Lazy Daze are one TOUGH rig!!

After spending the holidays with my family, I flew back to Reno on 1/2.  I had left my rig at the airport just like I did last year.  Only problem was that the weather this year was much harsher then last year.  When I got to the rig I noticed that the heater was not running.  I had set it on a low temp (about 55) to keep the rig warm inside.  I checked the lights and none of them worked as well.  My house batteries were completely dead.  BUMMER!!!

The truck battery was OK so I started it and drove the 2 miles to the Reno RV Park where I was able to hook up to their electricity.  I also noticed that my propane tank was empty so I had that filled up.  Now I had both electricity and heat.  I turned on the water pump for just a second to see if it was working but heard nothing so switched it off immediately.

None of my SeaLevel gauges worked so I couldn’t check any levels.  I basically had to thaw out everything to get it working.  The problem was it was late in the day and I had a doctor’s appointment in the morning.  So I turned on the heater to 70 and left it running all night.  By the way the temperature got down to 6 degrees in Reno that night.

In the morning, the gauges were still not working.  I headed out to the doctor and took care of that and then stopped by Jiffy Lube and had the truck serviced before I left Reno.  Then I was on the road to warmer temperatures.  I made it to Beatty, NV which is about 100 miles north of Las Vegas.  The camp host said it was only going down to 20 degrees.  Much warmer then Reno, but still not warm enough for me.

When I got up the following day I checked the gauges and sure enough everything was working as it should.  My levels even read the same as they did when I left Fernley way back on 12/24.  I couldn’t believe it.  I turned on the water pump and it even worked as it should.  AMAZING!!!!

My Lazy Daze is one tough rig to have survived that cold.  I had been following the weather in Reno while I was in Southern CA and I noticed that it snowed and the temps never got above 30.  I think two things happened while I was away.  The first was that I ran out of propane.  My tank only holds 7 gallons and I had it filled before I left.  Because it was so cold it used it all up.  Second, it snowed and the snow covered my solar panels.  It was so cold that even during the day the snow would not melt so the panels could not recharge the house batteries .  Since the heater was running to try and keep the temp at 55 it ran down the batteries.

I left Beatty, NV and headed 211 miles to Bullhead City, AZ where I will stay a couple of days with my brother-in-laws brother.  It will give me a chance to get organized and stocked up for my trip to Quartzsite.  It only got down to 30 here so it feels warm compared to Reno.  I can’t wait to get to Quartzsite.

2nd Year on the Road

On July 12, 2012 I just completed my second year of fulltime RVing.  I can’t believe I have been on the road so long.  So once again, as I did last year, I will summarized this fantastic year with some of the highlights.

Remember you can click on any pic then click again to enlarge.

Working in Texas

To start I was in Texas and decided to work for a month to help defray costs of traveling to Texas to see my family.  What a mistake that was.  It was 106 degrees and higher the entire month I worked.  Oh well I will definitely know better next time to stay away from there during the summer.

Grand Canyon of Texas

After my work duties were over I headed to Palo Dura State Park in northwestern Texas.  It is know as the Grand Canyon of Texas and a very beautiful place.  While there I hiked the Lighthouse Trail and took this pic of myself standing on the plateau in front of the lighthouse.

Taking advantage of my NM state pass

Then it was off to New Mexico where I wanted to take advantage of the last few months of my New Mexico State Pass.  My first stop was Clayton SP.

Then on to Sugarite SP, just south of the NM/CO border.  This next pic shows Lake Dorothy just north of Sugarite SP.

My next stop was Cimmaron SP and the town of Cimmaron.

Fulfilling a boy scout dream

I also visited Philmont Scout Ranch, which had always been a dream of mine ever since I was a Boy Scout.

More of beautiful new mexico

After that it was Eagle Nest SP, Coyote Creek SP (where I saw a bear), Storie Lake SP  and then on to Villanueva SP where I got my semi-annual haircut.  Finally it was off to Hyde Memorial SP.

Then in October I met up with all my good friends at the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta where I stayed and partied for 10 days.  Even had a balloon land on top of my rig.  HA!

After the Balloon Fiesta I drove south to Poncho Villa SP to enjoy a Escapees Chapter 21 Rally.  Of course that also included a trip to Palomas, Mexico where I had to have some dental work done and make sure the margaritas still tasted as good as always.

A visit to the Whitehouse

Next stop on my route was Canyon de Chelly (pronunced d’Shay).  Located on an Indian Reservation it is a beautiful place and a must see for anyone in that area of Arizona.  Of course I had to hike the Whitehouse Trail, which is so beautiful.

Monument Valley

From there it was to Monument Valley, UT.  Talk about a fabulous area, don’t miss out on seeing this.

On my way to Amazon

Then I drove north to Interstate 50.  It is known as the loneliest highway in America.  And believe me it really is.  You could drive for miles and miles and never see a car or truck in either direction.  You would not want to break down on this road.

My destination was Fernley, NV, where I worked for Amazon for 8 weeks.  By the way it was probably the hardest job I have ever had.  Thankfully the 8 weeks went by fairly fast, although it took a couple of months to get healed from the aches and pains I suffered at that job.  OUCH!!!  On top of that it was very cold as well.  Four degrees when I left there.

I then drove to Reno, NV and parked my rig and flew to SO CA to spend a week with my family over the holidays.  It was really great seeing everyone and getting caught up.  I even played some golf.  Actually I tried to play some golf.  HA!  What a joke!

Time to warm up

Then I hit the road to get out of that cold weather up north and drove down to Quartzsite, AZ.  There I met up with a whole bunch of Lazy Dazers (about 20 rigs at different times) and relaxed in the wonderful Arizona sunshine.  Of course I also saw the crazy RV show and even saw a concert by Paul Winer (the Naked Book Seller) although he was fully clothed.  Great show by the way with SRO.

With the help of all my friends I was able to upgrade my rig with new LED lighting, another 12v receptacle and an outdoor motion sensor light.

Next stop – Imperial Dam

In February I left Quartzsite and headed to Imperial Dam just outside of Yuma, AZ  I really enjoyed my stay there with more friends.  Got to do a lot of hiking in the desert.  Plus don’t forget the wild donkeys.  HA!

Heading south of the border senor!

Then it was south of the border to Mexico with the Harvest Host Wine and Whale Watching Tour.  What a fabulous trip that turned out to be.  Visited 5 wineries, with great wine tasting at each.  The wineries were located in the Valley of Gaudelope with very beautiful scenery around.  Also stopped in Ensenada for a day, where we had a great lunch down at the fish market and an opportunity to stock up on lots of great seafood.  Of course we also had to have some cervasa’s (brewskies) at Hussong’s Cantina.

Later visited La Bufadora (the blow hole).  Another very scenic spot.

The wineries were great plus the wine was even greater!  Even got to see a colt that was born that very day.  How exciting!

I am NOT an illegal alien!

After crossing back into the US I drove to Tamarisk LTVA where I stayed for a week and met some really wonderful people.  We hiked ever day in the desert and one day we were surrounded by Border Patrol cars who thought we were illegal aliens.  No comprende  Senor! What a trip that was!

One of my very favorite spots

After spending so much time with so many wonderful people, I needed a break and decided to head for one of my most favorite spots in the Clark Dry Lake bed of the Anza Borrego desert in southern California.  It is 7 miles outside of Borrego Springs.  This place is so peaceful and always gives me a chance to reflect on my future plans.  It was here where I made my resume on workamper.com and emailed it to various people.  Within 10 minutes I had a call for the job I would be working at this summer. More on that later.

Back to the coast

Then it was off to the west coast to Oceanside, where I parked my rig at the Elks Club and took the train up to Orange County to see family.  It was back and forth visiting different members of my family and it was great seeing my Mom.  Love you Mom!

Heading up north

Then it was time to hit the road and head up north.  My first stop was the Trona Pinnacles outside of Ridgecrest, CA.  It is like a trip to another planet.

From there it was off to the Alabama Hills just outside of Lone Pine, CA.  This has been one place I always dreamed of venturing to even before I had an RV.  An absolute MUST SEE.

From there it was off to Mona Lake, where I stayed for about 5 days and ventured around the area seeing the tufa’s at the edge of the lake and the weird cloud formations.

I also took a side trip to the old ghost town of Bodie, CA.  Much of the town is still intact as it was a hundred years ago.  Really neat and another MUST SEE.

Then I finally made it to Oregon where I stayed at Goose Lake SP, La Pine SP and finally Crooked River Ranch.

My workplace for the summer

I met up with my area managers who I would be working for the summer in Prineville, OR.  I am the camp host at the Ochoco Divide, a NFS campground.  It is on the summit (4,726′ elevation) of Hwy 26.  This campground is nestled among giant (200′) Ponderosa Pines among other pine trees as well.  I have now been here 2 months and love this job.  I get to meet a lot of interesting people and have lots of areas to hike in.

Well that about wraps up another fabulous year of my fulltime RV lifestyle.  There were some tough times (truck breaking down) and some great times (caravan trip to Mexico) as well as taking time out to see my family, which is very important to me.  I had lots of times spent with great friends and even some time to myself to ponder how lucky I am.

I almost can’t believe it has been two years since I have set out on the road.  I would also like to thank all my wonderful followers who have been with me as I experienced each and every day.  Every day is a new adventure.

What a week!

Weather has been very nice

It has been almost a week since my last post and I hope to post a bit more often.  The weather here in Central Oregon is getting really nice with a few drops of rain here and there.  There is some rain predicted for this weekend but nothing so far.

Visiting with my friend jack on his adventure across America

This has been a very exciting week for me.  To begin my friend Jack stopped in on his bike tour across America.  The Trans America Bike Trail goes right past me at Hwy 26.  If I am sitting outside I can here bicyclists talking as they stop for a break.  Ochoco Divide is at the summit and it is all downhill for 17 miles to Mitchell, OR.

Jack and I met back in 2010 when I toured the Columbus Historical Museum in Columbus, NM where he was workamping.  We have been best of friends ever since and always stay in touch with each other.  This year he started to fulfill his dream of bicycling across the US.

He got to my campsite around noon and we had a great time talking about old times as well as new.  After lunch and a big BS session, he headed on down the road so he could make it to Mitchell before nightfall.

Here is a pic of Jack ready to hit the road.  Good Luck Jack.  I will keep you posted on his travels when I here more.

And he is off to the wide open spaces of this great land.

Steve on his slower adventure across America

Just a few minutes before Jack left in “walks” Steve and his goat LeeRoy.  They are also traveling across the US but in a much different manner.  They are walking!  Steve decided to walk across America to raise funds to help his friend build an orphanage in Nairobi, Kenya.

 

When Jack told me he would be coming by my campground I went and bought two nice juicy rib-eyes to barbeque.  When Jack got here he mentioned that he was a vegetarian.  Since I had this extra steak I invited Steve over for dinner.  I could have invited LeeRoy as well, but he is a vegetarian also.  We had a good time talking about his adventures as well.  He started out in Seattle and is going to Times Square.  People notice him wherever he travels.  I can’t imagine why!

You can read up on Steve and his travels at needle2square.com

Checking out Prineville

Wednesday was my day off and I felt just like going into Prineville and checking it out.  I usually only stop at a few places to do shopping, gas and propane so I really haven’t gotten the feel for the town.  As I was turning onto Main Street I saw a green LD coming toward me.  I didn’t think too much of it as I have seen a guy with a green LD pulling a boat.  More about that later.

I found a good parking spot and decided to do some walking.  I was looking for a good book on the flora and fauna of Central Oregon so I headed to the bookstore.  I wasn’t able to find what I was looking for but just decided to window shop.  Then I looked up and saw the Bowman Museum across the street.  That was a MUST SEE.  It was a small but very neat museum that showed life in Prineville since way back when.  They had a lot of interesting railroad displays and also a great display on the Prineville baseball team at the turn of the century.  NEAT STUFF!

I then saw the Prineville Men’s Wear Store that was rich in boots, outdoor jackets, and lots of western wear.  I saw a pair of boots in there I just had to have, so guess what.  I done bought them.

After finishing up on my walking tour through Prineville I had a great lunch at the Tastee Treat.  I have eaten there before and every thing is great.  The service, the food and all the old codgers telling all their stories.

Meeting a blog follower

After returning from Prineville, I got settled in and made a campfire.  Then Stephany came by to introduce herself.  She was the LD I saw in Prineville as I was turning.  She owns a Lazy Daze and lives in Salem, OR.  She mentioned that she had been following my blog and right away I knew she was a very smart lady.  She just decided to come up and see how the campground up here was like.  I tried to convince her that she needs to come down to Quartzsite in the winter and meet up with our group and have a ball as we do every year.

Generations meeting for the first time

I also wanted to show you a picture of my wonderful family.  My grand-kids Eric and Rachael were visiting my son out in California.  They stayed at my sister’s home one night and went and met their Great Grandmother for the first time.

From l to r my grandson Eric, my sister Bev, my Mom, my granddaughter Rachael and finally my son Curt.  It was great they could all get together.  I just wish I could have been there as well.

More Quartzsite Happenings

WIN’s Ice Cream Social

Saturday Andrea and I drove over to the WIN’s (Wandering Individuals Network)  Ice Cream Social off Palomas Rd north of Quartzsite.  The WIN’s had invited all the LOW’s (Loners on Wheels), Escapee SOLO’s and the Escapees Boomers groups over as well.  They had lots of ice cream and it was really a fun time.  I did catch up with a few of my friends in the LOW’s group and it was fun chatting with them.

Final Upgrades to “The Breeze”

I finally purchased a couple more of the LED lights to go into my rig.  That will be the last of my purchases for this winter.  John installed my RV Motion Sensor light which replaced my existing porch light.  Later he adjusted it so that it wasn’t too sensitive.

Roger installed the LED lights that replaced the fluorescent tubes.  What a difference.  One LED gives off more light than two fluorescents.  Thanks go out to both Roger and John for all their help.

Sunset and last campfire

We had our last campfire and burned up the remainder of the wood that John supplied from his property in Colorado.  We sure had a lot of campfires from all that wood.  I also took a pic of the sunset.

Sunrise and farewell

I got up early to bid farewell to all the people who were leaving this morning.  I even got to see this beautiful sunrise.

There were six people and three dogs who departed this morning.  They were Ed and Carol (and gopher), John and Linda (and Sadie), Roger, and finally Steve (and Jiggs).  We all had a wonderful time together and they will be missed.  Annie and Rick (and Dweezle) were going to leave but Rick was feeling much better from whatever was ailing him and the day was so nice they decided to stay another day.

Tonight at our Happy Hour was Ann and Jerry, Chuck and Beverly, Annie and Rick, Andrea and I.  We had a nice time but it was a bit quieter.

RV Show and Paul Winer Concert

We just couldn’t wait

The RV Show started on Saturday 1/20 and everyone said they were going to wait until either Monday or Tuesday before going in order to avoid the crowd.  But guess where everyone was on Saturday.  We were all in the big tent of the RV Show.  HA! We were just like little kids on Christmas day after Santa had delivered our gifts.   Everyone had to see what was the latest and greatest thing to spend our money on. Some of us had made lists of those items we wanted to purchase.  Others just wanted to see what the vendors were selling.  I couldn’t take many pics because it was so crowded.  I will try to go back and take a few of the interesting exhibits.

This pic shows Annie driving Rick, Andrea and myself to a spot close to the big tent.  We didn’t want to walk too far with all the good stuff we might purchase.

As you can see the big tent was packed with people.  It was hard to get up close to vendors but where there’s a will there is a way. Nothing was going to stop us from those LED lights, soups, dips for the happy hour, etc. etc. etc.  The big thing at the show seemed to be the LED lights.  I even saw food vendors who were also selling them.  After all you have to be able to see what you are eating.

Dogs want to see the show too

I got this pic of a Corgy for my sister who also owns one.  Her Corgy is named Lando and is a great dog.

Saturday was a very windy day so I took this pic to show the flags of the big tent flapping in the wind.

This is outside the big tent with more vendors surrounding it.  I felt sorry for them as they had to endure the brunt of the wind and dust that was blowing.

Taking care of business

On Monday I had to dump my tanks and refill with propane.  Normally it is an easy task and only takes a few minutes.  But not at Quartzsite while the RV Show is going on.  I got there about 1:30pm and the line was not too long, but it was still about a 45 minute wait.  Her is a pic of the line at the dump station.

I then drove into the RV Pit Stop in town and filled up with propane.  It is literally just like a pit stop in a NASCAR race.  They get you in and out of there in a matter of minutes.  They are very organized.

Always nice meeting new friends

This is a pic of my neighbor and new friend Nancy of the Nancy’s Road Trip blog .  She was heading over to the WIN’s (Wandering Individuals Network) which is a singles group off Plomosa Road in the free BLM area.  Andrea and I have planned on going over there on Wednesday to meet the WIN’s.

Paul Winer Concert

The big excitement today was the Paul Winer Concert at the QIA in town.  If you don’t know, Paul Winer is the naked bookseller at the Readers Oasis Bookstore.  He is also a very talented musician and used to play in clubs and bars for many years.  Today he put on 2 concerts and they were both totally sold out.  It was a great time that everyone enjoyed.  It was especially nice since it only cost $5 per ticket.

This next few pics shows he and his fellow musicians playing.  They were really great!!

Finally I took a video of his last song.  This guy is really full of energy and has a real gift of gab as well.

Quartzsite Happenings

Warm and sunny days

I just wanted to update you on all the latest happenings in Quartzsite.  The weather has been getting much warmer with temps being in the low 70’s during the day and high 30’s at night).  The last couple of days have really been beautiful with calm days and no clouds.

A real jackrabbit

A few of us decided to walk into town to the produce market next to the post office.  They have some really nice produce.  On the way as we were walking down Old Yuma Road, Frank and Cookie drove by with their dog Buddy in the back seat.  That really set off Sadie (John and Linda’s Labradoodle).  She wanted to see Buddy.  She started jumping up and down like a jackrabbit.  I took a couple of pics but it didn’t really show how she was jumping.  At times all 4 paws were off the ground.

 A neat toyhauler

On the way we ran into this guy who had a really neat red RV.  He happened to be working on his engine so I stopped by to have a talk.  His rig was actually a custom built toyhauler with room for a small car under the back bedroom.  He even gave John and I a tour of the inside.  It was very spacious and very well built.  We didn’t recall seeing any windows but after looking at the outside pic there is a couple.  They must have had the blinds closed because everything looked rather dark.  Not like our bright Lazy Daze rigs.

Wash day and lunch at the Grubstake

The following day several of us headed to the Laundromat and then off to the Grubstake for lunch.  It is getting more crowded every day as it approaches time for the RV Show which starts on Saturday 1/21.  We were all lucky to get to the Laundromat without having to fight too many people for either a parking space or a washer/dryer.  In a few days it will be an absolute madhouse all over town.  Linda and I walked down to the bakery about 2 blocks from the Laundromat while our clothes were washing.  As you approached the building you could smell all the wonderful things they were baking.  I picked up a loaf of freshly made French bread and a couple of apple fritters, while Linda got a loaf of bread and a couple of bear claws.  Then we returned and finished our laundry.

We all planned to meet at the Grubstake for lunch later on.  Their food is sooooo gooood!!!  Most of us had the $5 fish special and Roger had the hamburger.  I didn’t hear any complaints about the food whatsoever.  It is a great place to eat.  Again we were able to walk right in and get a table.  I wonder what it will be like in a few days.

Improvements on my rig

On Friday John and Rodger came over to install a 12v receptacle under my dinette.  Previously I had to hook up my inverter on the other side of my rig and run an extension strip to my dinette to power my computer and charge my phone, camera and both of my Kindles.  This is a pic of John installing the receptacle.

That is one of the GREAT benefits of meeting up with other Lazy Daze folks.  Everyone has great ideas and they are willing to help you with improvements on your rig.  Here is a pic of my inverter at work in its new spot.  This is so much better than dragging the 10 ft extension across my floor.

A great wiener roast 

That evening we planned a wiener roast for dinner.  We had all the hot dogs and fixin’s and a lot of GREAT side dishes.  It was a super meal and everyone had a good time.  Then we all sat around and had great conversations about anything and everything.

I think everyone has decided to stay home for the weekend and refrain from going to the big tent which contains the RV Show.  I went last year on the first day and it was way too crowded.  So we will probably head up there either Monday or Tuesday.  I will take lots of pics to show you what is going on.

Pinata Party – Ole

POI Instructions for our Garmin GPS

A couple of days ago Ed, Jerry, Beverly and myself all got together in my rig so that Ed could show us how to add POIs (Points of Interest) to our Garmin GPS.  We were all able to connect to my 3G/4G Hotspot to get on the Internet.  Ed went through all the steps explaining everything at each step.  Once we had everything set up it was quite easy.  I was able to add Wal-Mart, Reststops, and Pilot Gas stations to my Garmin.  Then he showed us how to access it on our Garmins.  How cool!!!  Thanks Ed for being so patient with us.  Here is a pic of all of us (except me) working on this project.

Later on everyone made a mass hike to the dumpster about 1/4 mile down the road.

More shopping

We also did a bit of shopping on Kuehn St.  Lots of vendors.  I bought an Indian Taco at Ed’s advice and was it ever good.  Shredded beef on Indian fry bread.  Very good!  I wish I had taken a pic of it.

Then we also did some shopping in the Tyson Wells Flea Market. I ran into a neat collection of old bottles.

One of the vendors had this sign up. I guess we are all in the same boat. I would like a few of them myself.

Before we left I picked up my license plate holders.

Pinata party

That night we had our pinata party. Chuck and Beverly had been at Algadones, Mexico and purchased a pinata and also some tamales. Everyone furnished something for dinner and happy hour that had a Mexican theme. Here is a pic of our pinata.

After dinner we all tried to break the pinata.  We all had a great time and Linda finally broke it and candy was everywhere.  I put together this small movie of everyone trying to break the pinata.  We all had a great time.

I took this pic of the Big Q on the side of the hill.