Thursday, June 15, 2017

OLD RT 66



Article & Photography by: Rick Beach

Today I stumbled into information related to Old Route 66.  Often referred to as the "Mother Road"

Have you ever gotten to a page on the internet you have no idea how it happened?  Suddenly into some obscure website that piques your interest?  Subject related to something you would have never thought to go searching for it?  Ah, the pleasures of modern technology.  It allows you to travel the world in micro-seconds.

I have traveled sections of Route 66 over the years.  I know I have been on parts of it across the U.S.  Though at this stage most of my recollection is isolated to some Arizona sections.

On the the subject I really wish to share.  I stumbled into a blog an artist (Willem Bor) created to show his craft of model making.  Oddly he did not live in USA.  But fell in love with the buildings along Old Route 66 during a visit.  Then set off to recreate them in miniature form.

One building in particular is currently still standing and called "Hackberry's General Store".  I have actually been there on numerous occasions, and have done my own photography. 

Check out his blog link below.  I will let you find this very building built in model size, and showing on his blog.  Then you judge how cool these model buildings are.  I also love the history that is provided with each piece. 

Sadly, in researching and going to his Facebook page I believe he is no longer with us since January 2017?  His work and website lives on, at least for now.  We can only hope he is traveling along Route 66 and comparing his work.

Route 66 Model Art - by Willem Bor

Sunday, June 4, 2017

VINTAGE TRAILER RALLY - Lake Havasu, Arizona - November 2017




Vintage Trailer Rally
Havasu Round Up
At the Rodeo Grounds
Sara Park
Lake Havasu City AZ 86496
November 2 to November 5, 2017

All vintage trailers welcome. Come join us at the fairgrounds.

Fee's for camping are $10.00 per night.

Meet and greet November 3rd at 6:00Pm in the large metal building just northwest of the arena area. Bring snacks to share, and your own beverages

Dogs are allowed but must be on leash at all times.

There are hiking trails around the immediate area. The City of Lake Havasu is just up the road. As is the lake.  Lots of weekend activities available in the area.  The weather is normally hard to beat this time of year.

This is dry camping on a gravel parking area.  No tables or shade.  So bring your own.  The group has access to the main building to socialize out of any bad weather.  There are showers and toilets in a building next to the main metal building. You have to provide your own towels, soap, etc.

If you can't make the camp out be sure to come out for the day and check out the vintage trailers.

Contact: Cheri Aiken
(360) 595-2611 (Until Mid September)
(928) 505-2730 (After Mid September)
Email: jra@@cnw.com

 







Wednesday, May 24, 2017

GRAND CANYON CAVERNS CAMPGROUND

For those of you Backpacking Havasu Falls (Grand Canyon Area of Arizona) sometime in the future.  Grand Canyon Cavern Campgrounds offers an excellent alternative to sleeping in your car at the Hilltop Trail Head parking lot.

I have done the Havasu Falls trip on numerous occasions. More than once some years.  Until this year I have always left Las Vegas and made the drive timed to arrive at the Trail Head right when I want to start hiking.  At times that meant leaving Vegas at 2am.

Traveling in the dark means missing much of the scenery along the way, or fun stops such as Hackberry, Arizona.  Perhaps missing Seligman, Arizona if you are coming in from that direction from the east.  Both are great photo op stops.

The last 60 miles off old route 66, once you start heading north on Indian Rd 18, is a desolate and hazardous stretch of highway at night.  It is not the road to be driving in the dark due to wildlife and open range cattle crossing or standing in the road.

Our Havasu trip planned for mid May 2017 found us debating the early morning departure from Las Vegas.  After recommending the Grand Canyon Cavern Campgrounds on the Backpacking Havasu Falls website so many years we decided to give it a try.  Then judge for ourselves, and pass the info on to you.

The entrance is a few miles east of the RT 66 & IR 18 intersection.  The view from the road side appears as an old run down gas station, and a small cafe.  Some old vehicles staged around the parking lot up by the buildings.  We stopped in the cafe and the friendly staff pointed us to the road/drive, that snaked around the back of the cafe, and up over a small hill.  We almost got nailed by the cops tucked in behind a tree (Old black & white cop car staged along the road).

The campground is about a mile down this road that winds through low growing evergreen trees.  You eventually come to the restaurant first.  This is some distance off the main road RT 66 and not visible from the main road.

Don't expect RV resort accommodations.  Though they do have power pedestals on many sites.  The campground is typical high desert and appears not well kept.  Sites are dirt.  Some have picnic tables, some do not.  There are rough graded roads and ample sites tucked into out of the way places if you want to enjoy some privacy.   We saw no site numbers.  Once you pay you simply have squatters rights to any open place you want to make your camp.  Bathrooms/Showers.....not the best.  But they are centrally located at the front not too far from the restaurant building.

We made reservations at the last minute, the night before.  Mid May there were plenty of sites.  The grounds are large enough I would think you would not have trouble at any time?  You might not get a level site, or one with power, but I think they would be able to accommodate you.

The prices of $32 a night for 2 with a tent and no power requirement seemed very steep for what was offered.  But we had a picnic table and lots of 15ft Pinyon Pine or Ceders that offered wind breaks and some privacy.  The location makes it near ideal.  We didn't have time to check out the Cavern tours.  That might be another story for another day.

We arrived around 6pm and took advantage of the restaurant that looks like it is open until 8pm.  We can both recommend the Pulled Pork/BBQ sandwich.   We washed those down with several ice cold brews and had a very relaxing visit.  It sure beat driving over in the middle of the night tempting fate driving in the dark.  It certainly beat sleeping in the vehicle at the trail head.
We tried to set up minimal gear to head out right at first light.  It was a very cold night for sure.  I believe more so because of the higher altitude.  We survived the cold, and packed gear about 4am to take off.  Several others must have had the same idea because two other groups took off right before us.

The drive up IR 18, the last 60 miles to the trail head, was a pleasant one.  The sun just below the horizon.  Enough light to avoid slamming into black cattle standing on the road,  or wandering Elk.  Both of which could quickly turn a fun trip into a disaster.

We made a breakfast of bacon, eggs, and coffee on the camp stove stove out the back of our vehicle.  With some hearty protein in our systems we started hiking near sunrise.

So our recommendation is to allot the time to make this your stop.  Enjoy the restaurant the night before.  Even come early enough to check out the Caverns.  Then give yourself 1 hour of driving time, plus packing up your camp, to be at the trail head right at sunrise.   You will easily be down the switchbacks all in the shade.

Those leaving after a trip, and after hiking back out, this is also an excellent place to camp over.  Avoid a long drive after hiking out.  If this is your first trip you will not believe how cramped up your legs will get if you hike out, and drive several hours.

Summer time may be different, due to heat.  Camping could become unpleasant?  Be sure to check things out in advance of your date(s).  Plan accordingly.

For more specific detail info on the area, the trip, and preparation visit Backpacking Havasu Falls

Monday, May 22, 2017

SELIGMAN ARIZONA



Seligman Arizona was once the part of the homeland of the Native American Havasupai people.  They at one time had a settlement in this very area.

In more current times Seligman is on the original Route 66.  In recent years Interstate 40 bypassed the town a few miles away.  Traffic for the most part no longer passes through town.

The town still vies for tourist dollars to exist.  Now a small town of about 500 people.  If you stop and take some time, photo ops abound in every direction.  Old vehicles, Elvis, Burger joints, Frozen Custard, Road Kill Cafe, Gas stations, and a KOA Campground on the east end of town.

If you are traveling from the east on your way to Havasu Falls or Peach Springs, you will pass through Seligman.   You can also continue traveling west through Peach Springs and eventually hit  Kingman Arizona.  On old RT 66. Beyond Peach Springs you will pass by Hackberry's General Store.  Talk about another photo op.  Be sure to stop!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

OLD MORMON FORT DUTCH OVEN COOK-OFF FIRST PLACE

What wonderful weather for mid-March today (March 18, 2017).  Temps hit 90°F with clear blue skies in Las Vegas, Nevada.

I was happy to come away with a first place win in the “Main Dish” category.  Serving up BBQ Pulled Pork, to take home a trophy Plaque and a free annual pass to Nevada State Parks for the year.  That pass will certainly have some mileage put on it.

A group of us have competed in this annual cook-off for 3 or 4 years now.  We saw attendance go way up this year.  I came with 144 sandwich buns to serve the pulled pork on.  (12lbs of Pulled Pork).  I remember buying the buns and thinking I was practicing “over kill”.  When I saw the eating line start to form I started cutting buns in half.  Right before show time I started changing to 1/4 bun per serving.  I as well as many of the other cooks were wiped out.

The unofficial report I got this evening from someone connected with the fort put the headcount at 300.  A far cry from the 25-50 we had seen in previous years.

The 10lbs of coleslaw that never made it to the end.  It was just a bonus side dish to go with the BBQ.  Gone before the line finished passing the first time.

I also entered the dessert category with a double batch Cherry Chocolate Cake.  It didn’t even place with all the competition and great cooks.  Though it too was wiped out and only crumbs left.


Hopefully others that attended email me their photos for use on this site.  Also the winners for each category and the dish they served up.  Its tough when you cook, to find the time to take some photos or even sample all the great food.

I didn’t even have the time to enjoy the live music and fiddle players that were just out of ear shot.  Below is a portion of the cook set-ups.

Thanks goes out to Kathleen & Dave LeBlanc for serving up a Mountain Man breakfast for us early birds that were setting up at 7:30am.

Also thanks to those at the Fort that put this all together, then their task to get their park back to normal for the next business day.    There is lots of behind the scenes work and effort going into this event people never see.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

PAHRUMP HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL / CAR SHOW / CARNIVAL



February 24-26, 2017

A great event to get out of the house this coming weekend.  Pahrump, Nevada is about 75 miles west of Las Vegas, Nevada.  If you live in the area, or are just visiting, this is a great opportunity to enjoy Nevada's small town hospitality. 

We are posting this as a public service. This event is Sponsored by the Pahrump Valley Chamber of Commerce. Please check their Facebook event and page for further info.

Their Facebook Event Page https://www.facebook.com/events/1657376944562157/permalink/1657378411228677/

Their Official Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/PahrumpValleyChamber/





Sunday, February 5, 2017

PUMPKIN MUFFINS

Recipe & Image by Rick Beach


This is an experimental recipe for a lower glycemic index version for diabetics out there.  Also no cholesterol.  White sugar was omitted completely and agave nectar used instead at a lesser quantity.  All eggs whites.

If done properly these are a soft muffin.  Not a hard crusty muffin.

The  plain version, or the basic recipe is the most healthy.  But there are many options such as adding chocolate chips, pumpkin seeds, blueberries, or other fruits and nuts.

I had the blueberry version with breakfast and it was great!


Ingredients

3/8 cup      Agave Nectar
1/4 Cup     Vegetable Oil
4                Egg Whites
1 1/4 Cup  White Flour
1/4 Cup     Almond Flour/meal
3/4 tsp       Baking Powder
1/2 tsp       Baking Soda
1/4 tsp       Ground Cloves
1/2 tsp       Ground Cinnamon
1/4 tsp       Salt  (Using a 1/2 tsp tastes better if you need not limit salt intake)
1/4 tsp       Ground Nutmeg

Options
1/2-1 Cup Chocolate Chips
1/2-1 Cup Fresh Blueberries
Combination of both
Sprinkle of roasted unsalted pumpkin seeds
Other fruits or nuts.

Preparation
Makes 12 Muffins
Preheat oven to 400°F
Line muffin tin will paper cups and spray the paper cups with Pam or spray oil

Use two bowls
Whisk all wet ingredients in the first bowl until well combined
Whisk all dry ingredients in the second bowl until well combined
Dump the mixed dry ingredients into the wet and fold in with rubber spatula until uniform
If adding nuts, chocolate chips, or fruit, fold them in last.
Spoon batter into the oiled paper liners in the muffin tin
Sprinkle with several roasted unsalted pumpkin seeds if you care to.
Bake 16 minutes until tooth pick test comes clean of batter.

The basic recipe Nutrition Facts  (Adding options will of course change these numbers)



Nutrition Facts
12 Servings
Amount Per Serving
  • Calories 143.5
  • Total Fat 6.0 g
  • Saturated Fat 0.5 g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat 1.4 g
  • Monounsaturated Fat 2.8 g
  • Cholesterol 0.0 mg
  • Sodium 149.9 mg
  • Potassium 63.3 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate 19.9 g
  • Dietary Fiber 1.1 g
  • Sugars 8.6 g
  • Protein 3.1 g
  • Vitamin A 47.7 %
  • Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
  • Vitamin B-6 0.7 %
  • Vitamin C