Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Ruidoso New Mexico RV trip

We are home from a four night stay, and trip to Ruidoso NM
Rain along the route home, dirtied the coach and tow. After unpacking the coach, it was then moved to the lawn for a good bath (we don't waste water in New Mexico). The roof and AC units were washed and waxed first. The large areas require a soft wash brush on long handle and a small mop to wax.

Spray Eagle One Nano Wax is easiest. It was an Ashland product, but now is part of Turtle Wax. Price rose substantially but the product is the same. After moving into back yard, installing the windshield and side window covers, the wipers are encased into a split 'noodle', as used in kids swimming. UV is blocked enough and deformation eliminated, to save the big wipers for many seasons.

Tires are also shielded from the harsh UV of the sun, by panels cut from foiled foam construction board and wheel covers from Sun Pal holding them in position. Blue Ox tow arms are left locked to the coach and are covered to protect from sun UV. Landing gear is lowered to raise tires, taking weight off of suspension. When storing on concrete, Michelin advises to place a vapor barrier of plastic, between tires and concrete. Michelin claims the oils are sucked from the contact surface rubber by the concrete, causing premature failure.
Note: Black Gorilla Tape is holding up well on exposed inches of Sunbrella over the slide-outs. I installed it as UV shielding several months ago.

  • Leaving to Ruidoso and returning to Albuquerque NM, Less than 400 miles round trip, is fairly in-expensive, less time consuming than the long US 'tours' in the past. This first trip of the year, after an extended storage period for the Holiday Rambler motor house, was a 'shake down', after Installing the Blue Ox baseplate on the lighter Honda CRV
  • that replaced the heavy Jeep GC. Noted higher speed climbing out of the canyon, than with the haeavy Jeep GC. GC only got 12 mpg when driven. Not good in a fuel costly economy with investment returns kept, by a distrust of this administration, in the proverbial 'tank'. Honda CRV being lighter with smaller engine, seldom is below 20mpg.
  • The 35 foot motor coach that we find suits our personal requirements

  • is kept ready to roll at all times. Fueled and current on all maintenance, we try to keep ahead of any issues. The coach is also a fast way of escape in case of local problems. Stocking food and basic clothing is a minor hassle, due to the many trips from house to coach door.
  • The Twin Spruce RV Park

  • Ruidoso, just south of 'The Downs'
  • Twin Spruce RV Park was our destination. Visiting in past years, was always pleasant and affordable. Could not contact them for reservations, so drove up to office and asked for a 'hole'. Kay remembered us from previous stays and obliged by finding one site in higher level for 3 nights, then a move for the last night, at the the lower site. Crawling the coach up the steep slope, taxed it's mighty 8.1 liter Workhorse, only mustering 2,500 rpm, but it climbed into position. Kay's son, in his golf cart, guided us into the higher level spot overlooking the park.
  • After browsing little mountain town Ruidoso for a couple of days, we planned to attend the Flying J Ranch Chuckwagon
     Food is served at 7pm and entertainment starts at 8pm. The main 'Chuckwagon' in Colorado Springs was destroyed by another Forest Fire several weeks ago. Several more are in business around the western states, including the Bar D in Durango Colorado. The Bar D barely survived a Forest Fire several years ago. The burned trees are several yards outside the heavily defended perimeter.

  • with arriving family, on Saturday evening. Reservations to this always popular attraction, are required. The little shops are open at 5:30pm. Comedy fun 'gunfight' in the street at 6:30pm.
  •  The great cowboy entertainment last night, had a woman yodeling, telling jokes, funny stories (EnderCilla with the Pransome Hince) and singing. They are the flying J Chuck wagon wranglers. They fed us in the fastest buffet  you ever experienced. We were amazed at how swift the service was, to feed hundreds of people, took them just minutes. The enclosed entertainment area was welcome protection from the weather.

    After we ate a 'chuck wagon supper' of baked potato, brisket and Pinto beans with apple sauce, biscuit and ginger cake, washed down with tin cups of coffee, iced tea or lemonade, the servers sang and played various instruments for over an hour. Great Fiddler Saturday night, was 'Cody' from Portales NM, 17 years old. Wife said that our grand daughter should meet him, pick her guitar, sing and join in the talented group:>)  $25 each ticket was not too shabby, for what we received.
    Son and wife with their two boys, stayed in the motor home after arriving just before midnight Friday. The little boys slept on the dinette converta-bed. Parents slept on the hide-abed sofa. Round trip was less than 400 miles. We all left on Sunday. Wife and I had visited several quasi-'antiquey' shops and thrift stores before they arrived. Fewer bargains in tiny towns.

    We all got home from the trip this afternoon. the hiighway south from Corona to Carrizozo, is not very good. Presently the highway dept is widening it south of Corona. The waviness is the main problem with the pavement. I would rather take the other route across The Valley of Fires lava flow, from San Antonio NM south of Socorro NM, until the highway is totally refinished.

    The little boys rode back to ABQ in the coach with us for their first time on the highway. This was their first trip with us and very exciting. They were happier for the weekend, just playing around in the coach, than anything we did. Doesn't take much to make them happy. In years past, our fun grand daughters were our traveling companions on trips. Now as young teens, they are busy with their friends.

    Drove through the NM 'Little Bear' forest Fire burn area around Nogal NM

  • Over a hundred homes burned, just under 100,000 acres. As usual for Every area burned within the last few years, they had previously mandated Logging be 'stopped' in those vastly over fueled areas.... fifty years ago,.... in order to 'Save the Trees'. Metal roofs didn't stop the nearby homes of the 'Forest Interface' north of Ruidoso, from burning to the ground.

    Little touristy town of Ruidoso NM is doing somewhat better, but folks leery of the recent forest fire, are slow in returning to Tourist sections. Adventuresome Texas folks support this entire area keeping the numerous small shops and restaurants in business. The newer airfield can accommodate jets. Nearby Fort Stanton is a time capsule, maintained by dedicated historians.
  •  Lincoln county was the largest county in the USA back in the 1800's. At one time the New Mexico Territory was a vast sector of the USA, very remote from law and order. The state of NM is barely a hundred years of age. Lincoln, the little town of Billy the Kid fame, has many historic attractions, when you loop the route through Capitan, home of Smoky the Bear.
    Cattle Baron is one of the old reliable steakhouses in Ruidoso, complete with fresh seafood in season. 'Aspencade' a Honda patented term, attracts countless thousands of motorcycle riders from all across the USA in the Fall. They fill the motels and 'time shares', RV parks and campsites. Several large motorcycle rallies are held each season in the mountainous area. 
    The Inn of the Mountain Gods, is a casino attraction with family recreation. White Sands National Monument is near Alamagordo, 70 miles south of Ruidoso. Carlsbad Caverns National Park is further away, but still accessible from Ruidoso, if looping the southeastern sector of NM.
    Without the fun loving Texans, the little mountain towns would soon dry up and vanish. Horse racing at Ruidoso Downs is one attraction. 'Futurity' pays a $Million.

    The much cooler mountains, Ruidoso is located in, are the other attraction in the heat of summer. Billy the kid was a frequent visitor back in the late 1800's. The old grist mill is still kept somewhat presentable.  
    A nice little museum near the Downs, documents the time of Billy the Kid. the Museum of the Horse near 'the Downs' is another family attraction to visit. Skiing is the main winter attraction, so Ruidoso depends on year around tourism to keep it in business.

    Joke among New Mexicans is: "If God wanted Texans to Ski, he would have given them a Mountain". 
    Texans reply: "If God wanted New Mexicans to Ski, he would have given them MONEY".

    Ruidoso suffers major 'busts' when the oil slows in Texas (caused as usual by Federal politics).
    Real estate is either 'Everything for sale' (no buyers) or prices so high during the Booms, 'nobody  can afford them'. Big numbers of Texans invest' (?) in 'Time Shares'.

    The mountainside forested RV park (Twin Spruce) was filled with over 100 various campers of many styles, most all with Texas plates. Many people stay the entire season. The evening is often music filled, played by the talented campers. Days are 'Texas Hold 'em', Book signing by well known (sort of;>) authors. Sundays are church services, with various people filling in (today was missionary family telling stories about years in Ukraine). Biscuits and gravy for breakfast, fish fry Wednesday and different evening meals on most days.
    Son and his wife were surprised at the variety of goings on, for such a 'small' mountainside RV Park.
    We told them, they should see the really Big ones. :>)

    Whatever you do with your remaining life, please attempt to explore the Greatest Freedom Loving nation ever known, The United States of America. Created as "One Nation Under God". 


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