Thankfully Sunday’s cold north wind abated sometime in the night but it was still cool early this morning at 43F when I took Pheebs out about 5:30 a.m. With that thought in mind it was nice knowing we were heading for warmer weather today.
LOADING A FINAL FEW THINGS INTO THE RIG THIS MORNING
Loaded up a few last items in the rig this morning, backed it out & hooked on the Jeep. It was 9 a.m. as we rolled the big wheels through our south gate. After a stop for propane at Congress’s B&B garage we pointed the nose west on highway 71 & we were off & gone on a beautiful sunny windless morning.
HARQUAHALA MOUNTAIN STRAIGHT AHEAD
I-10 ABOUT 10 MILES EAST OF QUARTZSITE & A LOOK AT A FEW RV’S ALREADY THERE
Always a nice relaxing & scenic drive across the flat desert valley floor all the way to I-10. Again, very impressed with how nice this rig drives. And quiet too. We rolled into Quartzsite just before 11 & headed straight for our traditional stop at McDonald’s for coffee & a couple sweet chicken Chile wraps. (I’m giving up burgs) Fuel stop beside McDonald’s at the Pilot gas bar. $2.92 a gallon. Filled the rig up for $171.00 & what a treat that was compared to what we had to pay for gas coming to the southwest last month. Twenty miles away in Blythe California gas was $3.62 a gallon.
ALWAYS INTERESTING THINGS TO BE SEEN IN & AROUND QUARTZSITE ARIZONA
Didn’t feel like Interstating it today so we hauled ourselves off I-10 just west of Blyth onto highway 78 heading south through Ripley, Palo Verde, Glammis & Brawley. This was our third time using this route & I’d recommend it to anyone. Twenty miles of green irrigated farm land borders the Colorado River in a few spots. Good road & very little traffic plus this is a fun road to drive with it’s smooth roller coaster gulley whomps just east & west of the Ogilbe Road T-intersection. If you get up enough speed you can leave your stomach behind you:))
VERY MUCH AN AGRICULTURAL AREA SOUTH OF BLYTH
COTTON FIELDS WITH WHAT I SUSPECT IS A COTTON HARVESTER
DESERT SCRUB LANDS BETWEEN BLYTHE’S AGRICULTURAL AREA & THE IMPERIAL SAND DUNES AHEAD
A NOD TO JEAN & SKIP DOWN OGILBE ROAD THERE & A FEW GULLEY WHOMPS AHEAD ON OUR WAY TO GLAMMIS
But here’s the best part of this drive. The Imperial Sand Dunes run through this area for about 5 miles west of Glammis & it’s like driving through a Lawrence Of Arabia movie. Sweeping sand dunes on both sides of the road wander off into a clear blue sky in places. A few dune buggies today but on the week-ends this is a popular California playground for young & old alike with hundreds if not thousands of ‘Duners’ racing around in their various modes of off road transportation. We have been through here half a dozen times over the years seeing the dunes criss-crossed in every direction with countless tire tracks in the sand. Today was nice though because recent winds had already erased many tracks & smoothed out the dunes into a soft blanket covering of undisturbed sand. How nice to see the dunes in their natural state instead of the usual turfed up state.
IMPERIAL SAND DUNES DEAD AHEAD
We used Brawley’s new by-pass for the first time today & wound our way around Brawleys northeast end catching highway 111 north. We knew there was a rest area just south of Calipatria so stopped in there to top up our fresh water tank. There is a dump facility here as well & we have used this stop half a dozen times over the past 8 years. Unfortunately California is closing this nice big rig friendly rest area in 2015. Is it another California cut back or is it one of the first steps in a planned shut-down of Slab City just 12 miles to the north.
AT A STOP SIGN WE CAUGHT OUR REFLECTION IN THE REAR WINDOW OF 5TH WHEEL >>>
We are always amazed at the amount of smog we see in this area of California every year. It is mainly farm land here so figure all that smog has to be riding the prevailing westerly winds blowing over the mountains from the coast where Los Angels, San Diego, San Francisco & a whole host of cities, towns & suburbs lay densely packed between the ocean & the mountains.
AT A REST AREA SOUTH OF CALIPATRIA TOPPING UP OUR FRESH WATER TANK
We’re very familiar with the Slabs so knew exactly where to go & un-hook the Jeep. Same place as last year right in front of the little blue building church just a few hundred yards west of Solar Mikes. A quick ride around in the Jeep looking for an applicable boondocking site saw us once again pull into the very same site we had the second last time we were here back in 2012. Nobody near us & we are far from where the bulk of Slabbers live. Lots of room for Pheebs to run.
Slab City has a strong ‘Eeeeeek’ factor. Depending on what you know about the Slabs & your level of open mindedness & understanding you just may drive in here, have a look around & quickly go ‘Eeeeeek’ & hightail it right back out of here again. That’s understandable for many folks. But if you have an ingrained sense of adventure, a happy hippy background, a left over streak of rebellious nature & a twist of the bizarre you will understand the Slabs & all it’s Slabbers. Lots of colorful characters scratching out an existence here in an almost uninhabitable scrub filled desert surrounding. It’s just one of those phenomenal places like no other.
FOUND US THE SAME SPOT WE WERE AT BACK IN 2012
We’ll be up early & over to Solar Mikes Sunworks sometime around 8 a.m. I imagine by Tuesday night at this time we might have some kind of idea what has gone amiss with our inverter & other electrical anomalies in our coach. We’ll see how it goes. We are expecting to be here a week if not more. It will all depend on what Mike can find out tomorrow.
I wonder how many folks know RV boondocking pioneer Tioga George is a cancer survivor & came very close to losing his life to that insidious disease nearly a dozen years ago. George talks about that in his latest post entitled, ‘THE TRAIL’.
And here’s a must read from a fellow Canadian blog poster entitled, ‘DIARY OF A HEART PATIENT - PART 1. This fellows heart surgery just occurred a couple weeks ago & he has a well written post about what led up to the surgery, the surgery itself & how he feels about it now that it’s over. And how did he feel about the medical care he received. In summing up his thoughts I particularly liked this line he wrote…’I think managing your own attitude is a big part of it’. Read this fellow’s post to the end. He has some good advice for the rest of us regardless of what our medical problems may be. You can also find this fellow’s blog on our sidebar entitled, ‘Seasons In The Valley’.
GROANER’S CORNER:(( Trying to control my dry hair, I treated my scalp with olive oil before washing it. Worried that the oil might leave an odor, I washed my hair several times. That night when I went to bed, I leaned over to my husband and asked, "Do I smell like olive oil?" "No," he said, sniffing me. "Do I smell like Popeye?"