How it all began...

The idea had been circling in my head for years. But the time was right and I could no longer fight the wanderlust that had built up. I bought a 1977 GMC NuWa motor home, threw a solar panel on top and started getting it ready for the open road. My main goal: to wander around North America, catching up with old friends, visiting new places and experiencing things I haven't before. This is my story...

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Belle Starr's Silverado Ranch, Bisbee, AZ

As I am about to depart from Belle Starr's Silverado Ranch to once again hit the open road, I want to reflect upon my experiences here on the ranch. I arrived at Belle's on February 17th and thought I would only stay for a few days. Well, just over 5 weeks later, I am finally about to move on. I fell in love with the animals and the beauty of the land. Nearly every morning, Stella and I would take a walk around the ranch to say "good morning" to all the animals...around 20 burros, 20 horses, a mule, a few donkeys, chickens, peacocks, and dogs. It was an animal lover's paradise.

Considering that my knowledge of horses and burros was pretty much zero when I arrived, by the end, my comfort level had grown tremendously. I still remember the first day walking around, clueless of where to pet the damned animals! That changed very quickly, of course. Within the week I would find myself wrestling with a burro (score: Brian- 0, Burro- 1). We had been trying to separate out the pregnant burros from the rest and at the last moment, one of those that was preggers made a break for it. I grabbed it around the neck and had stopped it from bolting! Oh the pride that I felt...for at least 2 seconds, at which point the burro made one last effort and suddenly I found myself on my ass in a cloud of dust. So I dusted off my pride and my pants, then gave it another go. Eventually we separated out the ones we thought were "with child", though its rather hard to tell. They all kinda bulge out to some extent. Maybe the ones we took aside were simply well feed. I suppose I'll never know.

During my stay I met some interesting and great people. Belle was the perpetual presence on the ranch and I enjoyed my daily chats with her. She has an amazing story, so if you ever get a chance to visit, you should lend her your ear for a good bit of time. She has so many wonderful ideas and aspirations for the ranch, but unfortunately, no one to help her follow through consistently. But I don't doubt for a second that she will make it happen...somehow.
As the weather begins to sizzle slightly, my journey will take me north to cooler climes. I've heard mention from others on the road that the desert wild flowers are something to behold. I didn't give it too much thought until I started noticing the flowers starting to bloom. It's simply spectacular to see so many delicate colors in an environment that is typically so...well, brown. I can't wait to see what's around the next corner...


  1. I don't blame you for staying on ... It sounds great! Right up my alley with all the animals. I lived in Phoenix for a year and loved seeing the desert bloom. Can't wait to see where you go next! Peace...

  2. Happy and safe travels to you, Brian, may our paths cross again soon.

  3. Great to meet you Brian! Enjoy your time on the road. We look forward to checking your blog to see what new adventures come your way. Oh, and thanks for the wine!
    Safe travels-
    Laura, Jeremy and Rayne