2014 Travels travel blog

Carpe Diem greets the sun at Goosnecks State Park

Transitioning to I 40 near Flagstaff

US 163 Scene

US 163 Scene

US 163 climbs to more than 7,200 feet

US 163 Scene

Coal train along US 163

Monument Valley

Monument Valley

Monument Valley

Entering Utah on US 163

Descending to the San Juan River Valley

Hard turn at bottom of 10% grade???

Where Mexican Hat got its name

Nearing Goosenecks State Park

Goosenecks State Park
Carpeis near rim

Goosenecks State Park

Goosenecks State Park

Carpe at Goosenecks State Park

Goosenecks State Park in morning light

Picturesque rock formation from Goosenecks State Park

Desert wildflowers in bloom at Goosenecks State Park

Fri, 18 Apr: North to spectacular Utah!

Today was a longish day, 287 miles in three shifts. We had left an overnite stop as an option depending how we felt. It was a beautiful drive so when decision time arrived we elected to press on.

We departed the Prescott Valley Elks Lodge at 0915 and drove a whopping 1¼ miles to the Sam Club fuel station where we topped off Carpe's tank. She still had about ¾ of a tank but when diesel is available at a somewhat "reasonable" price we take it.

Following fueling we connected the car and headed back along AZ 69 to AZ 169 to I 17 which we took north toward Flagstaff. At Flagstaff we picked up I 40 east for a few miles and then US 89 north to US 160 thru Tuba City to Kayenta. At Kayenta we headed north on US 163 thru Monument Valley into Utah.

Monument Valley is always a spectacular sight even on an overcast day such as this. We took several pix, which are posted in the photo section of this entry. Once in Mexican Hat it was only a few miles north to UT 261 and then UT 316 to Goosenecks State Park where we found a beautifully situated site right on the rim. The view from our dining table was into the river canyon with the San Juan River 1,000' below the rim. Spectacular!

Today's total distance was 287 miles with an overall fuel economy of 8.3 mpg.

Wed, 23 Apr: Kickin' back and chillin'!

We've been here several days now and have enjoyed boondocking at Goosenecks State Park. This is a very spectacular place with the undulations of the San Juan River cutting unique and picturesque canyons. We stayed overnite here several years ago and vowed to return.

The downside is that it is really, truly, away from just about everything. Most notable is the very, very limited cellular coverage. We had one bar of 1X Verizon service, but with our Wilson booster we managed to get three (sometimes four) bars. The 1X service, however, severely limited our connectivity. Talk about withdrawal...

We had two very windy days during the week, especially Tuesday when gusts exceeded 50 mph. It was too windy and dusty to open windows so we had to start the generator to run the air conditioner. We even slept one nite with all the slides in.

We had a problem with our solar system upon arrival. It seems that a fuse in the main feed line failed (the fuse physically broke) and we had no solar charging. We were able to fix it temporarily until we could get appropriate replacement parts sent.

We've been in the midst of a construction zone since Monday. A crew from the Utah Department of Natural Resources arrived and started "improving" the park. New picnic tables, fire pits, gravel roadway, and a new pay system. That's right, as of this coming weekend Goosenecks State Park is no longer free, there is a $2 per vehicle fee to enter or a $10/nite camping fee. This is not happy news, but it is what it is. We'll pay $10/nite to park in this special place, but wonder how many others will do likewise.

We'll depart tomorrow after six very restful days of gorgeous vistas and delightful solitude.

Entry Rating:     Why ratings?
Please Rate:  
Thank you for voting!
Share |