Monday, April 27, 2015

Moving on: Saguaro Co-op Escapees Park, Caballo Lake and Elephant Butte

Since leaving San Diego, Katie and I have been traveling east to New Mexico and we're finally here.  We stayed a couple of nights at the Viejas Casino in Alpine, CA, then traveled to El Centro to stock up on food, gas up and spend a night at Wal-Mart.  We drove onward toward Benson, AZ, spending a night at the Love's Truck Stop in Gila Bend. Next we traveled to the Saguaro Co-op Escapees Park in Benson, AZ where we spent a night in their dry-camping lot, right next to the office.

While we were in Benson, we met up with Judie and Gary, fellow RVers, from Sierra Vista.  We've been trying to get together for a while and finally things worked out.  They came to get me and treated me to a wonderful dinner at Mi Casa, Gary's favorite restaurant in Benson.  I had a wonderful time - they are the most interesting couple!

After dinner we came back to the The Palms and spent a couple more hours visiting.  The evening came to a close, and I hated to see them go - they might be traveling to the New Mexico State Parks this spring/summer and I hope we will meet up again.

Thanks for your visit and a great dinner, Judie and Gary.  I'm so happy I finally met you both - see you soon!  :)

I got some photos of a few birds at the Saguaro Co-op park -

and my first cactus blooms of the year.  Some of the toughest looking cactus have the most delicate flowers.

There were a lot of "babies" in one area of the landscape - this is one of them.  I was surprised how many were ready to blossom at this tiny size:

This Escapees park is beautifully landscaped with different kinds of cactuses and little signs telling what kind they are.  Not a weed in sight - they do a great job.  It's a very nice, clean park.  I have been thinking about spending a month or more there in the future.

The next morning we headed to Caballo Lake State Park in New Mexico.  I have to say, I don't enjoy driving like I did in the beginning.  It's still exciting to get behind the wheel heading toward a new destination, but after about two hours of driving, I'm ready to stop.  That's one reason this area is so great.  Caballo Lake and Percha Dam State Parks are very close to each other, and Elephant Butte State Park is just 30 minutes down the road.  And Truth or Consequences (T or C) is right up the road from there, and it has a Wal-Mart in addition to other stores and restaurants.

We've been here at these state parks for the last four years, and taking photos isn't as high a priority as it used to be.  Most of the sites, birds, flowers, etc, have already been snapped and posted more than once.  I did take one photo, though, at Caballo.  We camped in the parking lot above the lake and boat ramp for three nights.  We had a great view of the lake, blue and  beautiful, then changing to grey as the clouds came in and the wind started up.  We had some rain, too. 

When the wind whipped up one afternoon, the lake below was sparkling with diamonds.  It was so pretty, there must have been little whitecaps all over the surface of the water and the sun was hitting them just right.  I snapped a photo to see if it would show the "diamonds," and it wasn't bad:

We caught a mouse in the trap under the driver's seat the first two mornings.  I got out my flashing solar light strings and put one in the engine compartment and one under the seat in the cab - and that did the trick; we didn't have any more mice.  :)

Then on Sunday I decided to head on to Elephant Butte, do some shopping at the Wal-Mart in T or C, then get a free dry camping site (with my annual pass) overlooking the lake.  We got here in the late afternoon and there were NO sites.  There are not many designated dry camping sites here, but there are two I know about that I've used in the past, and I was able to grab the last one.  The lake is so high I actually have a lake view from this parking place.  And super good Verizon and TV channels.  I was planning on staying at South Monticello, but just might stay here for the 14 days.  We'll see.

That's about it - just driving east and hitting a few spots along the way.  Now that we're in New Mexico we'll settle down a little and hopefully have a nice summer.

And one more thing:  I wanted to let you know - Discount Tire/America's Tire has never gotten back to me after that first e-mail.  I didn't want anything from them, except maybe paying the extra to exchange my four tires for the four I originally thought I was purchasing.  I'm disappointed; I thought their customer service would be better than that, and they dropped the ball.  :(

From me and Katie, have a great Monday, everyone!  :)


  1. Just love travelling that area, but have stayed much in New Mexico, looking forward to more pictures.

  2. I'm glad to hear there is water in the lake. It's been so low. We love that area around TorC. Have a relaxing summer.

  3. Cool you got to meet Judie and Gary. Did they tell you about our near miss? Great shot of that Gambel's Quail!

    1. Yes, they did tell me about it. Too bad, you would have loved them. And they would have loved you, too, of course. :) Maybe you'll meet up next year.

  4. I once bought a new tire at Discount Tire. After leaving, I happened to look at my new tire and guess what? It was never changed. I took it right back in and they said the guy must have forgotten to change it. I said never mind and give me my money back. Of course they tried to make it right but I took my refund and left.

  5. Glad you had a nice visit with Judie and Gary.
    Because we head south after Christmas it's a mad dash to get away from the cold weather. On our return trip we break it up into shorter trips but even those are starting to get tiring.
    From all the complaints I'm hearing about Discount Tires it doesn't sound like they'll be around much longer.
    Enjoy seeing the new sights and Be Safe!

    It's about time.

  6. Discount tires has probably been around longer than it should have. I hope everyone who has a complaint about them writes a review and posts it on the internet.

  7. Everything is still on schedule to spring out of here right after the next doctor visit. C U soon! ;->

    Virtual hugs,

    Judie < -- still mourning having missed Kim!

  8. And here I thought I was the only one that is growing tired of the driving.

  9. Glad to hear your travels east were just fine; enjoy NM! I'am betting you will have a fantastic summer!!

  10. That darn tire company. I'm still mad at them. I think you should publish the contact information and your reference number and all of us write in with a snarly email. I'm game. I'll lead a 60's type write in to them.

    1. Thanks, Barbara - but I'm fine. I ended up with good tires, and just stopped in El Cajon, CA to have the new valve stem extender installed on the rear dual tire. All the tires look good, so I'll just live with it. I'll still use their free PSI check, but I won't purchase any more tires from them. :(

  11. We love New Mexico State Parks--so glad you're back in the Land of Enchantment! We will return to Pancho Villa for the 100th anniversary of the Pancho raid next March & will undoubtedly return to Caballo Lake Riverside. I was just wondering what happened with Discount Tire--sorry to hear you never heard from them. I'm glad you got good tires.

  12. Fun meeting up with friends!! Curious about the flashing lights under the seat..they keep mice away? That's interesting. So, is that why people put lines of LED lights around and under their rigs? Or just light as you walk out at night. Still learning but getting better!! lol

  13. Fun meeting up with friends!! Curious about the flashing lights under the seat..they keep mice away? That's interesting. So, is that why people put lines of LED lights around and under their rigs? Or just light as you walk out at night. Still learning but getting better!! lol


Thank you for your comments - we LOVE them!