Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Our 2016 Excursion is Underway in Yosemite N.P. (May 17, 2016)

Note: While we started our excursion back on May 17th we have spent most of our time in areas where the data reception was diminished to "2G". It is very difficult to upload the blog, and especially photos, without the full "4G LTE" market provided by our service at T-Mobile.
To bring all that follow our blog up to date I just want to remind everyone that in January 2014 we joined the Escapee RV Club. The clubs home base is about 65 miles north of Houston, Texas, in Livingston. The club supports eleven co-op parks across the country and eight Rainbow parks. By the way, Escapees are fifty-five plus years mature and basically all have the same goals. In the co-op parks each space site is owned by individuals just like us. The co-op parks are independently run by the members of each park. Voting is held every year to appoint new people to run their park. In a co-op each member is responsible to fellow co-members to keep the park up to date and in order. Shared responsibility so to speak.

As of this date, our travels have seen us stay in six of the eleven co-op parks, and six of the seven Rainbow parks. In 2016 we expect to add two more co-op parks and one Rainbow park to our resume. Since we are staying in the western states this year these three parks will be in Sutherlin, Oregon, Lakewood, New Mexico near Carlsbad, and Deming, New Mexico. Of course we stay in many parks outside the Escapee system. So, here we go in 2016.

On Wednesday, May 17th, we left our winter base. Our base for the winter months is the Escapee Co-Op in Pahrump, Nevada.  We are owners of lot 66A in Pahrump. Pahrump has a population approaching 42,000, and it is 55 miles west of Las Vegas, and just a couple miles from the California border. Pahrump has all the necessities RVers are looking for and the town sees excellent stability in catering to the RVing base. I personally like it because it has a very good golf course.

Our destination on this day after a 400 mile drive through the southern San Joaquin Valley of California is Coarsegold, California. The Escapee RV Club’s “Park Sierra” will be our home for the next week. Park Sierra was founded into the Escapee system in 1991, and it is just a few miles from the south entrance to Yosemite National Park.

By chance, or luck of the draw, Janet and I were assigned to the most amazing space to park our motorhome. So amazing we have agreed that this is probably the best space we have ever been in during our four years of traveling. It had full hookups with strong 4G LTE signals for our phones and data line. The space, while facing south, was blocked by beautiful oak and pine trees which precludes our TV’s satellite from picking up DISH. We lived without TV for a week, and that has only happened two other time in four years.
This space is owned by one of the members of the co-op and put up for rent when they are away doing whatever. The money from the rental goes to the income of the co-ops general fund. While the owner is away the co-op has the responsibility of keeping the space in tip top shape for rental, and eventual the owners return.

The space itself is at the top of a small raised hill and it is about twice the size of any other space we have been in – ever - anywhere. It has a nice patio on the passenger side of our motorhome with a private picnic table on a level three feet below the coach. There are four birdhouses and two water features on the space for the bird’s enjoyment. This park is off the main highway far enough to be eerily quiet at night.

We made two different trips into Yosemite National Park during our week in Coarsegold. It was about 20 miles from the RV Park to the south entrance of Yosemite and about another 25 miles to the valley where the lodge is located. From here you can have views of El Capitan and Bridal-Vail Falls. Amazing views we had only seen on TV and in pictures were finally ours.

Being from the Las Vegas area, with all its glitz and glamour, we were induced to take a look at the local Indian Casino – “Chuckchinsi” (Pronounced: Chuck Chin See) Resort and Casino which was just two miles from the RV Park. This casino had a terrific buffet and a couple of very nice restaurants.
We had a plan to play golf but the weather didn’t cooperate on that day. Our week went by quickly and before we knew it we were getting the motorhome conditioned to move on to our second stop in our 2016 excursion. Tomorrow, May 25th we will be moving on to Reno, Nevada.

A Fun Stop Is Reno, Nevada May 25 - June

We put Coarsegold, California and Yosemite N.P. in our rearview mirror on Wednesday, May 25th, for the 300 mile drive on to Reno, Nevada.

While this trip started in clear and sunny weather it slowly deteriorated into sprinkles and eventually a very hard rain just east of Sacramento. While it was raining its hardest in the Donner Pass area of east bound Interstate-80 it suddenly transitioned to a flash snow adventure for about 15 seconds before it went back to just raining. Scary moments if you aren’t used to it, and we weren’t! It just rained the final 25 minutes of our journey into the Reno area. Our destination, for the second year in row, was the Sparks Marina RV Resort in Sparks. Sparks is the eastern suburb of Reno. This RV Park is a half mile from a major shopping area. It also has a new movie theater with all the latest gadgets like tilt back seating. Tuesday is always senior’s day at the movies!

This park has become more popular since we were here last year. It is a very clean park in that there is no real grass in the entire park. They used artificial turf next to each space, and after 11 years it still looks as good as new.

There are plenty of sightseeing type things to do around the Reno area, and we apparently don’t get tired of seeing them as we have been coming here for years. Lake Tahoe is in the mountains about 50 miles from downtown Reno. We spent our honeymoon there in 1978 and have come back to the lake on family vacations over the years.

Virginia City is in the hills about 30 miles southeast. This was a strong silver producing town in the 1800s and remains a western town tourist attraction. If you are lucky you might even run into “Stinky” the old miner that pulls his mule down the main street. Plenty of old history in this town of yester year.

Carson City is 30 miles south of Reno, and today a freeway gets you there. Carson City is the capitol of Nevada and the motif is western.
Yes, I played some poker at the Eldorado Hotel in downtown Reno. A trip to Reno wouldn’t be complete without me attempting to win some of my money back from prior visits. Alas, same results this year at the Eldorado - but the boys in the Sparks Nugget were not so lucky. I got them for more than I dropped in the Eldorado!

Our last night in Reno saw us catch a Triple-A minor league baseball game between the Reno Aces (Arizona Diamondbacks) and the Las Vegas 51s (New York Mets). The ball field in Reno is just two blocks from the major downtown hotel-casinos. Connected to the ball park and just 50 paces from the ticket booths is a Mexican restaurant called Arroyo. We highly recommend Arroyo. Regardless if baseball is being played, this restaurant is always open for lunch and dinner.

That does it for our stay in Reno. Tomorrow, Wednesday, June 1st, we will be moving another 300 miles north to Crater Lake Resort in Fort Klamath, Oregon. We are going there specifically to visit “The Lake” at Crater Lake National Park. 

Until next time, thanks for following Dave & Janet a.k.a. “The BooniePeople”.

Travel Blog:    www.BooniePeople.com
Email:              BooniePeople@gmail.com

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