Monday, January 14, 2013

Free Camping at a Gift Shop

It was getting late in the day as I roamed through the Petrified Forest National Park. I needed to start thinking about where I was going to spend the night. I asked a Park Ranger about camping nearby. He told me the National Park didn't have a campground, but there were 2 large private owned gift shops at the South end of the park that offered free camping. Free camping always appeals to me as long as it is in a safe place and no regulations against it. I decided to check it out.

As I approached the exit to the park, there they were, just as the Ranger had described. They are on opposite sides of the road. As far as I could tell they had both closed for the day, perhaps even for the season. It appeared I would be the only camper, which was ok with me. After looking the situation over, I couldn't tell if this was 2 separate business or one business spread out on both sides of the road.  The signs indicated 2 business, The Peterfied Forest and the Crystal Forest,yet the design, layout etc. appeared they were one. That part was confusing, but not important for free camping.

I picked the one with the tepees. There were even electric hook-ups. Perhaps they do charge  a fee for the electric if campers prefer a hook-up. 

During my tripping I have stayed at National, and  State parks...National Forest, BLM, Wall-Mart, truck-stops, ferry landings, privately owned campgrounds and probably others, but never a gift shop. This was a first, and if you are at the Petrified Forest and in need of some sleep, I highly recommend the gift shop or shops whichever the case may be.

Both gift shops are visible in this picture

The campsites even had a huge stumps of the petrified wood at each site

The next morning this rabbit was trying to get a drink  in the parking lot, there really wasn't any water there but it was moist.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Roadkill Cafe...Route 66

Although I do like to try the local cuisine, I didn't try this one.
Located in Seligman, Arizona

Bert's Country Dancing

On Route 66 about half way  between Hackberry and Valentine, Arizona are a couple more remnants from yesteryear. They are almost straight across the road from each other, and both have large pull offs in front of them. The large pull offs are a convenience for all the Route 66 traffic stopping to capture a shot.


Saturday, January 12, 2013

Eagle Nest Lake State Park

Eagle Nest Lake State Park is located near the village of Eagle Nest. It is at an elevation of 8300 ft. and that classifies the lake as an alpine lake.

Arkansas Scenic 7 Byway

 I only drove the first 130 miles of this scenic route, because I wanted to get off and take the  Talimena National Scenic Byway.  I started at Diamond City Arkansas and changed lanes at Ola, Arkansas.

Scenic 7 has been rated as one of the ten most scenic drives in America by some.  I would not vote on something like that, just too difficult too choose.

Map of the Northern Section of Scenic 7


Parts of the 7 go through the Ozark National Forest

Eleven Point River

The Eleven Point River Bridge is about half way between Doniphan and Alton, Missouri on US Hwy. 160.

A picturesque old bridge....

Land Between the Lakes

Land Between the Lakes is a great place to be if you hunt, fish, or boat. I don't do either, but since I hadn't been there in years, I made it my first stop on my journey west. The best part for me was the "The Homeplace" and I posted that here

There's also a quilt museum close by that I would like to see someday.

There was a Woodlands Nature Station that had several species of wildlife. Most was behind wire fences and couldn't take a good picture. They fed a groundhog and it was fun watching him stand up to munch his food.

We do like our birdhouses in Ky.

Was the movie Golden Pond filmed here? No, it wasn't.

I stayed at the Lake Energy campground.

For $5.00 per vehicle there's a 3 mile drive thru to see Elk and Bison. All I have to show for my drive thru is this picture. They were in hiding when I was there.