Our stop at Camping World is a good experience. It seems like such a long time since we've taken the coach in, and just had things done right and on time. Oil change and levelers lubed (really just cleaning the dirt out from the sand storm). We thought our water pump was going out and were having them replace it. The tech discovered the line was loose and making noise, all he did was tighten it again, and all good! Hopefully the quick fix is long lasting.
Grand Canyon Railway RV Park in Williams, AZ, is very clean with nice views of the mountains, decent spacing, picnic tables, and all smooth asphalt pads and interior roads. After the lack of decent campgrounds, and the frenetic energy of a busy Flagstaff, this immediately feels better. Both the train station and the historic downtown are two blocks away, the Safeway just beyond that. Although the tracks are only 50 yards from the back of our site- and a couple freight trains have rumbled by, blowing their whistle - we don't mind. Nice to be away from the noise of I-40.
Weather is moving above freezing at night, we may stay longer than the week already planned.
While Friday morning finds most of our neighbors catching the shuttle or walking to the train depot for the ride to the Grand Canyon, we opt for driving south to find the small lakes in the area. We aren't done with the forest, and there's lots more of it here in the Kaibab National Forest.
Just a mile south of town is Santa Fe Dam with such a small "lake" that we don't stop. Instead we continue until we find the dirt road to Dogtown Reservoir. The water now covers what was once an expansive prairie dog town - thus the name. The campground is closed, there is one truck at the boat ramp, a family of four passes through in their ATV, and we have the place to ourselves.
|Dogtown Reservoir with Bill Williams Mountain|
|Great to be at the water again|
|Peaceful to watch him soaring over the water|
|"Can't believe I didn't bring my pole!"|
|Humphreys Peak majestic in the background|
|Looks smooth, but the wash board surface makes us glad we're in no hurry|
Getting to the turn off for the lake, we find it closed. Bummer. We can go back the way we came or go another 18 miles on the dirt to pick up I-40. Let's do that!
When we pull off to a small parking lot we're delighted to find a nice, flat trail. The Sycamore Rim Trail connects with the Overland Trail. It has a wonderful history including being a regular route for nomadic Hopi tribes and early pioneers.
|A beautiful day among the pines|
|Looking up from a big ol' tree hug|
|While I'm intrigued by the tall grasses laid flat from water....|
|.....Bill discovers a deep rock canyon with water. So competitive!|
|It is much steeper than it looks here|
|I'm always impressed by growth from solid rock|
|Difficult access keeps these tanks in their natural state|
|Bright yellow on a burned trunk|
|Delicacy among the rugged|
|Lichen on lava|
Still lots more to see while we're among the trees. The temps at our next stop are already 30 degrees hotter :-(