Thursday, January 30, 2014

A Shower in Calif-Baby Shower that is


We have been enjoying the sunny, warm days of So Cal and AZ this moment. However, not good that we have had no rain and drought conditions. Hopefully we will get some rain in the next few months. Our money seem to rain out of our bank accounts as well this month. First we had to go down to San Diego to take the MH in for its annual checkup. Then over to Fontana to have the slide and the roof leak fixed as well as a few other things that even with some paid by our maintenance contract still added up those dollar bills. Another big expense came later in the month. More on that later. Oh well, comes with the territory. After a few days or so at Fontana, we headed over to San Mateo Campground, near San Onofre for a night's stay. We had plans to go to Quartzsite and Lake Havasu but first I had a baby shower to go to so this saves a long drive I would have had to take from Jojoba. So, on Saturday, the 18th, we left the campground with Joe driving the MH over to a Irvine shopping area while I drove to my sister Kristi's house for the baby shower for Kori. Baby Kayla will be arriving in February, but first a shower with lots of goodies brought for her. The shower was fun with a few games, lots of good food, good conversations and fun watching Kori open her presents. Nice to see everyone including Heather's sweet baby Amber who is waiting for her cousin Kayla to arrive.


After the shower I drove over to meet Joe and we hooked up the jeep to the MH and drove as far as the Indio are for an overnight stay at a Casino and then onto Dome Rock in Quartzsite for another overnight stay. Due to the holiday weekend, I couldn't get a reservation at Cattail Cove State Beach until Monday. The Big Tent Show in Quartzsite started on this weekend and there were thousands of R Vs everywhere boondocking or in the different parks in town. We went into the show and got some more led lights and some new outdoor chairs as our old ones are kinda of worn. We also took our hitch to the Blue Ox people who had a booth set up outside the tent area. Normally it cost over $100 including shipping to get a tune up for the hitch, but they were only charging $25. What a deal you say. Ha. More on that later. We'll pick it up on Friday when we return to Quartzsite for a rally we are attending then.

The next day we had the hour trip with me following in the jeep to Cattail where we had snagged a great spot right in the front near the water. The view below is from our large site. Didn't take any pictures other than the one below as we have been here a number of times. We had a good time. We set up our kayak with the sail and took it out a few times. Unfortunately there wasn't a lot of wind. In fact, I ended up paddling back up stream as there wasn't even wind enough to get us going. Still fun to be out on the water again. As we were near the town of Lake Havasu we took Savannah in for a few vaccinations she needed and the health certificate she needs for Mexico. We have gone to this vet a few times. When she was weighed we saw she is still gaining weigh and the doctor suggested she go on a diet to lose a few pounds or so. So no more people food and limited dog treats. Sorry Savannah.

Friday we left and drove back to Quartzsite to the road runner area where you can boon dock free for 14 days. We met up with the RV Driving School get together. Most of the people there are instructors, but some like us are just people who took the driving school lessons. We had a nice time, with the first night a happy hour with lots of appetizers and a pot luck on Saturday night.




We were having a nice chat on Saturday but had to cut it short to go back to the MH to watch the Stadium Game at Dodger Stadium with the Ducks and Kings playing hockey in 70 degree weather outside. Wish we could have been there. What an event. There are four stadium outdoor games being played by different NHL teams. Ours with such warm temps compared to the next one played in NY with snow coming down.

It was a success with our Ducks again beating our cross town rivals in a 3-0 shutout. We had beaten them previously on Wednesday's game at the Honda Center.

Well, we went to pick up our hitch and what a surprise. Our $25 deal cost us for $600 dollars as it was recommended we trade our old one in on a new one. We have had it about 10 years and it has a LOT of miles on it and so we decided to bite the bullet.

We drove over to Crystal Hill in the Kofa Wildlife Refuge to check it out for possible boondocking but the road is pretty bumpy for a unit our size. The next day we drove on the road to Palm Canyon, also in the Kofa area. It is a gravel road also but much smoother. We found a number of great spots.



There is a nice hike up into the canyon where the palm trees are located. Palm Canyon is the only place in Arizona where native palms, the California Fan Palm, are found. We were going to hike it but decided to wait as we thought we might move over this way in the MH.

As most of the people in our group left Sunday and Monday and in fact, we are the only ones here as I write this on Thursday, we decided to stay in this spot until Friday. We will definitely keep the Palm Canyon area in our minds for sometime in the future. Joe is busy working as we won't have much or any internet access while in Mexico. Friday we will make another one night stop in Yuma to do some WalMart shopping and prescriptions for Joe. Then we are staying 2 nights at Silver Strand in Coronado and then meeting up on Monday at Chula Vista with the Mexican Connection for our trip down to Escenada. I should have a post or two on that trip once we get back to the states.

Just us


Our nearest neighbor


Another Desert Sunset



Thursday, January 2, 2014

The Rest of 2013

Looking back, it is amazing how many great places we stayed in our beautiful western part of the US. May brought some of the more well known spots, such as Bryce Canyon and Zion where we have been before. Though this time we were able to get a campsite right in Zion for four days. That was neat as we could walk to the Shuttle that takes you around the park where we had a number of good hikes. First we had gone to the Bryce Canyon area, boondocking a few days near Red Canyon and about 15 minutes from Bryce and then sometime at the beautiful RED Canyon which is aptly named. We explored Bryce and were even able to hike the Rim with Savannah one day.

Winchester Bay




View from Red Canyon Campground


Watchman Campground, Zion


Zion Visitor Center



We stayed a few days at Sandy Hollow a little north of Zion and explored Kolob Canyon, which is in the northern part of Zion and a place we had not been before.


Some changes in when we would return to So Cal for doctor appts, etc gave us 3 weeks to fill and we decided on the Grand Canyon, which for some reason we had not gone to. We were very happy with our decision as we were amazed at how , well, grand it is. Pictures don't do it justice. You have to see it in person. First we went to the North Rim, which actually opened the day after we arrived at the campground at Jacob Lake, about 40 miles from the entrance to the National Park.




We stayed at another national forest camp near the South Rim, not far from the entrance for more WOW moments.






We went back to So Cal for a few weeks as I mentioned we would. We had gotten a phone call from Jojoba that a spot was available and decided it was a good time to get one as we were going to be in the area anyway. We went straight there, picked a spot and spent time transferring stuff from our storage unit in Irvine to the one on our lot. We also spent time with family and attended several block parties and happy hours in the short time in Jojoba. However, the road called and we answered heading up north by way of Hwy 395. We have traveled this hwy many, many times but only spending time in Mammoth and Lake Tahoe. This time we stayed at new spots. We did spent some time in Mammoth for the 4th of July but at a new FREE campground not too far from town. Alabama Hills near Lone Pine was a special trip checking out the placed where hundreds of movies were filmed. We spent a few days at a great little boondocking spot overlooking Mono Lake where we would like to stay longer another time. We got in some good paddling and hikes as well.

Alabama Hills



Tuttle Creek Campground


Mt Whitney in the background


Mammoth area


Lake George, Mammoth



Mammoth 4th Parade


Hiking at Lake George


View from Mono Lake boondocking spot





We hit a couple more new spots on 395, Washoe State Park, near Reno and Eagle Lake, where we had a nice private boon docking spot.



Eagle Lake

Oregon and Washington were our next stops for the rest of the summer. We spent some time on the Oregon Coast, at Brookings, a nice county park, Huntley, inland and warmer, near Gold Beach and back to the colder coast at Cape Blanco State Park. It was beautiful but cold and wind caused us to again head a little inland to Edson Creek Recreation Area on the Sixes River.






Cape Blanco Lighthouse


Near our Edson Creek campground
Day at Bandon


A few more days at Winchester Bay and then we headed inland to Eugene and then a return trip to Silver Falls State Park, east of Salem, OR for some hikes to some of the 7 waterfalls in the PArk.



View from our site at Winchester


Swimming Beach at Silver Falls


Silver Falls falls



.Our next stop was Elochoman Slough Marina, which is in Cathlament, Washington, on the Columbia River, Another site on the water. While there took a drive one day into Long Beach another to the Farmers Market in Astoria.


The Marina


Astoria Bridge

We continued north to the the rain forest area of Washington, Lake Quinault, one of our favorite spots, where we got the prime site with beautiful view.


Our view at Lake Quinault


Hiking in the Rain Forest



We found a great place to stay for the week before and during Labor Day. South Beach Campground, near Klaloch, was awesome. Unfortunately our week was shorten due to heavy rains and a lot of leaking inside our MH. We spent the long weekend at the Escapees Resort, near Port Townsend.



South Beach



After the weekend, we headed back south to Oregon stopping at a city park near Portland on the Willamette and a return stop to Ashland, this time staying at Lake Emigrant.


On the Willamette


Lake Emigrant

We headed back to California with a few stops, including 10 days at one of our very favor spots, Avila Beach, then back to Jojoba. We enjoyed the rest of the year at Jojoba. Christmas was spent at Kristi and Brock's. My nieces and their family had other family to visit, but my Dad and our kids, along with George and Flea were there for a nice dinner. The Saturday after XMAS, we went to Honda Center with Kristi and Brock to see our Ducks win yet another home game. We want the CUP, Stanley Cup, that is. They are playing so good. We really miss having season tickets.


Pier near Avila Beach









Christmas Day



Our tree


Waiting for Santa

We spent a quiet New Year's with lobster tails and champagne dreaming what 2014 will bring in new adventures. Stay tune to find out.