Friday, April 2, 2010

Living in the high desert

Life in the Tonto National Forest

We are only about 60 miles south of Phoenix, but it is another world. Up here in the mountains it is very peaceful. The air is crisp and clean. The high desert is in full bloom. There is only a narrow window of a few weeks when everything is in bloom so we are here at the right time. Once the sun begins to set the air become markedly cooler and the shadows make the scenery new again.
Sandy put up her bird feeders and has been rewarded by seeing several new-to-us birds. It really is fun to sit with a pair of binoculars and the National Geographic bird guide and identify a new bird. It often takes a lot of looking to be sure we are correctly identifying the right bird. We also have had a couple of hungry/thirsty Flickers come and drink sugar water out of the Humming Bird feeders. Because we have one-way mesh shades on the windows we can actually be as close as 10 inches to the birds that come to the Humming Bird feeders. Neat experience.

But not all is fun and games here in paradise. Life presents problems and we have to deal with them. Our slide-out room is operating erratically. In 1999 when Foretravel decided to make motorhomes with slide-out rooms, they wanted to do a first-rate job. They emulated the system used for sealing the doors on passenger jets. When our slide goes out a rubber bladder inflates to seal the gap between the slide-out and the side wall of the coach. And when we need to bring the slide-out back in, the bladder deflates, the room retracts and then the bladder again fills with air to make a tight seal. Now the air bladder is not emptying properly and taking way too long to re-inflate. We have an appointment on Wednesday to see what is causing the problem and have it corrected.

Dealing with this problem is not easy when we have to drive 17 miles out of the mountains (30 minutes one way on switch-back, winding roads with 15mph limits on some stretches) to find cell phone service and wi-fi at the public library.

But even with mechanical problems we are in a beautiful location as you can see from the following locations.

The RVs seen at the bottom of the photo are in lower terrace from us.  This campground has three
terraces built into the side of the mountain.  Lovely location.

Stay tuned

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