Saturday, September 29, 2012

9/28 Flagstaff AZ

I am staying in a campground is just a few feet outside of the Sunset Crater National Monument.  The monument shares a loop drive with the Wupatki National Monument, which consists of several ancient Native American village sites.  The volcano erupted about 800 years ago here and buried several native villages, so the peoples moved slightly away from the eruption and grew crops on the soil which had been enriched by the volcanic ash.  This campground is situated on what is called the Bonito Flow, and you can see that the earth here is black and ashy, and just barely covered with plants.  The Ponderosa Pine do fairly well here, so it is forested, but still vegetation is sparse.

Lesson learned at this forest service campground—they do not provide a dump station or water to fill your tanks.  After much discussion with the camp host couple, I drove over to the group camp host’s setup and he sold me some of his water, which apparently the camp hosts have to pay for beyond a certain amount.  Now at least I have a full tank, which will last me 3-4 days.

Extremely quiet here since we are two miles off the main road and have no power or hookups.  No cell phone service either!  With no cell or internet service, I did some reading, took a hot shower, and went to bed early.  Kept dropping my Kindle, so dozed off around 9:00 pm last night—really early for me!  I really prefer these national/state park and forest campgrounds to the commercial places where you are stuffed almost a handshake from your next door neighbor and can smell what they are cooking and hear their conversations.  Here you are spread out and have much more privacy and quiet.

It rained hard for at least a couple of hours last night.  Perfect weather here—70s in daytime and low 50s at night.  Motorhome gets chilly a night, but I am plenty warm with my down throw and the rear furnace kicking on periodically.
Today, I visited the Museum of Northern Arizona.  VERY nice!!  It has an amazing collection of Native American artifacts, well displayed.  One room, for example, was dedicated to baskets and basket techniques and another to pottery and its techniques as practiced by the various Native American groups over the millennia. I spent a good three hours here and bought a book in the bookshop—got to move faster on reading all this stuff I am accumulating!!

Since the parking lot was almost empty, and they had said I could stay as long as I wanted to there, I got online and wrote out addresses for Lowell Observatory and the Arboretum, which I want to visit over the next few days.


  1. Sounds like a great place. Where are the pictures?

  2. i swear i've been to that museum before but cannot picture it