Valley Vista RV Resort in Benson, AZ – an Encore RV Resort

We left Valley Verde on Monday November 2 at 9am. Acey’s mileage 67,236.8 and Thor has 74,895 miles – we drove nearly 1,000 miles at out last stop! On our drive east, we went thru Phoenix and Tuscon and enjoyed the sights along the way.

A drive-by cactus shot!

Picacho Peak

…and a smudge on the windshield!

We arrived at Valley Vista about 2:15 and made a late lunch. We will be here for a week.

Wednesday we rode our bikes just over 4 miles – it was way too hot to ride – and no shade! We saw this cactus in a yard we rode by.

On Thursday, we went to nearby Kartchner Caverns State Park. We opted not to go to the caverns, but went for a short hike.

So many varieties of cactus! Having grown up in Michigan, and lived in Florida and then Tennessee, we had not experienced much of the landscape and vegetation seen in the southwest!

There was some copper in the rocks!

On Friday, we drove to Bisbee. The hill was marked with a big B! We thought we had booked a mine tour for that morning, but the tickets were for NEXT Friday. We exchanged them for a tour on Sunday – but since we were already there, we decided to look around Old Bisbee.

This weird statue incorporated cacti in it!

This cactus looked like prickly pear, but didn’t have long spines, and had lots of colorful buds.

We saw a road runner! Is the coyote after it?!

The Peace Wall – at the base of Castle Rock.

This open mine pit was HUGE! “The Lavender Pit was named in honor of Harrison M. Lavender (1890–1952), who as Vice-President and General Manager of Phelps Dodge Corporation, conceived and carried out this plan for making the previously unprofitable low-grade copper bearing rock of the area into commercial copper ore”. It opened in 1950.  “Production through 1974 totaled 86 million tons of ore averaging about 0.7% copper, or about 600,000 tons of copper produced, with gold and silver as byproducts.” Thanks again Wikipedia!

We went to the “ghost town” of Lowell – it was a suburb of Bisbee and a thriving mining community at one time – and has been incorporated into the city of Bisbee. There were lots of antique vehicles and interesting storefronts.

Linda actually DOES remember gas being 34 cents/gallon – she had to pay Laura for gas when she took her places…

Need a cab? DIAL HEMLOCK 2-3842
I particularly liked this truck painted in GATOR blue and orange!

Our last stop was at the Shady Dell Trailer Park in Bisbee. They rent “rooms” that are in vintage trailers and one yacht! The staff let us walk around and look at the place.

The couple that owns this ’56 Chevy drove up as we arrived. They come here twice a year and have been driving this car since the ’80s!

The trailers were so interesting!

A vintage Airstream or possibly an Avion.

This unit looked like the trailer in The Long Long Trailer with Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz – check it out if you haven’t seen it! The movie featured a 1953 36-foot Redman New Moon model.

Linda’s family had several trailers over the years – she thinks the longest Travelmaster was either 32 or 35 feet – the family went on many summer vacations in the 60’s and 70’s travelling through the US and Canada. Here’s Linda’s family with a few neighborhood kids thrown in! Must have been a going away – or coming home gathering!

Probably around 1967 – Back row: Ted (in doorway), cousin Dave, Dad – Front row: neighbor Jan, Laura, Mom Eve, Linda, neighbor Julie, Rob

This little gem was the size of the 12 or 14′ Aljo our family took out west in 1962!

If you haven’t read the blog about that 1962 trip, look it up!

L-R — Linda, Ted, Eve (peeking out the door) and Laura in 1962

One option at Shady Dell is to stay in the boat. A real “land yacht”!

It was raining when we went to the grocery store on Saturday – first rain we had seen since northern California! And we were treated with a bit of a rainbow!

We are on Mountain time now, just an hour different from Nashville, so we Zoomed for Sunday School at 8:30 and church was at 9:40. Afterwards, we packed up a lunch and headed out. Our first stop was Tombstone.

The tall skinny trees are Mediterranean Cypress – we have seen lots of these in the southwest

Big Nose Kates Saloon had some nice stained glass, lots of memorabilia and animal heads decorating the place.

It was quite windy, so we ate our lunch in the car and headed over to the Queen Mine.

They outfittted us with helmets for the ride into the mine – (this is NOT our train…)

“stock photo” from their website – pre-COVID-19 for sure!

We rode into the mine on a train – perhaps the same train used by the miners. It was dark – so the photo is a bit blurry… Only 6 visitors on our train!

Jim got a quick shot of a shaft as we rode past. There were many levels in this mine!

We went up these stairs to see some of the drills used in mining – and how dynamite was used.

It was a fun tour, but the photos didn’t come out well.

During the nearly 100 years of operation, this was a very productive mine!

On our drive back to Benson, we went thru the Mule Mountains. Very scenic!

We will head to El Paso in the morning!


6 thoughts on “Valley Vista RV Resort in Benson, AZ – an Encore RV Resort”

  1. Great photography. Did you use your phone to take the pictures. Quite a collection of vintage travel trailers at the Shady Dell. Enjoy the ride.

    1. The trailer photos and most of the other photos were taken with our iphone 8 – we do have 2 other cameras but don’t always have them with us!

  2. Bisbee had A LOT of beautiful cars! Bill and I would have LOVED being on the tram with you guys in the Queen Mine Tours. Looked fun for sure! You guys are seeing so many awesome places!

    1. Thanks Charlene – I didn’t post all the photos – interesting that some of the cars were restored nicely – others were not in such great condition, but still fun to see!

  3. Ya’ll are having toooo much fun. Loved the old towns, the pickers would love Lowell. Your pictures are great and I saved a couple of them. I am a sucker for landscapes. Sorry we did not get to see you when you were here. I am going back for the women’s bible studies. I had Marion, Peggy, and Alva woof over for bridge last month. We had a good time, but had to remind each other how to bid. Things are the same here. Had an Aunt living in El Paso, and I spent a lot of time in Odessa, Texas with sister and family. You guys be careful, keep those blogs comin’. Luv.

    1. Thanks Patty! We are getting around – working with the restrictions imposed by the virus… Glad you are getting out and playing Bridge too! I haven’t played in a while, except online. Maybe we will see you at Easter when we pass thru Nashville again!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *