The weather is
frightful even here in Arizona...
With all the
news lately about the subzero weather and snow that the Midwest and East
experiencing, (latest snow storm in the northest with a million or so without
forget that Arizona has its share of devastating weather also.
it is raining here in Quartszite. OMG
It was 70
for most of the day. Had to put on a hoodie.
The other day I posted...
You could be in a lot worse places
than Q me thinks at this time of year.
I got this email...
"You are right. There are
worse places than Q in the winter. You could be in a winter shithole
called Iowa. The temps have been getting down to around 0 at nite
and the day time hasn't been much better. How I hate this place in
Next I got this from a good friend...
a photo illustrating the excessive damage caused to a
a storm that passed through the Phoenix area last week.
makes you cherish what you have, and reminds us not to take life for granted.
Great day but
fat fingers screwed things up...
had a good day in the sun here in southwest AZ. A perfect day me
called one of the title companies in Parker so we would know how to proceed
in our quest for a
deeded lot here in Q.
was well as we enjoyed the sunny afternoon sitting under our canopy. But
tonight after we came inside
we were watching politics on MSNBC TV. Then the recorded Nightly NBC News.
We DVRed American Idol for later watching
as I was deleting the NBC news recording I hit the wrong key and deleted
American Idol in HD. SHIT
recovered as it was ten till nine AZ time and American Idol was coming
on on the west coast feed of Fox
in HD) but we still can see it.
me thinks the beef (leftover from the pot roast last night) and the homemade
noodles Terry made, to make
and Noodles with mushrooms and sour cream will make it all right.
to stop so so I can watch the 12 guys perform...
Main site updates
and looking at land (again)...
Been working on the main site www.hitchitch.com
Added several new listings.
Many more are under review. This
is a tough deal selecting sites. Sort of like Simon
(from American Idol) being the bad
ass having to reject some of the talent.
And No I do not visit each site everyday.
Just like you I have my favorites.
I use the Pick A Site at Random
feature just to see which one it will pick.
Like some of you who are not fulltimers
and are stuck up north this winter season it
gives us a way of feeling connected
and seeing what others are up to...
At this time of year being in Quartzsite
(we are here for the WHOLE winter season since
Terry is so involved in the rock
club) I get hitch itch big time reading about where others are exploring.
But we are after all where it is
warm and will be hitting the road in due time.
You could be in a lot worse places
than Q me thinks at this time of year.
Isn't there a statement about being
not behind a desk, is better than being,
anywhere behind a desk ...
or something like that. I forgot how it goes since I'm not behind
a desk and don't have to think about
such things anymore.
Went back and looked at some deeded
lots in Q and they have dropped their asking price 20%...
So are rethinking that idea. The
wide open spaces of boondocking in the BLM is great,
but the thought of getting a couple
of ATV's and having a place to store them,
a possible hot tub,
a tread mill, (to get back in shape
- another dream)
with a covered patio to lounge in.
Then later replace the hot tub with
a small pool, now that's more like it me thinks.
Give me all that and BLM boondocking
in Quartzsite in the winter will be only a memory.
Now don't get me wrong... boondocking
during the summer is what we strive for but a little more comfort in the
winter might be nice IF I can have it on my terms.
It makes for nice daydreams right
now to help the long sunny afternoons pass.
All you have to do to get in this
frame of mind is to go for a drive to Rainbow Acres
(a suburb of Q) and see how nice
winter landing spots can be.
As you can see the mind tends to
wonder when you are retired and have nothing better to do.
Isn't that the way it's supposed
Now back to watching American Idol
and Simon Cowels later tonight to see how the selection (rejection) process
is done big time. Smoothing the candidates and at the same time hustling
the loosers off stage left. I want to study how Ellen Degenerous does it...
to help in my own Hitchitch.com listing selection (rejection) process.
Two items today, not sure
which one should go first.
You'll see why.
Quail Mountain Cafe in Quartzsite
(I love being able to go to Google Earth Street View
and gab a picture when I don't have one.)
We keep hearing good things about
Quail Mountain Cafe here in Quartzsite. We ate there a while back for breakfast
and had a good meal and came away pleased. But we have been wanting to
get to their Friday Night Catfish special. We called last night and they
said they had open tables at about 6 PM. So we rushed on over to find a
line waiting to get seated. We did get right in as we agreed to sit at
the bar. We had a good view looking directly into the food prep area. The
staff was in good spirits and friendly to each other and their customers.
They were dishing out the food in fast order not looking stressed at all.
They knew they were on the home stretch as they had less than hour as they
close at 7 PM. Still taking new customers right up to that time.
Anyway we got or dinner.
We ordered the special and it came
with a side salad or clam chowder. Both of which were good. I had the salad
and Terry the chowder. I had expectations of a catfish that looked like
a catfish but what we got were nuggets deep fried well past done. Not golden
brown but dark to blackish. For the most part you didn't get a taste of
fish just burnt batter and a hint of white fish inside. Now the three hushpuppies
included were good though. A chunk of sweet corn on the cob that was soggy
but meaty. Been sitting in hot water for hours me thinks. The fries looked
good but had a crust on them like they had been dipped in a batter. After
a few, that taste got a little old and I didn't finish them. The cole Slaw
Next time we might go back for what
looked good, and which they were serving lots of, was a huge thick chicken
fried steak covered in gravy.
Hope it was an off night as this
establishment has a long history of serving good food to a growing customer
base. Our idea of what a catfish dinner should be didn't measure up to
its billing, so if fish is on your mind it's still the Grub Stake over
on N Central me thinks.
Earlier we spotted this vender across
from Rice Ranch. Close by the $5 for shower trailer.
The mind wonders as to what this
is all about. So we had to stop and get a pamphlet.
Yep, that was what it was, all rightey...
He will clean out the most sensitive
areas of your RV. He even has a web site www.rvproctologist.com
From his pamphlet... Hydro-Jetting
uses innovative equipment which creates high pressure (500 to 2800 psi)
to remove odor-causing contaminants from holding tank surfaces by being
power-washed using multiple jets at a very high speed and force, dislodging
all foreign matter and flushing it out.
The best part was a Testimonial
was amazed at what I saw while Steve was flushing my tanks."
Remember as he sez... Dirty Holding
Tanks Are No Picnic!
Big boys and their toys
as the saying goes...
Now in my case I got today
a USPS Priority package with my latest must have item. This is an item
I have waited for someone to come up with for a couple of years, and now
it has been produced, and I am lucky to be one of the early receivers of
it. Now I don't think this upgrade is a big boy toy by any means but it
grabed your attention so read on. This might just be what you are looking
We have a DataStorm Internet system
and it has a BOW (bird on wire) (that's the arm off to to right that holds
the DirecTV receiver module) on it. So you can receive the internet data
stream on the main unit and also receive a SD DirecTV.
Now we have a HD flat screen Sony
1080p in our new 5er and have had to also drag around with us a standalone
tripod and SL 5 dish. Sure we could still get SD TV off the little BOW
on the internet dish. But to get get HD we needed to set up the tripod
at each stop. This thing takes up lots of room (storage) so we wanted a
better way to get HD without this standalone dish.
We did make it so it folds up for
storage at least.
Sure we could get another remote
dish on top of our 5er that just gets DirecTV HD.
But at a high cost and who needs
another dish on top about the same size of our current internet dish searching
around for signals to latch on to.
Several people on the DataStormUsers.com
forums had devised home made dish attachments that looked promising but
you had to take their ideas and make your own from stretch. None had a
detailed plan but Oregon RV Service said they were working on one. So I
wrote to them and got in on the ground floor. So now Oregon RV Satellite
Service has come up with a solution that I thought was the answer to what
I wanted. We are one of the first ones to get their product. They are not
advertising this yet that I can see, so I have not listed their site.
Now for pictures of the install.
The instructions called for us to
remove the little LNO (see above the black dish picture) on the arm and
replace it with the new SL-3 LNO unit. But we ran into a little problem.
We are on internet satellite 89W and the LNO unit needed to be positioned
closer on the arm and it hit the plastic cover of our older F1 satellite
dish. (The newer ones don't have this big shroud) So as you can see
we had to cut the plastic cover so the new LNO unit could slide to the
correct position. It didn't interfere with anything inside.
Now the details of the install.
We called Don at Oregon RV Satellite
Service and Don (he answered on first ring) said just remove the plastic
shroud and leave it off. We removed it but didn't think we should just
leave it off as he suggested. Look at all that would be exposed. Not pretty
let alone the open wires and connections and no blue lights... No BLUE
We would have lost our blue lights
and look at all the open wires.
Like we leave the D3 powered up
when we boondock.
So we took the shroud off and went
to work on it.
Now back up on the dish some final
pictures of our install.
We had to do this since we are on
satellite 89W but me thinks if you have an old F1 you may not have to do
this if you are on 83W. And if a newer dish no cutting involved at all.
Anyway this is great as we don't
have to set up the tripod to get DirecTV HD anymore.
Terry the other day as we were waiting
for the delivery asked what happens if we are in a spot and we can't get
DirecTV from the on roof HD dish. AND I said if that happens we wouldn't
get internet either so if I don't get Internet it doesn't matter about
Now if you're in the Quartzsite area
and looking for a tripod and SL-5 dish let us know.
A fun day trip...
about time we got out of town.
After meeting Tad at Brenda, AZ we
drive 80 miles to the Vulture
Mine in Wickenburg on Saturday.
$10 to explore on a self guided
tour, but well worth it. Of course Tad know the managers of the site
so we had a warm welcome.
Tad showing his friend Bob the assay
office, bullion starage room, and gaurd house.
Bob and his wife caravaned along
Tad getting a shot of Bob and his
The hanging Ironwood tree at the
mine where 18 men were hung for high grading.
In mining, high grading refers
to mining out the portions of the orebody that has the highest grade of
material to be mined, however it may also refer to the concealment and
theft of valuable gold or silver ore by miners for personal profit. Common
in the United States in the late 1800s and early 1900s, high graders would
usually conceal gold ore in a pocket or lunch pail, or internally within
the body, and later attempt to fence it on the black market.
Do read more
about it at the link to the Vulture
After the mine
tour we headed downtown to the Wickenburg 62nd
Annual Gold Rush Days A very big event in this part of
AZ. We lucked out as the traffic was jammed, but we pulled into a Bashas
parking lot right next door to the main evant and found an open parking
spot for only $5. Bashas had given over part of their lot to a local fund
raising group. Do click on the link to read more about this festival. A
couple of pictures from the event. A huge gathering of arts and craft booths.
We had a great BBQ meal from a local fundraising group and for only $7.50.
They have been doing this for 62 years so they have it down pat.
Later back from our 80 mile day (one
way) trip to Wickenburg we sat outside and listened to Cousin Brucie
on channel 6 on XM radio.
Now if you need a campfire fix we
share our campfire with you.
(You're not stuck up north in the
cold and snow now are you)?
After further review of my Friday
post (the blog was sent up to the blog post judge up in the booth who determined
this post was not worthy, so it was deleted. Ya Know trying to find
ideas to post about when you just don't have that much to talk about so
you ramble on is not good blogging me thinks. So nuts to that, after review
the post as denied. Did we just watch the super bowl or am I getting confused.
Today on Saturday
we went on a field trip with Tad and friends on a caravan to Wickenburg
to tour the Vulture
Mine and later downtown to the 62nd
Annual Gold Rush Days. Lots of pictures of the mine and the Gold Rush
event to be posted on Sunday. Above links if you just can't wait for my
as a Wed. night post. But having trouble uploading so now calling it a
Added another shot of the sunrise
the other day... I like this one. This is what it's all about.
We went for a ride to Family Dollar
for supplies and also stopped at the produce vender across from the post
Terry need cellery for his soup.
As you can see some of the venders
are having sales... or more like help me sell my stuff so I can "get out
of town sale". We sometimes analyze their setups as we walk by. At times
we wonder what they are thinking, as for some we think their product inventory
(even if they sold it all) would not equal their vender space rent cost.
But we do wish each of them well. We are all in this together after all.
A storm was moving in from the northeast
(not the normal weather pattern in these parts) as we were sitting out
in the sun at the picnic table. I got on the netbook and brought up the
NWS radar. Nothing severe but still this looked like we could get wet big
time. As it started to rain and with the sun from the west we got several
After it passed a picture of our
rain washed campsite. So clean with the fresh desert air.
As the storm moved south (most of
the storm was just to the east of us as) we captured this picture looking
Now for tonight (Wednesday) Terry
is working on a batch of vegatable beef soup with cabbage.
Just like his mother used to make.
I'll go ahead and say that word... yummy even before I taste
This was a sunrise in Q
not a sunset.
Terry has a bedroom slide portal
window to the east so he can see the sun come up. Looking out after scanning
his alarm clock he got right up. He is so tasky getting up before me as
he instructs at the rock club at 9 AM and has to brew his tea to take with
him. I get up a little later afer he has had a sip of his tea. He then
still has time to fix breakfast for me before he leaves. I go right to
the computer and get on with my online life. Blogs and the online e-USA
Today newspaper. Just like the real paper.
We installed a remote generator
starter (you did read our install story) so we don't have to go outside
to start our Honda. (We like to run the Honda 3000 a little in the morning
to get the AGM batteries back up to speed. We kick up the temp on our forced
air furnace when we get up, (overnight we leave it at 58) then let our
solar do its magic the rest of the day.) We are living in the desert off
the grid for the winter and are not doing without living this way.
He went outside and I wondered why.
He said sunrise. Later I loaded the pictures from the camera
and found out why. I run it through Picasa 3 to bring it all together.
Thanks Geeks on Tour
who teach about this stuff. Also see their personal
blog. I still use Fast
Stone as my main picture handling programs. Love ther screen capture
program. Check them out.
We like to do a loop drive in late
afternoon for supplies etc. (our big entertainment) and as you can see
you can go bowling down Bus I-10 now. (Looking west toward Pilot) The traffic
is gone and the merchants recognize us as long term visitors which makes
us feel more a part of things. This year so far the rock club has over
830 members, most of which are still in town. The local merchants and longer
stay venders are well aware of this and know who is here to support them
not just during the busy 10 day big tent show season.
Tyson Ranch is starting to have
less venders. We still have to get to the front row kitchen vender and
get some new fry pans. We buy from them each year as they sell quality
Soon as more people abandon Q we
will be able to go out to eat again like on a Friday night to the Grub
Stake for their fish fry (way to much fried food so should be done to only
a couple of times each season) and be seated with room to spare. We thought
about the Mountain Quail restaurant last friday and called but they still
had people waiting in line to get in. They do catfish on Fridays and we
would like to try them out before we leave town.
Now is the best time to be in Q
me thinks. Long Term Visitor RVers in the BLM areas now can say Hi again
to their neighbors who were here before, and still now after the rush in
January. And the weather only gets nicer now... sure January weather is
great compared to most other parts in the country (especially this year)
but NOW things start to warm up more each week. There is a reason why the
LTVA camping pass expires April 15 as it gets hot again even at that time
of year. (That is for us wimps who don't live here year round.) But then
again those who live year round in Q have to be NUTS, so what can I say.
Snowbirds are for the most part, when the sun is shinning are running around
in shorts while the locals are bundled up in what we would only call winter
parkas. If you need coats or hoodies just head over Kmart in Blythe to
see a huge selection of coats this time of year.
Anyway this is life in Q as we live
it... My view and I'm sticking to it. I didn't even have to write
out my main talking points in on my Palm Prompter.
Update: 7 PM
It is a strange year here in Q.
We have had several large rain fronts move through again late this afternoon.
HW 95 both north and south is for the most part at the stage where you
DO need to read the signs... If Water Present... Do Not Enter.
what the police radio reports officers on the scene are saying... You think
I'm nuts, I'm not out driving in this.
No sitting outside tonight listening
to music around a fire.
But we could be up north and out
east and be involved in record breaking snow falls. Been there done
NO thanks. I'll take a little rain
in the desert any day thank you, and be happy. It dries out fast and in
a day or two it will be dusty again when someone drives by.
Terry had to rush to a special rock
club board meeting at 4 PM. You know people can come up with all kinds
of things and the board at times has to rule and set things straight. People
are diverse, that's why life is special.
Now a chuck roast is in the oven,
showers done and life is good.
We went to Blythe, yesterday...
see the below Friday story and stopped at Albertsons
Picked up a Chuck Roast Boneless
for $2.99 and a package of NY Strip Bone In at $3.77 a lb. Fresh Ground
Beef 82% was $2.49 so we got a couple pounds of that also. Now that we
have room in our larger fridge we can stock up when the price is right.
We are not big fans of the local Blythe Albertsons store but if the price
Ya know you live and learn...
I get to make a bitch post today
about our adventures on Friday. Just my kind of post me thinks.
We have for years been going to Parker,
AZ 35 miles north of Quartzsite to the Chevy dealer for service. (You remember
last year when it took them 9 hours to put 6 new tires on our truck?)
So we were in need of a front end
alignment and an oil change in our Duramax diesel. So we thought we would
give the Chevy dealer in Blythe, CA a try.
Closer and couldn't be worse than
the one in Parker we thought.
Called them up and made an appointment
for Friday at 1 PM. We get there and the service guy sez you want an alignment?
See the truck up on the lift, been up there for days as the alignment machine
I said broke we have an appointment.
I looked down at his appointment book which was a jumble of scratchings
mostly unreadable. After I give him a look that could kill. I sez
can we still get the oil changed. Sure... So they do that and when
done he sez that will be $91. I said your highway billboard along I-10
in Quartzsite sez $69. He sez you have to bring in a coupon from the "while
pages" for that price and tell us up front.
(Now get this) As he sez we use
a different filter when you get the sale price. (So they are putting in
cheap filters and not telling anyone... that just slipped out me thinks.)
I said I don't know anything about
any coupon... what was I suposed to do bring in the billboard sign
and second of all you didn't even do the alignment that I wanted and you
still want to rip me off. After going round and round with him the service
manager stepped in wrote up a new ticket and I paid the sale price and
got the hell out of there. If you have ever been to the Blythe Chevy dealer
you know it looks right out of the third world. As we were walking away
I told Terry The Parker Chevy dealer now looks beter and better.
I looked up the Chevy dealer on the
web and my mouth dropped open when I noticed the same guy owns this dealership
in Blythe, CA Lake Havasu, AZ and also in Cottonwood, AZ. We remember
that one in Cottonwood very well as we were offended back in 2007 when
we stopped there for an oil change. A nice big new dealership way overdone
for the market. It was more like a palace.
The thing that tripped our trigger
was they had a Christian radio music theme playing very very loud over
their public address system. You couldn't hear yourself think as religious
preachings were blairing out at you. I asked a saleman about it and he
just shrugged his shoulders. We did complain when we paid our bill and
the clerk just said that's how the owner wants it. Later we saw a nice
GMC dealer on the ouskirts of town. Next time...
So there you have it, my bitch of
One of the things about life in Quartzsite
is some make due with only what they can find. It goes for all aspects
of life. Now this might just be the greatest viewing stand to watch
the people in the Tyson Wells south vendor area. Thousands of people go
by this and I wonder how many notice life taking advantage of its surroundings.
See anything... sure you do.. Just
move your cuser over the seguaro.
We had to go to town after Terry
returned from the rock club later in the afternoon to get reverse osmosis
water which is filtered to remove most minerals and impurities. NO one
drinks city Q water which is full of salts and minerals. It's 20 cent a
gallon. We get ours from the Pit Stop.
On the way back we did a loop the
loop (you did that as teenagers didn't you?) on B-10 then south on HW 95
and stopped to get a shot of the big tent coming down. This is one huge
structure to be sure.
A close up of the mess they now have
to deal with to get this thing packed up and moved out of here. The floor
was covered with green outdoor carpet. Can you imagine dealing with all
of that. Wish they would sell chunks of it now after they are done. They
jabbed the mid section tent poles right through it so much of it is ruined
After we got back relaxing around
the picnic table with peanuts in the shell. (Hope Bob and Linda are doing
the same down Mexico way.) I looked up at the solar panels and then
looked at Terry. He knew that was a clue, as we had discussed how dusty
they were becoming. So up he went to give them a good cleaning. Isn't he
special... He does windows.
This is going to be a reach... Don't
fall off your RV roof.
These are our so called window panels
to the sky, that allow us to use their absorption of sun rays, to provide
us with the power to use our Satellite Internet to send a tiny 1 watt signal
up 22K miles and then back down again, so we can with just a few clicks
explore the world around us.
Giving us a much expanded window
of the world beyond, our trailer UV tinted ones.
We live in times that when I was
kid (teenager) I could not even dream. And boy did I dream, looking out
my south facing second story country farm house bedroom window in eastern
Iowa at the night sky in the early 60's...
Did you ever build build a Heath
Kit. I sure did, a built great multi band radio to listen to the
world. I was reaching out even then to hear the world. You can go to the
site and see pictures and descriptions of kits they sold. Now look
at the world we live in... what a wonder the new Internet is... I started
You do remember the this first internet like service... don't you?
Monday Feb. 1
Life in Quartzsite on Sunday after
the hordes of RVers have started to leave. The MH rallies have left and
the big tent will come down this week. You can make a left hand turn on
Main almost without looking. We stopped at Family Dollar and found no checkout
lines. They have a bell to push for checkout service. I kid you not. They
had a sign.. ding us to check out. That was Sunday. There are still
lots of RVs in the free and the LTVA BLM pay areas so why on a Sunday afternoon
at about 4:30 PM the streets were empty. Our first thought was everyone
was already in the restaurants. I think old as in vintage, RVers must have
happy hour from about 3-4 and head out to eat about 3:30 to 4:30
PM as we see the popular cafe parking lots are full in this time frame
in the past. Most of the places do close at about 7 PM. But still this
amazes us to no end. Now the Yacht Club and Grub Stake I'm sure stay open
late for the young at heart. Or people who still have hearts that function
after dark. I'm getting close to that group who are not allowed out after
dark so need to be careful how I describe them. I do not go to bed
when the sun goes down yet, that is. We have a good Honda generator
to power us so I can still stay up to watch Leno. OOPS he is moving
back to his later time slot.. may have to rethink all this.
Anyway we took a Sunday afternoon
drive out on Ramsey Mine Road in the back country south of Brenda.
<- Quartzsite to the west
10 miles or so....
It only reinforced my desire for
a ATV. Another of those we shall see items. The map shows only the back
roads we could explore only in this small area. After not finding
acceptable deeded lots in Q. We found we kind of like our new BLM spot.
Price is right to be sure. After all who promotes boondocking more than
us. I would have to change our tag line on our blog. To much work me thinks.
There is so much to see on the back
roads and trails.
Now read more about it.
Terry said look an outhouse (being
funny) and I said we are in the outback, don't think porta potties are
needed out here. Later we were stopped and he was out taking a leak. I
had to hit the horn as a fast moving ATV was approaching us fast. Zip it
up and find an outhouse...
We really need to get more involved
in the back country instead of just watching people on their ATV machines
when they come back to their campsites from their adventures. They look
dusty but fulfilled me thinks. It's not about the money to get a couple
of ATV's, but where to store it or them. We see many ingenious ways people
have come up with on how to transport them, but with a 5er it's not easy.
More research is needed. Might be more useful and used more than a hot
tub me thinks. But heating pads in places might be needed after ATV rides,
I'm sure. (With the generator running full blast to power them)
Life's a trip, I'm just getting used
to my walking stick.
where we are at right now. DataStormUsers
map ID 98
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