Tuesday, December 29, 2015

In The Desert, Wind = Sand Storm

Our parking spot in the desert off Sidewinder Rd.

The wind started to blow early on Dec. 26 and didn't stop till the evening of the 28th.  It was blowing steady at about 20-30 mph with gusts up to 50 mph.  We didn't sleep the first night but caught up with sleep during the day of the 27th while the rv rocked.  We were able to sleep the second night as during the day I moved the car to block some of the wind.  Normally we would put the nose of the rv into the wind but by the time it started to blow and we could tell which direction it was coming from, it was too late.  It was hitting us at the back corner, not broadside thank goodness.  

Sun getting low in the dust filled sky.

I stuffed kleenex around the windows to try 
to keep some of the desert sand out.

But some still managed to find its way in.  What a mess.

This happened while we were parked with the Boondockers.  We had postponed our Christmas potluck till monday afternoon which was a good thing as by monday the wind had stopped completely and it was warm again.  There were about 40 people at our potluck and everything was delicious.   Sorry I didn't get any pictures of our gathering.

This is how I do most of our baking.  If it will fit in my Coleman camp oven it goes in.  If it is too big to fit it goes into the bigger oven.  The camp oven uses much less propane to warm and cook things.
Here are our Christmas morning cinnamon rolls.

Some friends from Northern California, Norm and Diane, who went to their daughter in Tucson, AZ for Christmas, stopped by to visit and spent some time with us.  They like to fish so on monday after our potluck with the Boondockers we moved our rv back over to Mittry Lake, meeting up with them at the casino along the way, and they followed us in.

Here's our camp at the lake.  They have this cute pop-up camper.

Norm and Diane fishing on a very calm lake with Pepper the dog.

This crappie was caught by a fisherman this morning 
while we were talking to him, he had a bucket of them. 

Thanks for reading and I'll see you in a few days.  And as always, thank you for using my Amazon link for your Amazon orders.


Monday, December 21, 2015

Sunset in the Desert

We have finally made it to an Escapee's Boondockers gathering, more about this group in a later post. We and about 10 other rv's, so far, are parked off American Girl Mine road west of Yuma. This property is NOT BLM property so we can stay here as long as we want for free.

Today is Dec. 21, 2015 the shortest day of this year.  Here are some sunset pictures from tonight.

Mountains behind us.

Smoke from something burning way off in the distance. 

Our camp.  Ghost strips showing. Almost looks
 like fog off in the distance but it isn't.

See you in a few days.

Evie and Joy

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Getting Things Done in Yuma, AZ

We went sunset chasing the other evening.  

Raptor over Mittry Lake

While in Yuma we've had some work done to repair other work we've had done that wasn't up to snuff.  Our solar system wasn't working as it should so went to Starlight Solar to have it repaired.  I'm not going to go into great detail about what a shitty job the guys in Northern California did but here's a picture of what we have now.  Two new batteries(2-blue L16's, sealed(don't need to check their water) on their sides), nice box all around so they don't wiggle around, inverter on top(white thing on left) and fuses all around(red things). Nice little awning rod holder in front and still room for vacuum cleaner too(barely visible to the left).

Removing leg.

Also had the awning worked on.  Thought we would have to buy new legs but these guys were able to repair the ones we had and an hour later we were all fixed up and gone.

Leg off and in the shop getting fixed.

Adjusting the front leg.

Last weekend we left the rv where we were boondocked (parked out in desert without hook-ups), near a friend who kept her eye on it for us (thank you Kyra), and drove the Honda to San Diego to cat sit for my daughter.  It was fun to meet Willie the cat and take a long shower and do laundry in a fancy washer and dryer.  On i8 between Yuma and San Diego there's a border patrol checkpoint.  

We've been through many of these checkpoints, they're all over the southwest,
 but this is the first time we've seen a sign like this.

They should have these signs in airports telling us how many times 
they've found explosives in shoes.

We've moved the rv several times since we've been in the Yuma area.  We just spent 3 nights in KOFA CO-OP, an Escapee club rv park, and now we're at a casino parked near Bette who we first met this summer at Eagles Nest Lake, New Mexico.  Bette has been living in rvs since the late 1980's.  She is full of useful information so I will be taking notes.  

We go back to Starlight Solar later this week to get two more solar panels mounted on the roof, that will max out our system.  

See you later.

Evie and Joy

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Seeking Warmer Night

You know how it is, if you’re not warm you move to a new place looking for a warmer spot.  That’s what we’ve been doing.  While in Casa Grande (pronounced casa grandee) it was getting down into the 30’s at night so off we went looking for warmer nights.  

We spent our first night near Gila (pronunciation help,  g sounds like h, so gila is heela) Bend at Petroglyph Painted Rock campground.  What a great place, quiet, dark at night and not many people.  But still cold at night.

On the way in we passed the Solana Generation Station.  

We only spent one night there as it was 37 degrees that night, on to warmer climes.  We ventured down to Yuma, only 3 hours south but lower in elevation which translates to warmer nights.  We are dry camping near Mittry Lake outside of Yuma.  Our first night, saturday of the thanksgiving weekend, right next to the dirt road, with about 2 dozen off road vehicles running up and down all day long. They were all gone by sunday afternoon. 

Yuma is all about growing vegetables, every kind of lettuces, broccoli, oranges, lemons and grapefruit, and dates.  


These last two pictures were taken out our door.

My winter garden, Paperwhites on the left and hyacinth on right.

I'll be back soon.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Odds and Ends and A Sad Story

Odds and Ends

We are still at RoVer's Roost, in Casa Grande.  Even though we are anxious to get out into the desert we've needed to stay here to wait for Dr. appointments for mom.  She is fine but since we're not in Calif. we needed to choose a centrally located city to find a Dr. and Casa Grande is it for us.

We've had all that nasty Texas dirt washer off the rv it wasn't cheap but we also had the oxidation buffed off too so it looks all better now.  Ready for another year on the road.

Another thing we are doing while here it to join the Elks Lodge.  The Elks have lodges all over and most of them allow rv parking for free or for a nominal fee to members and the lodge in Gila Bend, AZ courts full time rvers.  So we are doing that while here.  While traveling up and down through California there are long stretches or areas where there isn't any place to stop for the night or if there is it is very expensive.  And having the ability to park at an Elks lodge would help us tremendously. Sometimes we need a safe place to park for one night while traveling through an area, this would be better than parking in a Walmart parking lot, which a lot of rvers do, but not us.

A Sad Story

We have spent some of our time here exploring this area of AZ.  We've seen some interesting things. Unfortunately you don't get to see them.  It isn't that I didn't take pictures of them with my iPhone.  It's because I dropped my phone in the sink, full of water.  Oh no.  I had a feeling that something like that was going to happen.  I had just gotten a pedicure and while there I had a feeling that I might drop my phone in the water so I was being very careful.  But when I got home I put my purse on the kitchen counter and the phone quietly slipped out of my purse into the sink.  I grabbed it out but too late.  I got back into the car and drove to the AT&T store in town.  A note here:  This is the third iPhone I've had and when you buy a phone one of the questions they ask is "Do you want insurance?", and I always say no, but for some reason with this one I said yes.  So I have replacement insurance with a not so small deductible, but that's 1/4 the cost of a new phone.  It took the replacement phone 24 hours to get to me, they ship it to you not a new one from the store.  I didn't think that was too bad.  I'm back up and running, except it had been a while since I'd backed that phone up to the cloud so I lost a bunch of pictures.  My bad.  Live and learn.  So the picture today has nothing to do with the post, just one random picture I had.

Wow 17% grade, glad we were in the car.  
Outside of Willits, CA there's a 19% grade, 
you don't see many of these.

By for now.

Evie and Joy

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Giants in the Desert, Casa Grande, AZ

When I last talked to you I said that Bette and I were going down to Mexico, about an hour away, for lunch.  We did that, and had lunch at The Pink Store and I managed to get out of there without spending any money except for lunch.  It was a good day.  Had cheap fun.  I didn't take any pictures while there.  Before getting to the border area I turned off my phone so as not to get any international roaming charges, I should have only put it into Airplane mode, that way I could have used the camera.  Oh well.

The Pink Store photo taken from internet.

We only spent two nights at Rockhound State Park as it was very windy both nights and I don't like wind in the desert.  Breezes are good but 30mph wind isn't fun.  We are now in Casa Grande, AZ.  Back to our favorite area with Saguaro Cactus.

Growth chart. 

This Saguaro is over 200 years old. 
 In another picture later in this blog you can see
 that it has a brace on it.  Saguaros have a shallow root system.  
The plus side to that is that they are easy to transplant, the 
downside is that they blow over in rain and windy conditions.

It's been a wet year.  Look how fat it is.  
When it's been dry the fin like sections are very skinny.

Not all cactus have spines. 

Ok now for something a little different.  For the San Francisco Giant fans out there, in 1959 the Giants starter building a spring training facility in Casa Grande.  It is still here and being used by the local area as a sports facility.  But there are still sign of the Giants here.  The Giants moved to Scottsdale in the 1970's where they still hold spring training.  Here (it seems that this link isn't working for readers with iPads and maybe tablets as well, sorry) is a link to a book about the history of the Giants, the Casa Grande facilities is mentioned on page 58.

The top of The Francisco Casa Grande can bee seen in the background.

Click here and here to read about The Francisco Casa Grande.  
Also on the first web site is a link to the 2016 Cactus League spring training schedule.

Storm clouds brewing.

You see some interesting things at the grocery store.  Here is
Dragon Fruit.

Kiwano Melon

By for now.

Evie and Joy