Thursday, February 1, 2024

23 - 24 Trip to the Southwest, Day 109

Thursday, February 1, 2024 - Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ - 50 Miles, 3,452.3 Miles for the trip 

I stopped at Running Man gas station to top off the tank since gas this year is cheaper at Parker than Quartzsite. Currently $3.11 per gallon in Parker & $3.24 in Quartzsite. An uneventful drive down AZ 95 from Parker to Quartzsite, other than a very long 1 lane section of AZ 95 just north of Quartzsite. I was lucky - a 2 minute wait for the lane - a very long backup on the north bound side waiting for us to go through.

I picked out my part of Dome Rock. Hard to describe the location other than it isn't on "snob hill" or along Dome Rock Road, but at the south side of the Dome Rock Road area. I aligned the trailer north & south so that I could tip the solar panels if necessary. A photo:

My Site, Dome Rock

As you can see, it is a cloudy day. There is a storm that has moved off the coast & is just sliding by us. Very light rain off & on, but quite a bit of wind. Cool at 61°F, particularly with no sun & the wind. Few are sitting outside. There are already at least 20 fiberglass trailers spread across the area. So far I've seen Casitas, Scamps, Escapes, and one Big Foot & one Oliver. There are a few "Sun Blockers" still parked in the area, but fewer than 2022, the last time I was here.

After setting up the trailer, my hummingbird feeder (took less than 10 minutes for one to find it) and my name flag, complete with hummingbird lighted wind chimes, I took a short walk to say hi to folks. Back at the trailer I fired up my AT&T modem, got a usable (but slow) 6.1Mbps down & 6.6Mbps up. While not as fast as many other places, it sure beats the 600Kbps that Verizon was providing. Since Social Security posts their 1099's today, I was able to finish my 2023 income taxes on line. Free Tax USA is free for filing federal taxes and charges $14.95 for NY state. 

With enough wind to rock the trailer (although I haven't put my stabilizers down yet) decided to hold off on setting up the Clam. Tomorrow is predicted to be sunny, but it looks like there will be a couple of rainy, days over the next two weeks so I'll want it for outdoor cooking, and hopefully, need it for shade. 

I need to get used to living without hookups. While I have 300 amp hours of batteries, I tend to use quite a bit of electricity. In La Paz, with a 30 amp hookup, leaving the lights, the radio, etc on was no problem. Here even the small loads add up if you have a string of cloudy days. With the clouds & rain, my 360 watts of solar panels are currently cranking out between 0 & 1 watt. At that rate & what I am currently using (2.1 amps), my Victron shunt tells me I can go 6 days & 16 hours before the batteries are dead. I didn't bring my generator or external solar panel since most of the sites I'm staying at have services. The next 3 weeks will be dry camping.

I finished Kismet by Amina Akhtar, and as I mentioned, not my usual fare, but I did enjoy it. I started a J. A. Jance book, Blessing of the Lost Girls, her latest in her Sheriff Joanna Brady series. I preferred the Nevada Barr ranger series of books, but enjoy all of her novels (my read books database shows 50 of her books). It is fun to read books that take place in places you have been.

The rain is getting heavier - not any kind of storm, but you can hear it on the roof. It has cooled down to 58°F outside and 68°F in the trailer. Might be a good day to cook dinner in the oven!

Dinner was a Barber Foods Asparagus & Cheese Chicken and the rest of the Bush beans (cooked in the oven).

Until Tomorrow - 

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