Boon docking (Quartzsite, Arizona)

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Boon docking is an experience like no other! We have spent the last few days in Quartzsite, Arizona boon docking at the High Jolly BLM camp. As some of you know, most the land around here is free camping for a max. of 14 days, then you need to travel so many miles to a different area with a max of 14 days with a 28 day time frame in between. Yes it is free camping, but you have no hook ups, maybe phone and internet if your lucky, and you will need to bring your own water source to get by on… Basically, you are on your own. Water out here is very cheap (well water for the tanks are $0.05 per gallon, and drinking water is $0.25 per gallon or 5 gallons for $1.00) For a fee, there are plenty of places to dump your waste in the area that will range from $5.00 to $20.00. We ended up stocking up on paper plates, bowls, cups and plastic silverware to avoid using water for dishes. We have 1 2.5 gallon water container, 7 1 gallon water containers, and a 7 gallon water container that we use for our drinking water, coffee, and juices, our main tank is used for sewage only, with showers at truck stops, or state parks. Showers will either be cheap or cost you an arm and leg. We have seen showers as low as $0.25 for every few min. all the way up to $10.00 for a 30 min. shower. If you are by yourself, to save water and money, the best thing to do is shower with a bucket in the shower in your RV to collect the grey water to re use for your toilet. this will save money, and water. If you have a family like us… be prepared to pay a few bucks for showers out here. The cheapest showers are at the Laundry mat which are $8.00 per shower.

Now for the solar… We are glad we have it, but are very happy with having a 3800 watt generator as a back up. Our 500 watt system will power all of the lights, 2 TVs, our fridge, a game system, and the water pump until the unit over loads. Right now, we are not getting propane flowing to our fridge so we have to have 100% electrical power which has the generator running a lot more then we are wanting. The solar will last so long for the day but we need to monitor our system to make sure we have enough energy to run for the night. Until we can get this fixed, we will be forking out fuel for the generator to keep our fridge going… Its all part of the show when you decide to go on your own. You just have to suck it up, find the problem, and fix it.

We mainly came out here for the big Gem and RV show that happens every winter around this time and if you haven’t been to the show yet, make this a must see on your travels. We spent 2 days there, and still didn’t see the whole place. Expect to spend 2.5 to 3 days here to see the whole show. The place is huge and has everything from new RV’s to workamping positions that are hiring right then and there. We talked to all of the workamping companies there but are already set up for Alabama this year. If you are looking for positions opened, send me an email and I will send you the info of places looking for workampers.

We will be leaving tomorrow (1/22/18) and heading off to Yuma Arizona for a night, then off to East of Tucson, Arizona for some more Boon Docking. Have a great night and if you are or going to be in the area in Yuma, come on down to hang out. Not sure where we will be in Yuma, but if you know of some good areas, please do let us know. We use to schedule everything until we hit the road… now we just take it day by day with no real place planned to see or go to.

 

 

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Desert Bar & Nellie E Saloon (Outside of Parker Az.)

Well… we made it to the desert bar & saloon. For those of you that haven’t heard about this place here is a little background on the place:

The original name is Nellie E Saloon which use to be an old copper mine camp that a guy names “Ken” (sorry, cant find the last name) bought in the mid 70’s and slowly transferred into the “Desert Bar & Nellie E Saloon.

This place is a must see place if your in the area… but do understand that you will love the uniqueness of the place and think “I’m glad I saw this place” or your going to be ” Broke my axle, blew my tires, and had a 10 trek to the nearest highway.” From Parker Arizona, you will have about 5 miles in the desert out towards the Parker Dam, then another rough 10 miles give or take on roads that are meant for ATV use. The road is rough and gets rougher the closer you get.

I took 2 of the kids out there today and saw multiple vehicles coming back right after opening. Come to find out these people decided not to risk it as the road became rougher to drive on. I just about turned around due to the last thing I need is my wife pissed off that I broke the truck to go to a Saloon. (Sorry guys, the ladies frown on that). Once I was about to turn around we saw the saloon around the corner.

If your not a country western music fan (Jonny Cash, or Hank Williams) then this place isn’t for you. With live bands when opened singing country western music, best burgers(1/2pound patties min.) and dogs (1/4 pound hot dogs), and all of the unique things to see in this saloon in the middle of nowhere, this is definitely a gold mine and what I’ve learned today a bucket list for some. Kids are welcome here for the full timers and snow birds that follow us with families, just keep a close eye on them because this place gets packed which brings me to the hours of operations, and when they are open during the year to why it gets so packed:

Months of Operations: October – April

Days of Operations: Saturday & Sunday

Hours of Operations: 12pm – 6pm

THIS IS CASH ONLY! Do not bring a card or you will be making the trip back to camp or a bank to get cash.

For those of you that decide to make the trip out here… Good luck, and stay safe. Like I mentioned earlier, if you don’t have an ATV of 4×4 I wouldn’t recommend the trip. It gets rough, and there is no cell reception at all. There are plenty of boon docking spots on this road, with plenty of ATV riding (jeeps, trucks, quads, dirt bikes, side by sides, you name it, you can do it) and for the gun lovers, plenty of areas to go shooting.

Have a great night everyone, and keep away from the flu going around… Its a nasty one. I will be starting to do reviews on places that we have stayed at since I know some of you are fulltime RVers, some getting ready to make the transition, and others still curious about the life style. We will be out of here on the 18th back on the road to Quartszite, AZ next then we are taking HWY 10 or HWY 40 towards New Mexico. We haven’t determined which route we will take so if you have traveled these HWYs would love feedback.

 

 

Great Trip To Walmart Yesturday

A huge influence that got us to make the final step of going fulltime RVing was watching many videos on YouTube of fulltime RVers and how they can manage to live this lifestyle. A favorite is Nomatic Fanatic that will take you right along the adventure. The guy’s name is Eric, and he just travels, and videos his experiences with his cat in a class c motorhome. If you ever get a chance, check out his station.

I took a trip to Walmart yesterday and out of all places I saw the Nomatic Fanatic RV boondocking at Walmart. I ended up getting the opportunity of meeting him in person and his cat Jax. Hopefully we will be meeting more at Quartzite this year (Drivin & Vibin, Keep Your Day Dream, caravan Dan), and some of the other nomads traveling the country.

If your not familiar with it, Quartzite is a small town in southern Arizona that goes from a population of about 3,000 in the summer to half a million in the winter months. Due to the nice weather, dirt cheap to free long term camping, and the largest RV show in the world, its no wonder why this place is a true hit when it comes to staying in nice weather in the winter months for cheap. If boondocking for free on BLM, you have no water, or dump station (which you can get from town). The max. stay is 14 days, then you have to travel so many miles away from that campsite to where you can camp at a new area. The paid boondocking will cost you $180.00 for 7 months but will get you water and dump stations for free, plus you are able to stay long term. We will be doing the 14 day max on BLM since we don’t be staying long term.

Well, that’s all for now so have a great day. Hope you like the new lights for the trailer and my new ‘expensive’ fire pit.

 

One Month In

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Well, we have made 30 days so far and just wanted to give a little rundown of what we think so far, things we have learned along the way, and also the goods and bads of what we have noticed so far.

We spent a good year in a half researching fulltime RVing before we made the big decision to give it go. Once we had a date, the countdown was on and finally got to a point of no return. The feelings we went through in the process was mixed with excitement, depression, fear, and curiosity of the unknown. There were many times, I would ask myself “what on earth am I doing”, and start second guessing my decision. Those of you that are looking to make this transition must understand that it will not be easy in the beginning, but does get better. You will change your mind multiple times back and fourth which will soon drive you crazy. Once on the road, it may take a week or 2 to start adjusting to the change, but once you’ve made the step to go for it, and the adjustment kicks in, you can look back and see what you have just accomplished.

Your not retired yet, how can you do this? Is a question I’ve had from more then one viewer of this page. The reason why we didn’t wait for retirement is because to many things can happen do to health complications. We have read to many stories of people waiting until retirement to do this, then something happens, heart attack, significant other dies, and the list goes on and on and on. I do Auto CAD and different workamping positions to make our money. We pick our jobs, pick our places, and leave if we don’t like it. I believe every single person has some kind of skill that they could use to make money and the beauty of it is that if your bills are low, you don’t need to make a lot to get by. So far on our travels we have seen everything from photography, to barbers at parks, people that paint and sell rocks.

The Goods: We have the option to live where we want, when we want. Once you go fulltiming, the United States is your playground. Our bills, are fuel, food, and emergency expenses unless we choose to stay at a paid park. We get to see and have experiences that the majority of people will not do unless its on a vacation. Our home is camping all of the time.

The Bads: Tight living quarters, you are on your own so your RV set up becomes as important as your Social Security Card, internet and cable can get pretty tricky in spots even with subscriptions, and rangers, if you have a family or significant other you better get along really well because you will be seeing each other all of the time, clogged toilets are not unheard of, and draining the tanks isn’t a trip to Disneyland. Showers are short and not the sweetest, water usage, and other power devices need to be monitored closely.

Some may see that the good out way the bad, others may see the bads out weighing the good. There is no right or wrong answer to it. It falls on who that person is, and how they want to live there life.

Have a great Sunday everyone and stay warm.

Lake Havasu, Arizona (London Bridge)

 

 

 

 

Yes, that’s right, we went and saw the London Bridge in the Arizona desert. The bridge was built in the 1830’s to span across the River Thames in London. In 1967, the bridge was dismantled and sent to Arizona for reconstruction to where it stands to this day. Some of you know that I love history so this was a really neat sight to see.

Under the bridge was a little European looking village that had everything from boat rentals to take out on the canal going into Lake Havasu, to the biggest candle Shoppe in the world. Along the canal, you had swimming areas, a nice dog park, trails along the canal, 2 play sets, volleyball, basketball, gift shops and bars/restaurants.

When on top of the bridge, you will see at one end of the bridge a lot of padlocks from different people over the years. Its pretty neat seeing oddities like this as we continue to travel. We will be back here before we leave to see the hot air balloon show, and possibly just to spend another day hanging out.

Lake Havasu was a wonderful place to see with plenty of history, places to see, and things to do. If you are ever in the area, this is a stop that you don’t want to pass up on your travels.

Have a Happy New Year’s

 

Which type of RV should I get?

 

There is no simple answer to this, since all have their positive and negative features that you may be looking for. I will do my best to give you some of the positives and negatives about the different RV’s to try and save you a few headaches to better help you on making a decision if you are interested in living this type of life style.

Truck Camper:

Pros: Better fuel mileage for your truck, can easily park anywhere you  want, don’t have a vehicle or trailer to tow, less maintenance needed. Cheaper then any of the other RVs

Cons: Limited living space, if your vehicle breaks down your home goes with it (unless you are in an area that you can off load your camper), limits your truck bed to haul additional supplies that may be needed.

Bumper Pull Trailers:

Pros: Can haul with a smaller truck, open truck bed to pack additional supplies that you cant do with any other RV, if your truck breaks down just unhook your trailer so that you still have your living space (which you cant do with a truck camper or mobile home), more living space then a truck camper, is cheaper then going with a motorhome or 5th wheel route.

Cons: Bumper Pull Trailers don’t play as well with the wind as the 5th wheels do, smaller living space then a 5th wheel, cant make 90 degree turns when backing up if needed unlike the 5th wheels, and truck/campers, depending on the size your looking for, this may limit your areas to park at campgrounds. One thing I’ve learned is if you can, 35′ is the max length you want to go since you can still get into 90% of the parks. Once you go longer, your percentage drops fast.

5th Wheels:

Pros: Has the most living space which makes it better for bigger families then other type of RV’s, easier to tow then Bumper Pull Trailers, can make sharper turns then a Bumper Pull Trailer, loading/unloading is quick. Brandy and I have got it to where we can unload the 5th wheel, fully hooked up, slides out, and leveled in about 5 mins. Once you have a routine down it goes fast. Less maintence then a motor home (a 5th wheel like a Bumper Pull Trailer has wheels and an axle). Like the Bumper Pull Trailer, we can unload our home if we have mechanical problems with our truck.

Cons: Less room for additional supplies in the bed of your truck, a 5th wheel may be lower in cost then a motor home, but is more then likely going to require buying another truck unless you have a min. of a 3/4 ton. I would recommend a 1 ton diesel for towing if you can afford it. The 1 tons wont get as good as mileage as a 3/4 ton off tow, but on tow you will get about 2 miles per gallon better then a 3/4 ton. A 5th wheel hitch will need to be purchased also which could run another few hundred bucks for the budget.

Motorhome:

Pros: Your living area is your driving area (you can cook bacon while still driving if you have someone with you, or use the bathroom while on the road). Better view of the road while driving then your typical truck and trailer. Doesn’t require having a truck or a vehicle (but is recommended to have a small car for towing). More comfortable for long distance driving then any other RVs. (not sure, but hear the class A’s seem to be the best in this area). You will have better access of getting into parks since some of the parks are motorhomes only.

Cons: Maintenance is going to be a lot higher then a truck. Last I heard an oil change will run you over $300.00 if taken to a shop. Does not corner as well as trailers since there is no pin point for turning. Once a motorhome breaks down, you better have extra funds for a motel or a tent to set up since your vehicle/home is in one. A lot more expensive then a trailer, if towing a car, you may need to unhook your car first if you plan on backing up (this will depend on your towing set up). Smaller living area then a 5th wheel, more maintance will be required, if you don’t have a tow vehicle, you may be stuck where you park due to your size unless you call uber to pick you up.

Conclusion: Over all, you are going to find the good and bad with all of them and will never really find the perfect one. I just hope that I took a lot of the headaches away that I had to deal with when shopping for what would best suite us. Please comment on your experiences with what you have, had or any other info that I missed to help others interested in starting this life style but don’t know where to start with choosing the best RV that fits there wants and needs.

 

 

 

 

 

Merry Christmas

FHD0161We just wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. Due to limited internet out here in the desert, most photos and videos will not upload. We do have videos and Christmas pictures done, and will have up as soon as we can.

Christmas Eve we had a pizza party where the camp bought the pizzas, then everyone pitched in to bring dishes. Lots of food, and great people to meet. Today the camp made turkey, ham, mashed potatoes and gravy, and everyone brought dishes. For Christmas Eve Brandy made chocolate chip cookies, and Christmas day she made her banana bread that became a hit with the others.

Now for more donkey stories! Two days ago, we had the dog chained up on a 50′ lease, I brought her food and water outside, then came in to do some CAD work. It wasn’t 30 minutes later when I was hearing banging on the trailer, so I went out to see what was going on. As I swung the door of the trailer open, I ended up hitting the ass of an ass, with 4 others raiding the dog food with our guard dog hiding under the trailer. Yesterday I hit one in the head opening the door to the trailer. I guess he was just standing there looking at the door… Stupid animals! Our neighbor said he saw one the other day with the sewage hose ring on his leg, that I believe is behind our trailer now.

We hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas, and stayed warm… We sure did!