Wednesday, February 23, 2011

RELAXING DAY IN THE DESERT WEST OF YUMA

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We are on California time now so we’ll have a slight adjustment period for a day or two as we move ahead one hour.

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MORNING WALK & NICE TO SEE TREES BIGGER THAN US AGAIN

As soon as the sun had cleared the tops of the Cargo Muchacho mountains this morning our rig was filled with warming rays of sunlight.  The abundance of yellow flowering creosote bushes cast long shadows across the desert floor.  Sun filtered through the larger green barked Palo Verde trees.  Skies to the east slowly turned from burnt orange to pale blue with not a cloud in the sky.  Off to our west we could see the high sandy ridge line of the eastern most reaches of the Great Imperial Sand Dunes.  Think, ‘Lawrence of Arabia when you think of the Imperial Sand Dunes.  We will be traveling right through them on our way to Borrego Springs shortly.

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THE DESERT HOLDS MANY MEMORIES, MYSTERIES & SECRETS

Listening to the Yuma news last night they talked about the yearly death toll in the sand dunes.  I was not surprised at the high number.  Lack of water for people? No!!  Exposure to the elements?  No!!  I will give you a hint.  Most deaths & injuries are young males…………  Mix immaturity, alcohol & speed together & you have come up with the answer.  These sand dunes are a playground to thousands upon thousands of people & especially the younger folks.  The majority of them are week-end warriors pouring out  of large cities to rip around in the sand dunes with their mechanical metal monsters.  No traffic lights, yellow lined divided highways, roads or caution signs out there.  No rules or regulations, just countless numbers of dirt bikes, dune buggies, ATV’s & whatever a motor, transmission, grease, oil & tires will produce.   Racing every which way at blinding & careless speeds these vehicles tear across the dunes.  The collisions at the tops of sand dunes are inevitable & bone busting.  But, it is the way it is here in California & like I’ve said before….it is the way of the wild & wooly west.

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No rigs or people near us at all but we can see a few RV’s about half a mile or more away & that is acceptable.  Heard a familiar sound in the sky on our walk & saw a low flying hang glider far off to the north.  His glider’s sail colors brought back instant memories of a year ago around now when myself & some other RV’ers had to race to the aid of a downed flyer who was in trouble with the big wind gusts picking up his machine & rolling it over.  You can see my blog about that incident at the Clark Dry Lake Bed near Borrego Springs Ca. on Feb. 19th 2010.  TODAY I HAD TO RUN VERY FAST 

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Our border collie Checkers needs a special kind of dog food that can only be bought at a Veterinarians.  We had an idea where the Vet was in Yuma yesterday but with our total 53’ length & heavy traffic I wasn’t into driving around trying to find it.  We decided to stay here at Ogilbe Road for a second night so unhooked the Jeep this morning.  Kelly headed the short 7 or 8 miles back into Yuma for the dog food & I’m sure some shopping:))

Can’t tell you how nice it is being back in full boon docking mode again out here in the quiet Yuma desert.  And especially after a couple days traveling & banging around in the city of Yuma.  Traffic, noise & people everywhere.  I like Yuma but a city is a city is a city!!  From I-8 you can see RV Park after RV Park as this is one of the most popular RV destinations in the Southwest.  Kelly & I both thank our lucky stars we have have chosen the RV boon docking lifestyle we have.  Might not be most people’s cup of tea but it sure is ours:))

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We received that Microsoft Streets & Tips email that so many others received as well last week.  I haven’t heard of any repercussions (trial offers) from it so we decided to send for our 5 copies today.  They will be delivered to the hardware store in Borrego Springs.  For any of you folks in the Borrego Springs area that is where you can get your stuff shipped to.  Just drop in & let them know you are expecting something.  Great little hardware store as well. 

Took my new Nikon D90 for a little desert walk this afternoon & quickly realized I had some more tweaking to do.  I have a preference for rich full saturated & punchy colors & shy away from that slightly overexposed brighter look.  I’m on the other side of the beam & prefer to underexpose my photos a bit & then work with them in Picasa 3.8 from there.

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With our recent slide problems the question has been asked, would it be better not to have slides in an RV?  My opinion on that is is a simple, ‘No!!’  Slide problems have diminished greatly from the early days & if you figure how many RV slides are used problem free every single day compared to the occasional slide problem there is no comparison.  It’s the old ‘plane crash’ syndrome.  Thousands upon thousands of flights every day you never hear about but as soon as a plane crashes, flying is touted as unsafe.  Personally, under our present configuration of 2 adults & 3 dogs I would never buy an RV without slides.  The daily advantage of extra space far outweighs an occasional, if ever slide problem.

Kelly was back to the rig about 2 with the dog food & said she never had any problems getting around Yuma.  Yuma reminds me of Sierra Vista a bit with it’s wide streets & low profile skyline.  We have always loved southwest architecture with it’s shapes, designs & bold colors.

Looks like we’ve got us a bit of weather heading into the area so we’re trying to decide whether to hunker down here west of Yuma or head for Borrego Springs.  Winds picking up here right now……..

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SO GREAT TO SEE THE COLOR GREEN AGAIN

GROANER’S CORNER:((     The eastern lady who was all ready to take a horseback ride said to the cowboy, “Can you get me a nice gentle pony?” “Shore,” said the cowboy. “What kind of a saddle do you want, English or western?” “What’s the difference?” asked the lady. “The western saddle has a horn on it,” said the cowboy. “If the traffic is so thick here in the mountains that I need a horn on my saddle, I don’t believe I want to ride.”  And did you hear about the bow legged Cowboy who was fired for not being able to keep his calves together.

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The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right now...... AL.

17 comments:

  1. Yuma looks like it has many great picture taking opportunities!!
    Glad to hear that the slide problems are not an issue for the moment!

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  2. I'm with you on slides, but for a slightly different reason: you get more windows, looking in more directions. I LOVE to lay in bed with my bedside window open, six inches from my face, feeling the breeze blowing in. Sitting on the couch or at the dinette, I have an expanded view thanks to the windows on the end of the slide. It's the next best thing to living outdoors! :)

    We're in Q at the moment, spending the night and picking up a new solar shade tomorrow morning. We'll be in Borrego Springs tomorrow afternoon. For a change, we aren't boondocking at Rockhouse Road - doing a trial run at an RV park instead, checking it out for a longer-term stay next winter. Shoot us an email when you arrive if you'd like to get together; we'll be there until either Sunday or Tuesday morning (plans aren't firm yet).

    Safe travels!

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  3. Completely agree with the benefits of slides.

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  4. Al, Just a minor terminology correction, "Hang Gliders" are non-powered and rely on natural lift to fly. Those powered wings with an engine & propeller you see out there in the desert are called "Ultralights".

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  5. I AM A LITTLE CONFUSED. WE LIVE IN TOMBSTONE AND HAVE BIG GREEN TREES ALL AROUND US. WAS THERE NOT ANY AT THE RANCH WHERE YOU WERE STAYING?

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  6. don't know when you are coming to Borrego (there is no wind tonight) the site with the oven was available when we went by today.

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  7. don't know when you are coming (there is no wind here tonight) the site with the oven was open today when we passed.

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  8. I can't understand why I didn't get that offer for the software, or maybe I did and didn't know it.
    We will be in Yuma on March 6th for a week at the fairground for the Gypsy Journal Rally. I can't say I'm looking forward to it.Guess I'm just gettin to old, plus all those low flying airplanes drive me nuts. Too many people Al...Enjoy your place of peace and quiet.

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  9. Don't know much about photography but what works for you seems to work for me so I will just continue to follow in your footsteps...well other than the fact I am a Canon fan.

    Enjoy the boondocking and remember if you get by Dogpound South we have room for a lonely traveler.

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  10. Al & Kelly: We are right there with you on the boondocking thing--and we have you two to thank for showing us the way! Enjoy your time in Borrego Springs. We don't have slides and are very comfortable in our rig but we only have one little Emmi dog.

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  11. Hi Al & Kelly,
    Love the pics :) Just a thought for you both, suppose to get "rain" sat/sun. We are moving to a concrete pad for the weekend, to avoid all the mud and jack problems, as we are boondockers like you two, but after last weekends storm ugggggg
    be safe
    phxmtngirl

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  12. We have opposing slides in the back of the Hiker and it sure opens up that space..and lots of windows..Glad you are back in the boondocking quiet mode...Travel safe...FYI, 2-6" of snow due here overnight...just great.

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  13. We love the extra space our slides give us, especially the 2 opposing slides in the living room and kitchen areas.

    I'm not surprised to hear about those ATV accidents as those guys run pretty wild out there in the desert.

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  14. You have done it again-landed in another great area!

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  15. Boondocking looks a lot more peaceful than being in a crowded campground.

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  16. We are kinda on the other end of the slide debate. Our rig is a widebody and has lots of big windows all around, but no slides. Both our folks have motorhomes with slifdes, but theirs feel dark and tunnel-like. Might just be the darker woodwork too and smaller windows.

    I guess we are happy with what we have, and we also have a one big huge wide open basement area .. not separate bins. So that is a plus.

    My mom used to think their slides were neat, until she jammed a scatter rug under the big one and burned out the motor. $900.00 for just the motor, not even labor. OUCH.

    We are gonna be entering Texas in about 15 minutes... coming from Wisconsin and looking for warmth and sunshine~!

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~
    Karen and Steveio
    (Our Blog) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard
    http://kareninthewoods-kareninthewoods.blogspot.com/

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