Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Day 208, Wednesday, February 28, 2018 - Beacon Lodge & Motel, Snyder, TX

Site 3
Wednesday, February 28, 2018 - Beacon Lodge & Motel, Snyder, TX - 203.9 Miles, 5,334.2 Towing Miles For the Trip

On the way out of town I stopped to refill a tank of propane. About all that happened for the day was another 200 miles east on US 180. I crossed into Central Time somewhere along the way. Since I'm trying to do at least 200 miles per day (a bit over my preferred 150) I planned a stop in Snyder, TX at the Beacon Motel. They have a campground next to the motel that has electric & sewer sites. I'm in site 3, for $23.00 per night. Good AT&T & Verizon data coverage, but no bathrooms or showers, and a bit of road & airport noise. OK for an overnight, but not a place I'd stay for a week. I just had some neighbors with 3 kids pull in next door towing a large 5th wheel. Other than that, we are the only ones in the campground (and most of the motel, as well). After watching them hook up, I found the water connection for my site. Not easy to access, so I didn't bother hooking it up.

I have "Informed Delivery" through the US post office. For those not familiar with the service, the post office takes the photos their mail sorters use & emails them to you each morning, letting you know what will appear in your mailbox later in the day. Very handy when you are traveling to see what arrived in your mailbox. So, I got an envelope from my health insurance prescription plan stating "Important Notice". Since it it a bit difficult to open an envelope over the internet, I called the insurance to ask what was in the letter. Of course they had no idea. I do know that my current home town pharmacy is a Rite Aid that was purchased by Walgreens, but according to the insurance phone assistant, that isn't anything they would mail about. So, the next time I need renewals, I head to a Rite Aid, or maybe a Walgreens, try to find out whether the Oswego, NY or Blythe, CA Rite Aid (the last place I filled my prescriptions) has my refills, or did they move to Walgreens, and discover which of my prescriptions, if any, the "Important Notice" was about. Ah, the joys of long term traveling!

Dinner was a microwaved Amy's Thai Pan Thai dinner, along with a little cottage cheese. I just watched a Domino's Pizza delivery vehicle pull into the motel. Wish I had thought of that before cooking the Thai Pan Thai dinner. While I really like the Amy's version of the meal, a pizza would have been nice!

By the way, for the first time in a long time, it is raining!

Until tomorrow -

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Day 207, Tuesday, February 27, 2018 -Carlsbad RV Park, Carlsbad, NM

Site C1
Tuesday, February 27, 2018 -Carlsbad RV Park, Carlsbad, NM, 215.3 Miles, 5,130.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

I added a picture of Sarah & me that she took when we met to yesterday's post.

I made a quick trip to the bathrooms at Leasburg Dam this morning and discovered the showers. I was pretty sure I had a shower there the last time I visited, but that was 2 years ago, so I thought I was wrong. Nope, they are behind a door that says "Not an Exit". The word "Showers" was so faded and missing letters that I didn't notice it. Oh well, the showers here at Carlsbad RV Park are much warmer, although they lose points for not having a bench of shelf for your stuff in the drying area. The campground is a former KOA with the usual layout, but no Country music in the bathrooms.

Most of the drive was on US 180 through New Mexico & Texas. I passed Carlsbad Caverns National Park; I been twice & skipped it this time. I did make a short, road side stop to photograph the Guadalupe Mountain, but without going into the park, a lousy photograph. As you can see by both photographs, a dreary, cloudy day. While listening to KJZZ in Phoenix, I found it is raining there, so it could be worse.

I'm in site C1, a full hookup site for $43.06 with a Good Sam discount. It is too short to leave the trailer hooked up. There is cable, and WiFi. Both Verizon & AT&T have a signal at the campground, but both are pretty slow, particularly Verizon. Neither will stream audio reliably, and took minutes to upload today's images. I didn't try the campground WiFi.

They had a bunch of empty, inexpensive machines at the campground laundromat, so even though I didn't have a full bag, I did two loads.

Dinner was a couple of Chicken Empanadas, and the rest of the asparagus.

Until tomorrow -

Monday, February 26, 2018

Day 206, Monday, February 26, 2018 - Leasburg Dam State Park, Radium Springs, NM

Sunset at City of Rocks
Monday, February 26, 2018 - Leasburg Dam State Park, Radium Springs, NM, 110.6 Miles, 4,915 Towing Miles For the Trip

I took a few sunset photos at City of Rocks. Great color on the rocks, although finding ones that don't have the sun blocked by other rocks can be a challenge. By the way, it sure cooled off last night - 23°F overnight. More photos at today's LakeshoreImages page.

I stopped at the post office in Deming to mail an oversized birthday card. Deming has some strange traffic routes. Lots of divided streets, and some that look to be a street, but are actually I 10 interstate ramps. Eventually, I found my way to a gas station, Tractor Supply, and another visit to Walmart.

I arrived at Leasburg Dam around 2:00. A water & electric site for $18.00, with $4.00 a reservation fee. It looks like there is a sewer hookup, but the site is labeled as water & electric & it is too far away to be usable. Very tight site that required some creative truck parking to leave the trailer hooked up. Nice & warm, with predictions of 37°F tonight.

There was a new Escape 5.0TA parked in the site across from me. A fellow Escape Forum poster that I've communicated with, but never met; Sarah, Dexter the Dachshund, and Wild Thing, the 5th wheel. She keeps an interesting daily blog at Lots of photos & descriptions of her travels. It is always nice to meet people that populate the various forums.

I was planning to take a shower here, but it seems there aren't any in the bathrooms. Since tomorrow's expected stop is a full service commercial campground, I will probably wait.

For those the like period mysteries (this covers mid 19th century London) Granger's "Inspector Ben Ross" series is well worth a read. I enjoyed A Better Quality of Murder, and will look for more of her books.

Dinner was a Bubba Burger, Bush Beans, and asparagus.

Until tomorrow -

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Day 205, Sunday, February 25, 2018 - City of Rocks State Park, NM, Day 4

Sunday, February 25, 2018 - City of Rocks State Park, NM, Day 4, 0 Miles, 4,804.4 Towing Miles For the Trip

The 4th day without a phone. I really have to pick up a Verizon phone to go along with my AT&T for places like here where there is no AT&T coverage.

Another cool night, down to 32°F. It did warm up to 60°F during the day. Even though it is in the 60's, I'm freezing. 67°F in the trailer, warmer than I keep the thermostat at home, but I'm wearing long johns under my jeans, a quilted flannel shirt & sweatshirt. Hope I'm not coming down with something...

Lots of RVs moving into the campground today, including a bunch of large Class A's. Not sure where they went, since many of the sites are small. They must have found a home since none of them came back out! I did discover one thing about site 2. It seems to be a popular path for those heading for a walk among the rocks. Lots of foot traffic through my site just a couple of feet from my trailer. So far no one has cupped their hands to stared into the windows! While they are tinted, at night they are pretty much transparent from the outside.

I did lots of reading, both on the computer, and a real book - Sharon Shinn's Heart of Gold, an interesting SiFi that explores race relations. I finished that and started Ann Granger's A Better Quality of Murder, a Inspector Ben Ross mystery. I haven't read her before, something I picked up at the bookshelf at the campground office. I've mentioned it before, but campground libraries are great, no cost places to discover new authors.

Other than that, not much going on. Dinner was a salad.

Until tomorrow -

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Day 204, Saturday, February 24, 2018 - City of Rocks State Park, NM, Day 3

Saturday, February 24, 2018 - City of Rocks State Park, NM, Day 3, 0 Miles, 4,804.4 Towing Miles For the Trip

A bit cooler last night, down to 32°F. Still a toasty 60°F in the trailer, with the furnace running at about 20% of the time. Didn't do much today. I took a short walk around the campground, met a Scamp owner who tows with a 2017 Tacoma Off Road & felt it was under powered. He sure wouldn't be happy towing the 2000 pound heavier 21!

The big event for the day was firing up the water heater to do dishes. When I don't have hookups, I tend to collect dirty dishes for a day or two before making hot water. Seems a waste to heat up a tank every day.

I did quite a bit of reading; just finished John Sandford's Deep Freeze using the Kindle. I'm slowly accepting the Kindle as a "book". Still prefer paper, but I have to admit it is easier to hold the Kindle while lying down in bed than a large paperback or hard cover book.

I had an early dinner microwaving one of my frozen chicken stews. As usual, better with age. This one was particularly good - I should have kept track of what I put in it so I could make it again, but I didn't.

Until tomorrow -

Friday, February 23, 2018

Day 203, Friday, February 23, 2018 - City of Rocks State Park, NM, Day 2

Some of the Rocks
Friday, February 23, 2018 - City of Rocks State Park, NM, Day 2, 0 Miles, 4,804.4 Towing Miles For the Trip

A lazy day, although I did walk the loop road around the campground (about 2 miles), taking a few photos of the rocks & campsites. Everything from tents through teardrops to large diesel class A's spread throughout the rocks. Even the group site has RVs in it. More photos at today's LakeshoreImages page.

The staff did some wheel rut repairs to the road leading to my site. There must have been some wet weather last week - there are still a few puddles, and who ever was in my site previously made some deep ruts getting out. While the road into the site looks like hard packed sand, it can turn to mud with a little water.

The park is about 3/4 full, again, with all the hook up sites taken. By the way, there is no AT&T coverage here in the park, even with an amplifier & outside high gain antenna. On the other hand, Verizon has a strong, fast signal, even without an amp. Some FM stations, although no NPR or classical stations that are listen-able.

I did head for the showers after my 3:00 eye drops. I forgot how soft the water is here - you spend more time rinsing than washing. Push button, non temperature adjustable high pressure, low volume shower head, no bench or place to put things other than 4 hooks on the wall. There is a shower curtain & Dri-Dek type mats in the drying area so your feet stay dry. Very little heat & it was around 60°F, a bit cool for drying! By the way, it never got to the predicted 23°F last night, only down to 35°F. I did leave the cabinet doors open that had plumbing behind them, and ran the furnace at 60°F to make sure things didn't freeze; probably not necessary.

I was hoping to do some star photos last night since City of Rocks is far enough from city lights that the night skies are fairly pure. (There is enough "dark" that the campsites are named after constellations). While it was nice & clear, there was too much moon for photos.

Dinner was a couple of chicken patty sandwiches & a bit of cottage cheese.

Until tomorrow -

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Day 202, Thursday, February 22, 2018 - City of Rocks State Park, NM

Site 2, City of Rocks State Park, NM
Thursday, February 22, 2018 - City of Rocks State Park, NM, 290.5 Miles, 4,804.4 Towing Miles For the Trip

Another early morning. Since I was planning to drive all the way to City of Rocks State Park in New Mexico, over a 5 hour drive, I wanted to leave early. I hit the road by 8:15. A boring drive, mostly along I 10, although a bit busy going through Tucson. Gas is quite a bit cheaper in New Mexico, so, of course, I filled up just before crossing the border at $2.56. Oh well, at least I can fill up again in Deming at $2.11 per gallon.

I stopped at the Deming Walmart to buy a birthday card, and some supplies - I was out of milk, but needed other stuff. I've had a craving for pizza, so I bought a frozen one. While it wouldn't fit in the freezer, the fridge was at 36°F, and the City of Rocks State Park is only 30 miles north of Deming. I'm in site #2 since someone is already in my favorite site (#1). Both are within walking distance of the showers. I did make a loop through the water & electric sites to see if any of the first come were available, but all of them, as well as the reservable sites, were full. Since the prediction is for 23°F tonight & 29°F tomorrow night (City of Rocks is at 5000'), it would have saved a bunch of propane to have an electric hookup. Still, I prefer the dry sites since they are among the rocks, and the sites with hookups is basically a parking lot.

After setting up the trailer, I tossed the pizza in the oven. I should have kept an eye on it; whether it was the oven (it was the first frozen pizza I've cooked in it) or the fact that it was partially thawed, the bottom ended up a bit burned. In any case, it satisfied my pizza cravings.

I walked around the lower part of the campground and took a few photos. I'm also including a couple from last night at Picacho Peak taken during sunset.

Dinner was the pizza.

Until tomorrow -

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Day 201, Wednesday, February 21, 2018 - Picacho Peak State Park, AZ

Overflow Site #1
Wednesday, February 21, 2018 - Picacho Peak State Park, AZ, 88.6 Miles, 4,513.93 Towing Miles For the Trip

I made bacon & eggs for breakfast, then read forums, journals, etc. Around 12:45 I headed to the entrance station to see if I could stay another night in the emergency use site 91. The volunteer said that if they didn't need it by 1:00, I could stay, but the ranger stated that they could only tell me at 1:00 that I'd have to go, but not that I could stay. I asked her when I'd know if I could stay & she said it depended on how long it took to fix an electrical problem at one of the sites. Since I didn't want to hang around all afternoon, not knowing if I could stay the night, I packed up & headed out around 1:30.

A short drive to Picacho Peak State Park. As I suspected, the campsites were all filled, however they have a camping overflow area. They are pull through, dry sites with a fire ring & picnic table, for $15.00. Not quite level enough to leave the truck hooked up. The bathrooms & showers are not quite walkable from site 1, although there are pit toilets next door.

After my 3:00 eye drops, I drove to the bathrooms for a shower (and again, cheated & used my own shower head - shh, don't tell anyone), and after returning to the trailer, met & talked with an Escape 17B owner that has one of the standard sites. None have water, just electric, so I'm not missing much here in the overflow. Even the overflow area is filling up. There are around 8 paved sites, and over half are filled, the one across from me with a tent.

Since I lucked yesterday & found a Walmart that had Empanadas (and bought the two boxes they had), that is what I'm having for dinner.

Until tomorrow -

Day 200, Tuesday, February 20, 2018 - Lost Dutchman State Park, Apache Junction, AZ

A Night Time Panorama
Tuesday, February 20, 2018 - Lost Dutchman State Park, Apache Junction, AZ, 168 Miles,4,425.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

I got a early (for me) start & left Quartzsite around 9:00. The original plan was to head for Picacho Peak State Park, but along the way I changed my mind and headed for Apache Junction & the Lost Dutchman State Park. I thought both parks would have plenty of open sites since it is the middle of the week, but I'm in a emergency fill site (#91) which I will have to leave tomorrow if anything goes wrong with any of the other electric sites or reservations if the problem happens before 1:00. If I get thrown out, I'll head to Picacho Peak, even though there are only 3 sites left there. There is a commercial park near by that I can try if the state park is full.

My site here (again, #91) is right under the Superstition Mountains, with a great view out the kitchen & dining area windows. $30.00 per night for water & electric, something I haven't had since Agua Caliente on February 1st. Since it is getting cold (34°F last night at Quartzsite), it will be nice to have the electric heater.

I walked around the campground, found the showers (a long walk away from the site), checked out the coyote sundial (it was off by about an hour) and did some reading, recharging of batteries & other electronics, and relaxed. I'm hoping for a clear evening to do a star circle around the mountains that I'll add later or tomorrow morning.

Well, I did one, and started another at 9:00. The moon provided the light on the mountain, but it isn't a circular star circle (only streaks) because the mountains are not to the North. It is already down to 45°F, so the camera battery doesn't last all that well on long exposures.  The photos are at today's LakeshoreImages post.

Since I had a large turkey sandwich for lunch, dinner was just a salad.

Until tomorrow -

Monday, February 19, 2018

Day 199, Monday, February 19, 2018 - La Posa West LTVA, Quartzsite, AZ

Back At La Posa West for the Night
Monday, February 19, 2018 - La Posa West LTVA, Quartzsite, AZ, 80 Miles, 4,257.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

Last night's fireworks were excellent. Again I took far too many pictures, and them proceded to post far too many as well. If anyone wants to see what individual shells are available, I have the place! Again, we called it quits a little after 9:00, and they continued the fireworks until 10:30. Sure did shake the trailer! I did update yesterday's page with a couple of photos, and the link to the last set of fireworks pages.

Since I did most of my packing yesterday, it was a quick "getting ready for the road" this morning. Glad I did alot yesterday - it was cold this morning. Lots of wind and 51°F.

I stopped at the Parker Walmart for water & a couple other things, then drove across the street to Safeway for a 12 pack of Big Wave Golden Amber beer. Since I probably won't find it in the East, I'm bringing some with me.

I filled an empty propane tank at the hardware store, then drove to the Main Street Laundromat, hoping I could fit both the truck & trailer in their parking lot so I could do laundry without unhooking. While it was crowded, I did find a way.

After doing laundry, I pulled into La Posa West for the night. I'm in just about the area I was in for most of the winter, however I did jocky around until I found an area where the trailer was level without unhooking.

After making the bed, I edited last night's fireworks photographs and added them to the Link to Four Days of Fireworks.

Dinner will be a Chicken Mushroom Pot Pie that is currently in the oven.

Until tomorrow -

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Day 198, Sunday, February 18, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 7

Fireworks, Day 3
Sunday, February 18, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 7, 0 Miles, 4,177.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

We (Dan & Chris, the owners of the Bigfoot parked next to me) went to the Sea Scout's Pancake breakfast. Juice, coffee, sausage and, of course, pancakes for $5.00. A lot easier than making them yourself. Just in case you looked at yesterday's page before I added the link to last night's fireworks, here is the link to the updated fireworks page.

Again, many are single bursts rather than a large show display, although there were plenty of them as well. There were long breaks between displays, long enough that many left before the show was over. I left around 9:40, and there was at least one batch of large displays after I hit the trailer.

After breakfast, I processed last night's photos, and uploaded the pages. I really have to get control of the size of my site - it is currently 6.63GB and 62,067 files. The files are a bit exaggerated since some pages uses the Lightroom Web page generator, which makes many small files, but the total size is accurate.

A few RVs pulled out today, but most stayed until tomorrow. There is no difference in the price, so unless you need to be somewhere else for the President's holiday, you might as well stay. I'll be heading back to Quartzsite tomorrow to do laundry, fill a propane tank, etc, then start the trek East.

I'm going to have to check the schedule for the 2019 Quartzsite Fiberglass Rally, hoping that this program is still the week after. As long as we sign up for next year in the next couple of months, we can get the same site, with the option of moving to another with a better view if the people in them don't sign up. A site in the AA row would be nice since you would be able to watch the fireworks out the trailer's back window, but G2 (the one I'm in) is a short walk to the viewing area at the front of the upper deck.

I spent the rest of the day sitting outside reading.

Dinner was a barbecued chicken sandwich supplied by the park.

Again, I'll probably have to add tonight's photos tomorrow if the show gets over too late.

Until tomorrow -

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Day 197, Saturday, February 17, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 6

Saturday, February 17, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 6, 0 Miles, 4,177.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

This is going to be a quick post since it is pretty late. I've been taking more fireworks photos & I'm ready to call it a day, even though they are still firing them. Since I took over 400 images, it is time to stop. I'm sure there are quite few rejects, but now I'm just listening to them. This is one of the times I do wish I had a front window on the 21 since it is aimed at the fireworks. I'll process and add tonight's fireworks tomorrow.

Other than putting together a page that links to all the different fireworks nights for this show, and a much belated page for the Oswego Harborfest fireworks, I didn't do much else.

Dinner was barbecued chicken supplied by the park.

Until tomorrow -

Friday, February 16, 2018

Day 196, Friday, February 16, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 5

An Air Burst

Friday, February 16, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 5, 0 Miles, 4,177.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

After posting yesterday's journal, I hauled my camera & tripod to the level above the parking lot my trailer is in & found a spot on the front edge that had a pretty good view of the fireworks area. They started firing off shells well before dark. I took some photos with my 70 - 200 mm lens, but would have preferred the 24-70mm for some of the images. I'll try that tonight. Actually, a 50 - 150mm lens would probably be the best from the position I was at, but I don't have such. We will see if the 24-70mm will do.

Last night was mostly individual bursts with a few multiple displays. Here is a link to some of the images. I'm using Adobe Dreamweaver's built in web page generator for the fireworks pages. I don't like it for my general posts since it doesn't lend it self to text all that well, and it is a "pig" as far as the size of the files it generates, but it is faster to put together a page with a batch of photos, and easier to browse through since you can go directly between the higher resolution images, or use the index page to get to an individual image. Since I have little experience with cascading style sheets, I do wish someone would make a template that has the ability to add text windows.

I'll add more as the day goes on, but will probably be a day behind with the photos since they generally start after dark.

Well, it is now after dinner, and I did shoot the fireworks tonight, and processed them after I got back. I quit at 9:00, but they are still going on. Here is a link to tonight's images.

Dinner will be chicken tacos at the rodeo grounds dinner.

Until tomorrow -

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Day 195, Thursday, February 15, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 4

Thursday, February 15, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 4, 0 Miles, 4,177.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

Another day without photographs. Until they start the fireworks, there really isn't all that much to take photos of. It looks like there is a RC flying area in the park since I've seem a couple of stunt planes flying each day, but they are far enough away that they are not worth photographing.

Another relaxing day. The sun came out, so the solar fully recharged the batteries even though I microwaved breakfast & made a pot of drip coffee. I lent out my portable solar panel to the Bigfoot next door since it looked like his solar panel wasn't working. He went to Quartzsite for a new controller, and while my panel charged his trailer a bit while he was gone, my controller doesn't seem to be working right. Since I don't use it when connecting the panel to my trailer, I have never noticed the problem. I'll probably order a new controller since I like to have the portable panel available to operate with or without a controller.

After my 3:00 eye drops, I started a chicken stew/soup. Hard to decide which it is, but I make it with lots of vegetables, potatoes, canned beans, chicken thighs, & chicken stock. I make enough for one meal plus 2 for the freezer.

Other than that, I spent the day sitting outside reading.

Dinner was chicken stew!

Until tomorrow -

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Day 194, Wednesday, February 14, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 3

Wednesday, February 14, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 3, 0 Miles, 4,177.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

Happy Valentine's Day! Another quiet, cloudy and cool day at Lake Havasu City. A few more RVs arrived, but so far I still have a pretty good view of the Rodeo grounds from my trailer. There are two empty sites between me & the fireworks. As long as low trailers move in, I'm OK.

I spent most of the day sitting inside. I did get out when there was a bit of sun, but it is still fairly cool for outdoor reading. I'm currently reading Ken Follett's The Pillars of the Earth. A departure from his usual spy novels, but well written and a good read.

If it warms up, I'll head for the showers this afternoon, but if not, it can wait another day. Dinner will be a couple of chicken tacos.

Until tomorrow -

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Day 193, Tuesday, February 13, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 2

Tuesday, February 13, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, Day 2, 0 Miles, 4,177.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

I slept in this morning, but was done with breakfast by 10:00. I walked around the camping area looking for a dumpster for my trash. Found one behind one of the buildings; not sure it was for us, but used it anyway. More RVs arrived today, including a Bigfoot next door that came from the Quartzsite rally. Evidently, there is a "Boomer" group that is camping in many of the spaces in our area. The first to arrive was a bit worried that he was in the wrong place, but now that there are more of them everyone is happy!

I spent the day reading & moving inside & outside the trailer. While the wind died down, there were heavy clouds most of the day. When the sun broke through, it was outside in the chair, enjoying it, then when the clouds hid the sun it cooled off enough to chase me back in. Around 3:30 I headed to Safeway for some supplies.

There was enough sun while I was gone to bring the batteries back to full from their morning low of -31.5 amp hours, even with the panels flat on the roof. To make sure I found my way back to the site (lots of internal turns through parking lots, etc) I "saved" the location of my site using the GPS. While there are paved roads in much of the SARA Rodeo area, on the way back from town, Matilda, my GPS wanted me to turn directly from AZ 95 overland to get to the site. Even after I drove on the paved roads in the park, it wanted me to go back out to AZ 95 and head overland. With my lousy sense of direction, I'm lucky I found my site!

Dinner was baked chicken & deviled egg potato salad form Safeway.

Until tomorrow -

Monday, February 12, 2018

Day 192, Monday, February 12, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ

Site G2
Monday, February 12, 2018 - SARA Park Rodeo Grounds, Lake Havasu City, AZ, 80 Miles, 4,177.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

Not much in the way of sun today. Cool & cloudy at both Quartzsite & Lake Havasu City. It is also very windy here at the rodeo grounds. Since it is all on "dirt" (actually, fine sand) everything feels gritty. They didn't open the gate until 12:00, and there were a bunch of us waiting to get in. Once they started, registration went smoothly & quickly, with a guide to the campsite.

I'm in site G2, a piece of the parking lot that has been taped off to designate sites. Dry camping for $21.43 per night, although there are somewhat nearby bathrooms & showers next to the grandstand. A couple more photos at today's LakeshoreImages page.

I don't know if the fireworks will be visible from the campsite or whether I'll have to walk over to the grandstand. It isn't all that far away, but setting up a tripod would be difficult in the stands. So far, the area between my trailer & the grandstand is clear, but since the campground is sold out, I suspect it will fill. The fireworks don't start until the middle of the week.

After setting up, I wandered around to find where things are located. I haven't found the the barbecue locations, but I have until Friday to find it.

The rest of the afternoon was spent reading web pages, journals & forums. There is both Verizon 4G LTE at -99 dBm & AT&T LTE at -92dBm coverage, both slower than they were at Quartzsite.

It is too windy to cook outside, so I reheated one of the frozen chicken stews out of the freezer. Since the trailer is in the wrong direction for tilting the rooftop solar panels, I am going to try to conserve electricity & not use the microwave when the stove will do.

Until tomorrow -

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Day 191, Sunday, February 11, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 10

Castle Dome City Ghost Town
Sunday, February 11, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 10, 0 Miles, 4097.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

Lots of good byes as people left for home today. Lots of wind last night. This morning I spent some time picking up trash that had blown all over the area, part of which consisted of many pages of Butterfield 8, one of the books that was on my "free" table. At least the table is still there! I made a run to the LTVA dumpsters with my trash, then packed up some of the stuff I had spread around that I wouldn't be using today. I'll fold down the solar panels and fold up the ground cloth as soon as I finish posting today's page.

After breakfast, I headed to the Castle Dome City Ghost Town & Museum. It is about 63 miles from Dome Rock, most on paved roads, although the last 8 miles is good gravel. I took lots of photos, but rather than duplicating all of them here, I'll just link to the page.

So, this will be the last Quartzsite post. Tomorrow it is Lake Havasu City & hopefully, some fireworks!

Dinner was a salad & a turkey sandwich.

Until tomorrow -

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Day 190, Saturday, February 10, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 9

Sunset Over the Dessert Pot Luck
Saturday, February 10, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 9, 0 Miles, 4097.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

A quiet day at Dome Rock. I was up early to put some stuff out for the swap meet. Sold a couple of radios, but the more expensive stuff didn't move. At least someone picked up the entire box of books, so I don't have to take them to one of the dealers in town tomorrow.

I baked the second blueberry pie this morning. It came out a bit better looking than last night's - I'm getting used to how much over the marked setting you have to dial in the oven thermostat, so I'm hitting the right temperatures.

We had the ladderball competition during the afternoon. Since my team came in second the only time I played, I don't want to ruin the streak by playing again; I just take photos, many more of which are at today's LakeshoreImages page as well as the last page of the Rally photos.

After the ladderball prizes were awarded, it was soup time. Everyone brings a can of non cream soup, and they make three large pots; Chicken, Beef, & Mystery. One would thing mixing all the different kinds together wouldn't work, but it does - I had the chicken & it was great.

A couple of us went to try to diagnose a water heater problem, but didn't come up with a good solution, then back to the trailer for a bit of reading.

The dessert pot luck started exactly at 5:30 - there was a line & a countdown. My blueberry pies went over OK, and there was plenty of everything (except blueberry pie). I did get the dregs of one pie pan - a 1" square of crust with one blueberry on it. Next year I'm still going to make two for the start, but keep another one behind for me & the others further back in the line. While I enjoy taking photos, by the time I finish taking the start of the "feast", I end up at the back of the line.

There was a great sunset to finish off the evening. More at the last page of the Rally photos.

Dinner was dessert!

Until tomorrow -

Friday, February 9, 2018

Day 189, Friday, February 9, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 8

The Lagun Table Mount
Friday, February 9, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 8, 0 Miles, 4097.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

Another day of hanging around Dome Rock. I did get a chance to see a couple of Escape 21's that installed a Lagun brand table mount. It is very practical - easy to remove both the table & the support, and it swivels so the table can be positioned just about anywhere. More photos at today's LakeshoreImages.

I didn't do a count of trailers today, but there were not as many arrivals as yesterday. Still, I suspect we are well over 160 trailers. I did add a few photos to page 2 of the rally pages.

I did a bit of work on a broken awning (not mine) then headed to Sweet Darlene's for the Friday Fish Dinner. Excellent, as usual.

The next project is to make & bake the first blueberry pie.

Until tomorrow -

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Day 188, Thursday, February 8, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 7

Dancing Dog
Wednesday, February 8, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 7, 0 Miles, 4097.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

After breakfast I made a loop of the campground, then "helped" with a refrigerator problem that didn't get solved, then headed to Parker for blueberry pie supplies. I had to hit both Walmart & Safeway to find everything, and neither had my favorite wild blueberries, but I made do.

Bach at the campground I tried to do a count of trailers, and came up with 149. Since some have been & gone, and more will probably arrive tomorrow, it looks like a good year. There are little white trailers all over the place!

We made a video for Phil & Katherine, a couple that couldn't be here because of illness. If I find the YouTube link, I'll add it. The new photos have been added at the 11th Annual Quartzsite Gathering, Page 2.

A few more photos of the 5:00 happy hour, then I headed in to post the pages & make dinner, which was a salad & a Amy's Bean & Cheese Burrito.

Until tomorrow -

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Day 187, Wednesday, February 7, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 6

Around the Campground
Wednesday, February 7, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 6, 0 Miles, 4097.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

I made a couple of loops around the campground, then packed up the laundry & headed to the Main Street Laundromat to wash clothes & take a full size shower. The big news for the laundromat is blue towels. Now that isn't really all the earth shattering, but they have had brown towels for the last three years, so it is news.

Back at the trailer I fought with the bed (and won) then sat out & read for a bit. I have a "Take or Trade" table I set up for books, but it has also been used to let others get rid of stuff. My plan was to get rid of the already read books, but people keep dropping off ones that I haven't read, so I'm gaining, rather than getting rid of stuff.

I started a second page for the rally photos since the first was getting a bit large.

Five of us went for an early dinner at the Mountain Quail. Wednesday is their Country Fried Chicken special, a huge chicken breast cooked the same way country fried steak is cooked. Excellent, and much approved by all. Now none of us can move, and probably won't need breakfast tomorrow.

Until tomorrow -

Day 186, Tuesday, February 6, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 5


Tuesday, February 6, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 5, 0 Miles, 4097.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

I keep starting the page lately with "What a great day in Quartzsite", but what else to say? I would be nice if it was a bit warmer overnight & cooler at the middle of the afternoon, but after hearing from my son that he had to snowblow again, I'll take this.

Lots of trailers showed up today, and registration started around 2:30 when Earl arrived with the buttons. By 4:30 when it ended, 70 trailers were registered, and there are many late arrivals & some that have been here, but haven't stopped in. It wouldn't surprise me to find there are 100 or more by the official start date of Friday.

I made a couple of loops around the area, taking photos of people & trailers when I couldn't find people, dogs or parrots. The usual 5:00 happy hour, complete with music is underway as I type this page. Again, many more photos at the Rally Page, and today's LakeshoreImages page.

I did want to add a star circle I shot last night.  I like the combination of the circle & the traffic on I 10.

Dinner was a couple of chicken empanadas, the rest of the asparagus, and the last of the Kendall-Jackson Pinot Noir, which I could easily get used to, and probably won't be able to find when I get back east.

Until tomorrow -

Monday, February 5, 2018

Day 185, Monday, February 5, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 4

Happy Hour
Monday, February 5, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 4, 0 Miles, 4097.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

A very warm day at Dome Rock. I made a couple of loops around the campground taking photos, then spent time reading in the shade of my chair. I haven't made a count, but at least 20 new trailers arrived during the day. Tonight is the first of the evening happy hour concerts. Since they are right in front of my trailer, I get to enjoy the music without a long walk to the site. Of course, it I want quiet, that is a problem, but since I enjoy the music, no problems!  Many more photos have been added at the Rally page.

Dinner was Chicken Tacos made with left over chicken thighs from yesterday, coleslaw, and some brisket from Greg.

Until tomorrow -

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Day 184, Sunday, February 4, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 3

Some Early Arrivals
Sunday, February 4, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 3, 0 Miles, 4097.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

I'm going to get tired of saying another nice day at Quartzsite, but when I Facetimed with friends back in Binghamton, NY they showed my photos of the snow on the ground & still falling, so just about anything here is a nice day. 81°F and a light breeze to keep one feeling cool.

I made a garbage run to the LTVA, then stopped at the Roadrunner grocery store for water. Of course I picked up more than that, including a couple of chicken thighs and asparagus for dinner. Quartzsite still seems just about as crowded as ever. Not as bad as during the Big Tent week, but there is still a wait at the dump station, and long lines at the grocery store checkout.

Back at the campground I talked with a bunch of people, helped diagnose a water pump leak & pop riveted a door handle, then read for a bit snacking on Doritos & strawberries (hey, I never said I lived on a healthy diet). A bit later I made a loop around the lower part of the campground taking a few photos. I started a rally page that I'll add to over the week. I usually don't start the rally page until the "official" early start date, but since there are over 40 trailers already here, I started it today. I also posted today's photos at my LakeshoreImages journal page.

As I mentioned, dinner was a chicken thigh & a large bunch of asparagus, and a glass of Kendall-Jackson Pinot Noir.

Until tomorrow -

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Day 183, Saturday, February 3, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 2

Saturday, February 3, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 2, 0 Miles, 4097.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

A nice day at Quartzsite, with overnight temperature of 48°F and a daytime peak of 83°F. Hard to believe it was February. The last time I spent February in Oswego was 2013 & I had to shovel my roof (the house, not the trailer). I also figured out that today makes 6 months on the road. Not my longest trip, but one of the longer ones.

I walked around the campground for a bit, saying hi to some old & new friends, then did some rivet work on a Casita. The trade is I got to learn how to do it while working on someone else's trailer. All went well, although it is definitely a two person job.

After another loop of the campground, it was time for dinner, spaghetti & meatballs.

Until tomorrow -

Friday, February 2, 2018

Day 182, Friday, February 2, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ

Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ

Friday, February 2, 2018 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, 172.3 Miles,4097.3 Towing Miles For the Trip

I got a fairly early start (for me) leaving the campground at 8:45. I should have stopped at El Centro for gas, but seemed to remember some less expensive stations a bit further down the road. Well, as my low fuel light was flashing, I pulled into the Palo Verde Gas Station & paid $4.30 per gallon. So much for planning!

I stopped at the Blythe Social Security office to pick up my 1099SS form to start my taxes. The usual 2 hour wait for a 2 minute meeting, but since they don't do them on line, I don't have much in the way of choices.

I pulled into Dome Rock at Quartzsite around 4:00 AZ time. There are still about 8 large RVs in the area we usually put the headquarters trailers. I talked with them, and while they are nice people, they are planning on staying through the rally. I set up just West of them. There is still quite a bit of room, but it will have to be to the West of our usual location. I now have to get back into the habit of saving electricity & water. Full hookups were nice, but I won't see them for a couple of weeks.

The Goodyear blimp went by, so, of course, I had to take a photo. Photos at today's LakeshoreImages page.

I wandered around talking with some of the other early arrivals, then headed in to make dinner. Feeling lazy, I just made a couple of cashew butter & jelly sandwiches with chips & cottage cheese.

Until tomorrow -

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Day 181, Thursday, February 1, 2018 - Agua Caliente County Park, CA, Day 4

Thursday, February 1, 2018 - Agua Caliente County Park, CA, Day 4, 0 Miles, 3925 Towing Miles For the Trip

I did manage to get yesterday's web page & Blogger posts sent out this morning, but the internet has been coming & going all day. When it is here, it isn't too bad speed wise, but you can't depend on it being available. I lost a couple of replies on forums, and had posting the eclipse images hang until the second attempt. Right now, it is down. I've been listening to XM Radio since even when the internet is up, it is too slow for streaming audio. This morning it was NPR, but since XM doesn't carry Morning Edition of All Things Considered, news is limited. Most of the day was spent listening to the Grateful Dead channel. I never appreciated their music when I was younger; am I the only 73 year old that loves their music?

I didn't do much today other than walk around the campground watching all the new arrivals setting up. I did make another trip to the "spa" then headed for the showers.

I have to say that while the showers are large enough, although the floor of the drying area gets wet, the water conservation showerhead was terrible. They are pay showers, $.50 for 4 minutes, $1.00 for 8. It takes eight, 2 to wash and the remaining 6 to rinse (softened or soft water, I can never tell which). The problem with the showerhead is all it produces is a cold mist, even with the faucet all the way to hot. I might be willing to live with that using free showers, but if I'm paying for it, I expect hot water, and a strong enough stream to rinse the soap off. So, for the first time on the trip, I got out my own showerhead & temporarily replaced the mist showerhead. I had to turn down the hot water, so in the long run, I probably saved them money heating water. In any case, I'm clean & rinsed!

The light both yesterday and this evening is pretty on the hills to the north. I'm holding off on adding the photo here since the Blogger post is very slow posting.  You can see it at today's LakeshoreImages page.

Dinner was a turkey Bubba Burger & the rest of the rice & broccoli.

Until the Next Internet Connection -

Day 180, Wednesday, January 31, 2018 - Agua Caliente County Park, CA, Day 3

Wednesday, January 31, 2018 - Agua Caliente County Park, CA, Day 3, 0 Miles, 3925 Towing Miles For the Trip

While it started out cloudy, it cleared up for some good images of the eclipse. Starting at 3:00AM, I sat in the trailer & read, getting out for a photo every 20 minutes. Climbing out of the trailer I bumped the tripod during the "red" images (it gets dark when the moon goes away) & there wasn't enough light to refocus, so those images are a bit soft, but overall, it was worth staying up until 6:00AM to take the photos. Even the temperature cooperated - it was in the high 50's overnight. I didn't get to shoot the end of the eclipse - both the mountain & dawn got in the way.

I went to sleep at 6:00AM, did my 7:00AM & 7:30AM eye drops, then slept until 10:00AM.

You may not get to see these images for awhile. As of last night, the internet went away, both AT&T & Verizon. Both show a connection, with Verizon showing 3G, but no data is available on either.

Thursday, 2/1 - The internet is back, at least for a bit, so I'm posting yesterday's page.  Unfortunately, although the website page loaded, I have not been able to add a photo to today's post here on Blogger, so you will have to go to yesterday's LakeshoreImages page to see them.

Until the Next Internet Connection -