Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Quartszite, Death Valley, & Red Rock Canyon

From Buckeye Regional Park, we returned (once again) to Quartszite to browse the big RV show & visit with Casita friends. This desolate piece of SW Arizona is starting to feel a lot like home anymore - our third winter visit. This time we camped east of the usual Fiberglass Rally spot (full of Class A's) with a group of "eggs", only one we knew from 2 yrs ago was Jerry & Wanda (of EggRollings blog). We hung out a week, not doing much of anything productive. Lynn & David (of  Casita in the Desert, Casita in the Mountains blog) arrived the day after us. We also meet Julia (a solo from TX), Cookie & Bill, Carolyn (who had a birthday that week) & her husband, Mo (who lives near Little House Custom in TX), & Ruth & husband from Santa Fe in their Liberty. Ruth & I have been FB friends for years but never meet before. We really liked a few of their mods in their Liberty. A couple of other Casitas & one Escape were there, but I don't remember names. The 1st Blogger meet-up was held in Quartzsite on Saturday. . .but I have trouble keeping track of what day it is - & forgot about the meet-up being that day. Heard great things about it & hope to make it to next year's.

We got a few things at the RV show: new but smaller patio mat, cell fon case, sunglasses, t-shirt, & 2 solar lanterns that air up. Unfortunately it was not full sun many days in Q, so our solar panels (2 90W) didn't keep our 2 12v batteries charged all that well.

Jeff had Death Valley & Hoover Dam on his bucket list, so we headed north for a look-see before the Fiberglass Rally back in Q in a couple of weeks. First stop was a Coast to Coast campground in Needles CA - right along side the Colorado River. That water was sure clear & pretty, as well as running very fast. I got some laundry & other cleaning done, but it rained on us most of the one full day stay.

Next was a trip around Las Vegas (no desire to get into THAT circus), thru Pahrump NV, & across the CA border (again) to Death Valley - the lowest spot in the world. We were doing to boondock at  BLM...but those pesky clouds followed us from AZ so we used my Geezer Pass to stay at the Furnace Creek campground. Unfortunately no electric sites were available, so we still had to limp along with the solar panels under cloudy skies.

This Park is HUGE - reminded me of Big Bend NP in TX where the "attractions" are many miles & hours apart. The first morning, we drove up to see Scottie's Castle. We didn't take the walking tour, just wanted to see the area. There was a resident coyote hanging around the Picnic area waiting for handouts. It’s located in the mountains to the east of the Valley so higher elevation & probably cooler. Since the mountains on the west suck out most incoming moisture & the mountains on the east prevent weather systems from moving, air stagnates in the Valley - thus the outrageously high summer temps (something like 130° record). Also at the northern side of the valley are two old cone volcanos. Pretty awesome holes in the ground. On the way back to camp, we stopped by to see one of several old borax processing places around the Park - where the 20-mule team wagons were needed to cart the sacks of borax to civilization.

That first evening we drove south to the Painter's Palette for a "sunset" scenic drive thru a plethora of big, colorful rocks, peaks, & cliffs. Wow - serious eye-candy for me. Then we contined south to Badwater Basin - at 283' BELOW SEALEVEL (& still sinking). It seems the valley floor is tipping lower at this end & pushing up the western mountain range (over 14,000' & currently snow capped). I got a fabulous after-sunset glow over the salt flats.

We headed west on our 2nd day. Lots of miles but not really as much to see, depending on your interests. We got a general "feel" for the area, glad we saw it, but had enough in two days. We wanted to see the view of the Valley on the way out from a mountain peak east of the salt flats - but that darn rain caught us again. Low clouds & raindrops all over didn't work for scenic views or photographs on our way back to the Vegas area.

We went back east thru Pahrump & drove the scenic loop of Red Rock Canyon (just west of Las Vegas). I'm glad our Geezer Pass got us in free because only the first three miles or so right align the red cliffs were interesting. There were numerous hikes along the loop that may have gone to awesome scenery, but not much viewable from the road. Amazing red rock formations, but overall disappointing.

Finally we made it thru the traffic & rain to Lake Mead & Hoover Dam.


  1. I am very curious as to what your average per month cost is to fulltime as you do. The wife and I hope to order our Casita in August of this year and get started on a few adventures of our own.

    I enjoy reading your blog.

    thank you,


  2. Hi Glenda,
    I am loving your blog and especially your photos! I love to see other's photos as I have been taking photos on our various travels. We will be picking up our Escape 5th wheel the beginning of Sept 2015 and are truly excited to make it a 6-10 week trip home to NH. This will be our first and we are truly excited to do it! Reading your blog is a great way to get ideas of areas and campgrounds, and being a FG is helping to think about living in it fulltime - even if it's only for several months at a time. Thanks again for sharing!


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