After many recommendations from locals, Andrew and I spent our Sunday wondering through the artist town of Tubac.This small community hosts over 100 galleries in town center.We really enjoyed wondering and viewing at the architectural designs of the galleries, as well as many sculptural features.One gallery displayed an old metal mattress frame with little birds placed in the springs.Several other shops had unique metal lanterns or mobiles hanging.For us, the best part of the trip is when we find dog-friendly galleries, such as Z Forest Gallery and Cabin Fever, and restaurants, like Tubac Jack Saloon and Restaurant.Ame always enjoys a day of shopping, too.
With a week until we attend Alumafiesta, Andrew and I decided to come to Tucson and visit Saguaro National Park.One of our goals for traveling across USA has been to visit all of the 58 national parks.In 2014, we visited 20 parks, bringing our total to 29.Saguaro is our first national park of 2015, with at least another 20 this year while out west.
Arriving in Tucson, we chose to camp on a popular BLM site, Snyder Hill, which is close to town and the western half of Saguaro & Tucson Mountain Park. The day we arrived at Snyder Hill, we found a great pull through spot with a little privacy and pretty clean.The land only housed 15 other rigs at the time.When we pulled out Tuesday morning, over 30 RVs parked throughout the small patch of land.
Saguaro National Park is split into two areas on opposite sides of the city.Over two different days, we visited each side.Since we had Ame with us, we had to pass on hiking the various trails; however, we did drive the scenic loop in two parks.Both the Tucson Mountain District (west side) and Rincon Mountain District (east side) offered unique perspectives of the desert.The Tucson Mountain side had a large concentration of saguaro cactus.The landscape had never-ending view of saguaro, all different shapes, sizes and degrees of aging.In Rincon Mountain side, the saguaro were more spread out, as well as a large selection of other cactus species.Some of the rock formations seemed out of place, but were quite interesting to see surrounded by cactus.
While we didn’t get opportunity to do any hiking, hopefully we’ll be back in the next few weeks to check out the petroglyph and cactus forest trails.
Wow, what a fantastic week around Lake Havasu area.Andrew and I started off with a few days of quiet at Cattail Cove State Park, which is located 20 minutes from Lake Havasu City.Our main reason for staying at the park was to have a little down time between events.Somehow, I managed to pack January full of activities, so we have been moving from one rally to the next.
Even though we only had three days in Cattail Cove, we managed to do a little exploring.Cattail Cove has a few trails that follow the lake and desert hills.We spent some time playing with Ame at Whytes Retreat, which offers a small beach and picnic area.She really loved running in the water and finding sticks to play catch.
From Cattail Cove, we moved to our new camping spot in parking lot at Lake Havasu.We joined the Good Sam rally for the Balloon Festival.The balloon festival was a three day event with balloons ascending on the lake; bi-planes and ultralight flyovers; and food, craft and outdoor vendors.Our camping spot was perfectly located to walk to the event or stand watch the balloons from parking lot.It was a really treat to watch the balloons take off through Lake Havasu (on the island) and float along the lake.One evening we watched a balloon slowly float by our campground and down to the lake.
The best part of our time in Lake Havasu was my cousin, Jenn, driving over for the weekend.Itwas such a delight to host her in the Airstream for the weekend.She and I spent much of the weekend walking the island’s multi-purpose path.This path oddly suggested that walkers only go in one direction and bikers travel in the opposite direction, which means you have to walk the full length of the path (3.5 miles…no turn around recommended).Also, Jenn brought me some knitting supplies and patiencely explained to me how to use them.Let’s see how my first knitting project turns out (I’ll post a picture when complete).
After a fun time of events and visits, it is time to move out to Tucson.We’ll have another week of quiet before Alumafiesta, another Airstream event.