 which was really good when you think about how long I was entertained. Our initial plan was to be in Red River this weekend but due to Larry getting sick we had changed our plan. When I returned Larry said he was feeling a bit better and suggested maybe we should move to Santa Fe to do a little grocery shopping and stay at the Buffalo Thunder Casino and Resort. That way in the morning we would be closer to Red River and wouldn’t have to go shopping. Also I would be able to do a little more gambling. So off to Santa Fe we went. Kind of interesting you see because we had passed through Santa Fe earlier in the day when we were on our way home.

After we finished shopping we went to Buffalo Thunder Resort and Casino where I gambled for two and a half hours and won a dollar. It was a long day with a lot of driving but we had fun. I’m glad Larry is feeling better. Life Is Good!!!!!   

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

9-22 Down and Out

La Clinica in Tierra Amarilla
About a week ago Larry said his throat was scratchy, the next day it was a bit worse and every day since things have deteriorated. We had been camped up high in the mountains next to a stream and we decided that might not be helping. We moved south to New Mexico where we were at a lower elevation and had more sun, didn’t help, still got worse. Larry spent most of the last two days sleeping and self medicating trying to get better, finally this morning he gave up and decided to seek professional help. Did I mention when we camp we are normally way out in the sticks somewhere, yep, you guessed it, 20 miles to the nearest intersection and nothing once you get there. Ever heard of Tierra Amarilla, NM? Neither has anyone else who doesn’t live there. Found a clinic called La Clinica del Pueblo de Rio Arriba, it appears their main clientele are the local Hispanics but Larry said they certainly didn’t mind treating old, fat, bearded, white men. All clinics should be so wonderful; they even had electronic medical files, each nurse and doctor carried around a laptop. Larry looked bad and sounded terrible, the Nurse Practitioner checked him over, decided he had Acute Sinusitis (for our nurse friends). Said she was going to prescribe a couple of things, told him what they cost and said the pharmacist would bring them to the front. She also cleaned out one of his ears. Get this $80 for the visit plus about $16 for the drugs, in and out in about an hour, we were thrilled. Don’t know if it will cure him or not but he seemed to enjoy the clinic.
Heron Lake State Park
Heron Lake Visitor Center
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Camping at Heron Lake State Park
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The scenery that surrounds the park

After leaving the clinic we went to Heron Lake State Park, which was about 15 miles away. We have been there before so we knew what to expect. Heron Lake Park is prettier than El Vado Lake Park. The sites have a lot of trees to give campers a little privacy. We found a site and setup the Minnie for the night then we had lunch. After lunch I walked up to the pay station to pay for a night I didn’t take Flo with me because it was too far. As I was walking back it started to sprinkle. When it stopped sprinkling I took Flo for a walk. The clouds were building up so we didn’t walk too far. Shortly after we got back the rain came. It rained on and off the rest of the afternoon so we didn’t do too much. I read and did some dot-to-dots. Larry laid around trying to get to feeling better. Flo slept and occasionally looked around. When the rain let up I took Flo for another walk. We spent the rest of the day relaxing.  

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

9-21 Another Day at El Vado Lake State Park

Larry was still not feeling well so we stayed put at El Vado Lake. We didn’t do too much. Larry slept on and off all day, I read and did some dot-to-dots and Flo slept and laid in the sun. When I went to pay for another night I took Flo with me but when we got to the road to go to the pay station she refused to go there. Instead she wanted to go back to Larry. When we got back to the Minnie she wanted to stay outside and enjoy the site so I put her on her chain. Then I told Larry I was going to pay for another night and Flo was outside. So once again I was off to the pay station. I wasn’t in any hurry because there was no one here and it was only noon. On the way back to Flo and Larry I stopped by the host’s trailer and told him we were going to stay another night. He was grateful now he didn’t have to bother us later. We had another relaxing day. Life Is Good!!!!   

Monday, September 21, 2015

9-20 Another Beautiful Day in New Mexico

El Vado Lake
Camping at El Vado Lake State Park

We woke this morning and decided we would stay another night at El Vado Lake.  Larry hasn’t been feeling very well for a few days, started off with a scratchy throat, then moved on to headaches and other aches. This prompted us to leave the high mountains of Colorado and move a bit lower in New Mexico. We had planned to be in Red River New Mexico later this week so we just left a few days earlier than we had planned. Don’t want to get there too soon as it is really high up in the mountains and might also have limited sun due to being in the valley of the mountain. Here at El Vado we have nothing but sunshine. Flo and I walked down to to pay for another night. As we walked to the pay station she kept looking back to see if Larry was coming so this made it a slow walk. When we passed by the playscape there were three kids playing hide and go seek. It was cute to see and hear. Two of the kids were very young so when their older brother was finished counting and looking for them the little girl giggled the whole time. He was a good sport and pretended he didn’t hear her.  When we got back Flo stayed outside to rest. Larry slept on and off all day. I finished a book and started another one and worked on some of my dot-to-dots. Flo slept and went outside a few times to enjoy the sun. We had a good day even though we didn’t do anything.

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The parks playscape

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Flo enjoying the campsite

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El Vado Lake Campground

Sunday, September 20, 2015

9-19 El Vado Lake State Park

New Mexico
New Mexico Welcome Sign

Our destination this morning was El Vado Lake State Park in New Mexico. We left Vallecito Campground early this morning and drove about 130 miles to El Vado Lake. On the way there we drove through Pagosa Springs where we saw a few hot air balloons. While we were driving through town we saw a banner that read that Pagosa Springs was having a hot air balloon festival. As we continued our adventure we saw a flock of wild turkeys. At first Larry and I thought that the turkeys were buzzards but when we got close we saw they were turkeys. We drove through beautiful country with pine trees and mountains. When we got to New Mexico the scenery was still pretty.

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One of the hot air balloons in a parking lot at Pagosa Springs

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El Vado Lake

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A father and son fishing from the banks

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A family boating on El Vado Lake

We arrived at El Vado Lake State Park about noon. We hadn’t been here before so we drove around and found a site for the night. We had no problems finding one. We set up the Minnie and then we walked around a little. While walking we met the camp host, he was very friendly. After talking to him we went back to the Minnie and I made lunch. We had leftovers, I made a couple of enchiladas for Larry and I had a couple of sausage wraps. After lunch Larry and I walked over to pay for the night. On the way back we stopped by the boat ramp so I could take pictures of the lake. As we were looking at the lake we saw a family launch their wake-board boat. El Vado Lake is large enough that you can do water sports and fishing. The campground is very nice. Each site has a covered picnic table and fire ring for campfires. We spent the day reading and relaxing in the Minnie. Flo did enjoy the sun for a little while. We had a relaxing day.  

Saturday, September 19, 2015

9-18 Hiking at Vallecito Campground

Hiking at Vallecito
Hiking at Vallecito

We started the fourth week of our trip and it doesn’t seem like it. We woke up this morning with the temperature in the 40’s. I stayed in bed while Larry took Flo for a walk. When they returned Larry turned on the furnace just to get the chill out of the air and to get me out of bed. We had breakfast and then we went on our hike. Flo used to hike with us but the years are have really slowed her down and she simply can’t do it. We hiked for three hours, about four miles round trip. We hoped to hike three miles up to the a bridge but with the elevation we only hiked about two miles before turning around. The trail was very nice and challenging, it took us up to 8600 feet in elevation and we had to hike over rocks, what would you expect we’re in the mountains. As we hiked we heard and at times saw a beautiful mountain stream. The hike was very peaceful and picturesque. We saw a few people on our hike. We had a spectacular hike in the mountains. When we got back we went to our chairs and relaxed.

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Larry hiking the trail

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One of the vistas we saw during our hike

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The mountain stream that ran along the trail

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Hiking the trail

We relaxed all afternoon. Larry and I took a little nap. Larry read, I worked on some dot-to-dots and started a new book. Flo slept and sunned when we were outside.

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We have some old bread so I threw a couple pieces out for the birds to eat. I didn’t see any birds eat any of it but I did catch a chipmunk and I told Larry. We were surprised that the chipmunk really enjoyed the bread. In fact he enjoyed it so much he came back for more. When it was time for dinner Larry barbecued some seasoned chicken quarters and Flo and I kept him company. After dinner Larry and I went for a walk. We walked to the trail parking lot and took the trail around the campground. When we got back we took Flo for a walk. While walking Flo we talked to the camp hosts who just happen to be square dancers from Texas and dance at some of the same places we have. We had a super day at Vallecito Campground. Life Is Good!!!!!