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Saturday, October 31, 2015

Lunch at Benja's Thai Garden In St. George, Utah

Aloha Everyone,

Today we drove about 18 miles south to St. George to find a restaurant for lunch. According to the U.S. Census, St. George has the second fastest-growing metropolitan area in the United States. This is due to the city's mild climate and proximity to Utah's national parks and Las Vegas. In 2004, St. George had a population of just 78,506 people. Today, the population is 151,948 residents.

Home prices in St. George range from the low $100,000 for a bungalow-style 3 bedroom, 2 bath to over $3 million house with 5 bedroom, 6 bathroom offering panoramic views of the city's valley below.

Benja's Thai Garden is located in a small strip mall.

J.J. has a talent for finding unusual restaurants and ordering interesting and excellent dishes. Shrimp wrapped in a blanket, served hot with spicy Thai sauce and Beef Pad Thai were most satisfactory.

The background music which other diners probably heard as an exotic song was Kundalini Yoga music by Snatam Kaur. It was a special treat for me to listen to "Ong Namo" and " Ra Ma Da Sa Sa Say So Hung" as I enjoyed my food.

Aloha -- Cathi

Friday, October 30, 2015

Willow Wind RV Park in Hurricane, Utah

Aloha Everyone,
Willow Wind RV Park is located in Hurricane pronounced "Hur-a-kin" by local residents. The site is within a short walking distance to main street where a large grocery store and restaurants are located.

This is definitely one of the most beautiful and best kept RV parks we've stayed in. Tree lined roads and individual pads are paved with grassy areas separating you from your neighbors.

Kim, the assistant manager, is always welcoming whenever we stop by the office.
Among the special amenities is a two-level log cabin club house with kitchen, a TV room, and a pool table.

Another building holds the the fitness center, bath and shower room, plus a laundry room.

J.J. and I took advantage of commercial size washer and dryer to wash my sleeping bag.
We will be staying here one more day to enjoy the sun and the accommodations before driving to Provo.
Aloha -- Cathi

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Cracker Barrel Restaurant in Hurricane, Utah

Aloha Everyone,

We returned to Hurricane, Utah and stopped at Cracker Barrel Restaurant.

One of the selling points of this large chain is that they designate a section of the parking lot specifically for RVs and buses. Now that is a customer service!

J.J.'s hamburger with cheese and fries.

I ordered today's special Turkey dinner with stuffing, sweet potato and corn bread. It was a wonderful early Thanksgiving meal served with cranberry jellies. I took away 1/2 as my dinner. Price for my meal was $5.99! No wonder their restaurants are packed.

Aloha -- Cathi

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Overnight Stay at the Virgin River Casino Hotel in Mesquite, Nevada

Aloha Everyone,

Our RV Adventure has taken us to pristine mountain tops. timeless seashores, incredible mirror lakes, deep forests and open meadows -- places that are both indescribably beautiful and help waken our spirituality. 

Today, J.J. suggested driving from Hurricane, Utah on I-15S to Mesquite, Nevada via Arizona.

Our first stop was lunch at Durango's Mexican Grill in Hurricane.

J.J.'s Steak Burrito with mild green chili and Cathi's beef enchilada with a lots of vegetables

We then gave Honu a good washing to remove the. red dust and grime from recent trips to Utah's national parks.

Virgin River, about 162 miles long, is a tributary of the Colorado River. It traverses Utah, Nevada and Arizona. In 2009, during the centennial celebration of Zion National Park, Red River was designated as Utah's first wild and scenic river. Today with on-going road construction and expansion, the river at times is reduced to just a trickle and its color is chocolate brown.

Virgin River Gauge is one of my favorite passages on I-15. Steep overhanging limestone walls attract some serious rock climbers.

Located 80 miles northeast of Las Vegas, Mesquite has several casino resorts and growing retirement community. 

We checked in at Virgin River Casino Hotel. $24 a room rate is much less than RV parks we've been staying. It's a change from Honu.

We found a small strip mall about 3 miles from our hotel with "Sushi Masa" as their anchor tenant.

J.J.'s Fried Oysters and nabeyaki Udon and my Teriyaki Salmon teishoku served with miso soup, salad, tempura and California rolls were all very enjoyable. The serving size was meant for an average male's appetite. I could only eat about 1/2 of my tempura and one California roll.

J.J. invited Dick, a fellow diner, to visit Honu as he expressed his curiosity.

Tonight we have cable channels. J.J. is switching between basketball games and the Republican debate.

Aloha -- Cathi

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Colorful Red Rock Canyon, Lunch at Forscher and Majestic Zion National Park

Aloha Everyone,

Utah, home to 5 national parks, is a state blessed with natural beauties.

This morning, after another 2 hours stop in Bryce Canyon National Park, J.J. and I took Scenic Byway 12 in the direction of Zion. Red Rock Canyon is part of the Dixie National Forest. It is popular with hikers as its rock formations are moderate in height and easily accessible from the highway.

In the town of Orderville, J.J. suddenly turned Honu around. BÄCKEREI Forscher is a German Bakery & Cafe. The Bratwurst was excellent and we are very happy with the hand-crafted multi-nut bread we purchased for our tomorrow's breakfast

Here are our happy servers Seth and Jordyn

Today's entry point to Zion National Park was from US Route 9. We were able to access the larger tunnels where tour buses are permitted.

This unusual rock formation is called "Checkerboard." It was seen as we entered Zion.

All 5 national parks in Utah are located in the southern part of the state. Provided you choose a time of the year when road traffic does not slow you down, Arches, Canyonlands, Bryce, Capitol Reef and Zion can all be visited over one long weekend or definitely in 5 days.

I cannot choose one park over the other. However the character of Bryce Canyon is fiery like an entire section is on fire, yet formations are elegant and feminine. Zion is majestic & massive. The latter definitely is masculine.

Tonight we are staying at an RV park in Hurricane, Utah

Aloha -- Cathi