For Travel Tuesday, AZ:
Many snowbirds will be in AZ soon:
"Do you enjoy visiting your favorite Arizona State Park time and again? Or do you find that visiting State Parks in a region is more appealing? Whichever suits your needs, Arizona State Parks offers a deal for you, your friends, and your family through its annual pass program.
Three annual passes are available, a standard pass for $75 a year, a premium pass for $200 that offers increased benefits, and a disabled veteran's annual pass which is free. Any two individuals may put their names on a pass.
Learn all about the passes at the Arizona State Parks website. They are available for purchase at many Arizona State Park visitor centers and gift shops."
"Each of Arizona's 22 Native American Reservations operates under its own unique governmental structure and establishes its own rules for visitors. Visitors should not assume that what applies in one Tribal community is the general rule for all Tribal communities. Please observe all Tribal laws and regulations. For specific information, it's recommended that you contact the individual tribe(s) before your visit.
Taking photos, video and audio recordings, as well as sketching, is a particularly sensitive issue. Permits may be required, and fees and restrictions vary, particularly for professionals. Therefore, it is important to contact each individual Tribe regarding its policies. Do not attempt to engage in any of the above mentioned activities without prior authorization. Failure to comply with Tribal regulations could result in fines, confiscation of equipment and/or expulsion from Tribal Lands.
Dances are sacred ceremonies.
Observe them as you would any other religious function by dressing and acting appropriately. Be mindful of where you sit, stand and walk. For example, at certain Hopi dances men and women sit apart; during pow wows it may not be appropriate to stand beside a drum; and it is inappropriate to walk across the pow wow arena during a dance. Never pick up any object that is dropped during a ceremony. Please refrain from talking to the ceremonial dancers. Applause after ceremonial dances is considered inappropriate.
Some of the Tribal buildings and structures may be several hundred years old and damage easily; do not climb on walls or other structures. Do not disturb or remove animals, plants, rocks or artifacts including pot shards, as Tribal and federal laws prohibit the removal of such items.
Use caution when driving, especially at night. Much of the reservation land is open range, and small herds of sheep, goats, cattle and horses move freely along and across roads.
Like any community, a reservation is home to those who live and work there and should be respected as such. Although most reservation communities are open to the public during daylight hours, the homes are private and should be entered only by invitation." From: http://rvarizona.blogspot.com/2011/04/pay-attention-to-rules-when-visiting.html
"This small "ghost town" is along old Route 66 in Arizona just east of Laughlin, Nevada. The town isn't much -- a main street with mom and pop tourist shops, and the old Oatman Hotel where Clark Gable and Carole Lombard spent their wedding night."
"The fun thing about Oatman is feeding the burros that roam the streets. Buy a bag of carrots for $1 and you'll make some fast friends. But don't feed the young ones (the carrots can kill them) and never stand behind a burro because they can kick -- and you don't want to know what that feels like (ouch!).
A good place to camp is at nearby Katherine's Landing at Lake Mohave."
"Baby white donkey - just a couple weeks old - sleeping in the street.
He was just sleeping near the side of the street at the end of town outside one of the shops. If you look really close you’ll see the little sticker on his nose that says: No Carrots!
The locals told us that they don’t have their teeth yet at such a young age (only a couple of weeks in this case) and can choke on the carrots."
More about Oatman: http://oatmangoldroad.org/burros.htm
Tucson Audubon's Mason Center"The Mason Center is a unique piece of land within our city. Managed by the Tucson Audubon Society, it is located on 20 acres of mostly undisturbed saguaro-ironwood desert donated by its former owner, Mrs. Orpha Mason. It's in a part of Tucson's northwest side that is rapidly growing and in great need of outdoor education opportunities. As a protected area it provides habitat for the preservation and study of many desert plants and animals. Producer Luis Carrion brings us this look at this hidden habitat."
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Tucson, Arizona
"The raptor free-flight takes place daily from late October through mid-April. The museum is open year round. Several public and private campgrounds are located near the museum. The closest is the Gilbert Ray Campground which is operated by Pima County.
The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum near Tucson is a combination zoo, botanical garden and geology exhibit, with specimens from the Sonoran Desert in Arizona and Mexico. In addition to the animal and botanical environments and a cave/geology exhibit, a highlight of the park is a raptor free-flight demonstration that is absolutely breathtaking. Read more."
"This video was taken on January, 2010. The museum is a natural history museum, botanical garden and a zoo all rolled into one great institution. It is located west of Tucson, AZ a few miles east of the Saguaro National Park West. It is an outstanding facility where children and adults alike can learn about the flora, fauna and natural history of the Sonoran Desert."
"Part one of our visit to the museum includes mountain lion, Mexican gray wolf playing in sprinkler to cool off, whitetail deer, wild turkey, coyotes, javelina, see a volunteer handle a tarantula, visit a cave, see hognose skunk, Harris' antelope squirrel, be nose to nose with a Gila monster. Watch bobcats, gray fox, ocelot, ornate box turtle, delight in the antics of the raccoon and more! "
"Part 2 of our visit to the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum. Watch the beaver and otter swim, see the elusive coati, turkey vulture. See the cute baby bighorn sheep born at the museum, desert tortoise. Admire the beautiful colors of the hummingbirds and have a front row seat at the Raptor Free Flight demonstrations where you can watch the Chihuahuan Raven, Barn Owl, Great Horned Owl, Greater Roadrunner, Ferruginous Hawk and Harris' Hawks fly and hunt over the desert."
Centenarians on the increase in Arizona
"Want to live a long time? Drive your RV to Arizona. The US Census reports that there were 832 centenarians in the state in 2010, a 27% increase since 2000. According to Anne Morrison, director of education for the University of Arizona’s Center on Aging, “Once they’ve hit 85, the healthy ones have shown they’re strong enough to overcome problems,” Morrison said. “If something hasn’t taken them before that, they’re good beyond 100.” In all, residents between 100 and 104 increased from 598 in 2000 to 772 in 2011. Those from 105 to 109 increased from 42 in 2000 to 53 in 2010.
There are a lot of contributors for the increase in old folks, like the improvements and discoveries in medical care, nutrition, and exercise. People smoke a lot less than previously, eat healthier food, and are generally more knowledgeable about their health and how to maintain it. And, believe it or not, falling down from slipping on ice or snow and breaking bones was a contributing factor to a shortened lifespan–and one of the reasons Arizona had such good numbers, there is not much of that down there.
“They’re starting to experience the vulnerabilities of aging, but they’re camping, hiking, biking,” said Melanie Starns, assistant director of the Arizona Department of Economic Service’s Aging and Adult Services division.
That’s good news. It means that a lot of the things that we RVers like to do–camping, hiking, biking–are the activities that keep us healthy and able to live longer lives.
There are trails wherever you happen to be. Some are for hiking only, some are especially good for biking, like the Rails to Trails Conservancy where former railroad beds have been converted into level, improved surface, hiking and biking trails–more than 30,000 miles of them. Many go through scenic areas inaccessible by any other means, while others wind through historic sites and small towns. Check out their trail finder to find a trail near your campground.
Check also the National Park Service’s National Recreation Trails, over 1,100 trails in all 50 states. So get out of that camp chair, tune up that bicycle, dig out the hiking boots, and get out there and enjoy life–you will probably have a lot more life to enjoy than you thought previously." By Bob Difley
Put out your campfires
"Forest service rangers in Arizona while recently on routine patrol following a wildfire discovered twelve abandoned campfires improperly extinguished and still smoldering. With the dry season, and with the image of the horrendous wildfires that raged through Texas, it is imperative that all boondockers take extra precautions that their fires are out before leaving their campsite, especially since boondockers frequently camp away from more traveled routes and their smoldering fires may not be discovered.
Pour water on your fire, then feel all parts of the fire to make sure there are no hot spots. Then pile dirt over your coals for an extra measure of safety. "
Boondocking tips with Bob Difley
Fire Safety Tip from Mac McCoy "Driving with propane on can add to the danger if you are involved in an accident or have a fire. Most refrigerators will keep food cold or frozen for eight hours without running while you travel. Shut the propane off at the tank. Learn more about Mac and fire safety."
Last time I was in town, I had Mikey the Poodle with me when I took him in for his shots and to have his bad ears checked. I really needed to go to the store for a few things then, but not with someone else's dog in the car. So yesterday it was time to go shopping.
Jay wanted to go with me, so Misty had her walk-about down there, and sniffed with Maddie and Muffie who live across the street from each other.
First stop was the water company to pay our bills, and then on to Conroe Post Office to mail some more forms that I had had to fill out. That letter should get a day's head start on it's journey, by mailing it in Conroe instead of here.
We went to two thrift shops near down town, and Jay bought some Crocs. He had never had any before, and said that they are very light and comfortable, despite how they look. He also bought a really unusual Betta bowl, it is round when you look at it from the side, and an ellipse from the top. I bought a cute Dresden blue and white dress, and a ShopVac. Our favourite one that I bought for $8 ten years ago, bit the dust!
I have a regular manual citrus juice squeezer, which is hard on the wrist, so I bought an electric one for $3. I will make more OJ with that, and the clean-up will be the same. Bottled, boxed and canned juices have to be pasteurized, so that they can stay on the shelf for long times. That means that they lose their goodness and enzymes, as they are not raw and 'live'. Also most of the bottled juice's concentrate is made in Brazil, whereas the whole fruit is grown here in the USA. So I would rather make my own. http://www.ehow.com/info_8586850_freshsqueezed-vs-storebought-orange-juice.html I use my centrifugal juicer for carrots, apples, kale and such, but the regular juicer for OJ, lemons and limes, so I think it will be handy.
Then we stopped at another thrift shop on 105 and Jay bought some new Sketchers, normally $100, for $18. So he should be set for shoes for a while.
He said they are like walking on carpet with very thick padding, and is very pleased with them.
We both needed batteries, so we stopped at The Dollar Tree, as four AA Engergizers are ...well... a dollar. It is a good place to buy reading glasses, too.
A stop at Walmart to pick up his mother's prescription, so I bought a lot of the items on my list there, mostly in the automotive dept.
Jay bought a blue and red Betta, and Betta food.
"Siamese fighting fish, B. splendens, is often referred to as betta in the U.S., leading to some confusion"
I used to have a Betta traveling in my MH with me. They don't require air pumps as they breathe from the top of the water, and they don't require a large tank, so he was a great traveling companion. I put his bowl in the sink, covered with some plastic wrap in case it sloshed, and off we would go. When we got there, his bowl would be put back on the table. He didn't bark or need to be picked up after.
A stop at Petsmart for cat food, and it was home again on a beautiful sunny warm, but not hot day.