Fall 2019


Jewels on an Autumn Trip Michigan's Upper Peninsula

Four Corners: A Throwback to the Wild West Ancient Cityscapes and Native Cultures

FALL RETREATS Bee’s RV Resort Clermont, Florida Emerald Cove Earp, California Preferred RV Resort Pahrump, Nevada

Simply send us a short testimonial of a great experience you had using your Coast to Coast membership.

Contest rules: Coast to Coast “Where Has Coast Taken You” SWEEPSTAKES ABBREVIATED RULES. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Begins 01/01/19 and ends 12/31/19. Enter by sending a testimonial of a great experience you had using your Coast to Coast® membership to ccrpresident@coastresorts.com or by mail to Coast to Coast, Attn: President, PO Box 7028, Englewood, CO 80155- 7028. One winner will be randomly selected each month during sweepstakes period from all eligible entries by the 10th of each month. For full Official Rules, by which this Sweepstakes is governed, gotowww.CoastResorts.com/ContestRulesby12/31/19. Voidwhereprohibited.ThisSweepstakesisinnowayaffiliatedwith,sponsored,endorsed,oradministeredbyFacebook®,andthereforeFacebook® assumes no responsibility or liability for its conduct or administration. Sponsored by Camp Coast to Coast, LLC, Englewood, CO. CTC55265 - 1018 You can even send us a picture with your entry, although it’s not necessary to send a picture to enter the drawing. Each month from the entries submitted that month we’ll draw a winner of the $100 Merchandise Certificate to use at Camping World, Gander Outdoors, or Overton’s retail locations. Send your entries, including your testimonial (and picture if possible) with your name and member number, to: Email: CCRPresident@CoastResorts.com Mail: Coast to Coast, Attn: Bruce Hoster, PO Box 7028, Englewood, CO 80155-7028 It could be about an RV stay at a Coast resort, a cabin rental, a condo vacation getaway or unique getaway booked through Hopaway Holiday, a trip or a cruise you booked through Coast Travel Services, or even savings you received using your Trip Plus Discounts. We will have a drawing each month during 2019 from all the entries submitted that month for a $100 Merchandise Certificate to use at Camping World, Gander Outdoors, or Overton’s retail locations. To enter, send us up to five sentences about your great experience using your Coast membership.


TRAVEL 14 Four Corners: A Throwback to the Wild West

GOOD SAM AND CAMPING WORLD CHAIRMAN AND CEO Marcus Lemonis MarcusVIP@goodsamfamily.com COAST TO COAST PRESIDENT Bruce Hoster CCRPresident@coastresorts.com


Ancient Cityscapes and Native Cultures STORY AND PHOTOS BY RICHARD VARR 21 Jewels on an Autumn Trip Michigan's Upper Peninsula 27 St. Michaels, Maryland Gem of the Eastern Shore STORY BY DEE LITTEN WHITED

MEMBER SERVICES 64 Inverness Drive E. Englewood, Colorado 80112 800-368-5721 info@coastresorts.com COAST TO COAST WEBSITE CoastResorts.com COAST TO COAST FACEBOOK Facebook.com/CoastResorts EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Dee Whited ART DIRECTOR Nicole Wilson


DEPARTMENTS 4 From the President 6 Member Matters 8 Resort Updates 34 RV Review

RESORT PROFILES 10 Bee’s RV Resort Clermont, Florida 11 Emerald Cove Earp, California 12 Preferred RV Resort Pahrump, Nevada

Volume 38, Number 4. Coast to Coast (ISSN 1093-3581) is published quarterly for $14 per year as part of annual membership fees, by Coast to Coast Resorts, 64 Inverness Drive E., Englewood, Colorado 80112. Coast to Coast Resorts assumes no responsi- bility for unsolicited manuscripts or artwork. The contents of this publication may not be reproduced by any method without prior written consent of the publisher. ©2019 Camp Coast to Coast, LLC. Coast wing logo is a reg- istered trademark of Camp Coast to Coast, LLC. The GOOD SAM ICON, and Dream. Plan. Go. are registered trademarks of Good Sam Enterprises, LLC and used with permission. Unauthorized use of Coast’s or Good Sam’s trademarks is expressly prohibited. All rights reserved. PRINTED IN THE USA. COVER PHOTO BY EMILY AND MARK FAGAN CTC57232 - 0819




FROM THE PRESIDENT PUTTING MEMBERS FIRST New Coast Deluxe Resort in Virginia We are pleased to announce that North Fork Resort in Front Royal, Virginia has rejoined the Coast network as a Deluxe resort. This scenic resort is located on the banks of the Shenandoah River in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, near the end of the Skyline Drive and just 69 miles west of Washington, D.C. Family friendly activities at the resort include fishing, mini-golf, horseshoes, basketball, tennis, volleyball, a ball field and playground, and an outdoor stage. To learn more, see the article on page 6 of this issue or visit our online Coast has already added more than 25 new Good Neighbor Parks (GNPs) to our network so far this year, and we expect to add more in the final months of the year. The new GNPs include locations in Arizona, Texas, Washington, Nebraska, Florida, Tennessee, Nevada, Vermont, and Wyoming in the U.S., as well as Ontario, British Columbia and Manitoba in Canada. For details on the latest GNPs see the Resort Updates starting on page 8. For a complete list of new GNPs added year to date, as well as any other resort and GNP changes, download the Updates to 2019 Directory PDF by visiting www. CoastResorts.com, scrolling over Find a Resort at the top of the home page, clicking on Find a Resort in the dropdown menu, and the Updates to 2019 Directory PDF will be on the right side of the page directly under the red “Search” button. Updated Coast Travel Services Member Website Now Live The Coast Travel Services member website has been redesigned with a completely new look and feel. This directory at www.CoastResorts.com. Coast Adding More Good Neighbor Parks

site, also called the Members On Vacation website, is used by Coast members to book cruises, hotels, flights, and rental cars for personal or business travel. In addition to the updated design, the booking engine has been upgraded to be more mobile friendly which will make it easier to use on mobile phones and tablets. You can search various travel options and book your travel on the website, or speak to a Coast Travel Services vacation planner to help book your travel at 800-722-1410. To view the upgraded website for Coast Travel Services, sign in at www.CoastResorts.com, scroll over Benefits at the top of the page, and click Coast Travel Services in the Benefits dropdown menu. To take maximum advantage of the new features, make sure you are using a newer internet browser such as Chrome, Firefox, Safari, or Microsoft Edge. 2020 Coast Directory to Mail in January Can you believe 2020 is just around the corner? We can becausewe’vebeenhardonworkon the2020Coast Resort Directory, which will be mailed starting in early January. This 200+ page annual issue is a great travel planning tool and gives members all they need to take maximum advantage of their Coast membership. The directory will include complete listings for all Coast Resorts and Good Neighbor Parks, state and provincial maps showing locations for all affiliates, a rental directory, and a membership guide with tips to successfully navigate the Coast to Coast network. As always, if you have feedback for us on the directory once you begin to use it, or if you have any other suggestion for us to make it easier for you to use your Coast membership, just send us an email at CCRPresident@CoastResorts.com. Have a Good Trip!

MARCUS LEMONIS Chairman and CEO Camping World & Good Sam marcusvip@goodsamfamily.com

BRUCE HOSTER President Coast to Coast Resorts CCRPresident@CoastResorts.com





Need anything? I’m here to help. CALL MY OFFICE 866.232.8790 or Email me at MarcusVIP@goodsam.com

Marcus Lemonis Chairman and CEO Camping World and Good Sam

CTC57362 - 0719

MEMBER MATTERS MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR COAST TO COAST MEMBERSHIP New Coast Deluxe Resort – North Fork Resort In the Shenandoah Valley This scenic resort is located on the banks of the Shenandoah River in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, near the apex of the Skyline Drive in the Shenandoah National Park, and just 69 miles west of Washington, D.C. It is a great home base to visit doz- ens of exciting and beautiful venues within 100 miles. Park your rig at one of the many sites along the beau- tiful Shenandoah River or among the lush hardwoods nestled along the slope above the river. Family friend- ly activities at the resort include fishing, mini-golf, horseshoes, basketball, tennis, volleyball, a ball field and playground, and an outdoor stage. As a highly rated resort, North Fork Resort features numerous amenities including 24-hour security, dog park, river access, game room, family center, media room, three covered pavilions, five shower locations,

two laundry rooms, and propane refills. There are three types of rental units available and all come with their own picnic table and fire pit. Nearby are loads of attractions including Wolf Trap Na- tional Park for the Performing Arts, George Washington National Forest, historic Harper’s Ferry, Skyline Caverns, Natural Bridge, Virginia Safari Park, museums, bat- tlefields, canoeing, horseback riding, farmers market, theatres, wineries, and hot air balloon rides.




A New YouTube Channel for RVers Where RV USA The new YouTube channel is the brainchild of Val and Russ Hicks, full-time RVers and Coast to Coast mem- bers. The couple is producing a unique style of videos for RVers and people who are pondering whether or not to take the plunge. “We’re aiming our videos at the RV community because we’re RVers—baby boomers like us who are looking for what’s next,” said Russ Hicks. Their YouTube channel went live mid-August. “Where RV USA” is a riff on “where (are) Russ and Val” and also, of course, the tie-in with RVing. The Hicks will release four videos a month, which will include a Great American Community video twice a month. I met them when they chose Front Royal, Virginia, my hometown, as one of their Great American Communities. In addition to featuring Front Royal, their home base was North Fork Resort, a Coast to

Coast affiliate.They visited many nearby destinations including the Skyline Drive, the Shenandoah River, Shenandoah National Park, and Washington, D.C., which is an hour east. Once a month, their YouTube channel will feature a Thematic Video. For instance, while visiting Front Royal, they drove to nearby Washington, D.C., where they celebrated the 4th of July and visited nine memo- rials in the city. Other themes for additional episodes include covered bridges in Pennsylvania, the waterfalls around New York, and gold mines in California. “The third kind of episode will be for the RV communi- ty and will feature various RV parks including Coast to Coast and Good Sam. We’re members of both. We’ll also include how-tos, and a variety of information about the RV life,” said Russ.




RESORT UPDATES ADDITIONS AND CHANGES TO THE 2019 DIRECTORY The 2019 Coast to Coast Resort Directory is packed with everything you need to navigate the network of Coast to Coast Resorts and Coast Good Neighbor Parks. To keep members up-to-date, each issue of Coast magazine includes any updates that have occurred since the last issue. Rushmore Shadows Resort - Midwest Outdoor Resorts (page 168) Email: stay@midwestoutdoorresorts.com COAST DELUXE TEXAS Whitney Resorts, Whitney (page 175) URL: whitneyresorts.net NEW COAST DELUXE RESORT VIRGINIA North Fork Resort, 301 N Fork Rd, Front Royal, 22630; Telephone: (540) 636-2995; Reservation telephone: (540) 636-9949; Email: reservations@ nfra.com; URL: nfra.com; Directions: From I-66 (near I-81): SR 340/522 S to SR 55 W (2nd traffic light). R onto SR 55. W 2 mi. Resort on R. Latitude: 38.9566; Longitude: -78.2318; Check-in: 2 p.m.; Check-out: 11 a.m.; Maximum RV length: 40 feet; Max amp: 50. RV Notations: Rate includes 6 people. Additional charges: Utility fee $17/night. Water not available at sites from December 1 - April 1. Rental Notations: Rental units available. Trip Points not accepted. Contact resort directly. Open: Year-round; Peak Season: May 31 to September 30. COAST DELUXE RESORT TERMINATION TEXAS The Preserve of Texas, Cleveland (page 172) COAST CLASSIC MINNESOTA Golden Eagle RV Village, Perham (page 146) URL: goldeneaglervvillage.com MISSOURI Cloud 9 Ranch, (page 148) Email: gatehouse@cloud9ranch.com COAST PREMIER SOUTH DAKOTA

OKLAHOMA Eagles Landing Resort & Recreation, (page 162) Email: cchappell@eaglesresorts.net GOOD NEIGHBOR PARKS ARIZONA Arizona Oasis RV Resort, Ehrenberg (p. 198) Street address: 50238 Ehrenberg-Parker Hwy CALIFORNIA Sky Valley Resort, Desert Hot Springs (p. 200) Telephone: (760) 329-2900 NEW GOOD NEIGHBOR PARKS ARIZONA Verde Ranch RV Resort, 1105 N Dreamcatcher Dr, Camp Verde, 86322; Telephone: (928) 567-7126; Email: vrrvinfo@crrmgmt.com; URL: verderanchrvresort.com. Directions: From Jct I-17 & Hwy 260 (Ex 287): Go 0.5 mi N on Hwy 260. Ex at 1st roundabout. Go 300 ft E on N Dreamcatcher Dr. Park on L. Latitude: 34.58443; Longitude: -111.88563; Check-in: 2 p.m.; Check-out: 11 a.m.; Maximum RV length: 54 feet; Max amp: 50. RV Notations: 2019 Coast rate $40. Rate includes 2 adults per site, full hook-up, Wi-Fi. Additional charges: Extra vehicle $10/night, extra pet $20, tax 12.975%. Open: August 1 to December 31. Desert Oasis Campground, 5311 W Double Adobe Rd, McNeal, 85617. Telephone: (520) 979-6650; Email: campatdo@gmail.com; URL: campatdo.com. Directions: From Jct of Hwy 92 & US 80: SE 4.5 mi on Hwy 80 to Double Adobe Rd. E 3.1 mi. Park on R. Latitude: 31.27435; Longitude: -109.46798; Check-in: Noon; Check-out: 2 p.m.; Maximum RV length: Unlimited; Max amp: 50. RV Notations: 2019 Coast rate $24- 32. Rate includes 2 adults, 1 RV, full hook-up, free Wi-Fi. Additional charges: Extra person over 10 years of age $2/night, tax 6.06%. Max 4 people/site. $15 non- refundable reservation fee applies toward the first day camping fee. Quiet hours 10 p.m. - 8 a.m. Open: Year- round. Apache Mobile Home and RV Park, 79 N Apache Trl, St David, 85630; Telephone: (520) 720- 4634; Email: apachemobilepark@gmail.com; URL: apachemobilepark.com. Directions: From Jct 1-10 (Ex 303) & Hwy 80: Go 6.5 mi SE on Hwy 80. Park on L. Latitude: 31.90576; Longitude: -110.22724; Check-in: 1 p.m.; Check-out: 11 a.m.; Maximum RV Length: 45




WASHINGTON Northern Quest RV Resort, 303 South Kalispel Way, Airway Heights, 99001 Telephone: (509) 481-4300; Email: info@ northernquestrv-resort.com; URL: nqrvresort.com. Directions: From Jct of I-90 and US-2 at Ex 277: Go 4.5 mi W on US-2, then 1 mi N on S Hayford Rd, then 0.25 mi W on Sprague Ave. Ex roundabout on Kalispel. Resort on L. Latitude: 47.65841; Longitude: -117.56262; Check-in 1 p.m.; Check-out: Noon; Maximum RV length: 80 feet; Max amp: 50. RV Notations: 2019 Coast rate $48-$60. Rate includes 2 adults, full hook-ups. Additional charges: Extra adult $5/night, lodging fee $2, tax 9.1%. Max 5 adults, 2 pets. Deposit of first night required for reservation. Open: Year-round MANATOBA Champagne's RV Park, 102 Tinant Rd, Lac Du Bonnet, R0E 1A0. Telephone: (204) 345-2414; Email: champagnesrv@hotmail.com. Directions: From Jct Hwy 11 & Hwy 313: Go .4 km (0.25 mi) W on gravel road. Latitude: 50.28096; Longitude: -96.03726; Check- in: Noon.; Check-out: 11 a.m.; Maximum RV Length: 60 feet; Max amp: 30. RV Notations: 2019 Coast rate $36. Rate includes 2 adults per site, full hook-ups. Additional charges: Extra adult $5/night, extra child $5/night, tax 5%. No availability over long holiday weekends. Open: May 1 to October 1 ONTARIO Primrose Park, 635687 Hwy 10, Mono, L9V 0Z8. Telephone: (519) 925-2848; Email: primrosepark@ outlook.com; URL: primrosepark.ca. Directions: From Jct of Hwys 89 & 10, S 0.4 km (0.25 mi) on Hwy 10. Park on L. Latitude: 44.08821; Longitude -80.13763; Check-in: 1 p.m.; Check-out: Noon; Maximum RV length: 45 feet; Max amp: 30. RV Notations: 2019 Coast Rate $44. Rate includes 2 adults per site, kids under 12, full hook-up. Additional charges: Extra adult $5/night, tax 13%. Quiet time 11 p.m. - 7 a.m. No firewood permitted from outside park. Open: May 1 to October 14 GOOD NEIGHBOR PARKS TERMINATIONS ARIZONA Leaf Verde RV Resort, Buckeye Ho Ho Kam Mobile Village/RV Park, Coolidge Desert Hills Estates, Lake Havasu

feet; Max amp: 50. RV Notations: 2019 Coast rate is 20% off nightly rate. Current rates are $20 plus tax for 30-amp single lot or $35 plus tax for 50-amp double lot. Rate includes 2 adults, full hook-up, free Wi-Fi in clubhouse and office, trash service. Additional charges: 6.05% tax. Open: Year-round. NEBRASKA Meadow Park Motel & RV Park, 9868 Hwy 385, Bridgeport, 69336. Telephone: (308) 279- 1176; Email: meadowpark385@yahoo.com; URL: meadowparkmotelrv.com. Directions: From Jct NE 26 & US 385: Go 2.5 mi N. Then NW on US 385. Park on L. Latitude: 41.70825; Longitude: -103.11975; Check- in: Noon; Check-out: 11 a.m.; Maximum RV length: 40 feet; Max amp: 50. RV Notations: Special discount rate for Coast members. Rate includes 2 adults, full hook- up, free Wi-Fi. Additional charges: Tax. Kids under 2 free. Max 6 people/site. Open: Year-round. Sleepy Sunflower RV Park, 221 Rd E 85, Ogallala, 69153; Telephone: (308) 284-1300; Email: sleepysunflowerrvpark@yahoo.com; URL; sleepysunflower.com; Directions: From Jct of I-80 & NE 61 (Ex 126): Go 500 ft S on NE 61. Then 0.25 mi E on Prospector Dr. Park on L. Latitude: 41.11292; Longitude -101.70861; Check-in: Noon; Check-out: 11 a.m.; Maximum RV length: 45 feet; Max amp: 50. RV Notations: Special discount rate for Coast members. Rate includes 2 people, full hook-up, Wi-Fi. Additional charges: Extra vehicle $3/night, sewer dump $10, tax 7%. Cash or check only for 1 night stay, credit card for 2 or more night stay. Quiet hours 9 p.m. - 7 a.m. Open: October 1 – April 30 TENNESSEE Shadrack Campground, 2537 Volunteer Pkwy, Bristol, 37620; Telephone: (423) 217-1181; Email: camp@ shadrack.com; URL: shadrackcampground.com. Directions: From Jct I-81 & SR-394 (Ex 69): Go 5.5 mi S on SR-394. Then 2 mi E on US-19 (US-11E). Park on R. Latitude: 36.52906; Longitude: -82.24979; Check-in: 1 p.m.; Check-out: Noon; Maximum RV Length: 45 feet; Max amp: 50. RV Notations: 2019 Coast rate $26.25 for 30 amp or $30 for 50 amp. Rate includes full hook-up, Wi-fi. Additional charges: Tax 9.3%. Rate not available for the Apr NASCAR, June NHRA, or Aug NASCAR race weeks. Open: Year-round.




RESORT TYPE Coast Deluxe LOCATION Clermont, Florida SEASON Year-Round WEBSITE www.beesrvresort.com

For fun, the Magic Kingdom / Walt Disney World is within a half-hour’s drive, but there’s no reason to ever leave Bee’s RV Resort in Clermont, Florida, with its jam-packed activity calendar and excellent amenities. Visit the Beehive, the activity center, where you can play cards, dominoes, board games, or watch television. There’s also a book-trading area where you can exchange books you’ve read for a new-to- you book. Try card bingo, a different, fun way to play bingo; however, if you yearn for traditional bingo, it’s played on Tuesdays and Fridays. The activity calendar includes street golf, petanque, dances, crafts, concerts, and more. Amenities include a lighted shuffleboard court, 9-hole miniature golf, a nature walking trail, and solar heated pool. The activities team is busy keeping the activity schedule full. There is something to do almost every night with dances, pot-luck dinners, and cookouts. The recently renovated pool area includes a wooden fence to replace the chain-link fence that has been around for decades. A new 10-foot by 12-foot pergola has been added, Bee’s RV Resort Stay active at this busy Coast Deluxe resort

too, for shade. Claim your own umbrella for more shade. You can all but hang up your apron because the Honey Pot Eatery serves up family favorites. Take in the all-you- can-eat fish on Fridays and all-you-can-eat chicken for a Sunday dinner that just happens to be served on Tuesday night. Side dishes include mashed potatoes with gravy, baked potatoes, coleslaw, and chunky applesauce. Top it off with soft-serve ice-cream. In addition to the friendly atmosphere, RVers enjoy 30- and 50-amp service, coin laundry, hot showers, high-speed Wi- Fi, pull-through sites, RV storage, LP gas, and post office boxes with mail forwarding service. Nearby Lake Louisa State Park is 4,500 acres of beautiful, natural Florida. Just minutes from the area's major attractions, the park hosts guided horseback rides, guided kayak eco-tours, kayak, canoe, and bike rentals, fishing, hiking, biking, camping, swimming, and just about anything else you would expect from a top-rated resort.




RESORT TYPE Coast Premier LOCATION Earp, California SEASON Year-Round WEBSITE www.emeraldcoveresort.com

If you’re an RVer who loves all things water, head to the California side of the Colorado River and pull your rig into Emerald Cove Resort in Earp, California. Sites include a variety of terrains including right on the white sandy beaches of the Colorado River. Activities, of course, center around the river that glides through the desert terrain—the perfect place for water-skiing, inner-tube rides, and fishing. Bring your own boat and access the triple-wide boat launch that ensures easy access to the river. No boat? Watercraft rentals are close by. With more than 300 days of sunshine a year—and a unique mix of tranquil waters, rugged mountains, and tons of fun—it’s hard to stay inside. Everywhere you look, folks are hiking, biking, boating, fishing, golfing, off-roading, shopping, dining and enjoying seasonal events. Touring, dining, and shopping at nearby Lake Havasu can give you a break from non-stop fun on the water. While there, you can Emerald Cove Resort Plan for an active vacation at this riverside resort

also visit the city’s transplanted historic London Bridge. But the river’s not the only place where you can get wet. Enjoy two covered Olympic-sized swimming pools, two Jacuzzis, and wading pools for the kids. The pools are heated in the winter. Poolside is the Tiki Bar and Snack Bar with outside seating where you can watch pool games and contests for the kids and water volleyball games for the adults. The River Rats Kids Club at Emerald Cove Resort is a perfect way to keep your kids busy while you relax. Kids are received with smiles the moment they walk through the door. They are supervised by the staff and will have their choice of creating art work, beading, woodwork, playing X-Box games, or one of many other planned activities.




RESORT TYPE Coast Classic LOCATION Pahrump, Nevada SEASON Year-Round WEBSITE www.preferredrv.com

Many people head to southern Nevada to visit busy Las Vegas, but we suggest you head, instead, to Preferred RV Resort in Pahrump, Nevada. Not only is it not noisy and crowded, but there are sightseeing wonders all around including some of the West’s most beautiful natural wonders. Within a day’s drive visit Hoover Dam, Lake Mead, Lee Canyon Ski Resort, Death Valley, Valley of Fire, Bonnie Springs, Toiyabe National Park, and Tecopa Hot Springs. If you want to try your hand at gambling, check out the half-dozen establishments within the city limits— many open 24 hours. There’s lots of additional activities including high-speed racing, off-road trails, geocaching, lush golf courses, tasty restaurants, a contemporary wine culture, concerts, bowling centers, and firearms training. Pahrump’s slogan is, "Your Base Camp to Adventure." Onsite there are plenty of things to keep you interested. The spacious pool is heated and can be covered with rigid translucent polycarbonate panels, which are Preferred RV Resort The best place to enjoy exciting southern Nevada

retractable, for year-round enjoyment. The pool area has a Jacuzzi too. There are spacious pull-through sites and every site has 50-amp service and free Wi-Fi. Enjoy the indoor spa, billiards, an exercise room, and restrooms that are impeccably cleaned. You can rest comfortably knowing that there’s a staffed 24-hour front gate. If you’ve always wanted to learn a new craft, Preferred RV Resort offers an extensive wood shop and stained- glass shop with available instruction. There are also other arts and crafts including sewing. A full activities calendar means you’ll meet new friends. Also onsite are horseshoe pits, shuffleboard, playground, picnic areas, and a barbecue area. You can download a map of adventure trails in the Pahrump Valley: ATVs, jeeps, hiking, mountain bikes, and rock climbing. Visit Red Rock Canyon, which features a one-way 13- mile scenic drive, hiking and biking trails, wildlife, vegetation, geology, cultural resources and much more.




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Four Corners: A THROWBACK to THE WILD WEST Ancient Cityscapes and Native Cultures




Monument Valley, AZ and UT.

Monument Valley is one stop while exploring the Four Corners area, where the state lines of Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Arizona meet. All along the journey, I imagine seeing faces, statues, and figurines along the crumbling cliff sides—some lining up like saints on cathedral walls in Europe, while giant monoliths stand tall like ancient cityscapes. Four Corners was once dominated by the Ancestral Puebloan culture (also called Anasazi) estimated to be from about 750-1300 A.D. Today, their remarkable cliffside ruins remain—many multistoried and extremely well preserved. They dot the rocky rims and boulder- strewn walls of area canyons, many now protected in national parks including Colorado’s sprawling Mesa Verde, Canyons of the Ancients andHovenweep; Arizona’s Canyon de Chelly and Navajo National Monument; and New Mexico’s Chaco Canyon, among others. In Monument Valley, Holiday points to buttes known as King on His Throne and the pair with a semblance to hands, East Mitten and West Mitten. “Put your hands out and you’ll see the thumbs on the side,” he explains. And at Mitchell Mesa, the so-called Three Sisters spires look like the letter “W.” “We can see three Catholic nuns, and that's why we call them the Three Sisters.” The red-rock monoliths have served as backdrops

Four Corners Monument.

A THROWBACK TO THE WILD WEST Story and photos by Richard Varr I see faces in the rocks, seemingly chiseled out of the earthen-red sandstone walls of mesa tops eroded through the millennia. Streaks add shapes and shadows, creating expressions; protrusions jut out like fingers and limbs. I pass what looks like seagulls on a ledge, while other formations portray an Indian face, or an eagle with wings at its side. Rock spires cluster alongside buttes atop a wavy sea of sand dunes now brilliantly aglow, as the early morning sun illuminates one of the nation’s most vivid natural panoramas. “People visit from different countries and when they come to Navajo land, we share our language and culture. And we share our landscape,” says Navajo guide Larry Holiday while leading me on a tour through storied Monument Valley along the Arizona and Utah border. “And they take home what they see not by just taking pictures, but also by the images in their mind—the landscape, the colors, the sandstone, what our ancestors had left here.”




The twin 800-foot sandstone spires at the Spider Rock Overlook, Canyon de Chelly, AZ.

Monument Valley, AZ and UT.

for movies since the 1930s, when the first movie, Stagecoach , was filmed here by director John Ford and starred John Wayne. The 18-foot diameter summit of the slender pillar known as Totem Pole was used in the 1975 movie Eiger Sanction starring Clint Eastwood. “He used a helicopter to get up there,” notes Holiday, who also points to an area in the distance. “Today we call it Forrest Gump Hill, used in the movie scene where he says, ‘I’m too tired, I’m going home.’” A two-hour drive south of Monument Valley leads to Arizona’s CanyondeChelly (pronouncedd-SHAY)National Monument, a site with Pueblo ruins. The Puebloans were primarily farmers, growing their crops atop the mesas near their canyon homes. Key to these ancient dwellings were kivas—rounded, underground roofed pits, often with central fireplaces and ventilation ducts, that were used for ceremonies and other community activities. Because of drought and possibly conflicts, the Puebloans eventually moved and were followed by the more nomadic Hopi, Ute, and Navajo cultures. Canyon de Chelly sits within the Navajo Reservation and is actually comprised of two elongated main canyons with 10 marked overlooks offering dramatic views along North Rim and South Rim drives (34- and 37-mile round trips, respectively). I noticed the twin 800-foot sandstone spires shooting out of the ground like ancient

skyscrapers at the Spider Rock Overlook, the Mummy Cave Pueblo dwelling, and ledge-side Massacre Cave, where in 1805 a Spanish expedition opened fire on Navajos taking shelter. The park’s only trail without a mandatory guide, 2.5 miles roundtrip, leads down from the White House Overlook to the multi-story White House Pueblo ruins. Guided motorized tours deep into the canyon are also available. Navajo National Monument is about an hour’s drive from Monument Valley and includes three well-preserved cliff dwellings. The Betatakin site with its stairwells and sprawling multistory stone houses is the closest and can be viewed from a lookout following a short hike from the Visitor Center, where brisk winds sift through surrounding pine trees. Reaching Betatakin involves a three-to-five-hour, five-mile roundtrip ranger-guided hike, while the elongated Keet Seel cliff dwellings are even harder to reach with a strenuous 17-mile roundtrip hike. The third dwelling, Inscription House, is unstable and closed to the public. Driving into Colorado along U.S. Route 160, I attempt to stand in four states at the same time within the Four Corners Monument maintained by the Navajo Nation Parks and Recreation Department. A large, walk-on brass and granite marker designates the borders of Arizona, Colorado, Utah and New Mexico, with the lines taking




Square Tower House Pueblo ruins, Mesa Verde National Park, CO.

Deep canyons at Canyon de Chelly, AZ.

Great Kiva, Lowry Pueblo in the Canyons of the Ancients National Monument, CO.

Oak Tree Pueblo ruins from lookout, Mesa Verde National Park, CO.

shape during the 1860s and finally drawn in 1912. Today, flags of the states and Indian nations flap overhead, and Ute and Navajo vendors sell art and souvenirs. I see visitors—particularly the younger ones—twisting their bodies to place a limb in each state at the same time. Along Colorado’s southwestern edges, the Canyons of the Ancients National Monument is a sprawling 176,000 acres with the country’s most densely packed evidence of Puebloan native cultures including villages, dams, reservoirs, cliff dwellings, petroglyphs, and more. There have been more than 6,300 recorded sites so far, with estimates of up to 30,000 sites likely. Lowry Pueblo with its walled ruins and great kiva is one of the most popular sites within the monument grounds. Built around 1060 A.D., it was home to about 40 people. The monument’s Visitor Center and Museum, 10 miles north of Cortez and three miles west of Dolores, displays such artifacts as millennium-old, pieced-together pottery jars, clay and stone pendants, bracelets and arrowheads. In one corner sits a recreated roofed pit home typically dug into the earth. “Corn, squash and beans—they were farmers,” says museum volunteer Tom Hayden. “They lived in this area for about 800 years.” A more compact Puebloan archeological site is nearby, Hovenweep National Monument, part of a canyon with

the ruins of what were six villages dating back to 1200- 1300 A.D. Rimming the canyon’s cliffs are small rock- walled ruins including multistory square and circular towers, D-shaped homes and rounded kivas—all built nearby to what were then mesa-top crop fields. Today, a short hike from the Visitor Center leads to an overlook and a two-mile trail around the canyon’s rim. Ruins include the so-called Square Tower, Hovenweep Castle, and Eroded Boulder House. “It was a farming community—families working on their farms, kids taking care of dogs and turkeys. At night, they would gather in their homes or in the kiva for community activities,” explains Sierra Coon, Hovenweep’s Chief of Interpretation. “One thing that certainly struck me is the silence. You can hear the wind in the sage and it's a more personal experience because it's not as busy as other sites. You almost feel like you have it to yourself.” After seeing Puebloan potsherds in museums, I’m thrilled to go on my own artifact hunting expedition on the nearby Canyon of the Ancients Guest Ranch west of Cortez, a 2,000-acre working ranch with several guest cabins. I’m actually getting the chance to see landscape with pottery slivers never touched before, and without the glass and rope barriers of museums.




Ruins at Hovenweep National Monument, CO.

Overlook at Navajo National Monument, AZ.




Deep canyons at Canyon de Chelly, AZ.

Monument Valley, AZ and UT.

Local archeology enthusiast Yusef Ben-Masaud shows me a small corn cob found in the earth, pottery pieces, and petroglyphs from around 1180-1250 A.D., one of a human figure. “It represents the pueblo that was just above us on top of the mesa and is simply a billboard that says, ‘we're up here, come on up,’” explains Ben- Masaud. “It’s a specific person, and people at that time would have known who he was and whether they were invited to his village.” Back at the ranch home, a reconstructed pottery bowl, dinosaur bones and other artifacts found on the property are on display. Some of Colorado’s most impressive ancient Pueblo dwellings lie within colossal Mesa Verde National Park. They include the four-story Square Tower House; Balcony House, which can only be reached by climbing long ladders; and Spruce Tree House reached by hiking from the park’s Chapin Mesa Archeological Museum. I am most impressed with the round and square towers of Cliff Palace, joining a ranger-led tour which also includes ladder climbs. “It took three generations about 80 years to build Cliff Palace the way we see it today,” says Ranger and Interpreter Stanley Merritt. “We think that only 60 to 80 people lived in Cliff Palace, thus we believe it was more like a farmers’ market or gathering place.” I get a close-up look at the rounded kivas, once roofed and

busy with activity. “Children laughing, people singing, running and the noise of stone against stone as they worked their tools,” says Merritt, describing a typical day on the site about 800 years ago. Getting to the sites atop Mesa Verde’s Chapin and Wetherill mesas requires more than 20-mile drives from the park entrance, ascending along winding roads and reaching elevations up to 8,500 feet. The popular Chapin Mesa-Top Loop includes stops at ruins of pit houses, where early Puebloan communities lived dating back to around 550 A.D. Leaving Mesa Verde, a 10-minute drive west on Route 160 leads to Cortez, ideal as a base to explore the park. It’s basically the same distance east to the riverside, one-traffic-light town of Mancos. Cattle drives still thunder through the historic downtown, living up to its slogan, “Where the West Still Lives.” Well-preserved, century-old buildings line the streets, several listed on the state or national register of historic places. Once housing offices, a hospital, bank, and other businesses, the historic buildings are now occupied by art galleries, shops, and eateries. The 1910 Columbine Bar continues to be one of the state’s oldest operating bars, and Mancos High School, opened in 1909, is Colorado’s oldest continuously operating high school.




Props in Mancos, CO.

Mancos Museum, CO.

Visitor Center with mannequins and train depot in the distance, Durango, CO.

Durango and Silverton Railroad Depot in Durango, CO.

The small Mancos Museum features two wedding dresses from the 1890s, old mining gear and century-old bank notes. Driving into Durango, I was hoping to catch a glimpse of the town’s famous Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad with its old steam locomotives that spew smoke as they slowly chug on roundtrips to Silverton from May through October. “We have seven locomotives in their 90s that run just as hard as they did when they were brand new,” says Jeff Ellingson, curator of the railroad’s museum adjacent to the depot, where I see two of the locomotives on display. “Silverton has always relied on the railroad to bring goods and services, coal and food for the miners back in the 19th century. Today, we bring passengers to see that beautiful town and scenery and experience the Animus Canyon.” Durango, with a population of around 18,500, still boasts its cowboy roots with an added mix of old hippies and progressive young people. They frequent old-style saloons and trendy restaurants and cafes lining Main Avenue in the heart of downtown, also home to iconic 19th-century hotels with their earthen brick facades. The corner Strater Hotel, founded in 1887, has the world’s largest collection of Victorian antique walnut furniture and secret cubby holes once used to stash liquor and loot during Prohibition. Museum-quality Wild

West rifles and historic documents are on display within its Victorian-style, wallpapered lobby. Durango became popular in the 20th century as Hollywood filmed movie scenes in the town and nearby. The 1892 Rochester Hotel’s lobby and hallways are lined with original-release movie posters of such westerns including Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, How the West was Won , and the more contemporary City Slickers and National Lampoon’s Vacation . I see photos of John Wayne and Harry Carey, Jr. from scenes of the 1949 movie She Wore a Yellow Ribbon . “We call it a Monument to the Hollywood of the Rockies,” says hotel owner Kirk Komick. “We wanted to create a monument to that history so it wouldn’t be lost.” Yet, perhaps the most interesting part of Durango is the town itself. “It’s like walking through a museum, except it’s outside,” quips Ellingson. “Hollywood made a lot of movies about what the Wild West was like, but Durango’s the real thing. We don’t have to fake it here.”

FOR MORE INFORMATION www.colorado.com/articles/discover-four-corners-region-things-do

www.nationalparkreservations.com/park/monumentvalley/ www.nps.gov/cach/index.htm • www.nps.gov/nava/index.htm www.blm.gov/programs/national-conservation-lands/colorado/canyons-of-the-ancients www.nps.gov/hove/index.htm • www.nps.gov/meve/index.htm www.durango.org/




JEWELS ON AN AUTUMN TRIP Michigan's Upper Peninsula




Michigan's Upper Peninsula is a fabulous area for leaf peeping in the fall.

loveliest and possibly the most photographed part of this waterfall is a smaller series of cascades that lie slightly upstream of the main falls. Following the boardwalk to a path that climbed several short staircases alongside the falls, we discovered a more intimate setting under a canopy of trees where the water flowed over well-worn rocks in beautiful patterns. Two hundred and twenty miles east of Bond Falls lies another popular waterfall, Taquamenon Falls. Hiking the short trail to the Lower Falls, our first glimpse of the waterfall was through a frame of trees that were already dressed in their fall splendor. As I set up my tripod to capture a photo of the water flowing over the edge of the falls, a woman asked me if this was the best place for a photo. "I have no idea!" I said, since this was my first sighting of this waterfall. "But it's just so beautiful here I just had to stop to take a pic before taking another step!" It turned out that a boardwalk takes visitors closer to the waterfall, but in hindsight that first peek through the colorful trees was our favorite. At the mouth of the Black River we found several smaller waterfalls that are fun to hike to but don't get the same publicity as the bigger and more famous falls

Michigan's Upper Peninsula is a wonderful autumn RV destination.

MICHIGAN'S UPPER PENINSULA Story by Emily Fagan Photos by Emily and Mark Fagan

Michigan's Upper Peninsula (U.P.) is a beautiful, wild, and rugged land. Known for its extraordinary display of vibrant color as the leaves don their autumn hues each fall, the U.P. makes for a wonderful RV destination when the summer temperatures begin to cool. The leaves change color in waves across the region from late September to late October. My husband, Mark, and I arrived in the heart of the U.P. with our 36-foot fifth- wheel trailer in mid-September, a little ahead of nature's wondrous autumn display. However, the spectacular waterfalls and untamed Lake Superior shoreline offer drama of their own kind at every season, so we began our explorations in search of flowing water. In the western part of the U.P., Bond Falls is one of the area's most famous waterfalls, and for good reason. The main waterfall is a tall and wide cascade that can be seen from many vantage points along a boardwalk. But the




Some of the most beautiful places to see the fall colors in the Upper Peninsula are at small lakes and ponds where the beauty is doubled by reflections.

Taquamenon Falls, a wide straight waterfall, is beautifully framed by trees at an upper overlook.

elsewhere in the U.P. Of these, Sandstone Falls stood out as particularly unique. Rather than a wide straight waterfall like Taquamenon or a tall rippling cascade like Bond Falls, Sandstone Falls is more like a babbling brook that rushes over small rocks and makes quick turns left and right as it flows downstream. Huge flat boulders flank each side of the stream, and we spent several hours wandering around on these rocks. Even though the water gurgled continuously around us, a special tranquility filled the air and there wasn't another soul in sight. Nearby Rainbow Falls is another jewel in the Black River area. As we hiked from Black River Harbor through the woods to one of the waterfalls' overlooks, we were intrigued to find that we were on a portion of the 4,600-mile-long North Country National Scenic Trail that stretches from eastern New York to central South Dakota traversing seven states. As we hiked, we came across a metal box that contained maps and notes for through- hikers. What a thrill to know we were taking a few small steps on a trail that plays host to long distance hikers for a few months each summer. The Black River empties into Lake Superior at Black River Harbor, and as we walked barefoot in the sand on the neighboring beach, we watched the waves lap the

shore. Lake Superior was quiet that morning, but when we went to the beach at nearby Ontonagon Township Park on a windy afternoon, we saw the lake's wild side. Huge waves pounded the shore in a relentless rhythm while the sun sank into the water. Long driftwood logs and trunks of fallen trees lay scattered across the sand. Even after we retreated from the beach, the roar of the crashing waves resounded in our ears. At Syl's Cafe in the tiny village of Ontonagon we picked up some "pasties" to bake in our RV oven at our campsite. A pastie is a small meat pie the Cornish miners of a century ago made famous. Similar to a beef pot pie, these dough-wrapped meat pies were ideal for the miners to take into the mines for a tasty and nourishing midday meal. Many "Yoopers," as the residents of the U.P. call themselves, are descended from settlers who brought the pastie recipes from Britain. Porcupine Wilderness State Park lies 15 miles west of Ontonagon and is home to the famous Lake of the Clouds. A scenic overlook high above the lake at the far western end offers a breathtaking view. We were hoping to catch the lake with mist rising from its depths as we've seen in photos, but even without that otherworldly air the view at the top was well worth the easy hike.




No motorized vehicles are allowed on Macinac Island, so all transportation is by horse and buggy or bicycle.

We strolled the beach and watched fisherman bring in their catch at the Black River.

Eagle Harbor Lighthouse has guided mariners on Lake Superior for over a century.

Enjoying a horse and buggy ride on Macinac Island.

Just east of Ontonagon, the Keweenaw Peninsula juts out into Lake Superior. At the far northern tip lies the small lakeside village of Copper Harbor. We arrived in town on a cold and blustery fall day, but as we walked the charming streets and chatted with the locals, we got a whiff of what a wonderful place this must be for vacationers in mid-summer. Colorful kayaks were laid up for the winter already, and most of the tourist boutique shops were closed for the season, but it was easy to imagine boats coming and going from the small harbor and families strolling on blissful sunny days, ice cream cones in hand. Nearby we admired the historic Eagle Harbor Lighthouse. It has stood sentinel by the rocky shore and guided mariners to safety for more than a century. After visiting Copper Harbor, we drove south and east to the town of Munising, and to our delight the fall colors had just begun to peak in the Hiawatha National Forest. Some of the best spots for leaf peeping are on the shores of the small lakes and ponds that dot this National Forest, and we did many treks along the dirt roads that lead to the edges of these bodies of water. Dawn and dusk saw us setting up our tripods next to Moccasin Lake, Red Jack Lake, Worm Lake, and East Lake. The still water reflected the colorful trees, doubling the radiant shades of red and orange that filled the branches. On a

few mornings, a mist hovered over the water giving the scene a mystical aura. One of the most delightful places for soaking up the crisp air and vivid colors of autumn was at Mequesten Recreation Area just three miles south of Munising. A wonderful boardwalk winds around and across Cox Pond, offering lovely viewing areas on all sides. This made it ideal for visits at both sunrise and sunset, and we found ourselves going back several times for a leisurely stroll and photos. Munising was a terrific home base for leaf peeping, but it also gave us a chance to visit nearby Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. One day we took a short drive to Miner's Castle Lower Overlook where the shockingly clear turquoise water of Lake Superior looked almost tropical. Viewing our photos later, if we hadn't known we were wearing jackets and hats when we were at the overlook, it might have seemed like an inviting swimming hole! At the far eastern end of the U.P., Straits State Park on the edge of the town of St. Ignace gave us some wonderful evening views of the famous Macinac Bridge as the sun set and the lights on the bridge lit up. The next morning we stopped for coffee at Harbor Hope Coffee, an unusual coffee shop that overlooks St. Ignace Harbor. Run by a church group that worships each week




Sunsets on Lake Superior near Ontonagon are especially dramatic because the sun sinks into the water.

Macinac Bridge separates the Lower and Upper peninsulas of Michigan, and it glows with pretty lights at sunset.




Brilliant red leaves brighten an otherwise cold and gray fall landscape.

At the upper end of Bond Falls we found a lovely cascade to use as a backdrop for a selfie.

in the back of the shop, the profits go to local charitable causes and many of the baristas volunteer their time. Coffee in hand, we caught Sheppler's Ferry out to Macinac Island. It was a rainy, cold fall day and we had a rough ride on the ferry boat as it bucked the wind and water sprayed the decks. But despite the foul weather, the captain took us over to see Mackinac Bridge up close and let Lake Michigan’s waves lap the hull for a moment before we turned toward Mackinac Island in Lake Huron. Macinac Island is utterly unique because motorized vehicle travel is prohibited on the island. At first glance, it was a quaint throwback to an earlier era to see the many waiting horses and buggies lined up outside the ferry terminal. But as we walked the streets and watched the endless parade of horses pulling wagons, we realized that we were witnessing the very real experience of carting cargo of all kinds from here to there without the convenience of a car or truck. From lumber to luggage to furniture to sacks of concrete, everything that makes the island hum was hauled by horses. Bicycles are the primary means of transportation for most islanders, and bikes and bicyclists were everywhere. Whether lined up in bike racks along the streets, or lying down in the grass along the sidewalks, or being ridden

by tourists and islanders alike, we saw bicycles by the hundreds. We relied on our own two feet for our explorations and made our way out of the busiest parts of downtown, past the mansions and sprawling guest houses, to some quieter roads along the coast. A canopy of trees arched over the road while the roar of waves wafted to our ears from the shore. This is a beach town and a beach goer's delight, but even on this bitter and blustery day we were enchanted by the beauty. Before long it was time to board the ferry to return to the mainland. As we towed our fifth wheel over the Mackinaw Bridge the next day, our tour of Michigan's U.P. drew to a close. We loved our weeks in this remote land and hope to return someday to experience the dazzling fall colors and windswept Lake Superior shores once again. (Editor’s note: Coast to Coast has a Good Neighbor Park, Tiki RV Park and Campground, in St. Ignace, Michigan)

FOR MORE INFORMATION www.michigan.org/hot-spots/upper-peninsula www.nationalforests.org/our-forests/find-a-forest/hiawatha-national-forest www.mackinacisland.org/




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