October 8, 2013 Roadrunner RV Park, Espanola, New Mexico

A little on the Roadrunner RV Park where I will be for the month of October. This is a fairly new, full hookup RV Park located right on busy Route 84 just south of Espanola, New Mexico, about 20 miles north of Sante Fe. I stayed here for a week or so a few years back and it worked out to be a nice place to stay while exploring the area, reasonably priced, $27 with a Good Sam discount, $475/month, and that gets you 50 amp electric, good water and properly located sewer connection on each site. It doesn’t appear they allow tents as there is no bathroom or shower, laundry facilities in the park.

It is essentially a large, flat gravel parking lot, no trees or grass, but the spaces are fairly well spaced out on diagonally oriented lots so you are not staring into your neighbors unit all the time. There is adequate room between lots to park your tow vehicle beside or behind your RV. I have a spot on the farthest lane from busy Highway 84 where I am faced looking out over the desert, not at another row of RV’s, so it actually feels like I am in a more remote campground. I haven’t been bothered by road noise at night and traffic in the park has been very limited both day and night, so it has been fairly quiet. They offer free WiFi, but it hasn’t worked at all for me since I have been here, however I do get very strong 4G Verizon coverage here for my JetPac. With no trees, obviously satellite TV reception is just fine. The dogs have the usual desert complaints about all the plant life sticking to them, and sticking them, lot of limping and hopping going on here, but that is going to be the same no matter where we set up here in the Southwest.

My limited dealings with the park staff have found them very polite and helpful, so all in all, I would have to say that this is not a bad place to nestle down and wait out the government shutdown.

You may have noticed that I have not yet gone on too much of a rant about our wonderful federal government shutdown yet, but I do feel one coming on as I sit here twiddling my thumbs in the desert. Not today, but I’m afraid I am going to have to go off on one one of these days, probably pretty soon.

Today I worked for about 8 hours on re-checking all of the Handy Bob blog on solar power and charging systems and getting my system specs committed to paper, then did some work on my blog until 3 PM. Now I have to go out and get a hydrometer to check the batteries before I email Bob for advice on how to get a little more juice out of my expensive solar system. From reading his blog ( for the second time no less ) I would have to guess that my batteries are just not ever getting fully charged, probably because of some of the conservative factory default settings on my inverter/charger.


October 4 – 7, 2013 Road Runner CG, Espanola, NM

Warning! It’s going to be a little boring reading in this blog the next few days as I get settled in at the Roadrunner RV Park, get caught up on my blog and image processing backlog, and try to figure out what to do and where to go with all the National Parks, Monuments, and Wildlife Management Areas shut down.

Friday, October 4

Arrived at the Road Runner RV Park on Route 84 around 11 AM. Got myself set up on Site 602, same as 3 years ago, but have been warned that the park will be full with 2 caravans for 2 weeks starting next Tuesday, so I have to be gone after just 4 nights, don’t have any idea yet where to go with all the National Parks and lands closed due to the shutdown. Didn’t even untie the car today, R & R only.

Saturday, October 5

Great weather, perfect blue skies 70 degrees, cool night for sleeping. Goofed off all day, finally gave dogs a bath, watched TV, still haven’t unhooked the car.

Sunday, October 6

Walked over to the casino across the highway and had a very so so breakfast ( won’t bother again ) and then watched football on TV all day, absolutely great weather, blue skies, mid 70’s, cold, clear night, mid 30’s, can’t get much better than that!.

Monday, October 7

Washed car and got it all scratched at the car wash here in Espanola, great!. Guess I should have left it dirty, $4 car wash probably cost me a $2000 paint job down the road. The campground did find a spot for me and let me extend for the month I had asked for, works out to less than $16/day, so, a good deal since I can’t get into any of the national parks and have to wait out the shutdown somewhere.


October 3, 2013 On the Road to Espanola, New Mexico

SmallRV andToadMooseSomewhere around Roosevelt, Utah, to 10 miles south of Pagosa Springs, Colorado on Route 84.

The section of 191 from Duchesne to Price was particularly interesting as you ascended to a mountaintop pass through an ever narrowing lush valley dotted with only a few homesteading spreads, lots of mule deer, and even more new oil/gas well pads in some very unusual settings.

In this area and others on this two day drive, I often felt like I was driving through one of the many western movies and TV shows I grew up with.

Was not terribly pleased having to pass by the Flaming Gorge National Recreation area, Mesa Verde National Park, Arches National Park, and Canyonlands National Park, all places I had planned on spending the month of October exploring, but what can I say, thank you very much to our wonderful representatives, senators, and president, it sure is nice to know that you all are constantly thinking of how to best serve those of us you represent.

Stayed on the side of the road directly under the “ Leaving San Juan national forest “ sign. Actually got a good night’s sleep since traffic on the road after 9 PM was quite light.

October 2, 2013 Shut Out of Teton National Park

SmallRV andToadMooseOn the Road Heading South to Espanola, New Mexico

Left Gros Ventre CG around 9 AM, skies clear today and you can actually see the tops of the Tetons for the first time today, YEA for the government shutdown!!

The Grand Tetons
The Grand Tetons

Who in their right mind would want to stay here and tour the National Park on such a gorgeous fall day as this?

The trip south on Route 191 was a very pleasant trip with interesting scenery for the most part, not much traffic and mostly good road. I had planned to stay at a private campground in Vernal, Wyoming, but passed it by when it turned out to be located right in the heart of the city’s commercial strip. That was around 5 PM so it left me only two hours of daylight to find another place to stop. I didn’t find one so ended up pulling off the side of the road somewhere short of Roosevelt, Utah, for the night. Got no sleep since an 18 wheeler decided to pull in and run his diesel all night right next to me.