In the last post I briefly listed the stops we had on our way from the Black Hills of South Dakota to where we are currently in the Hill Country of Texas. This post will give a more detailed overview of those stops.
Our first location of interest was Scott’s Bluff National Monument in Nebraska. Neither Liz nor I had been to Nebraska before and this monument was on the way to Colorado so we decided to visit. It is unique in the sense that it the first large rock formation as the Great Plains give way to the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. It became an important landmark for early travelers heading west to Oregon and California.
More information can be found at the link below.
Once we left Nebraska we made an overnight stop in Cheyenne, WY. However we were on a schedule to Rocky Mountain National Park so we didn’t spend any time exploring the area. However, Wyoming is one of the states that we want to spend time visiting in the future.
On Friday, September 16th we arrived in Estes Park, CO which is near the entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park. It is a beautiful little town nestled in the mountains and has an elevation of about 7600 feet. Liz and I had a little difficulty adjusting to the altitude as we live less than 100 feet above sea level. The drive up to Estes Park is what I would describe as a typical mountain drive with many curves, but maneuvering the rig or lack of power were non issues. What we didn’t expect was a jam packed crowd in Estes Park. It was a beautiful Fall day and, in addition to the park, there was an arts and crafts show occurring in the town so people had poured in from surrounding areas. Unfortunately, the GPS took us through the middle of town which created a lot of stress for me, but we made it through and got to the RV park without issue.
As we arrived at the park, we were greeted by a large bull elk and his herd of females. It seems that it is normal for these elk herds to roam through the edges of the town. Since it was “rutting” season the bull would “bugle” every so often to keep the females together. It was quite a welcome.
Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) is beautiful and should be on everyone’s list of parks to visit. Depending on when you go, be prepared for crowds as it is a popular park close to densely populated areas. Below is a link to the RMNP website and some pictures from our visit.
On Wednesday, September 21st we arrived at the Colorado State Fairgrounds in Pueblo, CO for the Newmar Kountry Klub International Rally. We couldn’t park on the fairgrounds property until Thursday so the Kountry Klub parking team staged us in a parking lot overnight so we could move to our site the next morning.
This was our first experience at a large rally. There were approximately 450 Newmar coaches participating, plus vendors and speakers. We had a wonderful time seeing old friends and making new ones. These type of events also continue to increase our RV’ing knowledge, learning from both the seminar presenters and the experiences of other RV’ers. There is nothing like sharing information with other owners with the same or similar coaches. I plan on publishing a separate post with more detail on the rally.
The rally ended on September 30th which was the day we were to be in Albuquerque to begin the Balloon Fiesta events. This was a special event sponsored through the Newmar Kountry Klub so many of the participants at the rally were planning to attend the Fiesta. Newmar was limited to 50 spots in Albuquerque so we felt fortunate to have snagged one of them. Since we needed to arrive between 2 and 3 pm and it was a 330 mile trip, we departed around 7 am. A departure time way too early for Liz, but not a prime time for me either.
The Balloon Fiesta deserves five stars as far as we are concerned. We were parked next to the Balloon Museum adjacent to the launch field. We had a front row seat to the daily balloon launches without even leaving our coach. It was, however, worth the time to go down to the field to get a close up perspective of all that goes into a balloon launch. A visit to this event should be on everyone’s “bucket” list. I will publish a separate post about the event and our balloon ride later.
More to come and a report from the Hoots Rally at the Buckhorn Lake RV Resort in Kerrville, TX.