Friday, August 27, 2010

Military Jeepers Beat The Heat Run

Last weekend, Aug 21/22, myself and several folks from the West Tx/Southern NM Chapter of Military Jeepers, got together for a weekend of camping and off roading. Our destination was the western side of the Sacramento Mtns, NM. There were 7 vehicles and about 15 folks for the trip, the idea was to escape the basin heat 95+, and spend time in the 70 degree mtns. We were fortunate enought to have one of the founders of Military Jeepers come out with us, as he was on leave in AZ and made the trip over. We also had a gentleman from eastern TX, who was doing work in El Paso join us as well.
Here we are on the way to the campsite to drop off most everyones gear before hitting the trails for the day.

Our campsite was a secluded and little known mesa overlooking Alamogordo, so our gear would be safe there as we headed out for the day.

Our first trail lead us up Horse Ridge to another beautiful overlook of the basin below.

Back on the trail.

We were threatened all day with these rains, however they seemed to miss us and our campsite the whole weekend. Ok, except for one little downpoor while hiking back from a waterfall.

It was a great day to be out exploring the area.

After a full day on the trails it was back to camp and AJ cooked up some great ribs!!! Everyone ate well and finished setting up their sites for the night.

As night fell the campfire began roaring as we all settled in for an evening of beverages and good conversation. The lights of the city below just added to the great location. As the night lengthened it was off to bed for a well deserved sleep.

Morning came with coffee and breakfast burritos, what a way to start the day!!!

It was a beautiful sunrise as we all began packing up and getting ready for another day of exploring.

The day was spent out on the trails and enjoying the beautiful scenery.

Our final stop for the weekend was Bluff Springs Falls, this is a year round waterfall approx 50' high. It also helps to feed the Rio Pensco River which winds it's way along the road to the falls.

It was a great weekend, meeting old friends and making new friends. If you can not make it out the banner says, West Texas/Southern Mew Mexico Military Jeepers. I sure will miss these guys when we leave NM, but thats the great thing, MJ is a Nationwide organization so we'll be meeting up with more Military Jeepers all over the country, as well as many other people from both other off road and RV fourms.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

El Paso's Franklin Mountains

Another doctors appointment down in El Paso the other day, be glad when there done with and we can then get on the road, should only be another month or so. We planned on leaving here (Holloman AFB) on Oct 1st, we will still leave, but will prob move down to El Paso until Sheryls back treatments are done. Ok, there is a point to all We have been to El Paso several times and travel the same basic roads. One of the roads is TransMountain Dr, which is an East/West pass over the Franklin Mountains from on side of El Paso to the other.
While we have travelled this beautiful and scenic road many times we have never stopped at any of the overlooks to just take it all in. Well this time we had 4 hours to kill between appointments, so we took our time and stopped at each one. You can see El Paso in the forground and Mexico as marked by the distant mountains.
Even though we have not had a chance to travel around much since begining Fulltiming, we do try and see what we can while we here. Sometimes (since being here so long) we get caught up in day to day life and forget to stop and smell the roses or wild flowers as the case maybe.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Man it's Hot!!!

Hopped in the Jeep to run up to the store and thinking Man it's Hot out today, then I looked down at the temp reading and thought wonder!!! Those temps plus having above average humidity Desert Rats are dying out I know the rest of the country is having above average temps this year also, and the East coast with their humidity, I don't envey you folks one bit right now. I grew up in FL so I know what you folks are going through, But humid or not 107 is just plain hot no matter where you are.
Ok, so stay cool as we are trying to do and remember winter is just around the corner, when we'll be begging for warmer weather again....just not this warm. So until next time..............

Saturday, August 14, 2010

If it Wern't for Bad Luck we'd Have no Luck at All

Well between several appointments and general running around, we were able to find time to pick up a new tire to replace the blown out one. Should have seen the tire guys face when I asked him if he could just patch the old At least now the trailer has one brand new tire and 3 preety new tires as the other three were replaced by the previous owner last year. Now just have to get it put on, 100+ degree days sure puts a damper on wanting to do much of anything.
Finally washed the beast, she hasen't had a bath since the last trail ride a few weeks ago and was begining to look alittle rough. I really don't like a dirty vehicle, but it has been raining almost everyday here, be it a little or a lot. Of course we know what rain does to a freshly washed car.......mite as well not even bother. The weather has finally cleared a bit, so I tempted fate and you guessed it, rain last night!!! Well it still looks better than it did.

I'm begining to wonder about my luck with most anything. I picked up this little propane tank at Camping World a couple of weeks ago to use on the new grill (hate messing with those little green bottles) and it works great. Well it worked great till yesterday, I though it was still full, but the grill just sputtered and then wouldn't lite, hmmmm, maybe I left the valve open and all the gas leaked out. Took it to the propane guy to refill and he said it was full, but seems the valve is broken and won't open......great. So I'm stuck with another $50.00 paperweight until I can get back down to Camping World to exchange it in a couple of weeks.
Whats that old saying, If it wern't for bad luck I'd have no luck at Seems to be the way thing shape up around here sometimes. However, I take it all in stride, as this Fulltiming lifestyle sure beats the heck out of working for a living, and besides, how boring would life be if we didn't have these little hick-ups to keep it interesting.
I want to thank you folks for reading along and taking a couple of minutes to leave a comment or two, sure feels nice to know folks are stopping by to say hi.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Big Boom!!! and an Old Ft Bliss Update

Wow, what a couple of days. Yesterday Sheryl and I were headed out for lunch, when she looked down at the tire area and said "hey honey we have a flat tire" to which I looked and responded "Wow, I guess we do, wonder what happened??" Of course you would think that it was kinda obvious from the picture, however we have a table with our grill set up right over the tires. Well, just after saying "wonder how that happened" I looked alittle closer and Holy Cow!!! Thats what I saw.
Funney thing is, we have just been sitting here. I have never heard of a tire exploding just sitting, but I guess they do. I asked a couple of other folks in the campground if they have ever heard of such a thing?? and to my surprise, three people answered yup, happened to me once. Ok, so it's not an uncommon occurance.....still odd to me. If there is a bright side, it was the only old tire we had, the other three are brand new occording to the previous owner. So it's off to Wally World on Wed. to get a new tire.

If you remember from the last post I took a side trip to Old Ft Bliss a couple of days ago. Today Sheryl and I had to go back down to El Paso for a Doctors appointment, so I thought I swing by and show it to Sheryl and see if the museum part was open today. As luck would have it, it was, so we took the self guided tour and checked it all out.
They did a very good job of mocking up several areas, even though it is just the remains of the church and hospital. Above is the General Store.
Spinning Room

Barracks Area

Blacksmith Shop

And of course your Loving Site Hosts
Thought you all would like to see a few pictures of the inside and a glimps of life for our militay men of the mid 1800s in the old west.
Ok, see you on the next go round....Take Care and thanks for dropping by!!!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

El Paso, TX/Ft Bliss

Our next door neighbor,( Scott) here in the park asked me if I could take him down to the El Paso Airport yesterday morning. He is here for a couple of months for school, and was not too keen on the idea (neither was his wife Kelly) on her driving 70 miles back through the desert by herself. So when Scott asked if I would mind driving him down and picking him up a few days later, of course I said yes. The drive down was uneventful, just general chit chat. I dropped him of at the airport and said I'd see him in a couple of days.
El Paso Airport has a really nice Bronze Statue and Clock Tower marking the entrance.

The back entrance to Ft Bliss is just outside the airport, so I thought I'd take a short trip through the base. I took a road I had not been on before and ran across these old adobe buildings, they looked so out of place, I just had to stop to investigate. Turned out to be some of the orginial buildings from when Ft Bliss that was built back in the late 1800s. It appears most the buildings were destroyed from departing US troops, except for the hospital and church which you see standing here.

It is now a museum, but it wasn't open today. So I just walked around and took a few shots.

On the drive down, again I took a new route. I could see what looked like Military Cemetary from the road, so I thought I'd go a see what it was all about, and of course pay my respects to those who were laid to rest there, after serving our Great Nation.
Turned out to be a U.S. National Cemetary (military) One thing I did notice on the headstones. That I wasn't aware of, was on the back of the headstones was the name of the soldiers spouse complete with DOB and year of death. I found that a fitting tribute and a way to keep each other close even though they were parted so suddenly, that after death they are once again close together.

God Bless all who have served our great nation and paid the ultimate price.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

New Generator and a Close Call

We finally decided (and had the money) to buy a generator so we can boondock as needed and not have to worry about elec. After alot of research we decided on the Honda 3000 Handi. I know there are less expense generators out there, but we decided to attempt to do it right the first time and buy the best. These little beauties are supposed to run "Most" 13.500 BTU RV A/C units. Well we found out, our A/C unit is not considered "Most", yup plugged her in hit the A/C switch and the poor ole Honda just sputters and dies a slow horrorable death. Darn, Darn, Darn (ok, maybe alittle more colorful, but you get the idea) Wow I think to myself, a $1900.00 paperweight!!! Of course it'll run everything else just fine. Bad part is (well more than one bad part) we had went back and forth on buying two 2000 watt gens or the one 3000 watt, but decided on the one for simplicity, figuring it would do what we needed. Second bad part is, we bought it off a internet site, so very doubful we can return it after it has been ran (can't mail a engine with oil and gas fumes anyway) so were kinda stuck with it.
Now for the close call part, when I decided to test out the generator and see how it would do running the RV, I went out and unplugged from the power post and this it what I saw!!! Not good, not good at all I thought. So instead of sticking that in the new generator, I thought I put it back into the outlet until I could get a new cord. Yea, that didn't work at all, all the post did was sizzle and pop!!! Ok, no power, this isn't good (oh and it's all ready 95 degrees) Ok, just run down to the RV shop, oh wait, it's Sunday everyone is closed!!! Think, Think, Think, ahhhh Camping World is open, it's over and hour drive, but you gotta do what you gotta do, so off we went.

We get to Camping World prepared to buy a whole new cord, but all they have are 30 amp extension cords. I wanted one with a plug and open wires on the other end.....hmmm now what to do. I looked up and saw just a new plug I could replace my old one save 30 bucks also......sold!!! Of course you can't come away from Camping world with just one item......ok, thats another post in Get home, rewire, plug the nice new plug into the post and Snap, Sizzle, Pop!!! pull the plug right away and the metal tabs are already burnt, not bad, just wiped them off, and goonew. Troubleshooting overwith, figure it's a bad 30 amp socket. Well I'll just call and have it fixed.........oops, it's Sunday on a military base, nothing is open......hmmmm made a few calls and was able to get an emergency work order to fix the plug. About 2 hours later the Electrician showed up to fix the post. They were great, even if they were called in from home, they did a bang up job and got the post fixed for us......woooo hoooo we have power again!!! While they were fixing the post they noticed the 30 amp plug was completly shot and the power wire to it were burning up, so it was a close call that we didn't end up with a fire in the post or our RV.
Ahh, back to the gernerator ordeal, we thought about it and decided to keep the 3000 and if needed later, just buy another 3000 and run them in parallel, better to have too much power than not enough.
Well, that crisis was everted, thank goodness. Never a dull moment in this Fulltiming thing, were still loving it and can't wait to actually get out there on the road. Speaking of loving it, since I we haven't said it a while.....Keep Lovin your Life as we do Ours!!! See ya next time.