Sunday, February 24, 2019


Days 8 & 9, Heading for home.  When we got up on Friday, there was a severe winter storm warning for AZ on TV.   All the schools in the Sierra Vista area had decided to close,  Fort Huachaca was also closed (where our final banquet was to be held).  It was raining and predicted to turn into heavy snowfall in a few hours, with accumulations all the way from 2 inches to 2 feet depending on elevation.  Sierra Vista is 4600 feet so they were predicting 6" or more.  Considering that Friday was now a total bust, and we might have a window of opportunity to get down to lower elevation before the storm got really bad,  we hit the road for home.

It was definitely exciting, as you can see from the following pictures, getting a little snowy and then a lot snowy as we went along.  At first it was just spitting rain, but we could see this really dark cloud.

Then the rain got heavier,,,,

And started to change to snow, while we sat at this redlight,,,,

Then it started to stick,,,,

By the time we saw this sign, it was old news,,,,

Then we really got into it for 40 miles on I-10 until we got to Tucson.  Careful does it with that trailer back there pushing us.   Saw at least 5 cars in the bushes.  When the lines on the road begin to disappear, you know you are having fun....

Tucson on was no sweat, just occasional rain showers until we crossed into CA.   Lots of mountains with snow all the way home.

Palm Springs area,,,,

On the Grapevine,,,,,

Home at last,  and greeted by our faithful dog who watched tirelessly out the window for us!

In the end, we put 1941 miles on the Bronco, and only 205 miles on the T, since we got shortchanged a couple of T touring days.  Cheapest gasoline was in Tucson at $2.09/gallon.   Bronco took 172 gallons, the T took 16 gallons.  73 cars and 170 folks were listed in the Tour book, but we heard that as many as 40 folks in 20 cars cancelled because of the nasty weather forecasts.   We think there were actually about 50 cars making the tours.  It was definitely an adventure and I don't know about the rest of the folks but I still had fun. 

Thursday, February 21, 2019


Day 7,  February 21, 156 miles (by Bronco) to Tubac.   Cold and windy all day, occasionally spitting rain.  I think only 3 T's made the tour, everyone else took their modern vehicle.  It was nice to be toasty warm for a change.  On the way out of town, saw this encouraging sign.

 Lowering clouds, few spots of sunlight occasionally highlighted the hills.

Stopped in a little town called Patagonia for hot chocolate and pastries,  small town cafes are always best.

The mug of hot chocolate was a work of art.

We were asking ourselves, where do the people work way out here in the middle of nowhere?   Then we saw this lot full of border patrol vehicles which answered the question.

Could not resist dropping down into Nogales and catching a glimpse of the border.   They have a serious fence there with a couple border patrol cars parked right there.   Look at the razor wire on the top.  Click on the photo for a larger version to look at.

 On a more historical note, stopped at Tumacacori National Monument,  first started in 1691.  The mission building dates from about 1800.  Cold wind a blowin'.

Furthest destination for the day, Tubac.   Kind of an artists colony alongside I19.    Lots of shops and art galleries.  We loved the whirligigs but they were a little pricey so we just enjoyed all the art but did not buy any.

So, that was the day,  but here are a couple signs, could not resist snapping a photo.

This evening, we are under major storm warning for snow.  Tomorrows tour is not going to happen, and the final banquet has already been cancelled and a bunch of the T's have fled.  We will probably head for home tomorrow morning if the roads are open.   That's life, always the unexpected.  

Wednesday, February 20, 2019


Day 6, February 20, 34 miles to Tombstone and back.    Blue sky, clear blue sky, cold blue sky, 24 degrees.  Only way to start the T was to get a few folks to push it again.   We took the road less traveled to Tombstone, my kind of road.  Interesting fact, at one time Tombstone was the largest city between St. Louis and San Francisco.  All because of a silver strike and the resultant boom,  rather short lived however.

Arrived in Tombstone just in time to see the morning stage coming down the deserted street on this cold and frosty morn.

Town seemed to be full of desperados, possibly looking to hold up the stage.

The happening place for lunch was Big Nose Kates.  Good sandwiches and good spudkickin music.

After lunch, had some street skits, with lots of shots fired.

And then vigilante justice was meted out to these two shady characters.

Finished off the day at the courthouse museum and headed back to Sierra Vista.     This evening, here is the forecast that we are looking at for Thursday and Friday. 

Conclusion,,,,,, put the T in the trailer and let's take the 4wd tomorrow.  One last thing, Pat and Linda saw this at an antique store, fortunately no room in the trailer.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019


Day 5, Feb. 19 Old Bisbee, 75 miles.  Things started out today with a fine new white coat at 31 degrees!

Do you know how hard it is to start a T in cold snowy weather, after the battery is exhausted?

Fortunately, I had moral support.....

Finally got it going and headed out,  still more snow falling,  wishing for that windshield wiper that I never installed.....

Amazing, snow can find the tiniest hole in the side curtains and provide a little interior snowstorm to put up with.  Arrived in Bisbee, a little chilled and headed for the Queen Mine Tour.  Queen Mine is a retired underground hardrock copper mine, that is now a tourist attraction. 

Pretty soon we were properly outfitted with orange vests, hard hats and miners lamps. 

So we ride this little narrow gauge train with a string of mancars into the mine through these narrow little tunnels.

Our tour guide started working in this mine in 1956,,,,,  do the math on that one.

Really interesting.   After we came out we spotted these three cars on display.   Take a close look at the center one.   It really is what you think it is.

Spent the rest of the afternoon, as appeasement to the ladies, prowling the antique shops.   Now there was only one purchase of any significance as far as I am concerned.

What would life be without pie ala mode???? On our return trip to Sierra Vista we had blue sky and sunshine. But weather forecast for tonight is two inches of snow!

Monday, February 18, 2019


Day 4:  76 miles.    28 degrees this morning,  T's very reluctant to start.  Wore the battery down, cranked till blue in the face, pulled the plugs, tried starter fluid,  finally recruited pushers, put Pat in the drivers seat and we pushed,  on the third try, started and with me on the running board working the choke we got it going.    Whew!   Ray had a little better luck with a strong battery and lots of starting fluid.

So with ski jackets, gloves and scarves and sweatshirts, off we went, at least the sun was shining which was great.    Fun following a long line of T's.

Little roadside stop for honey and pecans,,,,,

Arrived at Kartchner Caverns, along with everybody else.

All those apparently dead trees are mesquite, quite ugly this time of year.  Here we collected our lunches,  good lunch, did not have to worry about refrigeration

On to the caverns,,,  No cameras or cell phones allowed inside, so no stalactite pics.   Let's just say the caverns were awesome.

Arrived back at the Suites, did a little maintenance and then attended the National Meeting.   And look what turned up there!!!

Well done, Nikkie!!!!

Sunday, February 17, 2019


Day 1: 476 miles.

On the road again in 2019, packed, stashed and ready.

Left for AZ at 6:47AM, spitting rain, forecast not all that great.   Little tire trouble right off the bat. , Ray needed to check a tire at Santa Nella, was 37psi when he started to add air, pretty soon was 30 then 22.   Finally got it aired up at the second service station he tried.   And being our day for tires, I blew a trailer tire on I5.  Fortunately, we were between rain showers and there was a nice wide spot to get off.

But,,,, I used the ramp jack that I bought last year, and we were back on the road in 13 minutes!!!!  I don't remember who told me about that, but it is a lifesaver.    13 minutes from pulling off, we were on  the road again.

We decided to forego the Grapevine, high wind advisory, trailers and campers not recommended.  Instead, opted for cajon pass on I15.   It had its own stuff to throw at us,  big headwind, could not hold 50mph, and then horizontal rain whistling up the pass.

We finally arrived in Indio at 7PM, long day of weather, detours, and tires.

Day 2:  265 miles, blue skies, and a tailwind.  so good to get into AZ and have a 75mph speed limit, even for us pulling a trailer.  Ended the day at Bob and Janes house.  Notice the tee shirt.

Day3:  178 miles.  More blue sky, and more tailwind.   Got into Sierra Vista early and unloaded.  It is a little nippy, 44 degrees, but look at that blue sky.   Forecast, possible snow showers tomorrow, sure hope that is wrong.

Checked in, Pat is ready to tour, new hat.

Tonight was welcome party,,,,,,,

Enchiladas and western music,,,,

Tomorrow, the official tour begins.