2010: Lake Powell

Goodbye to Powell


Bright and early Monday, Mike was at the RV parts store hoping to get a replacement dump valve. The store had one part of what he needed, but not the other part; the owner checked with his supplier and said he could get it for us by the next day, Tuesday. UPS usually delivers around noon, so we should be able to pick up the part and still move to our next destination. We went back to camp and took some final pictures of the area.

We'd exhausted the exploration opportunities surrounding Lake Powell, yet I was reluctant to leave. Despite the heat, which usually bothers me, I had grown surprisingly fond of this starkly beautiful place. I loved watching the changing colors in the desert as the sun rose and set each day. And there was no doubt this would be the nicest RV site we'd ever had.

As it turned out, I'd have yet one MORE day to enjoy the view; the UPS man never arrived Tuesday with our part. Exasperated, Mike got on the internet, ordered what he needed from Camping World, and arranged to have the package delivered to our next RV park.

The next day, we were finally off for a four-hour drive to the Bryce Canyon area. A couple of hours into the drive, Mike starts craning his neck to see better in the mirror on my side. "What's that flying around on the side of the trailer?" he asked me. I took a gander, and concluded it was probably a loose strap that attaches to the awning. Mike decides to stop, and discovers I was wrong -- the weather-stripping around the trailer door has started to slip from its track and flap in the breeze as we're driving. Mike rips out the whole mess; he assures me he can fix it at the next stop. Trailer From Hell strikes again.

I'd found that the choices for RV parks near Bryce were much more limited than we'd seen so far. The main offering is Ruby's Inn and RV Park, a large commercialized complex just outside the park entrance, but I wasn't convinced it was the place for us. The place I decided on was the Cannonville KOA. We don't usually like the KOA RV camps, but postings on the websitervparkreviews.com were pretty universally complimentary about this one and taken with other factors, I decided we'd take the chance on it.

Now, I knew we'd been spoiled at Lake Powell, so I tried to adjust my expectations accordingly; but apparently I failed. I went into shell-shock as we pulled into the new place. Rough, rocky, noisy unpaved roads. Very few, very small trees. Tiny, packed-in spaces. Occasional weed patches substituting for grass. I wanted to turn tail and run immediately, but Mike was driving. No doubt sensing my mood, when he got out to check in, he took the car keys with him.

When the golf cart led us to our space, things got worse. We were assigned to the "overflow area", a desolate and even rockier hill with nothing but scrub brush on it. I threw a fit and wanted to immediately drive back to a much nicer-looking park we'd seen on the highway. Mike forced a Valium down my throat and got the camp host to find us a slightly better site on level ground. There was no room for the truck, so we'd have to park it by the garbage dumpsters after we unhooked.

As good as it gets. The pits next door.

At that point we were pretty much committed, at least for one night, so I reluctantly agreed to a temporary stay while we looked for a better option.

Good thing we wouldn't find out until the next day about the gravel-crushing plant next door. Chunka-chunka-chunka-chunka chunka-chunka-chunka-chunka chunka-chunka-chunka-chunka BEEEEEP-BEEEEEP-BEEEEEP-BEEEEEP.