Blown away, literally, by today’s winds. Max gusts of 50mph, per the weather guessers — our guess might be higher, based upon the wind tossing hardback books from the table-top to the ground.
Our group ambitiously will attempt a picnic here in little more than an hour. Debbie, Jerry and Ann Hall, Frank and Carol Colligan and I are hosts to our 55 fellow caravanners on the WBCCI SW Adventures Caravan.
We’re not doing anything fancy. We’re going to serve KFC chicken, fixings, and some pie from Safeway. It’s a picnic, after all. Some caravan guides material mentions caravan food competitive spirit. We’re here to help relax those who follow — it’s camping, after all.
Our first two days here were full of fabulous weather — mostly sunny skies, highs in the 70s, lows around 50. Oh, and sunrise is at 0515 hours, Arizona time. Wow, that’s really early. Jim’s waking and staying up, enjoying watching the morning unfold. None of this for Debbie. She’s arising to the clock time. Someone please pull the shades down early, okay?
We visited Antelope Canyon, a very pretty and narrow slot canyon. And we enjoyed a day-long rafting trip down the Colorado River from Glen Canyon Dam to Lees Ferry. Our guide, Rico, is very knowledgeable about the river and its history and entertained us thoroughly with his stories and histories.
Today we enjoyed a “zero day”, no tours, no hiking, nothing until mid-afternoon. Now we’re setting up for the big picnic. This is our only occasion on this caravan to host a meal and we have a fantastic committee with the Halls and Colligans.
Since we lack any kitchen and dining setting and are eating in the park’s picnic area, we easily agreed to picnic food. What’s more picnicky than fried chicken, potatoes and gravy, and cole slaw? Well, homemade ice cream would have iced it just perfectly, but some things are a little out of reach for our caravan.
Glen Canyon NRA has several campgrounds. Our group is tucked into Wahweap Campground near Page and on Lake Powell. Many of our trailers have a very fine view of Lake Powell and the opposite shoreline. Our price for this great setting is five days camping with no utilities.
A little more than half of our group have a little less an overlook. They are sited on concrete pads and provided with full electric, water, and sewer connections. Maybe it’s an even swap. Debbie and I think so. We’re a little more than halfway through our fresh water tank supply (total 40 gallons, used 22 gallons). We’ve had great solar electric power generation to keep our batteries full.
Our main use of batteries has, so far, been in restoring the Dell laptop. Thus far we have reloaded Vista, MS Office suite, Picasa, Coffee Cup, FileZilla, Quicken, and TurboTax. This afternoon we started trying to reload backed up data files from portable hard drives.
We have no idea how much data we’ll restore, or how well it will work. But we do have the cleanest and sparest install we’ve ever seen on any laptop anywhere. Our desktop has exactly one icon, Recycle Bin. That’s it except the quick launch bar at the very bottom screen margin, where each of the above-listed apps has a small icon.
Hopefully we’ll be able to keep it this way. And we’re talking about how and whether to optimize the uses of the laptop. We’re starting over, we can make the rules any way we want, right?
I can’t keep typing — one hand is bracing the laptop screen to keep the wind from folding it over. Sand is driving, off and on, into my face. And I want to go talk with fellow caravanners nearby.
We’re enjoying this big wind country through tomorrow morning, then we’re driving directly into the wind to North Rim. Tomorrow will be Debbie’s and my first opportunity to see the Grand Canyon and we’re excited.
This windy Glen Canyon NRA is perfectly wonderful this time of year on the calm days. And no calm days are in the immediate forecast. We’re blown away from here, and will hope to visit again in calmer times.