Den-CO Unit Maintenance Rally 5

We attended our very first rally with our Denver Colorado Unit of the WBCCI (Wally Byam Caravan Club International). 121 members attended this very popular annual rally which was held at the Wellington KOA Campground just north of Ft. Collins, Colorado. There were 51 shiny and beautiful Airstreams representing our local club. In addition to maintenance forums, there was a tamale making afternoon with instruction by Nina and Ray Velasquez, my favorite event ~ “open house” where you tour Airstreams (as long as their door is open!!), happy hours each afternoon, breakfast each morning and dinners shared together each night. It really was a great event to not only learn about new and vintage Airstream maintenance and repair but, to meet fellow ‘Streamer friends.

Our Beatrice (the Big B) in the moonlit evening while we share vino with friends. And one afternoon under some very interesting Colorado skies

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My favorite spot was Luke Bernander’s “Barstream” where we enjoyed draft beer each afternoon and evening. Luke owns Luke’s Maintenance and Repair company in Loveland, CO and is a well-respected Airstream repair facility. (970) 222-4065. Luke is not only an exceptional mechanic but, he is a super great guy and always has a smile on his face.

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Entrance of Wellington KOA and Pavilion

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Tamale making afternoon

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Maintenance forums

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DenCO members having fun mingling during Happy Hours, eating and just plain having fun!

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Airstreams, Airstreams and even more Airstreams

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Photo source: © Anna Sullivan Photography

Elk Meadows Lodge & RV Resort ~ Estes Park, Colorado 10

We spent Father’s Day weekend at Elk Meadows RV Resort in Estes Park, Colorado. The weather was spectacular ~ warm days while the evenings were crisp and cool. Elk Meadows is nicely situated right outside of the town of Estes Park ~ easy mile or so drive into downtown. There are plenty of shops, restaurants and large Safeway for all of your grocery needs.  Elk Meadows has full-hookups, free WiFi, laundry, showers, swimming pool, horseshoes, playground and a hot tub. The staff was very friendly and willing to answer all of our questions. We were in site A17 which we liked very much because it sits right up against the evergreen trees. Site A16 is much wider and is also a very good one along the trees.

Sign from Highway 66 and Office

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In the middle of the RV park, there are few trees as seen below but, all have mountain views. The park is very dusty and the wind gusts creep up on you so beware of your awnings. Will have to do a thorough cleaning of our Beatrice because everything has a coat of pollen and dust. Just can’t be helped.

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Elk Meadows is directly across the street from the entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park but, you have to drive out of the RV park, down and around to get to the entrance. Very convenient, indeed. Our first morning I looked out my Airstream bedroom window to see a gorgeous Bull Elk with velvet antlers eating his breakfast. It was wonderful to witness but, there was not enough good light for a photo.

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Our site and Otis, of course!

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We checked out the sister RV park to Elk Meadows which is Spruce Lake RV Park. I wasn’t as impressed with Spruce Lake. The sites are very close together and it’s not up on a hill like Elk Meadows. Since the two RV parks are only within about one mile from each other, I would much prefer to return to Elk Meadows on our next trip to Estes Park.

Other views around Elk Meadows

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Photo source: © Anna Sullivan Photography

Pecan Grove RV Park 7

I wasn’t sure what to expect when we arrived at Pecan Grove RV Park because it’s a bit of a mystery. So old school ~ they don’t even have a website and when you call on the phone to make a reservation, the gentleman on the other end of the line is very brief. I was actually a bit reluctant to write this post because Pecan Grove, as I have now found out, is a treasure. It’s location is downtown Austin, Texas. How can one get better than that? It’s scenically located on Barton Springs Road and sits in a grove of Pecan trees. With restaurants, coffee shops, a small grocery store and Zilker Park right out the entrance of Pecan Grove, you can soak in all the “Weird” that Austin has to offer.

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Directly out the entrance of Pecan Grove you can find Uncle Billy’s Brew & Que, Austin Java Cafe & Bar, Thom’s Market, Zilker Park and so much more. We walked Otis to Zilker Park everyday and it is one of my all time favorite parks I have ever been to. People and dogs of all ages gather at Zilker to exercise, take a mini-train ride, have a picnic or do whatever your heart desires. It’s an amazing park and shouldn’t be missed when you are visiting Austin.

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Pecan Grove is the home to permanent residences. The RV Park only rents out about 10 spaces to overnighters like us. This RV Park is home to many and as you can see from the pics, the neighbors have made it very cozy.

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I walked around Pecan Grove and met many of the locals. I realized on this particular trip that I felt so connected with the city because of the local friends that I had made. When one stays in a hotel, you just don’t get the same sense of local flavor like you do when you are RV’ing in a local hangout. Case in point, I met Linda. She lived at Pecan Grove for the past 20 years and this was going to be her last weekend living in Austin. She sold her vintage Avion and was moving north. She invited me into her trailer to show me around. I was thrilled to not only see a vintage Avion in the flesh but, also to learn Linda’s unique story. She also shared with me her homemade light cover that she is very proud of. I wish Miss Linda all the happiness in her new life. I know that she was struggling with leaving Pecan Grove and her lifelong friends she had made there.

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Our site, Beatrice and Otis! This was our first camping trip of 2013 and our first trip with Otis. He LOVES camping. Our site at Pecan Grove was in the back of the park where there are only three pull-through, full hook up sites. We were in spot B and just loved it. Looking forward to going back to Pecan Grove in November for more Austin adventures.

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Photo source: © Anna Sullivan Photography

Wimberley, Willow City Loop & The Salt Lick Reply

This post is my last stop in the Hill Country before moving onto Austin, Texas. A few of my favorite places in the Texas Hill Country ~ the small town of Wimberley, Texas, the scenic Willow City Loop and The Salt Lick Bar-B-Que!

Let’s start with The Salt Lick. I have shared this favorite spot previously here but, since it’s our go-to barbeque joint in the Hill Country, thought I might temp you with some more pics of our afternoon. Choose from their world-famous pork ribs, brisket, sausage, turkey and leave some room for the Texas style pecan pie!

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The Willow City Loop is a delightful drive especially during Bluebonnet season which blossoms around March/April. But, this year poor Texas didn’t receive much H2O from Mama Nature so the wildflowers weren’t as abundant as usual. The drive is perfect for a slow afternoon to take in the vast panoramic views and natural beauty. Addtional photos from my previous post on the “Loop” here.

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The tiny town of Wimberley, Texas is the sweetest little place I ever had the pleasure to visit. Not only do they still support the “Mom & Pop” concept but, the southern hospitality, the quaint shops and the best restaurant, The Leaning Pear is what you’ll find here in the heart of the Texas Hill Country. “Wimberley is the geographic center and the aesthetic heart of the Wimberley Valley and is located at the confluence of Cypress Creek and the Blanco River. The natural beauty of the softly winding Blanco River, shaded Cypress Creek and the stunning views of Lone Man Creek call to artists, retired folks and anyone seeking escape from city life.”

The Leaning Pear never disappoints. As a matter of fact, we have been here on every single trip to the Texas Hill Country and it’s ever-changing specials and daily soups still surprise and delight us on each visit. We enjoyed immensely the Meatloaf with Scallion Mashed Potatoes & Green Beans, The Leaning Pear House Salad with shallot vinaigrette, spiced pecans, local goat cheese and pear garnish  (my all time favorite) and the Pecan Crusted Black Drum with Spicy Sweet Potato Purée and Cilantro Aioli. I have recommended The Leaning Pear to everyone I know with confidence. I just adore this restaurant, the food and the exceptional service. They are building a new restaurant on the property which I have shown below. Looking forward to dining in the new establishment on my next visit. My previous post that included The Leaning Pear!

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The Wild West Store is simply the best shop to find that perfect pair of vintage cowboy boots you have always wanted. Ulli Johnston is the owner and she is a delight. Ulli is known as the “Boot Whisperer” and since 1993 she’ll prove that to you with a selection of over 500 pair of vintage boots, collectables and Western goods. Don’t tell Ulli what size shoe you wear ~ simply remove your shoes, she’ll take a peek at your foot and then she disappears for a bit. She’ll show up with several pairs of vintage or gently used boots and I guarantee you, one of them will be the perfect fit. I found this stunning pair of custom made Liberty cowboy boots and snatched them up. Thanks, Ulli. We so enjoy you and your fabulous store.

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The charming town square of Wimberley and the big cloud skies of Texas. And much to my surprise, I found a vintage Airstream behind a restaurant in town!

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Photo source: © Anna Sullivan Photography