2012 - 2017 Travel Map - Now in the Bad Lands National Park, South Dakota

Travel day from Desert Hot Springs CA to Quartzsite AZ


Wednesday, October 17, 2012 

First thing, we have decided to sell our bicycles and get smaller/lighter folding ones.  One of the reasons the ladder broke I believe is that the bikes bouncing caused the ladder’s aluminum tube frame to crack.  So this is the second try at carrying the bike on the RV that has not worked.  I also don’t like the fact that the bike are very hard to get on and off the RV.  I want to pull into a park and ride in just a couple of minutes.  Now it takes about 20 minutes to get the bikes off and 45 minutes to get them back on the RV.  Way, way too much time!

We are looking to purchase 20 inch folding bikes with aluminum frames and only a few gears.  We want the bikes to be able to be stored in the back seat area of the truck.  So when we go to a trail or a place we can ride we will have the bikes with us and we can carry them at a weight of 25-30 lbs each.  We are going to look at them at bike shops maybe starting in Phoenix.  We will then decide if getting them on the internet makes any economic sense.  I have read that bikes do not always ship well and may need maintenance after they are shipped.  We will consider this when we decide to purchase from a bike shop or online.

Patty made up 2 signs to advertise the bikes for sale.  She put one on the RV hitch and one in the back window of the RV.  Around 9am a couple knocks on our door and a woman wants to purchase Patty’s bike!  Yippee!  Now we just have my bike to sell.  Just having one less of the big 26in bikes makes a big difference.  I am going to store my bike behind the truck cab laying down and secured so it won’t interfere with the 5th wheel hitch.  Loading just one bike in this manor is much easier than trying to get 2 big 26in bikes on top of one another behind the cab.  So we are OK for now with bikes and will start to look for a replacement for Patty’s.

Patty's bike that sold in one morning for $100!
Today was Patty’s first day pulling the RV.  She started with hitching the 5th wheel to the truck.  In the space we were in it was very tricky to get the truck hitched to the RV.  The RV was very close to the curb so that when trying to back into the RV hitch the front tires had to climb the curb just as you approach the hitch.  The area between the RV and the curb was also on an incline.  It was somewhat difficult to tell how high to have the RV to meet the truck after it climbed the incline.  She tried a few times and then wanted me to do the hitching.  It took us a few attempts to get it right, but we did it.  I had to use the brake and gas at the same time as well as having the truck in 4 wheel drive to help get it done.

After hitching up Patty took over in the driver’s seat.  We got a few feet down the road and noticed that the 4 wheel drive and the tow lights were flashing on the dash.  Just the tow light should be on and not flashing.  We stopped the truck and I had to get the manual out as I couldn't get the truck out of 4 wheel drive.  It was very easy but a little tense as we were blocking the entire road while I was reading the truck manual K.  Put the truck in neutral and then place the 4 wheel drive switch back to 2 wheel drive.  That worked and we are now on the road J

Patty behind the wheel with the rig for the first time.
The trip to Quartzsite was an easy trip.  It was real hot at 95 degrees and a little tense as we climbed through the small mountains at this temperature.  The truck and Patty handled it perfectly.  As we crossed into Arizona we saw the big tall cactus for the first time.  I think those are so cool. 



Wide open desert.


Welcome to Arizona.

One of the up hill grades along the way.

The large cactus.

More large cactus.

We arrived at the 88 Shades campground at 3:15 pm and we got a pull through site.  The park is wide open with no trees or RVs for that matter so it was very easy to park.  Patty did a few back and forths as we are still learning how to get a perfect side to side placement after we are in the site.  This was a good site to practice on as it is so wide open.  We both learned a few things about how to maneuver the rig here.  By 4 pm we were completely set up.  Not bad, 45 minutes to set up even with us practicing some getting into the site.

Our site in Quartzsite AZ
We decide to go out to eat as we had heard this area is known for fish fry’s.  We heard one of the best was a place about a mile away called GrubStake.  We went there and they are under new management and not open!  We searched on the internet with our phones and found a pizza place not far away.  Patty made the wise choice and got Mexican food.  I, on the other hand, got Italian food.  The sauce was afoul, not good…it sucked!  My stomach is turning as I write this just thinking about it. What was I thinking ordering Italian food in the desert anyway?  I scraped off the sauce and ate the piece of chicken that thankfully was not cooked in the sauce.  If it was done right, the chicken would have been cooked in the sauce.  Anyway, $36 for dinner and a carafe of wine wasn't bad.

After getting back and settling in with some TV the power went out!  Again, the park power was going over 132 volts and causing my power management system to shut down the RV.  I decided to run the generator as there is no one around us to bother with the noise.  I ran it for about 2 hours when the power came back on again.  We have been on the road for a little over 2 months now and have just started seeing this high voltage problem in the past 2 weeks.  We will see what happen tomorrow.
Tomorrow we plan to explore the area of Quartzsite.  Also we still want to find that good fish fry!

Another fine day!

Stay tuned!

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