Arizona to Jackson, WY travel blog

New beltway around Phoenix

Joshua Tree forest

Spent blossoms

Joshua Tree in our park

Date: April 24, 2017

Tonight’s Location: Wikieup, AZ

Campground: Hidden Oasis

Mileage: End - 11582

Start - 11391

Total Miles for the day: 191

Weather: partly cloudy

Temperature: start 77º

High 77º

Wildlife count: Cottontail Rabbit

Year List: 296; Life List: 562

Birds: Gila Woodpecker

We were in no hurry to leave this morning, as we wanted to miss Phoenix early traffic, so we drove out to the McD’s for breakfast, then hooked up and left at 8:45. The truck GPS did not recognize that there was a new express beltway around Phoenix, and would have taken us on gravel roads, but with prior planning, and the Google Maps, we got to the beltway, which had almost no traffic. The campground owner in Gila Bend had told us that there was not much that far west, so not much traffic, and he was right. I’d imagine that in a few years, however, when that all builds up, there will be LOTS of traffic on that 6-lane road.

We were very surprised that the way up through Wickenburg to Wikieup was through mountains – first filled with Saguaro cacti, and then Joshua Trees, which took us a little while to recognize. Joshua Trees, which are in the Yucca family, only grow in the Mohave Desert, between 2000-6000’ elevation. What a treat to travel through a forest of them.

Set up at the RV park, we walked to the office/restaurant/gift shop for lunch. We shared a sub – Brenda (young owner of the park and restaurant) baked the bread, and then prepared the filling – it was delicious. She also served homemade potato salad, which was out of this world – what a hidden gem! It was our rest day – so we did rest – set up the chairs out under the trees and let the wind blow over us. Had to go out to refuel the truck, then watched from our chairs, and caught sight of a new bird, the Gila Woodpecker, an Arizona specialty. Before dinner, we went back to Brenda and bought banana/pecan bread for breakfast, and a piece of blackberry/raspberry pie for each for dessert, along with ice cream. Dinner was just a grilled ham/cheese sandwich, and then our pie – it was delicious! We won’t last long tonight.

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