Monday, December 31, 2018

Imperial Dunes

The last day of 2018 started early when I headed over to Glamis to see if I could get a sunrise shot in the dunes. Although the picture I envisioned never materialized I did see some nice colours.

It was interesting that even though I was there before sun-up there were sand machines roaring through the dunes already. Yesterday I mentioned there were hundreds of rigs over by us, well over near the Glamis flats there were literally thousands of rigs spread for miles down the eastern side of the dunes. There is a stretch of these dunes north of Glamis that is a wildland so the dune system is protected from the marauding sand warriors up there I guess, although as I walked around it seemed like the wind pretty near erases most traces just overnight. I guess in a perfect world eventually vegetation would establish itself and these dunes would just become hills but that is probably not in the cards.

Other than the run to the Dunes it was a lazy day, I ran into pick up some smokes for Brenda and then just hung around camp the rest of the day. It clouded up pretty much and even some rain fell here and more over near Yuma, so it was an inside day and not much on the solar generating front either.

Sunday, December 30, 2018

The Eve of New Years Eve

A week or more has passed since I bored you with our adventures. We are still up on Ogilby Road enjoying the serenity and peace and quiet. Our nearest neighbours are 3 or 400 yards away from us, and pretty quiet folks as well. Across the road pandemonium reigns supreme as that is where the folks who have brought their quads, side by sides, and sand rails to tear around the Imperial Sand Dunes are camped. There must be a few hundred rigs, toy haulers and car trailers parked on the East side of Ogilby Road where they stage to head out into the dunes.

Lots of Rigs

Imperial Sand Dunes

Earlier this week we were over to the gravel pit, north of Yuma, where our friends Ron, Edie, Bill and Margaret are camped for a visit, and then on Christmas Day Bill and Margaret came over here to Dogpound Anywhere for Christmas Dinner. Brenda of course went all out so we had a bird along with all the usual trimmings. The wind has been howling these last few days and we have been hiding out in the rig and catching up with some trips to Yuma to pick up some stuff we needed.

One day we stopped by Rockies Pizzeria to satisfy that craving, what a wonderful pizza those guys concocted for us, if not the best ever, certainly in the top 3.

Of course we had to do all those usual things, like laundry, and we combined that with a trip over to Don and Angela's to pick up Brenda's Christmas present and some other things Amazon had dropped off with them. One of those things was a new phone for me, my old one decided it had had enough and quit charging so it died a slow painful death. I ordered it online and the Apple elves managed to get it delivered in one day so it was waiting with the rest of our packages. 

Today was a mixed bag, this morning I headed over to Gray Well, a rest stop just to the west of Ogilby Road where you can drop off your garbage and fill up with water. I have a bladder I have carried around with us for the last ten years or so and it once again was pressed into duty.
Water hauling
After hauling a load of water we once again headed for Foothills and a lunch date with Don and Angela at a local Chinese place called Sesames.

One morning the wind was down a little so I kicked the Mavic up so I could give you a look around our little slice of desert. It is pretty gray and not many trees but it is quiet and the hummingbirds are buzzing us constantly and that is the kind of spot we like to be in.

The sunsets aren't to bad either.

Saturday, December 22, 2018

In Search of a Canine MASH Unit.

Maya has had an ear infection that Brenda has been treating for about 10 days. She develop a swelling in her ear that made us decide she needed to see a vet before Christmas. We started off looking around Quartzsite without much luck although the vet in Parker could see her after we got the appointment organised it turned out that vet was in Parker, Colorado, a long drive from Western Arizona. We tried Blythe but they couldn't do anything till mid next week, so we figured we needed to head for somewhere bigger. Yuma was our next choice of spots and they have 4 or 5 vets but as we got hooked up and heading down the road Brenda called them all and none of them had time yesterday to squeeze us in.

I guess through the miracle of social media Brenda got in touch with our own vet back home. Heather Van Esch from the Cremona Vet Clinic gave her some advice and a few tips on what to look for and some possible treatments.

Meanwhile I found a Truck/RV Wash in Ehrenberg, Arizona so we pulled in their before we crossed the border into California to wash some of the road grime off of our rig. It is a cash only outfit so I had enough to get them started then I ran over to the Flying J to raid a bank machine for the balance. It wasn't the greatest job, but they did get the big lumps off so it is better than it was. After that we headed through Blythe and then south towards the Dunes and Ogilby Road. We found a little spot just east of the road on Road 707 where we got ourselves set up. It was a little cloudy and cool yesterday, great day for traveling, but the sunset was pretty nice.

Dogpound Anywhere photobombing a great sunset.

Today we got up early and headed into Yuma to set up a blockade at the Ironwood Vet Clinic. They opened at 8:00 and Brenda was ready to knock the door down to get Maya looked at. We pulled into the parking lot about 7:00AM and one of the tech's was just getting out of her car. After hearing our sad story she took us in and we filled out all the paperwork and prepared to wait till they could squeeze us in. Fortunately an early morning surgery they had scheduled was late showing up so Maya was first up. Turns out Heather had nailed the diagnosis all the way from down the road from Dogpound and even the treatment, so we have some prednisone to deal with the hematoma in Maya's ear and the infection that was there last week is all cleared up so it is just a matter of time till all is right in her world again.

The vet visit out of the way we headed over to Walmart to re-stock our larder, we were running low on ice cream and that is critical component to our well being while we are down here. Picked up some other stuff and then headed back to rig.

It was a beautiful day today so we read a little, sunned a little, snoozed a little and then Max and I took a walk in the desert which brings us to now. No excitement planned over the next few days but who knows what tomorrow will bring.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Hi Jolly or Hadji Ali

I didn't make that name up, he was a pretty well known character in the South West, camel driver for the Army, later ran a freight business after the Army kiboshed the camel experiment, but they tell me he was later known as Philip Tedro. He died here in Quartzsite in 1902 and his name, at least one of them is seen all over this area including the 14 Day BLM area we are camped in presently.

We have been sticking pretty close to camp but have taken a few runs into town, one for lunch at an old favourite spot the Grubstake, they used to have some of the best fish and chips in the area, it is advertised as cod and it still tastes like cod although the pieces were so narrow it could very well have been from an eel. Pretty skinny and the price had been pushed up a couple of bucks so probably not high on our list of places to repeat.

Today, Monday, was laundry day, we had not done any since back in Las Cruces so it was time, we got our clothes all caught up and over the next day or two will probably be doing another load or two of bedding before we move on down the road.

At this point we are not sure which way we are going, we need to get our rig washed up and that is pushing us towards Yuma at least for a few days, but then we heard Wandering Willie was hiding out at an old favourite spot so who knows we may go that way, or just maybe some other direction all together. When we know, you'll know so till then we'll just keep wandering Down the Road from Dogpound.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Hi Jolly

We left our spot at Picket Post a few days ago, and headed down to Thunderbird Farms to visit Lorrie and Trish. They were good enough to give us a place to park for the night and we had a great pasta dinner in town.

I had a new antenna for our cell booster sent to their place so we should have that fixed in a day or two. Early the next morning we hooked up to Dogpound Anywhere (DPA) and hit the road west, while Trish and Lorrie headed off to Vegas and the festivities surrounding the NFR and the World Series of Team Roping.

We were headed out towards Quartzsite to meet up with our friends Bill and Margaret from Dease Lake, I used to stay in their RV Park in Dease Lake on the Cassiar Highway while I was working up there for a few years a decade or so ago. We have been meeting them down here in the desert for years and although it has been a couple since we last crossed paths, it was like it was just yesterday. Good friends make it easy to pick up just like you had never been apart.

Quartzsite is an interesting town, probably deserted in the summer but this time of year it is starting to come to life and by this time next month it will probably be a madhouse.

We are in the 14 day BLM camping spot just north of town called Hi Jolly, although we are usually somewhere in the desert this is not our normal kind of spot and later in the winter it will be jam packed with folks living off the grid but jammed in cheek to jowl. Those who know us know we like a little more space, like a half mile between us and others, but for now this is pretty good, the nearest rig is a couple of hundred yards away and we have a spot kind of tucked out of the way and Max and I can slip off into the desert for our rambles.

This morning we had to run into town, Brenda needed sugar for her tea, and thought we would grab breakfast at Mickey D's. It was jam packed with folks but the service was quick, but for the record this was the most expensive McDonalds I had ever eaten in, and that includes the one in Moscow's Red Square. I guess they figure if they only have a few month's in winter to pay the bills they should make hay while the sun is shining.

I did get the antenna mounted on the roof but the cell service is great here anyway and our Verizon Jetpack is working well so we haven't turned it on as yet, but we will find places where it is a necessary part of the rig.

Well that is it for now, stay tuned and we'll update when we have something interesting to say about our journey Down the Road from Dogpound.

The day begins

Monday, December 10, 2018

Costco, etc

Sunrise this morning!

We are hanging out at our favourite mountain just chillaxing and letting the world pass by.

We ran Maya into the vet this morning as she has an ear infection so her and Brenda are going to be struggling to get her medication applied for the next week or so. She is a pretty meek soul so I am sure they will come to some kind of working arrangement pretty quickly.

While we were in town we made a run through Costco to replenish our water and meat supply. It might be a while till we encounter another Costco on our winter wanderings so we are stocked up for a while.

After we got back from our trip to the big city we had a bowl of Brenda's great meat ball soup for lunch and then Max and I decided we should go on a little walkabout through the hills behind our camp. Two old guys just ambled along up hill and dale enjoying the quiet of the desert and the scenery. Brenda always says and she is right that it feels like we are living in a painting here, the landscape is really surreal.

We did run into some other walkers on our journey, a few cows and this furry fellow just strolling down the trail.

Till next time we are just heading Down the Road from Dogpound.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Through the Old West

We pulled up the jacks, slid in the slides and racked the dish and headed out of Las Cruces this morning. We had a closet full of clean clothes and a full tank of fresh water, and bellies full of good food from La Posta down in Mesilla.

Maldito buen Mexicano
It was time to roll on west so we blew that pop stand and headed for the boondocks. We had to wander down I-10 for bit but soon we were off on the Old West Highway (70) running from Lordsburg up towards Safford and onto Superior where we knew a great spot to spend a few days decompressing from our trip across west Texas.

Old West Highway somewhere southeast of Safford
The Old West Highway is a two lane lightly traveled road that traverses some pretty nice country between Lordsburg and Globe crossing the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation along the way. Most of our drive today was done under cloudy skies and even the odd rain shower and even though rain is not one of our favourite weather patterns, it was hard not to think of the smiles on the faces of all the cowmen along this highway as that rain nourished the landscape.

We are in a familiar spot near Picket Post mountain and will spend a few days here before moving on further west. Where, who knows, like all RV'ers our plans are written on jello and other than a few folks we want to connect with along the way we don't really have any plan other than to enjoy the winter here south of the snow line.

A panoramic view from our spot
 This two pictures give you an idea of the view from our lawn chairs and probably a good idea of why we keep returning. Till next time, stay tuned.
Now that's Solitude

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Heading West

Well we have left Matagorda Bay and Magnolia Beach in our rear view mirror and headed west. Our route only hit San Antonio with a glancing blow but the freeway system there reminded me of my Great Grandpa's description of the old traffic circles in Edmonton, designed by Dante himself. I swear there is no rhyme nor reason to them in fact at one point we were whirling around a corner from one freeway to another and I thought, there goes a rig just like ours, then it dawned on me that I had just about passed myself going the other way.

One of the small towns we transited on our way in towards San Antonio had a lot of low hanging branches over the streets and one of those branches knocked the antenna for our cell booster for a loop so we have another on the way to a friends place in Thunderbird Farms.

Last night we stopped at a familiar spot, the Circle Bar Truck Stop, near Ozona, Texas. We stopped there on our way east and woke up with about 100 trucks parked in close quarters. While walking the dogs I had noticed a back corner that the big fellows couldn't access so last night we wiggled our way back into that corner and slept like babies while the big CATS and Cummins purred away at a distance. We noticed that the trucks start slipping in off the highway about sundown and don't leave till daylight. Not sure why so many leave the road at night, back home the truckers seem to like those less busy dark hours, but it could be the hundreds of dead deer we pass along the highway in West Texas give them a little incentive to get a good night's rest.

We were on the road early this morning and that put us into El Paso just over the noon hour. I am not sure if it was a normal day or maybe the federal holiday honouring George H.W. Bush brought more folks out onto the freeway but it was exciting. I have always said Salt Lake City is a city built along an interstate and is 100 miles long and a 1/4 mile wide. The traffic there is legendary, in fact many go a long ways out of their way just to miss SLC.

Well, El Paso is about the same, a city jammed between a mountain and a Wall and the I-10 is everything I-15 is to Salt Lake with a little Mexican spice added for effect. My strategy of picking a semi going the right speed and then just following along behind him worked pretty well and kept that oh so precious space in front of us so we don't have to hover over the brakes. The little fellows don't seem to like following those semi's and leave a good amount of space behind them.

We are in Las Cruces at the KOA tonight and plan on staying here tomorrow and getting those tanks that need emptying empty and fill those that need filling filled as well as catching up on our laundry before we head back out to an old favourite boondocking spot.

West Texas has some wonderful vista's in fact maybe to many vistas as we crossed that vast wasteland but I didn't get the camera out so I will leave you with one last sunrise shot from Matagorda Bay.

Monday, December 3, 2018


Our time by Matagorda Bay is coming to an end, the weather is looking like it is cooling off for the next few days so we came to a command decision and decided we needed to get the wheels rolling again. We have a spent a great week here at Magnolia Bay, seen a lot of things swimming or floating by us here in the Bay but the desert is calling. We don't expect it to be a whole lot warmer out west but there is more room for Max and Maya to roam and we have a few favorite spots to visit and enjoy. Texas has been great but when it comes to cool weather we rather prefer a drier cool than we are likely to get here along the Gulf of Mexico.

The title, oh yah, that's a twelve dollar word that means either:

  1. 1.
    a person who travels from place to place.

  2. or
  3. 2.
    an Aristotelian philosopher.

Your choice.

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Beach Day

It was a beautiful day at the beach today. Started out with a maritime fog and cloud cover that kind of shut down the sunrise, but that soon cleared off and it was bright sun all day. We just chilled and watched the world go by, visited with our neighbours here, and enjoyed the day.

It was pretty dark this morning but I do believe we have found where Herman from Smith Falls spends his winters down here along the Texas coast. He landed right in front of me and just stood there waiting for the light to get a little better, figure he wanted to get his picture in the blog so that Gordon and Sandra would know he was OK.

We did have the usual complement of chemical transporting barges and LPG tankers transiting the Bay in front of us but today we also had a steady parade of these small fishing and oyster dredging boats heading into Port. Home for the weekend I guess.

And of course I did manage to get a couple more photos of our rig, the first one I had to stand in the water to get it all in the frame, most of our neighbours here on the beach pulled out this morning so of the 6 or so of us left in the first half mile, 5 were Canadian and one Texas couple from just down the road trying a little boondocking for a staycation.

And I did capture this beauty on the beach.

Caught this foggy sunrise a couple of days ago so thought I would close with it.