Friday, March 10, 2023

Senator Wash - Winters end

Its hard to believe that its been over a month since our last post from Quartzsite.  Time has a way of slipping by even when you are not running at high speed.   And now we are sitting here staring at the end of another winter season.   The snowbird flocks are starting to migrate, and so we shall as well.

Our migration will now take us to the east coast and onboard the Queen Mary2 for a summer in the UK and Ireland.  But that is still a few weeks hence, so let me bring you up to date as to what we've been doing.

A big change in Quartzsite this season seemed to be that a large part of the Geezer population seemed to start dispersing prior to the end of the show.   By a few days past the shows end, we had seen a large decrease in the local population and we were enjoying our nice slice of the desert in relative peace and privacy,

Unknown to us however, that was not to last....

About 5 days after shows end, a few older RV's of all types began congregating just to our east in the spot where the Montana circle had been.   The group grew - slowly at first - but then the pace of growth took a turn.

One afternoon this green converted vehicle with a ladder sticking out of its roof started to drive up and down all the fairways between washes.   He was blasting rock & roll music as he drove around.

Driving by us, he entertained us with a very loud rendition of Grand Funk Railroads "Closer to Home" (I'm your Captain).   His speakers were quite good, and I must say I enjoyed the tunes but started to worry that if this continued into the late night it could be less enjoyable.

I'm your Captain

It seemed as if he was the Pied Piper of the group because as he drove about, more and more vans, school busses, panel trucks, and other types of RV's  descended upon the stretch of desert to our east.    At first we were simply a far outlying eastern suburb of the group, but as the days passed, we started to be incorporated more into the edges of their growing encampment.

looking east towards the group at first

It seemed to be a race between how fast thier group would grow vs our upcoming departure date.

Talking to some of the group, we found out that they belonged to a group called "Van Aid".  Simply a large get together of like minded folks who would meet to help each other learn about how fix, improve, and maintain their campers, and to learn tips and tricks about the lifestyle.   They ranged in age from very young to very old.    Seemed to be more of a hippy leaning group, and they were very nice and quiet at night so I found it all to be fine and rather interesting.    I would just perfer to have a bit more room between us and them

The group expands closer

Finally, a couple of weeks after the show ended, our group began to break up.    K & B went to Organ Pipe, R&M to Tucson, and eventually Rob, Pat, and us went down to Yuma.

Ron & Maxine depart thru the "Camp"

While in Q I installed a Reverse Osmosis system for our drinking water.

I know it looks like something out of "Breaking Bad" but Water White I am not.    This is to finely filter water down to the molecular level giving us the cleanest most pure drinking water possible.

Installed under the sink.   The 4 gal storage tank is anchored to the wall and valves let me select from a number of options for both the distillate (clean water) and brine (waste water)

I can send the distillate to the bus fresh water tank or to the under sink storage tank.   I can send the brine to the fresh water tank, the grey holding tank, or overboard.   It all depends on where I am and if I have an external water supply or am dry camping.

A separate faucet (on the left below) provides the RO water for our use.

After leaving Q we went down to Yuma for a week and stayed in the Fortuna de Oro RV Park.   This allowed me to wash/wax the bus and rent a rug shampooer to give the bus a long overdue freshening up.

Soon, we were all back in the desert.   This time back at Senator Wash/Imperial Dam Long-Term Visitor area just across the border in California.

Being next to the Imperial Dam Complex on the Colorado River, there is a fair amount of water nearby and some Riparian areas in the LTVA

The 4 of us with the Senator Wash Lake behind us.

We were able to secure a pretty nice spot in the "Murphy Flats" area.

While here - the stormy season continued and we had several rain and dust storms.   Days of cool, wet, and/or very windy weather.

Dust storm in Yuma

One morning while Rob and I were walking about, we found a better spot over in the Northwest section of the LTVA where the cell service is stronger so we made a move to our new home.

Our site in The Hermans Horsepath area.

One night I made a Rack of Lamb for Kate and I.  Roughing it in the desert!

Some rock art

Ron and Maxine, finished with their visits to Tucson and Scottsdale, returned to spend some more time with us before they headed for home.   If you look over our shoulders you can see the dark clouds of the next storm approaching.

The next storm was a bigger one with a fair amount of rain.   The normally dry washes all flooded.   While hard to see in the photo below - the rain is creating rivers of muddy water flowing down the hillsides into the wash below our site.

When the skies cleared, the boys and I took a ride in my truck on some of the dirt roads and went down to the bottom of senator wash to check out the riparian areas and the lake

Senator Wash Lake from down below

Finally it was time again to say adios to Ron & Maxine.    Theyv'e had enough of us and are headed for home.

And head for home is what we will do next too.    We have a lot to get done in the next couple of weeks.   Kates Irish Citizenship was approved so we need to get her passport paperwork done and submitted, Dogs washed for the trip, clothes packed etc.   Before you know it - our next post will be from somewhere back in the bus headed east.    Fingers crossed that this time we really make it onboard.

See you then.