Our Travels

“You Ready Ski Cat?”

“Hit It Jackson”

This is the perfect place to thank Monty, my best friend, husband, soulmate and traveling companion.  Without him there would be nothing to write about. The joy we share in life and traveling together is greater than either of would have believed possible.

We are a good team Monty is in charge of lug nuts and all things mechanical, oh, and he drives and holds the Zoe’s leash.  I’m in charge of food, riding shotgun to point out road kill, hollering ‘turn here’ and carrying the camera.  As you can see, we have all the bases covered.

When we met, Monty told me a story his Uncle Harry told him, about two fellas water skiing for the first time.

As the story goes, Jackson, and his brother Daryl, were eager to make a good impression at the lake resort. While Daryl climbed up on the pier, skies on and tow line in hand, Jackson revved up the ski boat. Jackson’s famous shout “You ready ski cat?”, and Daryl’s reply, “Hit it Jackson!” still reverberate along the shore! Every time I think about the guy on the pier flying thru the air it makes me laugh.

We don’t head out the drive way without Monty asking, “You ready ski cat?” I reply “Hit it Jackson” and the trip has begun.

We hope you enjoy these tales as we relive some of our fondest memories.

Carrie, Monty, Zoe and Mattie

Maine 2019

Some of our favorite things are found in Maine:  stately lighthouses perched on rugged coastlines, crashing waves on rocky outcroppings blueberry muffins to die for and fresh lobsters right out of the water.  We don’t usually enjoy the muffins…

Glacier National Park, Canadian Rockies 2007

You ready ski cat?  Hit it Jackson! We’ve loaded up the truck, camper and Mattie, attached the tow  jeep and we are off to see Glacier National Park and Canadian Rockies in British Columbia, Canada. First stop on this summer tour…

Life's A Beach - Early Camping

Before we retired we looked for opportunities to get away for a long weekend. The beaches in Southern California make for a perfect getaway. We were already set up with the truck and camper so why not take advantage of our traveling accommodations…

Summer Riding - 2017

The Bonello gang, Monty Carrie and Zoe are on the road again.  We are off to Colorado and Utah for a couple of weeks.  If you remember in 2012 we sold all the ATV stuff.  Somehow we came to the decision we were getting too old to be out in…

Beach Hopping - The California Coast, 2007

We refer to this trip as the beach hopping trip from Malibu, California to Brookings, Oregon. We are traveling light with just the truck and camper for this adventure since we will be sticking to the winding coast highway. We set off on…

Dauphin Island, Alabama, 2010

The brownies are safely stored in the oven, are you ready Ski Cat? Hit it Jackson! We’re heading for Dauphin Island, a barrier island off the coast of Alabama. We heard about this island from our friend Bob Bowers and several full time RV…

Our Desert Trek

In June of 1994 we headed out to Utah to hike and ride the ATV in some of our favorite canyon country. We were tent camping at the time and set up camp on Bears Ears, elevation 8,200 feet. The Ears are two peaks sticking up from a flat mesa.…

Southern Cities - 2006

This adventure through America’s Southland began on April 12, 2006 with the camper loaded with the usual stuff, the Jeep Wrangler in tow and Mattie dog comfy on her spot. The internet, plus articles from travel magazines and current brochures…

Antelope Canyon - Lake Powell - 2005

In the fall of 2005 we headed for Page, Arizona to do a little sight seeing. The focus of the trip is to see Antelope Canyon, located just outside of Page on the Navajo Indian Reservation. Since we are spending a few days in the area we plan…

New York City with Tricia - 2012

My daughter, Tricia, spent some time in the Big Apple for business the last few years and mentioned she'd like to show us the city. September 2012 was my 70th birthday so what better time to take a special trip. Tricia took care of the details…

Zion National Park - 2012

Fall is a great time to travel, and the open road is calling our name. We are eager to take the motor home out for a week or so and see how we like it. We took a look in our travel library and decided on a trip to Zion National Park in Utah.…

Colorado with Tommy - Goodbye Camper - 2012

We have so loved the ATV experience, being out in the fresh air in the back country. There is such joy riding together and looking out over the canyons, finding new trails, discovering that Indian ruin on the side of the canyon, taking a break…

Southeast - Washington, DC - 2009

  We left Tucson on March 26, 2009 early in the morning. First stop was at the Motor Vehicle Department to get the 5th wheel registered and affixed with a new AZ plate. We have had lots of experience with the DMV, some good, some not…

Forward

While Monty and I were working we spent many vacations in the canyon country of Utah and San Juan Mountains of Colorado. We loved nothing better than taking off in the truck with the camper and the ATV or jeep in tow and spending time in the…

Mexico Through the Years

During the 1990’s we made several trips into Mexico with the truck/camper, towing the ATV. Nelson, a friend from Raytheon, was involved with a dive club and they organized trips across the border to dive in the Gulf of Mexico or in some cases…

Colorado 2015

This trip was a little different for us, we used two Bluegrass Festivals as an excuse to spend six weeks in Colorado. We left Tucson on the first triple digit day of the year. We were quite proud of our timing, that kind of heat in Tucson…

2017 December Trip to Phoenix: A Quickie

On our usual trips to Phoenix we leave Zoe at home with a new dog bone and strict orders to run for the house if a coyote, or God forbid, a snake gets into the yard. As near as we can tell she follows the rules, doesn’t get into trouble…

Asheville, North Carolina 2011

When we travel a familiar road, and this is one of many Spring trips to Florida, we tend to choose favorite places to stay.  InLouisiana, it is usually in Lake Charles, at the Sam Houston Jones State Park.  This time we decided to try something…

Montana, Canada, Washington and Oregon 2014

The motorhome is washed the windows are sparkling, the travel info is stored in the breakfast nook, the brownies are safely stored in the oven, the pantry and fridge are full, Zoe is in her place, so I guess we are ready to roll.   This…

Northeast - Nova Scotia 2004

This was the summer we sampled Shoofly pie in the Amish County of Lancaster, Pennsylvania and feasted on lobster in York Harbor on the coast of Maine. At Ben and Jerry’s ice cream factory in Vermont we tasted new flavors, and mourned the demise…
Resident Gator

Florida 2013

This is another spring trip to Florida. This trip will take us back to some of our favorite places and include some new stops destined to become favorites. It was one of our favorite trips. After a slight stutter at the beginning of this…
Montreal Botanical Gardens

Canada, Montreal, Quebec - Maine 2013

We left Tucson on July 22, 2013, and took our time getting to Grand Junction, Co. to meet the newest addition to the family. William Paul Aieta, was born July 12, 2013 to be called Will, affectionately being called Willie P by grandpa. Monty’s…
Old School House - Note the Outhouse to the Side

Appalachia 2013

Previously I shared our visit to Missoula, Montana for a week before heading over to the east coast to spend time in Maine and Canada. There was more to this trip but I feel compelled to make Appalachia a story of its own. Appalachia is unique…

Bryce Canyon - Great Basin - Lassen National Parks 2009

At the end of summer in 2009, Evita and Jim, friends from Grand Junction, Colorado, called and suggested a trip to Bryce National Park in Utah.  We didn’t have to spend much time thinking about it, Bryce is the one of the most beautiful red…
Desert Bluegrass in Tombstone

Bluegrass

Mentioning the Bluegrass Festivals in the Colorado 2015 trip brings to mind the many Bluegrass festivals we have enjoyed. We didn’t know much about bluegrass or traditional music when Monty started playing the resonator guitar, aka dobro.…
Bison on the Range

South Dakota - Black Hills 2003

On June 12, 2003, we headed for the Black Hills of South Dakota. First stop was in Grand Junction to touch base with the family,  we had a good visit and spent an afternoon in the park at a car show.  We saw several nice street rods and Monty…
In the Beginning!

The Trip From Hell (Every RV'er Has One)

Every RV’er has a story to tell about an unfortunate event that shrouds a road trip.  No matter what the event you just hope it doesn’t involve the dump station. Before we retired, Monty decided to build a street rod.   When he was…
Fisher Towers

Utah - Through the Years

Utah was the first place Monty and I camped together and it quickly became a favorite destination to spend a week hiking, and riding the ATV. The red rock country is not only beautiful but it has a special warm inviting feel that we don’t…

Life’s a Beach - California Beach That Is

Before we retired we looked for opportunities to get away for a long weekend.   The beaches in Southern California make for a perfect getaway.  We were already set up with the truck and camper so why not take advantage of our traveling accommodations…
View From Our Picnic Table Lobster Pound

Maine with Great Stops Along the Way 2016

Earlier travels on this blog have been from a book I wrote for family about our travels. The trip is after the book was printed. We might start Volume 2 with this trip. Maine seems to be popular destination for us but every time we go there…
Beautiful Arizona Desert

Arizona - Through the Years

There is no doubt about it, Southern Arizona weather in the winter can’t be beat. We are blessed with blue skies, lots of sunshine and warm temperatures. If we are fortunate to get a few winter showers the desert comes alive in the spring.…
Cedar Key Did Have Beautiful Sunsets

Florida - Spring 2017

The brownies are stored safely in the oven and the three amigos are on the road again. Monty, Zoe and I decided on a spring trip this year, we just don’t want to miss that good old summer time in Tucson. Our destination is Florida and the…
Salt River Canyon

Maiden Voyage in the Motorhome - August 2012

The first trip we took in the new motorhome turned out to be quite an adventure.  We brought it home from Texas in July and except for the congestion getting through Houston the trip was open road, relatively straight and flat. We had many…
Our New Chariot

Our New Motorhome

It all started in 2012 when we turned into Craig's list junkies.   After years of towing a 5th wheel around with a Dodge dually or loading the 11' Lance camper on the truck and towing an ATV trailer, or jeep, we decided to downsize.  We turned…
Angel Arch

Canyonlands National Park

Monty left Grand Junction, Colorado and lived in Austin, Texas for a short time before arriving in Arizona in 1984. He brought with him the love of camping and dirt bike riding. We met in 1990 and he quickly introduced me to the joys of camping…

Paddle, Damn It, Paddle

In the mid 90’s, while we were still working, Monty mentioned to some friends at Raytheon that we were going up to Colorado over 4th of July.  To our surprise one of his friends said that sounded like a great idea and he’d come along.  Mike…

Death Valley

In 1997 we spent Christmas Eve with the kids in Phoenix and then headed out camping until New Years.  This trip took us to the deserts of California and up to Death Valley. At the time we were using the original camper on a Chevy truck and…
Old Faithful

Pacific Northwest 2002

August in Tucson is hot and muggy, what a perfect time to head up to the Pacific Northwest to check out tall trees, waterfalls, volcanos, islands and beaches.  Our first stop for the evening, was along the North Rim of the Grand Canyon …
On the Road to Clear Lake, Near Silverton

Colorado - Through the Years

It goes without saying that I like Arizona, I grew up here and the place you grow up always has a special place in your heart. But I have to admit Colorado is my favorite state. Monty grew up in Grand Junction, where the red rock Colorado…

Florida Keys

“You ready ski cat?”, “Hit it Jackson”. We loaded the camper on the truck, hitched the Tracker on the back, coaxed Ali Kitty into the camper and took off into a blinding sand storm on Saturday, April 5. In our wisdom we looked at the…