Cortez Colorado

Cortez Colorado

Last Stop Before the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta

 October 2-4

Our last stop before getting to Albuquerque is Cortez, Colorado.  We stayed for 3 days to explore the area.  It sure was nice to get into some green farmland again – a nice change from the deserts of Nevada and Utah.  We stayed at the Sundance RV Park in Cortez.  It was a very nice park that is well maintained with friendly staff.  It’s central location makes it easy to go to Mesa Verde National Park, and Canyons of the Ancients National Monument.

Cortez Diesel

Our first stop though was to Cortez Diesel – a Cummins diesel shop.  Lola – our Winnebago Journey hesitates when accelerating after we got fuel.  We always get fuel at a major truck stop, so fuel quality should not be an issue, but throughout this trip after stopping to get fuel it continued to happen.  At first it was a slight hesitation – I thought my foot may not have been on the accelerator fully or slipped off the gas pedal.  The second time it was a more significant, and the third time it happened in the middle of the intersection just outside of Salt Lake City during rush hour traffic (now that makes you start to sweat). The engine caught and we were off and running.  Since the problem was getting worse we decided to get it checked out.

We called Cortez Diesel after checking web reviews and talking with the service manager Cory Schmitt, we scheduled a morning appointment.  Cory checked out the throttle and saw no issues, then ran a diagnostic – that also looked good.  However, he noted that we were many many revisions behind on our Cummins software.  One of the fixes that we were missing was engine cutting out at low RPM.  He also noted that if that did not solve the problem there is a controller under the throttle that is simple to replace – even though the diagnostics indicated it was OK.  {Lola ran great for the rest of the trip to Albuquerque and back to California to see the kids.}  Thanks Cory & Cortez Diesel.  We highly recommend them if you need any diesel work.

Canyons of the Ancients

Visitor Center

Our first stop is to the Canyons of the Ancients visitor’s center just outside of Cortez.  Very friendly staff and going through the visitors center we learned a lot about the early settlers and the native Americans.  Gives you a better idea of what you want to see in the time we have.  They explained how much time it takes to get to the different places to explore.  We also really enjoyed the green fields and snow-capped mountains!


Lowry Pueblo – Canyons of the Ancients

Leaving the visitor’s center we drove to Lowry Pueblo – our first stop.  Built about 1060 a.d.,  it is so cool to wander around where native Americans once lived so long ago.  It’s a nice walk around the site with the dogs.

Hovenweep Pueblo Complex – Canyons of the Ancients

Next we drove to Hovenweep Pueblo – just across the Colorado – Utah border.  Another good place to walk the dogs.

Mesa Verde National Monument

Mesa Verde National Monument is one of the premier places to view pueblo cliff dwellings dating back 1300 years.  There have been inhabitants in this area dating back to 7500 BCE!  Most places are accessible to those with pets.  As with all National Monuments – drones are prohibited.  Who wants to hear the buzz of a drone while enjoying these sites?  No problem here!

At an elevation of 8572 Park Point fire lookout has a commanding view of the valley below.  You can see why this was a choice defensive position for the Paleo Indians and Native Americans for millennia.

This Episode’s Video

Happy Trails!!

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