Not wanting to enjoy the good life at Borrego Springs to the excess, Hailey and I decided it might be time to move on and see what other good life we could discover. But first, we had to buy another big bag of those delicious grapefruit they grow so well here. They sure are good!
The weather here had been super – with the possible exception of a bit too much wind one day – and the noisy ‘generator’ neighbours had already left. But still it was time to move on.
So, we stuck our heads out the window of the truck and headed for the highway.
The tire tracks of the Bayfield Bunch were barely discernable on the hot pavement, but we were just able to track them as far as the great Arco travel center at the Salton City junction. This place is great! They have a free RV dump with about 6-8 lanes (tho I was the only one when I was there), a fresh water supply, the least overpriced diesel around, propane, and the usual travel center store. I dumped everything, and I filled everything, checked the map and headed off down the road.
I had heard about some boondocking possibilities east of Mecca that I wanted to check out, and as that was a shortcut towards Blythe and Quartzsite, that’s where we headed.
Sure enough, it was the Mecca Hills Wilderness (BLM land), once out of the intensively irrigated agricultural land around Mecca. It’s called the Box Canyon road, and appears to have lots of road-side possibilities, however off-road driving is prohibited through most of the area, and no one was camped there within sight of the road. Most of the dirt roads were blocked from vehicular access, but there are some official ones that I would like to check next time. One at the south western edge is called Painted Canyon road.
From there, the shortcut took us out to join I-40, where we were careful to leave all hitch hikers waiting along the side of the road!
Quartzsite was not quite a deserted ghost town yet, but showing obvious signs of the approaching summer siesta.
The big tent was gone, some of the businesses had closed already, and there were no parking or traffic concerns.
I had earlier priced out a good deal on some 6v deep cycle batteries, so I traded them two of my useless ones for some brand new shiny ones! Almost need a contortionist (with a magician on standby) to get the old batteries out of my new battery box and the new ones in. I was well motivated and got the job done with no one getting any batteries dropped on their toes, or any battery acid exposure – more than the usual amount. One night had to be spent in the Mile 99 area, and I was glad I did a quick sound inspection before setting up in the spot I had picked. Good thing, because there was one of those loud, noisy type generators rattling away nearby. And the rules of boondocking state that you cannot complain about something – if you were the one to move in next to it! So I immediately found a spot with soothing highway sounds to spend the night instead! Not wanting too much of a good thing, we bolted in the morning and headed back over to the Bouse area, which in my books has way more variety, better scenery, and endless parking possibilities. And, much quieter.
On a different note, Hailey has been wondering a lot about the pros and cons of taking a shower. She is always quite concerned for my safety when she sees me locked in the ‘water torture chamber’, but now her curiosity is getting the better of her.
She seems to be saying that this is not that bad at all! I’d turn the water on, but would not want anyone to get hurt in the exodus!
On a related topic, there is finally some serious solar output during the day, and finding shade and staying cool is thankfully, at last, a concern. Like her seasoned predecessor Harley, Hailey is learning that a light mist from the water spritzer bottle can aid her in staying cool.
I was hoping to get ‘chased north’ or at least to higher elevations months ago by the oppressive heat, but that reality is only now showing a glimmer of a possibility. And about time.
Our plan is to stay here for an undetermined length of time, then head to an undetermined location. But that plan could all change.