GM Recalls 475,000 Cars Chevy Cruzes


If you are driving a 2011 or 2012 Chevy Cruze, head to your newest GM dealer. You’re driving a unsafe vehicle and they’ve recalled it.

24/7 Wall St.

General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) today issued a recall of more than 475,000 Chevrolet Cruze sedans to correct a problem that could lead to fires in the car’s engine compartment. The recall covers cars sold in model years 2011 and 2012 to customers in the US, Canada, and Israel. An additional 10,000 customers in Australia may also be affected.

Last January Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) recalled 450,000 minivans and SUVs in January and Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE: TM) recalled more than 680,000 cars and light trucks in March.

GM said that no injuries or crashes have been reported which are related to the issue. The company will begin sending out recall notices in mid-July.

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Sisters On the Fly: Female Road Warriors


Traveling with the group known as Sisters on the Fly is definitely on my retirement Wish List. These female road warriors, ages 20-something to 80-something, travel all over the U.S. by truck, travel trailer and camper caravan. They fly fish (hence the name), they ride horseback, they take part in cattle drives. They even attend Cowgirl College. Every once in awhile they let the menfolk join them, but not often. Most of the travels are in the Western U.S.

If you don’t mind roughing it, and you love the open road, this group just might be for you. Of course, you’ll need either a camper or a truck and travel trailer. Check out their site – there’s often one or two gently-used and well-decorated trailers for sale. Besides enjoying the great outdoors, you could make some lifelong friends. And, there’s safety in numbers. How many of us don’t venture to places we’re dying to see because we can’t find anyone to go with us, and we’re nervous for our own safety?

By the way, Sisters On the Fly was actually started by two sisters – Becky and Maurrie, from Montana.

All you wanderlust-filled women out there, do check out this great group!

Sierra Ancha wilderness the view east


Tempe, AZ  artist  / blogger Ellen Pierce offers some great views of beautiful Arizona. This particular trail is part of the Sierra Anche Wilderness in the Tonto National Forest. It’s a tough 5 mile trail that reaches into the Fort Apache Indian Reservation. Its lowest point is about is 4000 feet and the trail climbs nearly another strenuous 3000 feet. It’s not for the meek or untrained hiker for sure.  The nearest town is Young, AZ, population 561. This tiny Gila-County village, surrounded by mountains, is 130 miles northeast of Phoenix and 60 miles southeast of Payson. To get there from Phoenix you’d take 10E to 60, and then along the Apache Trail by way of Globe. This is a slow and winding but beautifully scenic trip.

Directions (courtesy of Outdoor.com):  From Young to Billy Lawrence Trailhead:
Drive south on State Highway 288, turn east onto Forest Road 410 (Reynolds Creek) and travel 2.5 miles to the junction of FR 410 and Forest Road 235 (Cienga Springs Road). Follow this road for 0.5 mile, then east 2.5 miles to the Billy Lawrence Trailhead. A high clearance vehicle is recommended for this road.From Young to Lucky Strike Trailhead: Travel south on State Highway 288, take Forest Road 203 (Cherry Creek Road) 26.6 miles to the trailhead.

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Sierra Ancha wilderness the view east

Along the Lucky Strike trail we get great vistas and dramatic landscape to treat our eyes

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Sweltering in AZ? Head up to Payson


If you’ve never been to Payson, AZ, you must go. This small mountain town is big enough to have all you need, cool enough to be comfy even in the heat of the Arizona summer, and has plenty of outdoor recreation opportunity. I head there periodically throughout the summer, either camping or staying at the convenient, affordable and well-kept Super 8 on Hwy 260. There are tons of places to hike – my passion. Tiny little Pine is 15 miles down a lovely winding road, where you’ll find crafts and several nice cabin spots.  There are many opportunities here and nearby to camp including national park areas, at all levels of price and facilities.

There are two events coming up next weekend that are well worth checking out. Payson is noted for its rodeos, and they draw a big crowd. If you want to attend, make lodging reservations – if you still can – RIGHT NOW.  May 18 and 19 is the Gary Hardt Memorial Spring Rodeo, an annual event for decades. It’s $12 for seniors, $14 for other adults.  The Payson Aero Fair at the Payson airport is free, though if you want to take a plane ride it’s $30.

Payson has two great local parks, both a stone’s throw from the downtown area. (Don’t get caught up in the Historic Downtown hype, though. That’s a total snooze!) Green Valley Park has lakes, fishing, walking paths, picnic areas, and is home to the Zane Grey historic cabin, with a nice tour that tells you all about the life of the famed author. My favorite park, on whose grounds is a a well-equipped local library, is Rumsey Park. There are tennis courts, softball fields, a skateboard park and seemingly miles of places including gazebos where you can pull your car or RV in under the pine trees and pick a picnic table to dine. It’s my favorite place to bring my laptop and get some work done while still enjoying the outdoors.

My favorite dining – and drinking spot – is the Buffalo Bar & Grill. The food is simple but good and low-priced, and the atmosphere very welcoming. There’s a nice bar area, with pool table, and live music on the weekends and sometimes other evenings as well. It’s on Hwy 87, right next door to the Days Inn, and near the junction with Hwy 260. I’ve stayed at the Days Inn and it’s acceptable, and has a nice indoor pool.  The rooms don’t measure up the Super 8, however.

The Payson Campground and RV Resort is on Hwy 260, right across the street from the Super 8. It has everything you could want in a campground, while still being right in town. There’s a community room with TV, a nice pool, very clean restrooms with showers. I have two complaints – the spots are very close to each other, and not all of them have picnic tables. And if you make a reservation and have to cancel, they WILL NOT give you a refund. If you don’t mind being on top of your camping neighbor and you’re new to camping, this is a good place to go. It has both RV and tent spots, and the price is low.

From Phoenix you can get to Payson in less than two hours, so it’s not an impossible distance for a day trip. If you have the time, though, do spend a night or two. If you get to Payson you won’t want to leave.

Meet Meetup


If you’ve never visited Meetup.com, you’ve missed the opportunity to meet like-minded people in your local community for fun, companionship, networking, business training, sports, or perhaps even romance. The site allows you to search by locale and by interest, and to set up alerts for new groups whose hobbies or interests you share.

Over 50 Singles of Central Phoenix

In Phoenix alone there are 1,065 different Meetup groups. Within a 10 mile radius 61 hiking groups meet regularly. Of these the 126 metro-area dance groups vary from ballroom to country, disco and hustle to swing. There’s even a Swingin’ Out Gay and Lesbian Swing Dancing Meetup Group. Entrepreneur groups include the Phoenix Young Enrepreneurs Incubator, Real Estate Investing and Marketing Entrepreneurs, The Mom-e Club in nearby Gilbert, and the Phoenix Affiliate Marketing Group. There’s a group for Senior Healthcare Professionals and even one specifically designed for NASCAR fans. Groups for those of us in the 50+ age bracket abound. Snowbird Connection was founded by a Michigan resident who resides here half the year, to meet others who do the same. The Family Caregiver and Support Group of Tempe welcomes anyone caring for family members, while Solo Seniors of the East Valley plans group events for boomer and senior singles.  Continue reading “Meet Meetup”