The drive to Kingman should have been an easy one, and it was…until we unloaded bikes at the Shell Station in Seligman, Arizona. As the lift gate was coming down, there was a pop, and the right side of it drooped. Oops! It’s not really surprising that something like this happened. That lift gate is going up and down three or four times a day right now, and I’m not sure it was built for that kind of use. On the plus side, we had already exchanged the bikes for the execs, so they’d gone on their way. And we were in a truck stop, off the highway.
As Mike and John tried to figure out what was wrong, they discovered that John had inadvertently parked the semi next to poop…human poop! With toilet paper and everything! Ewwwww!! So, as they were working on the lift gate issue, the smell of poop was everywhere, and it only got stronger as the temps rose. Blech! I felt particularly lucky to be doing my freelance work inside the RV that day.
Eventually, the guys determined that they didn’t have the equipment to fix the gate, so a repairman was called out. While we were waiting, bikers came in and out of the truck stop and posed for pictures with the semi and the bike. When a group of 20 French bikers showed up, I used my French to let them know it was okay to sit on the bike and take photos.
Once the repairman arrived, he had the gate problem taken care of in just a few minutes, and the guys were quickly loading the bikes back into the rig. Aside from the poop, the truck stop wasn’t too bad. It had a well-stocked convenience store along with fuel pumps and a shop filled with Indian crafts. The stuff outside was pretty, but I didn’t dare venture inside to check it out. There’s no room for more trinkets in here!
After overnighting in Holbrook, Arizona, before we took off for the next leg, I rode the lift on the semi up top where the electric bikes were charging. It’s cool up there, but even I have to hunch over to get back the bikes, and I’m only 5’2″ and a half! There are metal bars that fit into slots along the walls to brace the bikes. They’re sturdy enough to sit on, so you can give your back a break.
The execs riding the LiveWires stopped in Winslow and by the meteor crater for photos while we went ahead to our meeting place in Flagstaff. We parked the RV across the lot from the semi and decided to grab lunch before everyone arrived. On our way to the restaurant in the Little America, we saw a very rare Airstream motorhome at the gas station. It was in great shape. Mike talked to the guy who owned it and found out that he’d replaced the 454 gas motor with a Cummins diesel engine. To be honest, I was a little envious of the Airstream. Our RV is nice, especially inside, but it’s in that awful middle ground between not being new and not being vintage. It’s just a little shabby on the outside without the Airstream’s retro flair. Oh well! We have plans to make the outside a little distinctive. 😉
The view from the restaurant was gorgeous! After the hectic first week of daily travel, looking out onto tree-lined walkways and seeing bunny rabbits dashing among the bushes was so refreshing. Mike and have been cutting down our expenses and calorie intake by sharing meals, so we split a hamburger. The waitress was awesome. She cut the burger for us and served each half on its own plate with a small side of fries and individual accompaniments. She didn’t even charge us a split fee!
When we got back, before the execs arrived, I had the chance to walk Sadie off the leash. The bark babies so rarely get off-leash time these days. Sadie loves to meander at her own pace and soak up the sun. She was digging the Arizona rays.
We spent that night at the Harley dealership in Bellemont. We had to get up at the crack of dawn to roll toward Kingman, but it was worth it to see the glorious sunrise.
Famous Route 66 runs through Williams, Arizona. While on a quick getaway from the heat, staying at the Railside RV Park, Mike and I had a chance to check out this little stretch of history and grab a bite outdoors while listening to live music.
Cruisers Cafe 66 is probably nice inside, but we couldn’t say. With Meeko and Sadie in tow, we took full advantage of the outdoor dog-friendly patio. A lone musician with a guitar and his own canine companion serenaded us during our meal. One song he played, “Treetop Flyer” by Stephen Stills, really resonated with Mike since he’s a pilot. He’d never heard it before and downloaded it to his iPhone on the spot. The food was satisfying, the music was nice, and the dogs were well-behaved. It was a good time.
The coleslaw had apple slices and walnuts!
I have no idea if the pizza is any good, but the slogan is terrific!
The blistering heat was unescapable. We had jumped from the Vegas frying pan into the Phoenix fire pit, because Mike was training the service techs at Buddy Stubbs Harley-Davidson. At the end of the week, as we headed out of town toward home, worries about the coach’s a/c and a strong desire to cool down led to an unplanned stop in Williams, Arizona, at the Railside RV Ranch.
Pulling into the Railside, the first thing you see is the Covered Wagon Grill. I immediately got excited, mouth watering at the thought of burgers and BBQ. I had to wipe the drool off my face because the grill is an event venue for special shindigs only. Bummer! Still, it gives the park a nifty wild west movie set feel. The office, where you check in, is opposite the grill and is stocked with friendly staff and a few sundries. There are plenty of pull-through spots with full hook-ups as well as a dumping station if you don’t want to stay. The dog run is compartmentalized, so you can bring your cat on a leash, too, if you – and the cat – are so inclined. If you’re wondering where the Railside RV Ranch got its name, look no further than the line of Grand Canyon Railway train cars adjacent to the park. It’s a lovely view.
The town of Williams, located in the heart of the Kaibab National Forest at an elevation of 6,770 feet, is known as the Gateway to the Grand Canyon. Besides train tours to the Grand Canyon, it has a lot to offer, including seven fishing lakes in the area, hiking trails up Bill Williams Mountain and into Sycamore Canyon, an alpine ski area, and cross country ski trails. Unfortunately, we didn’t partake of any of those things during our brief one-night stay. Just not enough time. We did, however, explore the charming downtown, enjoying a yummy meal and live music at Cruiser’s Cafe 66.
Our stop in Williams was a great break from the heat, and we hope to visit again when we have more time to spend.
Mike and I are transitioning to a full-time RV lifestyle. Yup…we’re moving out of the stick house and into a hallway on wheels! No, we’re not retiring. Quite the opposite. We will be motorhoming to Mike’s gigs across the country, and we’re going to share our journey with you.
Mike is a technical trainer, and he travels the nation, training on-site at Harley-Davidson’s service school in Milwaukee and various HD dealerships. Basically, he’s gone every week for work and only home on the weekends. He’s been doing this since we started dating. As glamorous as constant travel sounds, it really isn’t. It’s taken a toll on him physically, and he’s missed me and our pet babies terribly. Although it’s been easier for me, I’ve missed him terribly, too. So, we’ve made the decision to adopt a full-time motorhoming lifestyle for at least the next year and see where it takes us.
We picked up our new-to-us RV in Tucson. It’s a 2000 Holiday Rambler Endeavor that had one owner before us. It’s in great shape, but we are doing some remodeling. I’m funkifying it!
We had to drive it back to Vegas, and about five hours into the trip, around 9 p.m., we decided we needed to catch some Zs. So, we pulled into Hidden Oasis in Wikieup, Arizona, and had our first park stay. It was a terrific experience! Brenda guided us into our spot when we arrived, which was a huge help considering Mike had never navigated an RV in the dark. (In fact, he’d never even driven an RV before that day!) The next morning, Brenda made us breakfast in the little restaurant/gift shop/convenience store that fronts the park. We didn’t have much time to enjoy the surroundings because we had to get back to Vegas. But it didn’t matter because there was plenty to enjoy in the park itself. There were several large-scale metal sculptures of cactus and flowering plants; there was a whole row of huge Mariachi singers with a giant cobra coiled in their midst. There was even a metal moose guarding the sign for the park. After browsing the artwork, you could sit a spell in the chairs and benches scattered among the landscaped flower garden and rocks with gentle waterfalls. If this any indication of the parks we’ll be staying at in the future, our adventure is going to be great!