Utah with friends and arrival at Bosque del Apache

Our arrival at ‘Florin’ — the secret hideaway of our friends Roger & Cindi — was delayed a few days due to rain.  The trip from Kanab UT to their site includes about 20 miles of dirt road, including fording two streams (or washes, as they are locally known).  It had rained in Bryce Canyon and the waters had completely washed out both fords — there was almost three feet of soft, wet mud at the first ford.  Even 4-wheel drive would not pull 16,000# through that!  So we waited until things dried out a little, and the road graders and front-end loaders cleared things up before traveling on.  Of course the wait was worth it!

View from our camp site

While we were waiting, we visited the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, an iconic refuge that houses about 1.600 animals — dogs, cats, horses, birds, rabbits, etc.  It was a lovely place to visit.  While we played with some of the kittens, we managed to leave without bringing one home!

We also visited the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park outside of Kanab.  It was beautiful, but it was a longer drive than we anticipated – we ended up driving into Arizona to get back to our campground.

But on the way, Cindi called to say that the Wash was clear and we should come “right away”.  So we raced back to our trailer, packed up, and we were on our way in less than an hour!  When we got close, Cindi said that there had been another rain, and we would have to wait just a little longer, boondocking at the Deer Springs Ranch Headquarters with the sheep and goats and geese and peacocks.  But we did finally make it without any other issues.

Our time with Roger & Cindi was, as always, delightful.  Good times, good laughs, shared food, and (of course) lots of board games.  Our new addiction is Wingspan, although we did work in a few games of our old favorite, Dominion.  We did a little hiking, and a little scenic cruising, but a LOT of board games and reading.

We hiked the Lick Wash canyon one day.  It had been greatly modified by the recent rains, but was still a pleasant hike.

One of the challenges of such a remote location is cellular and data service.  I configured three lengths of PVC pipe into a telescoping mast for our new WeBoost Antenna and Booster.  We actually had a usable (barely) signal from a tower 43 miles away!

Just as when we arrived, we had to plan for the weather when it was time to leave.  We chose to leave a couple days earlier than we might have wished, because rain was predicted and we didn’t want to get ‘rained in’ again.

Then it was on to New Mexico and Bosque del Apache (BdA).  When we started our journeys about 6 years ago, we had decided that we would like to volunteer at National Parks, National Monuments, Wildlife Refuges and other places of historic or natural interest.  We also said that we wanted to keep learning, so we would not repeat any location — one time and out!  Well, that worked until we arrived a Bosque del Apache.  The facilities, the staff, the other volunteers, and of course the wildlife, caused us to break that rule.  We have volunteered at seven different places, but this is now our fourth time at BdA!

The scenery is majestic and awe inspiring.

View across the Refuge
Sunflowers Everywhere

Even before the migration begins, there are good things to see.

Blue Grosbeak
Blue Grosbeak – Juv. w/ caterpillar
Wild Turkeys

As we start our duties we will be helping out where we can and meeting visitors, hopefully sharing the love and beauty of nature.


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