Archive for the ‘Adventure’ Category

Winter 2018

Saturday, March 17th, 2018


There is a lot that has happened over the last few week, but as usually happens during the winter, I have become lapse in recording it. I mainly write so that family can track me as I travel during the summer. Winters in Arizona are repeatedly consumed by parking in the desert, or spent with family doing a lot of things they know about, so I fall into a routine of quiet documentation.

After I arrived in Why, AZ, I received several invites to return to Phoenix for niece Michelle’s graduation from Devry University. It turned out to be a nice trip back to town. Along with getting to attend Michelle’s graduation, I had a wonderful time visiting with family for a few days. I also found a new Doctor and established with him through my Cigna Advantage Plan.

I parked at Daryl’s house for a few days while I saw my new doctor and then camped at Bulldog Canyon for a week for the graduation and many meals with family. My Canyon camp was only five miles from the RV park where Richard and Dianna were staying so I would ride my motorcycle to their home and travel with them to all the activities. In the evening Richard, Dianna and I would walk over to the hot tub after dinner and relax in the hot water. It was a nice time spent with all.

After the side trip to Phoenix, I went back out to the LTVA near Yuma. Within a few days, Richard and Dianna joined me at my site here in the desert. We positioned our rigs so that we are isolated on a little hill, forming a courtyard of sorts, and optimizing our direction for the most sunshine on our solar panels.

We have been quite busy the last two weeks. It seems like most days we go somewhere. We have done lots of geocaching, finding over 20 hides in the area. It is a good way to get some exercise without realizing it. Twice we have been to Los Algodones for dental work. The first trip I had a tooth pulled and Richard had a root canal. Neither of us felt much like eating afterwords so we stood in the long line to get back across the border. The second appointment was not as destructive to our teeth, so instead of waiting in the long line to cross the border, we had a nice meal of Mexican food at the local open-air plaza. By the time we were done eating the lines to cross back into the US were minimal.

Yesterday, we drove to Picacho State Park, situated along the Colorado River about 25 miles from anything familiar to civilization. The road was dusty, sandy, narrow, and rough, but R&D’s Subaru took the terrain like a champ. It was actually a nice campground with over 50 sites scattered in the foothills along the Colorado. There was a self-pay stand asking for $10 per car when we drove in. All Richard and I had were $20’s so we became outlaws and skipped the entrance fee.

The place was pretty deserted with only three or four campers hiding from us as we drove around. We drove down to the boat launch area and read about paddle wheelers coming up the river many years ago. Picachos population reached 2500 residents back in the 1860’s as gold was mined along the drainage hills by the river. We hiked a trail back to the remains of an old stamp mill and read signs about the old, rusting metal and eroding structures along the way. It was a fun day of hiking and learning about early life along the Colorado River.

We have two more weeks planned to be here at the LTVA and then we will return to Phoenix. Richard and Dianna have some work planned on their rig before they go up on the Rim to work for the forest service this summer. I have a follow-up Dr appointment and then will move with the weather. We have had lots of nice cool temperature days here in Yuma but it is way too early to move far north just yet.

Why Not!

Thursday, February 8th, 2018
Lots of green things.

Lots of green things.

I moved from the LTVA by Yuma over to a dispersed BLM area just outside Why, Arizona. I didn’t move for any particular reason other than to scratch my wanderlust itch. The weather is about the same as Yuma and the area is packed with quite a few rigs. The one advantage here over the LTVA is more trees and thus more privacy and less wind.

There is a spigot in Why where I can get water, but to dump tanks I will have to pay at Coyote Howls RV park. I will miss the convenience of a free dump and the big city of Yuma for all my supplies.

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument is 30 miles south of here, so I will probably visit there one of these days. The little town of Ajo, 10 miles north, has lots of history and sometimes entertainment in the town square. Ajo also has an IGA grocery store and Dollar General for a few overpriced items.

My plans after a few days here in Why – the legal stay limit is 14 days – is to maybe wander over to Tucson and down to Tombstone for a bit. I have stayed in the Santa Rita foothills before but it has been a while since visiting some historic sites below Tucson. As always, my plans can change at the drop of a hat.

Another RTR and Big Tent

Wednesday, January 24th, 2018
Only one day.

Only one day.

Each year I tell myself I’m not going to the RTR anymore and then I end up going. If it were just for the seminars and shear madness of many thousands of people, I know I would skip it. The problem is that I get a text from an old friend asking me to come see him at the festival.

Todd and I hung out together for several days and endured many repetitive talks about surviving in an economically challenged society. Most of the people that enjoy the seminars are newly retired, usually living on a fixed income of SSI, and don’t have enough savings to stay in a house or senior living home. The rest of the group that flocked to the desert were mostly young people that don’t want to work or are trying to make money on the road. There must have been a dozen YouTube entrepreneurs milling about.

Todd likes the idea of travel but he cannot be away from his house for very long. He has a good pension from the Yuma Fire Department, a nice house, and lots of money in the bank. He said it is too boring to be out on the road all alone for more than a few weeks. He asked me why I’m not bored living in my RV and I replied that I can do everything in my RV that I could do in a house.

Except for the loud music at night, I enjoyed hanging out and meeting new people. I feel sorry for some of the newbies that are just starting out in this lifestyle. They will make mistakes just like I did and still do, but if they stick with it they will all learn what works for them.

I’m now at the LTVA in Quartzsite. I went to town yesterday to see the Big Tent carnival. Each year the booths in the tent are filled more and more with “barkers” selling mops, bag closures, jewelry, massage devices, slicers and dicers, and every other bobble or bangle you can think of, many not even related to RV living. There were a couple new places selling Lithium battery systems but they were not very knowledgeable. I walked around outside for a bit, avoiding the food that smelled so good, and left shortly after peeking inside a couple new, six figure RVs.

I think I will go back down to Yuma for a while. I have a couple projects I want to work on than require a Home Depot. Who knows? I might even ride for a date shake and a movie.

Yuma Again

Sunday, December 31st, 2017
This is why we come.

This is why we come.

Happy New Year everyone!

I’m back at Imperial Dam LTVA again. I’ll be here until I get itchy feet and decide to explore a new place. Richard and Dianna will arrive in a few days and we always have fun exploring the area for fun things to do.

I feel lucky that I can live this nomadic lifestyle and migrate with the weather. Even though the winters here in the southwest can be chilly and windy, it is way, way better than the weather my kids are experiencing back in the northeast. All last week it has been dumping snow and hurtling bone-chilling temperatures over most of the upper USA. I talked with my Daughter, Jen, who lives in Western New York, to hear her tell of a foot of snow and -10 degree temperatures. Here in Yuma I have been inside much of today because the temperature only got to 68 degrees. I’m such a wimp.

It was nice camping with John and Rick at Big River BLM by Parker last week. We had many good talks where we solved most of the problems in the world. Each morning John and I walked two miles for our daily exercise. It’s always better for me to have someone that motivates me to exercise. I’m sure it’s the same for him.

While I was camped at Parker, a pickup pulled in and a man waved out the window. I didn’t recognize him at first. It was Bob, another full-timer I had not seen since Cottonwood last year. We went completely different directions this summer, he to the east coast to see family, and I to the north to see Alaska. But the desert southwest is where many of us migrate to this time of year and hang out for the nice climate.

I purchased a new laptop computer a while ago. It’s a Microsoft Surface that can be used as a touch-screen tablet or with a keyboard that clips on. It’s nice and light and compact but I’m still getting used to Windows 10. Right now, I’m using it as a tablet to write this and it is even more awkward than using my phone. I know the phone key touch well, and it is a new learning curve with this touch keyboard. Santa didn’t bring me the keyboard so I guess I will have to go buy one soon.

Parker, Arizona

Thursday, December 21st, 2017
Camp near Parker, AZ

Camp near Parker, AZ



It is one of those cold, windy days where the only sensible thing to do is stay inside and maybe take a nap. I’m camped with my friend, John, only five miles from Parker, Arizona. I moved here two days ago and we have had nice temperatures and calm winds until last night. Shortly after I went to bed last night the wind started rocking Minnie and making noises with the roof vents. I didn’t get much sleep.

Every morning John and I walk 2 miles. This BLM campsite is surrounded by mountains and deep washes. There is a long road running back to the foothills that makes a nice place for morning walks. If I get ambitious and the weather gets better, I may take Honda back a few miles to explore.

There are quite a few campers parked in the dispersed pullouts along the road. It’s not crowded. Most of the rigs are Class C’s, vans, and small trailers, and we all seem to find a little corner in the desert to call home. I have found few places to dump and get water near Parker, and I think that’s probably what keeps most of the big rigs away.

The cell service is excellent, and if you rely on OTA TV, there are many broadcast stations on antenna. The nice thing about this location is the fact it is only five miles to Parker and all the perks of a city. Yesterday, I rode to the Walmart, went to see a movie (Star Wars – The Last Jedi), and washed some of the grime and dust off Honda at a self carwash. I used a little restraint and drove right past McDonalds.

I plan to be here until next week and then start back south. As long as I have the LTVA pass, I may as well take advantage of the facilities it entitles me to. It’s only 40 miles south to Quartzsite, where I will camp for a few days, and then move down to Yuma after the first of the year. There are many places in southern AZ and CA I like to visit during the winter and the LTVA pass gives me the option to come and go as I please.