Monday, February 28, Gilbert Ray Campground, Tucson, AZ - 12.1 Miles, 4,577 Miles for the Trip
While at $46.00 per night, Desert Trails is expensive, it really is not designed for over nights. The price for long term stays is more reasonable (although still expensive) at $685 per month including electricity. They have a huge library, game rooms & outside game areas, a couple of shops, and weekly entertainment. Not my type of place, but it looks like those there for the long term were quite pleased with the place.
I slowly packed up the trailer & hooked up to the truck - I have an 11:00AM checkout time & a 12:00 noon arrival time at Gilbert Ray, 12 miles away. When I got there I spent 15 minutes trying to find my reservation. They have the strangest reservation system for the campground that I've seen in all my travels. You are actually reserving with Pima County, including fair booths, exercise programs, etc. They don't email you an actual reservation; only a link to a county website with which you must make an account, but no easy link to any reservations. The link does have your permit number and tells you to review it for accuracy, but there is no way to view your permit (at least that I can find).
They couldn't find my reservation & I was off by one site in my notes - I had C9 & when they finally found it I was/am in C8. They have the correct leaving date, but my arrival was listed as yesterday (which would have made it 5 days so I didn't appear on today's check in list). No where in anything I can access tells me my actual dates (or what I paid) but the check out sheet on the post has the correct day for leaving. I checked with my Credit Card statement, and evidently, I did pay for 5 days, so one of us messed up. No way I could have caught the problem because, again, they do not send you a copy of your reservation.
I lied - you can find your receipt & reservation dates. Just in case anyone else has a problem with reservations here at Gilbert Ray, here is how you find it: Go to the Pima County web page, log in (You do have an account, don't you?). Go to "Historic Transaction Data", find the date you paid for the site (hope you remember that), click on the "Receipt Number" (for "Permit", not "Reservation"), and on the Permit page click on "Permit #" and it connects you to a page that shows start & stop dates. By the way, the amount paid shown on that page is incorrect - it does not include the processing fee. As I said, a strange system.
Anyhow, I'm in site C8, an electric only site (as are all in Gilbert Ray) for $21.17 per night, $26.47 if I include what I paid for the extra night. The backgrounds for the sites in loop C are not as pretty as those in the top of loop A, but still lots of cactus around the site. A long walk to the only bathroom serving the loop. No showers, but they do have an outdoor hot water hair &dishwashing station (at least that is what the sign says).
After setting up I went for my morning walk even though it was 12:30 by then. Found 3 Escape 19's in loop A, one of which is a campground host. I've met the other two on this and previous trips.
While walking, I listened to Raymond E. Feist's The King's Buccaneer, a very long, but interesting story (like most of his novels). I got back to the trailer I sat outside & read - current book is The Star of the Desert by Gordon Wallis. I'm having a tough time with the book - lots of mistakes & unbelievable plotting. I finished it and added it to my Yes/No field as a No. The great reviews on writing & story make me hesitate to believe any Amazon review. I started Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse.
I set up my welcome sign & a hummingbird feeder. It took about a 1/2 hour for a hummingbird to find it, but only one, and only one visit so far.
Dinner was a Bubba Burger, snap peas, & peaches. By the way, this batch of snap peas from Walmart, unlike the last bag, are stringless. Same bag...
Until Tomorrow -