Saturday, October 31, 2009


OMG! We have really become snowbirds. We have spent time in Arizona five times in the last three years. But we have always been going against the traffic—driving south in March and north in October, always watching hundreds of RVs (so it seemed) going the opposite direction. Until this year, that is.

This year, we drove south in the first week of February and again in mid-October, and many of the RVs on the road were going the same direction we were. We will be spending the first three months of 2010 volunteering at Casa Grande Ruins in Coolidge, AZ. We had planned to slowly make our way south—Wickenburg, Cottonwood, Mesa, Tucson, Benson—then put the trailer in storage for a couple of weeks while we go to Colorado for Christmas.

Our plans changed this week when a cold front moved through Arizona. We are parked in Mesa and temperatures ranged between the mid-40s and the mid-60s. But when we checked the weather in Benson, the low on Thursday morning was 18 degrees. What is the definition of a Snowbird? It is a gray-haired human flying south to avoid the snow and stay WARM. That cold front brought lots of snow to Colorado and other northern states, driving lots of snowbirds south.

And we changed our plans for the rest of this year, signing up for a sale here at Valle del Oro. For one flat rate, we can have our RV here till January 5. We have stayed in other snowbird parks that have both park models and RV sites, but always off season. We thought they would be too crowded and too social for us during the busy season. Granted, we have to leave in the first week of January, before the place really fills up. But the park’s character is already changing. We will see soon whether we enjoy it or not. But the Phoenix area is relatively warm—our first criteria for a winter place to park.

Each day many new people arrive—some in the RVs, which they spend the winter in; some in RVs that they empty into their park model, then put into storage; others by car or plane, headed for their park model. Classes, hikes, social events are gearing up. We don’t know how we will feel by the time we leave for Christmas, but we are enjoying learning about something new and wearing shorts to go hiking.


  1. Hey, Guys it'll be great to see you again at the park. The cold was weird to say the least, the park was hitting 33 as a low and about 50 in 9:00 a.m. when we opened. I'm still at the park, did test with a Fire Dept. but ended up staying here for now.

  2. By the way Zion is awesome. I spent a week up there last year during some training.

  3. We'll have to get together when we get to Mesa!