Saturday, May 4, 2013

Heron Lake State Park

It would have been a 5 mile hike from our camping spot in El Vado Lake to this spot in Heron Lake State Park, but driving was almost 30 miles. 

Along the way , we stopped in Chama, NM for laundry,post office, banking, and a little lunch at the recommended High Country restaurant.  Very friendly people in Chama.  Met some nice folks at the laundry-one of the nicest laundries so far on the road.  One gentleman had gone to the same school as Jan and I back in Mass.  He sent us up to a Wildlife Management area just a half mile beyond the laundry.  A beautiful spot with views of the snow covered mountains. It would be free camping at this time of the year---well marked.  In the fall it is a tagging spot for the deer and elk brought in by hunters.  We were already heading for the state park. so we passed on it for now.

All said , we were happy to visit Chama. Also met a gentlemen at the post office who insisted that we follow him home to show our Lazy Daze to his wife.
A very nice couple, maybe future LD owners.
As you see from our picture, this is what we see quite often from inside our Twin King Lazy Daze.  We often have this kind of view in state parks and Corps campgrounds--one of the big reasons we bought Lazy Daze and this model in particular.

Our kitchen is almost exactly like our kitchen in our 28 foot fifth wheel trailer.  As you can see, Jan is quite happy to be baking brown edged cookies in her oven.   I am also quite, quite happy that Jan is baking brown edged cookies in our oven.

Yes!  Quite, quite happy!

It is Spring up here at 8,000 feet.  Besides leaves on bushes and some trees, we have found a number of small ground plants that have quite colorful flowers.  They are usually only a few inches high.

Most of the trees here are Pinion Pine ,Ponderosa Pine, and other pines, as well as varieties of Juniper.

Wish we knew the names of some more of the bushes, trees, and flowers.  We have learned a number, but others escape us.

These yellow , cheerful flowers were growing out of a rock on the trail. 

We were lucky to see a number of these folks on our walk the other day.  At first, we were thinking deer, but these are much,much larger than the deer we had just seen at El Vado. 

These two were big enough to jump up on to ride like a horse.  We believe they are actually Elk.  Any of you in the know, can let us know.

There were about eight of them here in broad daylight.

The signs on the trails indicate that there are a good many more than this in the area.

We have been camping in our new Lazy Daze for about 135 days or 4 and a half months.  In that time we have camped in 32 different campgrounds.  Of those campgrounds , we have been at 3 different boondocking spots(no hookups or facilities-water, electric, or sewer dumping)and no developed camping sites) for 33 days.

 Also7 private parks, 11 state parks,1 county park,2 Corps of Engineer parks,2 Harvest Hosts,and 3 National parks. A number of these have been dry camping spots.

Right now we have enjoyed our annual pass for New Mexico Parks( $225 for the entire year.)  As of now we are camping for free.  We are in a no-hookup or dry site(yes ,this beautiful site) for free because we have passed 22.5 days at $10 per day normal fee.  We will stay in New Mexico state parks for perhaps 2 more weeks(free) and then our pass is good until the end of March 2014. So, we might stop this way in the fall and winter to take advantage.  Dry camping--like here-- means no hookups on the site, but there is a designated camping spot and water and a dump station are usually in the park or close by.

As well as keeping our camping costs way down, we have also seen our mileage change in our new LD. So far, in four and a half months , we have only put about 3600 miles on the Ford.  We used to travel in what we called the wagon wheel effect.  We would travel from campground to campground, set up, and then use our truck to travel all over in every direction to look at the area.  Now, we travel in a straight line so to speak.  We leave a campground, and on the way , we take care of grocery shopping, laundry, banking, sight seeing, gas fillups, before we stop at the next campground.   So far, it is working great for us !

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