DAVE & REBECCA'S BIG ADVENTURE travel blog

The TTN Verde Valley preserve entrance, from here it's down hill 1...

Dave spun around and took this photo looking south from the entrance,...

one of the best mini golf courses

the family lodge is a central place for many activities

our setup, space C-1, near the river, can't see it but sure...

The view out our breakfast window, the Verde River is there under...

Dave pooped out after a lengthy walk around the hils. This preserve...

Rebecca says, "it's all mine" lets explore!

we tried our hand at GeoCacheing, it's fun, the target rocks can...

The preserve has it's own geocache game of 20 "hides".

It took us four days of leisurely hunting but we got them...

Some locations were "diabolical" in their hiding places. but all were Rocks...

While walking around the preserve one gets views like this. North area...

And, this...South area of the preserve, our coach is down there by...

or this, finding a plant growing tenaciously out of a rock.


We had quite a good time while in the care of the Untalan's. Dave and the other guys ended up going fishing a total of three times. All total, ZERO, Zip, Nada, "the big cheerio", keep-able fish were caught, a very odd occurrence, I assure you. But they had a good time doing it, nonetheless, because as they say, "A bad day fishing beats a good day at the office!" For News Years Eve, Joe, Marie, their son Sean, his girlfriend Ashely and ourselves went to a nice little Italian place in the very small town of Sonoita. The restaurant had a special, for $75 per couple choice of 4 dinner entrees and dinners complete with wine and party favours. Live music was provided by a local guitarist. It was fun and lively.

Monday, the 3rd of Jan, ended the fun and games for most everyone else, they had to get back to their jobs. For us, moving day came on Monday the 3rd, we knew it was going to be a long drive day, longer than our usual 250 or less. We headed out of their driveway about 8:30 and after a couple necessary stops arrived at our destination 310 miles away near Cottonwood, AZ. Cottonwood is about 25 miles south of Sedona. This Thousand Trails preserve is located 5 miles east of town nudged up against a gentle bend in the Verde River right where Oak Creek adds it's volume to it. It's a beautiful canyon to see the morning sun illuminate the canyon walls above us and listen to the nearby falls of the river calling to us. We'll be here a total of three weeks, till 24th. Upon arrival the friendly ranger advised us to keep water dripping OR disconnect and drain our water hoses at night as the temperatures have been freezing each night. Dave let the water drip the first night, at 18 degrees it still froze up. The next several nights he disconnected the water and drained the hoses. A reminder to all, we are not SOUTH of I-10, one of our "rules of thumb" for the winter. As we write this, it's NOT been above 28 or below 16 but usually about 25 at nights! Dave wasn't thinking straight when he made these reservations. Poor boy is delirious sometimes. But, we have high hopes of seeing several things we had not the chance 4 years ago when we were here last. Some of those would be Jerome, Prescott, Payson, Sedona, Montezuma Castle and others. Of course, there will be pictures and more stories for you, good reader.

Within a couple days of arriving, we made our way to the preserve store to outfit ourselves with the Geo Cache game sheet. It has the geocoordinates of 20 locations where special rocks can be found. Each location has one rock you have to find, the rocks are about the size of your fist, flat, smooth, "TTN" is painted on the top side, a three digit number is painted on the bottom. We used our Garmin (NUVI 260) from our truck and it worked well enough to find each rock. We just didn't have the terrain maps to follow. When you locate a rock put the three digit number next to the geocoordinate on the paper. When you've located all the rocks and matched up the three digit numbers, you're done! Turn the sheet back to the store for checking the correctness, get your prize, discount, or free movie rental or something they offer you. It's fun and healthy.

We want to welcome a few more new "Friends" to our email list. We hope you enjoy "traveling" with us.

Share |