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Thanks for following along with us as we travel North America in our motorhome, enjoying the RV lifestyle. Your comments are always welcomed.

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Friday, February 28, 2014

YUMA–LAND OF DESERTS, AGRICULTURE & SNOWBIRDS

Travelers that head south during the winter months to warmer climates are called “snowbirds”.  Some are escaping the freezing temperatures and snow of the upper Midwest and Canada, while others just migrate south annually to be with their friends, whether they be in Florida, Arizona, or Texas – the popular destinations for RVers. We haven’t made it to Florida or Texas for winter stays, but we have been spending about 3-4 months every year exploring Arizona.

Since 2007, our winter travels have included Yuma for at least a week’s stay to get our Boomer-fix in late February and early March.  A few of those years I taught seminars at the Gypsy Journal Gatherings RV Rally put on by Terry and IMAG0201Nick Russell, staying at the local Yuma County Fairgrounds.  Other years we have just put the word out on our Escapee Boomer forums asking who was in the area and if anyone had an RV lot where we could stay.  Our often go-to guy has been Dick Reed, former owner of the RV Driving School, who has introduced us to an area known as The Foothills.

ZONED FOR THE RV LIFESTYLE

The Fortuna Foothills, aka The Foothills, is a community that is developing its own personality on land that has been subdivided into RV-friendly lots.  Most lots contain three walls of Mexican-style brick with parking spaces for 1-3 recreational vehicles. Most of the spaces have separate electrical meters, water and, sometimes, sewage waste dumps. Some property owners build small structures (casitas), park single or double-wide travel trailers/modular homes onsite, or full-size homes on the lots. They they rent out their open RV sites on a weekly, monthly, or seasonal basis to cover their costs.  Typically, the longer you stay, the less per day the rate is.  Being short-term renters from friends, we have been lucky to rent spaces for $10-15 per night.

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foothills age chartWhen researching the demographics about the “Fortuna Foothills” area, I got a laugh out of this age distribution chart.  We were surprised the first time we actually saw a school bus.  Not many kids in the area.  Dan Sheppard, a Boomer friend who has been living in the Foothills for the last eight years, gave us a good laugh the other day.  He said every time the sirens start, another lot goes on the market.  I suspect that is often quoted in other senior communities.

LOTS OF LOT CHOICES

We actually had choices of lots this year.  Boomer Joy Melton was the first to offer us an electric-only space next to her home. We then heard from Dick Reed that the full-hook up lots where he and friends from our home area were staying would be opening up the exact week we needed it.  We said yes to that offer and planned to arrive on Thursday, Feb. 20.  We would get specific address and driving instructions on the way.

As it turned out, the lot we had been “assigned to” on 38th Street was owned by Paul and Pat, folks we had met at our local Elk’s Lodge in Auburn, CA.  (Dick Reed is great at organizing “Taco Tuesday” get-togethers for his RVing friend from our home area.)  Dick and his lady friend Joy and RV Driving School instructor Frank & his wife Sharon Piccolo would be pulling out and leaving the space for us.

Surprise! When we called-in we learned that Frank had broken a tooth and was going to be staying on so he could visit a dentist in nearby Algodones.  But, never fear, they got on the phone and found another lot on 45th Drive., this one also owned by members of  the “Taco Tuesday Gang” – Joe and Joanne Annuzzio. There was already one motorhome on site when we arrived.  It was occupied by Mary and Ivan, two more TT Gang members from Meadow Vista, just up the road from Auburn.  The lot and neighborhood looked extremely familiar.  Turns out we had stayed on the site back in 2011.

(Top) Our neighbors left yesterday.  (Bottom) Dick Reed’s former bus parked with a friend on our shared lot back in 2011.  Notice the new addition in this year’s photo:  a new Verizon cell tower right beyond our back wall!

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NO AGENDA

After two very busy months of rallies, special events, socializing, and repairs, our stay in Yuma was intended as just kick-back time.  We had no plans to travel across the nearby US-Mexican border to the town of Algodones for IMAG1260shopping, pharmaceuticals, eye/dental dental appointments or even the popular fish tacos. We never even hit a Wally World, but there was a well-stocked Fry’s food store.

Algodones, Mexico Fish & Shrimp Tacos

BECKY’S BIRTHDAY

Becky and b=day cardWe did make it to a Boomer birthday party for our friend Becky Hazen.  We normally help celebrate Becky’s birthday during the “Ed’s Birthday” celebration at the The Steps in Lake Havasu.  This year, however, the potluck party was held at Joy Melton’s and about 30+ Boomers attended.

Boomers at Becky's b-day party

MEALS OUT WITH BOOMERS

By now, you know we eat out a lot with our Boomer friends. After spending an afternoon visiting with Barbara and Tom Westerfield at their site at South Mesa RV Park, we decided to head for an early dinner at Lin’s Super Buffet.  We know the Lin’s chain from our many years taking groups to their Albuquerque, NM facility.  (That location changed its name to Hong Kong Buffet after a franchise dispute, but the building and the outstanding buffet are nearly identical.)

We also had a chance to catch up with Jane and Russ Darrow on Sunday morning for breakfast at the Foothill Eatery.  We first met the Darrows in Iowa when they were workamping at Adventureland with other friends, Gloria and Charlie Goss.  We all attended the National Balloon Classic hot air balloon event after a fun happy hour gathering.  We have been Facebook friends since and they were attendees at the 2013 Boomers and Balloons rally at the ABQ Balloon Fiesta.  We had a good visit before they took off the next day for their stay at Anza-Borrego State Park.

The Boomers who visit Yuma during the winter have a tradition of attending a Wednesday afternoon movie followed by a group dinner somewhere different every week.  We passed on his week’s movie choices, as did most, but 13 Boomers showed up at EAT Asian Super Buffet for dinner and conversation.  We had the “Boomer Banner” with us so we brought it along for a group photo for the club newsletter.  (I had forgotten to take it to Becky’s birthday party. Sad smile )

Boomers at Eats Asian Buffet

GOLF FIX

IMG_20140226_114627_683I had a chance to play golf twice this week with Boomer Andy Overbay at the nearby “Foothills Par 3 Golf Course”.  Weather was fabulous and I shot a 41 for nine holes both days (about average for me).

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The golf courses in Yuma use reclaimed water.  This “pond” is actually the driving range. At night, pumps drain the pond for the sprinkler system use and then the range balls are reclaimed for another day of use.

SMOG TEST & LICENSE TAGS

When our forwarded mail arrived last week we received our license tag renewal paperwork for our Honda CR-V.  Normally we can renew online, but this year we were required to get the car’s smog system re-certified – in California! 

Since Yuma is on the Arizona-California border, we decided El Centro, CA would be the closest location (75 miles away) with a qualified CA smog testing station and DMV before the tags run out later in the month while we are still in Arizona.  IMG_20140225_090441_391-1We made an appointment at Direct Honda in El Centro for Tuesday morning.  Not knowing how long it would take, I did not make an appointment at the local DMV branch – mistake!  The place was jammed as expected and we had about an hour wait. They had seating for 50 and probably another 40-50 standing along the wall. Once we got our number we moved to a piece of wall and used the smartphone to log onto the DMV online appointment website.  While this has worked before, the next available appointment was two days away.  IMG_20140225_125223_466 - CopyNevermind!  We spent the time people-watching and we were done in just over an hour. With our tags in hand, we headed back across the desert to Yuma.

IMPERIAL SAND DUNES AND YUMA FARMLANDS

El Centro is located along Interstate 8 in Imperial County and, as Luke drove, I researched the area on the internet.  The area, which is surrounded by sand dunes and desert landscape, is actually one of the Southwest’s largest agricultural areas.  Click here to learn more about the source of the region’s irrigation water system fed by an aquifer system of canals and reservoirs.

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The All-American Canal feeds the irrigated fields, which turn the desert brown into lush green crops.

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YumaLettuceDays logoYuma is also know as the winter lettuce capital and two years ago we attended the local Lettuce Days Festival. Highlight of that event was the narrated bus tour we took out into the fields. A professor from Ag Extension told us about the field growing and harvesting processes.  Yuma is home of Dole and Fresh Choice bagged lettuce where the crops are harvested, washed, and bagged right in the field.  They get four crops per season with an overnight turn around between picking and replanting.

The 2014 Lettuce Days Festival is this weekend but we are headed north to Surprise, AZ on Saturday morning. 

YUMA SUNSETS 

Leaving you with another sunset photo.  This was taken from our lot in the Foothills earlier this week.  Rain is coming … needed, but darn!

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NEXT:  “HAPPY TRAILS TO YOU…”

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Camp Freightliner

Non-RVers must think that those of us who live extended or full time in our “homes on wheels” must be crazy dealing with all the mechanical issues we encounter. 

When you put a 30-40-foot box made of wood, fiberglass, and steel framing on a set of six wheels going down the freeway at 55+ mph, “stuff” is going to happen.  Many say our recreational vehicles are constantly undergoing a 6.0 earthquake when on the road.  Of course there are roads like I-5 in Central California or the desert washes of Arizona where that might run that earthquake rating up to a 10.0 on the Richter scale.  When not moving, however, we LOVE our “condo on wheels” and dealing with the maintenance issues is just part of the routine.

ROUTINE MAINTENENCE

Our 2007 Itasca Horizon 40’ TD was built on a Freightliner chassis and has a Cummins 400 diesel engine and an Allison 3000 transmission. We carry 100 gallons of diesel and 28 quarts of oil!  We frequent truck stops and run with the 18-wheeler “big boys” (although we run a lot slower).  So maintaining all this hardware requires specialized service centers and our choice for our annual maintenance is the Freightliner of Arizona Service Center in Tolleson, a suburb of Phoenix, Arizona.

IMG_20140220_094811_083This is not your old greasy roadside truck stop.  Two years ago the company moved into a huge facility with dedicated work areas for trucks, emergency vehicles, and motorhomes.  (In their old location it was common for the motorhomes spending the night hooked up to electricity to be parked next to fire trucks and ambulances which also need annual certified maintenance.)  RVers with appointments for service are encouraged to come in the night before to be ready for service techs at 7:00 – 7:30 a.m. and if your service runs late or requires extra days for parts, you are generally allowed to stay on site.  Having electrical hook-ups is common, but having full-ups in a nice facility is wonderful.

At the new facility the current RV parking area consist of seven level spaces with 50 amp electricity, fresh water, and a sewer dump. 

There is a covered picnic area with two BBQs, tables, and lush green lawn.

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The highlight for Miss Star is the fenced doggie park with lawn for rolling on and seating for the photographer.

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Star patrols the inside perimeter and then claims the lawn for herself.  Too much time in the Arizona deserts.  Green, green grass – oh, yeah!

ARRIVED EARLY

Our appointment was for Wednesday but we called ahead and booked a free overnight site for Tuesday.  We arrived about 1 p.m. and, surprisingly, they had a cancellation and asked if they could start working on our “list” early. 

We grabbed some lunch to go and then headed for Friendship Park where there is a large doggie park with a shade canopy and a big tree (rare in Phoenix).  Star greeted a few canine visitors but then sought out the shade.

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MEETING NEIGHBORS

When we returned to Camp Freightliner we had new neighbors – snowbird grain farmers from Saskatchewan, Canada.  It is very common to meet folks on the road whose paths we have crossed before and this was just another occasion,  No, I was pointed out as “CoolJudy”, but we had shared an afternoon at a laundromat in Indio, CA (near the Indio Elks) back in January.  They remembered me – hmmm.

OH, YEAH – GETTING SERVICED

We had two primary items on our “to do” list for this service appointment.  First, we needed to have the “routine” 65,000 IMG_20140217_162737_999mile service done; and secondly, our dash air conditioner need fixing. The temperature outside was already reaching into the 90’s so that was a definite priority.

Since we started coming to this Freightliner shop in January of 2008, we have been very impressed with our Service Manager, Kirk Ault.  He is the one on the other end of the phone when you call into FL on their trouble line.  He KNOWS RVs, and we trust his troubleshooting and his technicians.  This year, Julio, who worked on our rig last year, was right on target with his evaluations.

BOTTOM LINE

After two days in the service bay we ended up replacing our hoses and a major belt, re-charging the AC, and changing engine and transmission fluids.  They also “cleaned” the engine compartment of all the dirt and grime from desert camping, and replaced filters.

Yes, the “camping fee” was zero, but the service call cost us about $1200 per night.  We are confident we are good to go again another year.  We’ll be back at Camp Freightliner next winter.

NEXT: YUMA

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Great Balls of Fire–Winter Blast XXV

If you love fireworks, you NEED to put Winter Blast on your bucket list!

Colorful stillWinter Blast is the annual convention of the Western Pyrotechnic Association where the members learn to build shells and rockets and safely handle hazardous materials during the day and then blow up things every night from 5 pm to 10:30 pm.  Fireworks vendors bid for the opportunity to present nightly featured choreographed shows of 20-30 minutes, simulcast over local radio for those sitting around the desert hillsides. You owe it to yourself to arrive early and get a seat right in front of the racetrack where the action begins.

25th ANNIVERSARY

Winter Blast is always held in Lake Havasu City’s SARA Park over Presidents’ Weekend. In honor of their 25th Anniversary, the public displays were extended an extra day this year. Attendance on Thursday and Sunday nights, while good, were not as big as the shows on Friday and Saturday nights.  On those days you had better have your seat in the bleachers or your folding chair positioned by 3 or 4 in the afternoon for the 7:30 pm shows or you don’t get in.

VIDEOS AND MORE VIDEOS… Play when you have a good signal!  To see the videos larger, clicked the [Full Screen] button on the lower right corner of the YouTube screen.

Over the years we have come to like special effects.  Among our favorites are the “gas bombs” that normally catch everyone by surprise.  You definitely feel the heat.  (Length:  0:52) 

It is difficult to capture the beauty and the sounds of fireworks displays of this quality.  I will try to leave you with a few special minutes of videos I managed to capture on my phone camera. Sorry for the shakiness.  You can provide your own Ooooos and Awwwwws. The links are to my YouTube account where the videos have been uploaded.

COLORFUL SAMPLER

Sitting close to the raceway infield you cannot truly capture more than a screen full of the action at once. You are constantly watching the ground and the skies above you in all direction. (Length: 2:11)

FIREWORKS TO MUSIC

It can be extremely difficult for the pyros to coordinate the barrage of fireworks with the timing of the beats to various songs.  There were a number of exceptional segments where IMG_8339it worked perfectly.  Some sets were dramatic with solemn music and large12-16” diameter shells displaying huge circular cascades.  Some were playful and fast-passed.  Unfortunately, I was watching (and not filming) the best segment played to “Great Balls of Fire” which featured great timing of colorful “gas bombs”.  Here is one nice segment synched to “I Left My Heart in San Francisco.” (Length: 1:21)

SATURDAY FINALE: 

Make sure you have plenty of camera battery and storage to capture the finale of a Winter Blast featured program.  Viewing these fireworks in-person will spoil you forever.  Your community fireworks programs will never be as great.  (Length: 2:32)

GOING OUT WITH A BANG

Finally, the Sunday night public display was produced by members of the WPA.  The highlight this year was a tribute to one of the club’s member who passed away this year. The video is 5 minutes, so sit back and enjoy. (Length: 5:01)

NEXT: FREIGHTLINER

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Hangin’ In Havasu

IMG_20140207_155349Our travels almost every year brings us to Lake Havasu City, AZ for a couple of weeks surrounding the Winter Blast, the fireworks convention put on by the Western Pyrotechnical Association (WPA).

We first came to LHC in 2005, shortly after my retirement.  We were invited to attend Winter Blast by a former college colleague, Jim and Phyllis KingPhyllis King and her husband Jim.  Their sons, Lyndon and Tim, were very involved with the fireworks association and Lyndon was in charge of Winter Blast for many years.  He is now President of the WPA and they are both still active during Winter Blast. 

At that time there was a small following of RVers coming to Craggy Wash, BLM land north of the LHC Airport.  They would commute to SARA Park, home of the fireworks display.  Nothing like today where hundreds of RVs fill in level (and sometimes not-so-level) public camping lands to attend the 4-5 days of pyrotechnics.  More on Winter Blast next…

IMG_20140209_152226When we first attended, we were traveling without a dog and were invited to join the Kings and our other RVing friends, Teresa and Len Hoare, to park the RV right at the SARA Park.  What a great spot to park and watch the “open shooting” from 5 pm to 10:30 pm each night.  During the three nights of formal public shows, we would have already reserved our seats in the grandstands earlier in day to take in the spectacular ground and aerial displays.  Our second year, however, we had acquired our previous German Shepherd, Krissy, and she definitely was NOT a fan of fireworks. We were parked adjacent to the ball diamond and parking lot and when the fireworks began, she apparently was so frightened that she began chewing the material on the RV seats.  Not Good!  For the remainder of that show, we would take turns sitting with her inside the RV with both the radio and TV going.  That was the last time we stayed onsite but have been fortunate enough to get WPA parking passes each year. It is nice knowing “people”.

Since that time we have stayed at Cattail Cove State Park with hook-ups or, the last few years, moved over to an area known as “The Steps” where many of our RVing Escapee Club members have called home during Winter Blast.

Besides doing laundry, shopping, and running errands, we haven’t done much tourists activities. Been there, done that over the years.  123_2316

Lake Havasu City is the home of the re-located London Bridge.  It was actually systematically dismantled in England and shipped to the US and reconstructed over DRY land. The area below the bridge was then dredged to allow the adjacent Colorado River to flow through, creating an island in the middle of the Colorado River. 

EATING OUT

If there are Boomers in the area you can bet we have been eating out.  We first started by meeting up with Jim and Nanc Tidball at El Mariachi Mexican Restaurant.

We then did a group lunch with the Kings and Hoares (who are all staying at SARA Park) at Pizza Hut’s salad bar and pizza buffet.  We also ate on our own at the LHC Elks Lodge and at China City Super Buffet. We then had two meals out with our Folsom neighbors, Jim and Karen Hood, at the Barley Brothers Brewery for Valentine’s Day Dinner and a Sunday breakfast at The Red Onion.

ED’S BIRTHDAY PARTY

“Ed’s Birthday Party” is now a Boomer tradition, even if  “Ed” (aka Duane Peyton) is celebrating in Florida this year.  Well, for that matter, the REAL Ed isn’t here either.  To learn the history of Ed’s Birthday Party, scroll through our February, 2012 blog.

While our numbers are down this year, we still had 30-40 folks show up for our noon potluck on Saturday.  We called it an “All SKP Potluck” since so many in attendance were from many Escapee groups – Boomers, Geocachers, Boondockers, Solos, etc.  As usual, there was plenty to eat and the potluck ended with Ed’s birthday cake and the singing of the “Mr. Ed” theme song.  Yes, “…A horse is a horse, of course…..”. 

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The afternoon ended early as most in attendance headed north about 12 miles to SARA Park to watch the Saturday Night Winter Blast Spectacular.

NEXT: 

GREAT BALLS OF FIRE – WINTER BLAST XXV

 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

HYDRAULICS HEADACHE

We last reported that our motorhome’s HWH hydraulics system had dumped a puddle of fluid below the steps while we were parked at Cattail Cove near Lake Havasu City, AZ.  We needed to move the rig to another location for a week before we could get into repairs at 3T’s RV Products.  Moving, however, meant we needed to retract our leveling jacks and bring in our two room slides. That job required adding more hydraulic fluid to the reservoir and creating enough pressure in the lines to get (and keep) things moving in the right direction.  The 3Ts staff advised us to retract the jacks first to put the fluid back into the reservoir and then do the slides. (Winnebago recommends the reverse process.) 

Luke added about 1.5 quarts into the tank, pushed the buttons, and we held our IMG_20140205_102159_339breath.  Voila!  It all worked smoothly. IMG_20140205_102955_801IMG_20140205_104255_622

After leaving our space, we notified the Cattail Cove Park Rangers of the fluid spill and they dispatched someone to deal with the clean-up. Thankfully, there were no penalties.

While Luke was pushing buttons, I was standing over the hydraulics access area under our top step to see if we could see where the fluid was coming from.  Oh, yea!  I almost got hit in the face from the spray from one of the lines controlling the front slide.  And when Luke retracted the back slide, I watched as a pool of hydraulic fluid seeped out over the top.  I was able to capture photos of the leaks which made troubleshooting much faster.

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The top photo, if you look closely, has a diagonal line coming from the middle on the bottom of the screen upwards towards the upper right corner. That is actually the fluid shooting upward.

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The lower photo shows the puddle of fluid atop the hydraulic system.  The culprit was the smaller “check valve” next to the large bolt.

 

CATTAIL TO THE STEPS AND BACK TO 3T’s

Since we still had a week before our appointment, we moved south a couple of miles and took up residency in the Boomer area at a boondocking (free dry-camping) area called The Steps.  We found a level spot, reversed the processes, and got our jacks and slides out without difficulty… or so we thought!

Luke actually had to re-position the rig slightly, so he did a loop around some desert plant life and came through his path a second time.  Upon further inspection, he had left a looooong trail of red hydraulic fluid over his entire course.  We managed to bubble out all the fluid again like the puddle we made at Cattail while we sat and hope the desert dirt covers our tracks. 

The afternoon before our appointment Luke once again refilled the tanks, got the system working and we drove into 3T’s.  They provided us a flat concrete IMG_20140212_142411_021pad with 30 amp electrical and water for the night.  When we told them we were “puking” fluid (Luke’s term) all over their white concrete, they provided an oil pan immediately.

SERVICE DAY

We didn’t have to be ready for the service tech until 7:30 a.m., and, even then, the office woman had said they normally stand around and have coffee & donuts, and then jockey rigs into their service bays.  When it was our turn, we noticed one bay door had a cut-out for taller RVs, but it was not the one the driver was taking our rig through.  We figured they knew what they were doing, but we still sweated it as the rig crept into the service bay.  First, our DirecTV satellite dish barely slid under the header beam and then we thought the plastic extended roof vents would surly hit… but they didn’t either!  The driver had lowered our airbag suspension system and everything cleared without damage.  WHEW!!!  They really do need to make that opening taller.  [Sorry, no pixs.]

We were told they would call us when it was ready, so we gathered up Star and went to breakfast with friends Elise and Don McKibben, fellow Escapee Club members, who also had an appointment the same day. 

By 10:30 a.m. we received a call to pick up our motorhome.  We were really surprised that it was done so quickly.  We had also asked them to clean up all the fluid left on the interior of our steps and to also adjust a pesky rear slide that had developed a gap at the top over my bed.  We could actually see light through the gasket area and we were lucky we had not had any rain since the gap appeared.

THE PROBLEMS

At $100 per hour labor, we were expecting a bill much higher than the $229 we were charged.  The main problems of the leaking fluid was caused by two loose check valves and two bad O-rings and a breather cap that had to be replaced.  3T’s is good at itemizing their time and charging appropriately.  It only took them 30 minutes (0.5 hr.) to troubleshoot and resolve the problem.  It took them longer to clean up the fluid mess (.8 hr.) and only .3 hr. to adjust the slide (or so we thought).

We returned to our same parking space at The Steps, proceeded to properly extend the slides and lower our leveling jacks. A quick check of the hydraulic system showed a sparkling clean area with no signs of any leakage. 

Unfortunately, when Luke extended our rear slide, the gap over my bed was still there!!!  We immediately called back and they told us to bring it back in.  We will do that next Monday, after we stay at The Steps and attend Winter Blast. We don’t plan to pay for that botched repair.  Good news is the skies are still clear and no rain is in the forecast.

NEXT: HANGING IN HAVASU

 

 

 

 

 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Lake Havasu City, Arizona

This is not our first visit to Lake Havasu City (LHC).  In fact, we have been spending two or three weeks a year here since we started our extended RV travels in 2004.  Our repeated visits fall into a routine after a while.  My February 1, 2012 blog details our typical visit to LHC where we will meet the same friends and attend the same activities once again in 2014. 

CITY LIFE

We call this “civilization” after spending a few weeks in the barren, dusty desert around Quartzsite.  Don’t get me wrong, we really enjoy the social life in Q and the desert landscape. Give me a Saguaro cactus, surrounded by mountains and throw in a spectacular sunset and I am one happy camper. 

LHC, however, has “clean” laundromats, restaurants, and lots of shopping opportunities not found in Quartzsite or nearby Parker.  There are also plenty of automotive, RV, and electronics services which seems to come in handy every year while traveling through this area.

After leaving the desert on Saturday we headed for Cattail Cove State Park where we had reservations for four nights.  The plan was to “re-boot,” as one of our RV friends had calls it, when you need time to dump (RVers know the routine), have reliable water and 50-amp electrical service, and time to CLEAN. 

Super Bowl Sunday was a day off.  Our DirecTV service is assigned to Phoenix right now, so we had no problem picking up the game on Fox TV.  Unfortunately, Denver didn’t show up. Since our SF 49ers weren’t playing, I spent the day catching up the blogs. I did catch most of the commercials, but wasn’t impressed with them either.

BACK TO WORK

Monday started slowly, but I did hit the Sunshine Laundromat around 11, just as the rush was ending.  I spent a small fortune in quarters and we now have clean, dust-free clothes and bedding. 

While hanging up my Geocaching BOF t-shirt, the laundry manager noticed our club logo on the back of my shirt and asked if I was a cacher.  Turns out she and her husband are Sunshine Laundry - LHCavid geocachers and even have a cache placed in their parking lot. You can check it out at “Makes Me Hungry"  (GC3QKEZ) on Geocaching.com. I shared info about our Geocaching Rally in Q and she sounded interested in attending next year.  I presented her one of our signature Pathtags to add to her collection.  (I will go for her cache the next time in town.)

NEW PROBLEM

While I was doing laundry, Luke was hard at work removing the first level of dust from the motorhome.  His task was interrupted, however, when our neighbor pointed out a very large pool of fluid under the front of the coach.  After further investigation, Luke determined the leak was from the reservoir in our HWH hydraulic system that controls our leveling jacks and slide out mechanisms.  Without fluid there can be no pressure which means neither system will work when we are scheduled to leave on Wednesday.  IMG_20140203_151900_686

The hydraulic system controls and fluid tank are accessible under the top step in our entryway. Hopefully, that will lesson the labor costs to fix the leak.

A quick internet search revealed that 3T’s RV Products in LHC was an authorized HWH repair center.  After taking photos, we drove into town and discussed the leak location.  We made an appointment for next Tuesday and purchased extra fluid to refill the tanks before we attempt to move the slides in and raise the jacks.  We will see how it goes this Wednesday when we have to leave Cattail Cove SP and move just down the road to our boondocking site at The Steps. Wish us luck!

NEXT:  HYDRAULIC HAPPENINGS