Well, catch-up time again. We left Quartzsite for a 4 - night stay in another Coast to Coast campground near Salome AZ. We really are trying hard to get as much benefit from this rather expensive camping club. And since cloudy days & rain have dogged us & our solar panels all winter, we keep needing to plug in.
The KOA campground was nice enough - for a gravel parking lot, but all the winter residents drove ATVs or UTVs around daily. Not a lot of peaceful time.
We're waiting for winter to finally end in MO, so decided to check out the BLM camping north of Congress AZ instead of heading to NM yet. We also stopped in to say "Hi" to AL & Kelly of The Bayfield Bunch blog on our way up Ghost Town Road. They came out to visit with us a few days later. And that Phoebe dog is so precious.
We made a couple of trips into Wickenburg, & although we've been thru it before, we're really feeling comfortable in the area. Phoenix (Walmart, Lowes, Trader Joe's, PetSmart, & a few other toy stores) is just an hour away, & yet Wickenburg has a comfortable, western town feel. There are realistic statues around town depicting its history. And learning about the mainly mining history of the area is becoming more interesting to me than anywhere else. Yet it's a real western town with lots of cowboys & girls & horses.
Overall, we were very happy & content with this camping area, & especially our spot next to a couple of palo verde trees. And the young but big saguaro right in front of our door was always a pleasant view. Mountains ring the canyon around us, & all the campers are spread out. A live rattlesnake was spotted in front of another RV the other afternoon tho, so these higher than normal temps this month have the snakes stirring earlier than usual.
There are two cemeteries nearby: a modern one & an old pioneer cemetery. The old one was intense.
We took a drive up to Yarnell where the Hotshots were killed. Didn't see too much evidence of the fire, but lots of new houses. Huge boulders litter the area west of town with houses backed right up to them. Amazing.
The divided road up/down the side of the mountain is fantastic - & the views of the valley are awesome.
Also trekked down a dirt road to another BLM area near Stanton, but not as big, flat, or easy to get in & out of. Lots of big, mature saguaros I couldn't resist photographing.
Oh, & there's the big rock along Hwy 89 painted green because it resembles a giant frog.
Of couse, the AZ sunsets continued to be awe inspiring!!
Unfortunately, Jeff's back was hurting extremely during a rainy weekend, & he finally decided to try chiropractic treatments. After four adjustments from a Wickenburg chiropractor, he was feeling much better. Seems last year's bulging disc is caused by both vertebrae above & below it twisting & squishing the disc out to touch his sciatic nerve. Made a lot of sense (finally) since he's had a history of this causing one leg to be shorter & backaches.
Because of his back, I got (was forced) to learn how to handle dumping our tanks (with our macerator pump & a hose down a gopher hole in the sand, filling our fresh water tank from the water bladder on top of the pickup cab, charging our batteries with the pickup during rainy/cloudy days (we're looking at maybe getting a small, quiet, lightweight generator for those cloudy spells), switching propane tanks, & moving/stowing our solar panels. What a way to get exercise (& needed experience)!! We hope the VA will authorize chiropractic treatments for Jeff when we get back to Branson in April.
Since the SW heated up earlier than normal, we decided it was time to head north, & eventually east. After 5 weeks at this lush, quiet, unattended BLM spot, we reluctantly moseied off to Phoenix for a couple of nights parked on the street in front of my cousin's house. The cacti are bursting with blooms in Phoenix.
Finally we headed north on I-17 to spend a couple on nights boondocking on Crown King Rd before getting into Camp Verde RV Campground (another Coast to Coast campground) for a few days to refresh our tanks, water, & batteries.
Before reluctantly leaving AZ, we spent a few days parked next to my cousin's cabin near Heber, way up on top of the Mogollon Rim. It’s usually 25-30° cooler up there than in Phoenix. Gorgeous country!!! but the elevation over 7,000' is slightly uncomfortable.
So finally we headed east to NM, nearly a month later than previous years. We've really fallen in love with AZ this winter & are not looking forward to Spring in MO with the humidity, bugs, & tornado risks.