Friday, April 3, 2020

Enchanted Trails Sojourn

Enchanted Trails, Albuquerque, New Mexico

It's funny how articles come into being, how I am motivated to write on a particular subject. This post was inspired by the above photograph. I've been holding back this image for about seven months, waiting for the right moment to write an article--waiting for the right angle.

The tow vehicle and RTTC Grizzly camper is a great match-up, and sitting there before the trading post in that dramatic light is really a "picture postcard" moment. Kathy Hancock wrote for her August 2019 Facebook post, stating that their summer tour of the West was going well.
"We stayed in the most 'Enchanted' RV park in Albuquerque (just outside of the city). It originality was a trading post built in 1940, and it thrived during the Route 66 boom. In 1970 it was converted to a campground. It has a pool, nice showers, trees and a laundry and clubhouse furnished with some quality antiques! I would recommend Enchanted Trails, very reasonable rates. We’ve had a great trip from Knoxville, Tennessee, to Washington State, through California and heading home. Fifteen national parks, and we’ve had NO PROBLEMS with our 3 1/2 year old Grizzly. (We’ve also taken it to Maine.)"
I have a RTTC Polar Bear, and even though my wife and I have an Alto R-1723 on order that will better meet our family and business needs, there is a great appeal for me about owning a rig for which the most complex task in the camp set-up is plugging in the 110-volt electricity extension cord. There's a lot to be said for simplicity, and in some ways I'm already missing that, even though I'm also looking forward to a slightly larger and more complex teardrop for next fall.

1963 Winnebago Dot

Kathy Hancock and her husband discovered an RV park that had a retro theme that went along with the Route 66 history. The Enchanted Trails RV Park and Trading Post has 135 sites with all but eight pull-through. They offer full services, including a laundry facility. The park also includes an exhibition of retro cars and travel trailers. The trailers can be rented for a sleepover. If you go to the Vintage Rentals page for the park and click on a trailer image, a great "Ken Burns style" slideshow features the exterior and interior of each trailer.

In addition to the website slideshows are a couple of YouTube videos about the park, one from New Mexico True TV and one from the full-time couple from the Drivin' and Vibin' YouTube channel. In a follow-up blog article, the Bradys from D & V mention that the interstate creates noise for the campsites at the front of the park but is not a problem at the rear.

The Hancocks continued on with their 10,000-mile odyssey after hitting the Enchanted Forest, looping up and west until arriving back home in Tennessee. "Ten thousand miles later we’re home!" Kathy said. "Our Grizzly performed flawlessly! We visited 15 National Parks and 2 NRAs. I posted the first set earlier in this group. Enjoy!"

Mount Rainier National Park

North Cascades

In addition to their camping activities, the Hancocks also volunteer for disaster relief work with a church group.

Although hoping to use their tiny trailer, the Hancocks ended up traveling on the bus.

During this time of staying more at home, it's good to remember the good times we've had, the great places we've traveled, and all our future camping plans. Whether it's prairie, ocean, forest, or desert, let's all hope and plan for enchanting camping destinations in the future!

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  1. I loved this blog. The top photos continues to be one of my favorite ones posted on the Rustic Trail Teardrops and Friends FB page. I have added that campground to my planned western trip.

    1. I imagine myself traveling through the Southwest, on the highways through the stark desert beauty and isolation, and then I come upon this RV park with its retro look back at an earlier time. I think stopping here would be a great break from the expansive vistas of the Southwest--and it would also capture an element of the pioneer frontier spirit.

      Thanks for commenting, Jim. I think you epitomize the positive exuberance of tiny trailer camping. You are an independent spirit that always finds a way to unify the differences, and I appreciate that. Camp on, even if it's only driveway camping!