What more does a person need?

I like staying at Elephant Butte for several reasons.

One of the reasons is the many choices of walks for the crew and me.  We can walk to the lake, go up to Lion’s Beach, take the Luchini trail, make our own trail going off from the campground in one of a number of ways, or follow the campground road up to the entrance road that overlooks the marina.

Elephant Butte Marine. The lake once covered the sandy area.

People dry camp along this road.

Pull off the road and you can park next to an adobe bunker with a picnic table, restrooms nearby, a playgound, and beautiful views like these photos show.  The crew and I walk up that way and stop to talk with a guy sitting next to his Jayco trailer and pick-up.  His name is Pat and he tells me he’s been fulltiming “pretty much” for over twenty years.

Here's someone dry camped not far from the road enjoying a million dollar view!

I see he has a solar panel on the roof.

I ask Pat lots of questions.  He has a 160 watt panel and three 20 watt panels, the latter he’s had about 20 years.  He says he originally had the panels on another trailer and a guy in town named Chip (Baker RV) helped him move the panels to his new trailer.  I tell him I want solar and he tells me to call Chip, he’s good and reasonable.  Chip is the same person who found the leak in Bridget’s (the lady) water heater and replaced it for her.  Bridget recommends him also. 

Pat and I talk for close to an hour.

Remember my harrowing experience driving to Coyote Creek Park (“The Coyote Road Crisis”)?  He tells me about a similar experience during his first year fulltiming.  I guess it’s a rite of passage.  During our conversation we realize he’s followed about the same sequence of parks that I have this fall, just a few days behind. 

When he was at Coyote Creek, a black bear about 250 pounds ambled by his trailer.  He says he sat still in his camp chair, and he and the bear had eye contact until the bear moved on.  Other campers were not as calm and caused a ruckus, wanting the bear removed.  Gee, it’s the bear’s territory, people!

Monticello Campground, north of here, is not as inviting as it once was.

Fellow camper Bridget and I ride in the PTV with the crew to see this Elephant Butte State Park campground we’ve heard so much about.  The facilities and campsites are very nice and well-spaced with views of the lake.  Actually with views of what used to be the lake.  The lake shore has receded so far that you can’t get to the water.  The boat ramp is closed because it leads into the dirt.  So it’s camping in the sand and bushes with a view of the mountains . . . no lake fun.  Bridget and I both decide we won’t camp there.

Whenever you have people living close together . . .

Today Bridget tells me about a “situation” she had to deal with last night.  A couple camped in the site next to hers had a fierce argument, throwing things, yelling above their loud music, and generally being out of control.  Both of them were very drunk.  Bridget called the camp host, but by the time he got there a few minutes later, the man had peeled out in the Class C rv with the woman racing after him in the pickup.  They were gone all night, leaving a bunch of stuff at their site.  They’re back today making no noise at all.  Hangovers? The rangers told Bridget to notify them if they do anything annoying and they’ll throw them out of the park.  Not everyone at a campground is someone you’d want for a neighbor.

Bridget and Spike take their camp expertise to a new level!

I admit I spoil the crew.  Ever since we left Georgia Bridget and Spike have been with me constantly.  Even when I go to the campground rest rooms or showers, they go with me.  The most I’ve left them is when I run into a grocery store while they wait in the PTV.  That’s it.  They turn on the worst howls, especially Bridget.  What a screeching she makes!  This campground has too many people for me to take the crew into the showers. I’m thinking. . .  This is not good.  Spike and Bridget have to learn to stay in the Casita by themselves.

I leave the air conditioning and the television on.

I can hear them howling as I walk toward the shower house and hope that no one complains.  I envision us receiving a visit from the park rangers, telling us to hit the road!  When I return after my shower, all is quiet in the Casita!  Of course, I give them lots of praise.  Behaving themselves and being quiet while alone in the Casita is the last big lesson they need to learn to be excellent campers. 

Today’s weather is perfect! 

The lake is a beautiful shade of blue today.

I realize I am very fortunate to live the way I do.  I’m far from wealthy, but, really, what more do I need?  I have all I need and much more, and I am grateful every day.



About rvsueandcrew

Fulltime nomad
This entry was posted in Bridget The Widget, Casita, Simple living, Spike The CoPilot and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

26 Responses to What more does a person need?

  1. Ilse Werdermann says:

    Many years ago I was tent camping with my kids. The people next to us were having arguments and one ended up stabbing the other. Not a pleasant experience!

  2. John says:

    Sue, I’ll second the endorsement of Chip. I generally try to hold any work I have until spring or fall when I’m in EB because he does such good work.

  3. A few more times with them learning to be left alone for short periods and lots of treats, they will be good campground doggies toot sweet! Good going!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Karen and Steve,

      I am so impressed with the crew. Anyone who is worried about whether their dogs will adjust to fulltime living in a camper ought to take a look at Bridget and Spike. They walk on leashes like a team, they know they have to stay with me at the campsite, they are polite when meeting other dogs, they ride well in the PTV, and now they’re learning to stay alone in the Casita! And these dogs were only acquainted with running around in our backyard. I’m so proud of them!

  4. kayjulia says:

    Welcome to the full timer’s world it can be very, very sweet 🙂

  5. longdog2 says:

    Congrats on leaving Bridget and Spike for their first “alone” time. I leave the radio on as well when I am in a campground where people are closer together so that mine don’t hear someone walking and talking right near them and feel that they have to defend their home. This was a big step for all three of you; practice for longer periods of time so that you are prepared when you really need to leave them for several hours.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, longdog,

      I think it was a previous comment you made on this blog that got me thinking about the need to train them to stay alone. Thanks for giving me a nudge!

  6. Jean Burke says:

    just wondering if you ever use the Casita shower

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Yes, I do, Jean. I like it! I use the water conservatively, turning it off while I soap and scrub, then rinsing off. The height of the platform the commode sits on is the perfect height to place your foot when shaving your leg. (I know, guys, too much information!)

      I’ve been camped for about ten days so my grey water tank is filling up. That’s why I’m going to the campground showers.

  7. Reine says:

    Sounds great. We’re the only campers in our loop at Big Arsenic campground at the Wild Rivers Recreation Area north of Taos. Our site is on the rim overlooking the Rio Grande. Lots of trails, some easy, some not so easy. Put this place on your list for next summer. You and the crew would love it. BLM so $3.50 per night with senior pass but strictly boondocking. Snow on the surrounding mountain peaks.

    Elephant Butte sound like a great place to hang around for awhile. We’re so glad you and the crew are settling in to fulltiming so well. Maybe the RV guy can install a Wave 3 for you.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Reine!

      I’ve been watching the weather reports for your area and thinking of you. I’m so glad you are keeping in touch. Sounds like you are in a great spot . . . I’ll probably be asking you questions about it next summer! Don’t stay too long in those mountains . . . Hello to Paul!

  8. Kay and her Border Collie says:

    Hi Sue,
    I really enjoy reading your blog. I’m so glad you are enjoying your new lifestyle. I was just wondering … Geri mentioned (several blog entries ago) that there was going to be a balloon festival in Elephant Butte State Park on October 8 and 9. Did that happen? It would have been fun to see.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Kay!

      I agree, it would have been fun. However, we had the dates wrong. It happened before I came to Elephant Butte.

      I’m pleased you like reading my blog!

  9. Richard H says:

    Maybe a real nice tune or two by someone you’ve probably never heard of….

    Been following your blog from Newfoundland…had this playing via Youtube in the background…and Karen’s music just seems to fit. Hope you enjoy it as I do following you and the canines occasionally…

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hello, Richard!

      You are probably my most faraway reader . . . at least for now. I hope you continue following the crew and me.

      Karen has a unique voice. I like the line “Living in my own dream.” That say’s it all. Thanks for putting the song here! I enjoyed it.

      • Richard H says:

        I’ll be checking in occasionally – I like the spirit you show in making the decision to fulltime, and then carrying thru on it. Thought you might enjoy Karen Dalton – I found her album in the $1.00 bin at Woolco 40 years ago, and bought it on the strength of the musicians on it. To this day, it’s one of my favorites…and her voice is, as you’ve noted, absolutely unique…

        Have a good day, take Spike and Bridget for a good long walk and give ’em an extra treat from Uncle Rick…

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Hey, Richard!

          An album for a dollar at Woolco … that brings back memories. Her voice doesn’t match the photo. The voice and the interpretation of the music is very mature.

          The crew and I have already taken a good long walk down to the lake this morning around 7:30 (Spike gets us up early.).

          You have a good day, too, Uncle Rick . .

  10. Kathe says:

    Looks like you might be going to have some excitement near your campsite…

    ALBUQUERQUE — Authorities say they have new information that could lead to some of the 40 victims of a man convicted of sexual torture, including an Albuquerque woman missing for 16 years. 

    FBI agents, New Mexico State Police and Albuquerque police plan to search around Elephant Butte Lake on Tuesday. They believe that’s where David Parker Ray may have buried some of his victims. 

    Albuquerque police believe one of his victims may have been Jill Troia, who disappeared in 1995. She was last seen at a restaurant with Ray’s daughter. 

    Ray boasted of the killings in his writings, but no bodies have ever been located. He died in 2002 while serving life in prison for sexual torture. 

    Ray was from the Elephant Butte area.

  11. Don says:

    Sue ,
    I heard a quote once, and I forgot who said it,
    “Wealth is the ability to fully experience life”,
    I think your getting there……:)

  12. Too bad about the South Monticello campground. We’ve been there twice and it was so pretty being right on the lake. I can imagine it wouldn’t look so nice without much water in the lake.
    If you want to splurge and go out to eat one day, Cafe Bella Luca in T or C is excellent, especially the grilled pizza!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Jim and Gayle,

      I try to imagine how beautiful it must have been when the lake level was up next to these campgrounds. It must have been gorgeous.

      Thanks for the tip on grilled pizza . . .

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