Diego pulling our home with us.
Off to points
north and east. We had planned to go north to Palm Springs and then east
to Joshua National Park.
We got off
on a wrong exit trying to go from I-5 to I-15 and Yes we did yell a bit
until we got back on track.
Did it by
turning around in in downtown La Jolla as we tried to go east on CA 52
and ended up going west on La Jolla Pkwy. After we got back on CA 52 headed
east and this time got on I-15 north. We got turned around in a gas station
with a tight fit with Terry outside directing so we didn't rip a hole in
our 5er. Now let me say this about that. I-15 is multi lanes
and crazy to drive. Mostly all new highway with more lanes added in the
last few years. We got off on CA 79 at Temecula and headed north.
Got on I-10 at Beaumont and later stopped at a Walmart for stuff at North
We did not
take the dreaded Pines to Palms Hwy 74. And me thinks that was a good decision,
Esp. after emails from people telling us not to do that route.
Or plan was
to go into Joshua
National Park at the south entrance and camp at Cottonwood campground.
up the 4 mile road to the visitor center we found ALL campgrounds in the
park both here and further north were FULL. And they said that meant full
We could have
boondocked at the I-10 road heading to the NP at some BLM sites, (the Joshua
National Park web site even has a link to the BLM dry camping areas with
There is no overflow camping in the park, however there are some BLM areas
here for a map.(270k PDF) These are right off I-10 so even if
you are not planning to visit the park you can find dry camping along I-10
between Palm Spring and Blythe, CA.
The temp was
only 77° at the visitor center and 88° at that lower altitude back
at I-10 and so we kept on going to our backup plan. We not many times have
a backup plan but today we did... a PassportAmerica campground further
east on I-10 at Desert Center. So off we went to check it out. Green Acres
Mobile Park off I-10 at CA 177. What we found was an little used Mobile
Home Park but well kept and clean and a great friendly person named Mary
who runs the place. It was a bustling MH park back when the Eagle Mountain
Mine was in full production 20 years ago. Now the area is a bit rundown
as like many places in the desert but Mary has kept this place looking
clean and neat. And if you stop be prepared to have a pleasent chat with
this weathered woman who is as friendly as the day is long. She has been
here since the boom times in the 80's and still making it her place in
the desert. Just $15 for a full hookup (50 amp) and I bet if you are not
a PassportAmerica member also just offer $15 and all will be happy. She
was happy to see us and help us get set up in her park. She didn't ask
if we were Passport and just took the cash and it was a done deal.
No paper work just enjoy your stay here at Green Acres MH Park.
Now for Friday...
May stay and chat with Mary and explore the area or just head up the road
on CA 177 from Desert Center and connect to CA 62 and see what we shall
see. By heading north at Vidal Junction north on US 95 to Needles and then
east to Williams and the Grand Canyon on I-40.
A day off...
or I was worn out from the day at the ZOO.
I can hear
you now saying but they rode around on tour buses all day. Yes so true,
at every change I could. But the park is in several canyons and any walking
was up and down.
about going to tour the USS Midway downtown but decided to just relax.
Anyway the ship was kind of pricey... $18 a person and $7 for parking.
I'm sure we would have loved it at any price but we hung out to get ready
to move on Friday. Heading north.
We are going
north on I-15 and over to Palm Springs and looking for a route to get there.
Go I-15 to
CA 79 to I-10 and then east... the easy route...
Or go for
the adventure and take CA 79 TO CA 372 and then CA 74 (Pines to Palms
Hwy) down to the the Springs. A National
Scenic Byway route but a serious downgrade, so we shall see how we
feel in the AM. I did a post on RV.NET
forum asking if this route was good to take.
stop at Joshua National Park.
on our stay in San Diego. This is a great town that has a lot going
for it... It doesn't have that large unfriendly city feel... I could
grow to like being here. But you locals already knew that didn't you...
Glad we came for a visit.
Yes... It was a big Zoo day at last.
We left after
what we thought would be rush hour and the traffiic be slower and we had
our route planned and it all came off without a hitch and we found the
Zoo parking lot at about 9:30 to be about 1/3 full. Now that's the ticket,
me thinks. Bet the Balboa Museum parking south of here was full I bet,
this time we came in from the north and landed in the big Zoo lot instead.
Look at all the spaces that were
open. We parked at the end of a row so our truck would fit better. Spaces
were filling to the left across the drive in this picture as that was where
we had to walk to get to the Zoo entrance.
San Diego Zoo site has expanded internet resources on each
aspect of the park. This is a great link to go to. Everything you
ever wanted to know about what you can see at this zoo, plants and animals
is explained in very much depth.
So here we are now in the Zoo...
at last... after we entered we headed right to the Guided Bus
Tour (below) and of course got on the top deck so to scope out the park
to see where we should explore. We were there early enough so to get on
right away. This picture was later in the day as we road past in
an express bus. Our advance tickets were good for entrance and unlimited
use of the Guided Bus Tour, Express Bus and Skyfari Aerial Tram. We got
on and off the Express Buss several times to ride around the park. It only
has 5 stops on its route and was not full like the guided tour bus which
makes the same route but does not stop to let people on or off. This
park is up and down in canyons so walking to several of the areas is much
to hard for most people. The express bus is the only way to get to many
of the attractions.
At the far end of the park is a stop
for the Aerial Tram and where you can get off and explore the new
elephant exhibit area. A very busy place. Very well done.
Now off to the Elephant
exhibit. Do see this link for so much more info on the elephants in
Yes that is Terry don't ya know.
And without a hat to keep his blond head from getting sun burned.
I had him hold the Zoo park map
over his head when we had to wait in lines or ride the upper deck bus in
the sun so as to protect his lily white skin.
Now these don't have to worry about
that, me thinks. This new section for them and they all looked happy to
Now to the Giraffe section of the
A view from the express bus on the
From this top bus deck we were eye
to eye with this friendly guy on a later express bus drive by.
We took several tours around the
park on the express bus route.
Now that you have met this one up
clsoe and personal please do go to the
Section link and find out all about these tallest of land animals.
No Zoo would be with out these fun
I got this shot from the upper deck
of the express bus of a Polar Bear. A huge exhibit.
We didn't walk back down the hill
to get up close and personal. Did I say this zoo is in up and down canyons.
Now at bus stop stop 5 we walked
down to the Giant Panda exhibit. How could we not miss this. With this
popular exhibit they had rope lines to usher people to it. The line went
fast but I still had Terry hold the park map over his head. It's not like
we were in Disneyland and we were in line for the Dumbo ride or something.
(Tad may it snow on you every day this week). But before that we stopped
for lunch. I had a Asian Fusion 1/3 lb. hamburger and Terry had Sweet
Tai Chili Sause with chicken and rice. About $9 each but we were super
hungery so worth every penny. It didn't dawn on me till later that this
food offering was becasue of the Panda Exhibit. How dumb am I.
You can tell this is a big deal for
the park. A big research facility building was next door. As in many of
the exhibits people are employed in reserach for species preservation.
Money from park entrance fees are helping all this me thinks.
Later we rode the express bus back
to the far northwest side of the park so we could take the overhead tram
ride as a last view of the zoo (it was included in the price of our tickets)
and we had seen people on the tram all day overhead so we knew we had to
make the effort to do it.
It was worth the effort.
As we were coming in for a landing
on the east side of the park I go this picture from the tram.
See the EXIT sign as I knew that
was the way to go as I was tired from a BIG day.
Landing on the east side.
Terry wanted an ice cream cone after
we go off the Aerial Tram and then wanted to cruise the gift shop before
we hit the EXIT. He didn't buy anything... Did ask if I wanted a T-shirt
and I said I don't need the... I've been there and got the T-shirt...
off to Balboa Park toady. The operative word was "were".
at the Mission Bay Info center and bought tickets to the Zoo for $68 and
thought we would use them tomorrow and we would go to the Balboa
Park museums today. We got there and the
streets were clogged with cars, cars and more cars. The whole area was
overwhelmed with people with KIDS spring break... Now not
the college kind (they were out on the beach and wouldn't be caught dead
in a musem... but little buggers and their parents. I think I heard somthing
about free admission for locals on Tuesdays.
Now just imagine
what went through our heads as
do you park a 1 ton dually truck in that crush.
The answer is you don't, so we
left... found our way out to I-5 and headed out past Sea World and
headed instead to Ocean Beach and later up Sunset Cliffs Blvd. at Point
Loma on our way to Cabrillo National Monument. Always have to have a back
up plan. Drivers have to think ahead... Navigators seem to to just
go along for the ride.. I'm about to be in trouble for saying that, me
thinks. Starting to run it into the ground. We ran into others who had
tried the same as us and gave up on Balboa Park and were at the Monument
The arrow points to Mission
RV Park. where were are parked.
At the entrance I asked if my Golden
Age card was good and he said sure. But with cars behind me I couldn't
find it. So we pulled of to the side and tore my carry on bag and the truck
apart and found it stuck deep in the glove box. So we lucked out and got
Link to the Cabrillo
The views of the whole area are so
awesome up here as Terry can attest to.
The lower drive in the park down
to the ocean side.
We then took Harbor Drive back all
the way through downtown past the attractions.
See the carrier USS MidWay below.
Now looking at the area in Google
Earth... I would love to go back and tour this ship.
That would be way cool.
Downtown San Diego is very cool with
the ships and convention center etc. We made our way back to I-5 after
spotting a BOA that we could get the truck into the paring lot, so I could
cash a old web hosting check to get some cash. Got on I-5 went with the
flow back up to our RV park. And after driving around some the roads are
not that bad to figure out. Nice large street signs. I could move here
if I had lots of money for a hillside house for the views if I had to.
We stopped at a Keils food store and found a nice friendly store but prices
were more like you find in Quartzsite. Guess you have to pay for the price
of living in paradise.
We were a little frustrated to say
the least not getting into Balboa Park today. You do know it is always
the navigators fault when no parking is to be found, Don't Ya. We shall
try again tomorrow and get up early to get there (Balboa Park) in time
to beat the brats to the good parking spaces, me hopes. We looked at public
transportation but that didn't look feasible in our case.
Stop back to see if we get to see
the wild animals or if we turn out to be some ourselves...
as if we don't get to use our $68
tickets we will also be beasts to be dealt with.
We just did the Streets and Trips
and Google Earth thing and have a route to the larger Zoo parking lot that
we missed today, all scoped out for the AM. We shall see if it all works.
San Diego in the rain to find our next stop.
We got wet
hooking up at the Indian Casino in Alpine with on and off rain heading
into San Diego. The drive was straight forward as I kept my eye on the
road so to speak. People will build on any hill for the views, so that
got my attention as I love views. It was all I could do to keep my
eyes on the road and not see which home I would like to move into on the
hills with these fantastic views. I knew to just stay in the center
lane of I-8 and I would get to the end of the road as it can't go all the
way to Japan, ya know. It has to to stop, but we did turn north on I-5
just before the end of the earth in CA as we know it, and got off on exit
22 to Clairemont Dr and next to E Mission Drive to find our RV park. Mission
Bay RV Park
As I said it was raining on and off
and at times heavy. This site was not satellite friendly... see the tree.
We tried and tired to get the internet dish to lock on. We even called
the office to ask to move to other sites... They gave us other sites to
try, but we decided to just move more over to the side and we at last got
locked on and we were happy. That took about an hour.
After all that, the sun came out
and we went for a drive to get our bearings for the next few days. We are
only a few blocks from the ocean so we headed off to the west to see how
far we could go.
Look what we found, great beaches.
It was not that great of a day so we can understand why the beach was not
full of people digging in it. The weather is looking up for the next few
days so we should come back and maybe even play in it also.
Look at the row of classic beach
lights in the above picture, they go on forever.
Next off to Balboa Park and the San
Diego Zoo for fun and adventure in the next couple of days.
A special note of Thanks to Sandy
and Woody who gave us guidance on how to navigate
the back roads in this area of California.
A day trip
across the road to the Outlet Mall and off to San Diego in AM.
PM: Strong Mexico quake shakes L.A.,
people used to joke about CA falling off into the ocean from the big one.
So we get
to the San Diego area and it sort of starts, me thinks?
CNN: A string
of earthquakes and aftershocks rattled the Pacific Coast of the United
States and Mexico on Sunday, including a magnitude 7.2 quake that could
be felt across Baja California, Arizona, and southern California, the U.S.
Geological Survey reported.
southern California and Arizona reported serious ground shakes.
"We have not
felt a shake like that since about 1979," Michelle Tapia told CNN from
Brawley, California." We felt it for about 30 seconds. It was rolling,"
San Diego County sheriff's Lt. Scott Ybarrondo told CNN. In San Diego,
there were reports of shattered windows, broken pipes and water main breaks
in private buildings, but no reports of injuries, San Diego Fire-Rescue
Department spokesman Maurice Luque said. Coronado Bridge over San Diego
Bay was briefly closed by the California Highway Patrol as a precaution.
NOW GET THIS:
Lucy Jones, a seismologist at the California Institute of Technology, said
the area could see a "triggered earthquake" of a magnitude around 6 in
the next few days.
part was we didn't feel it. Me thinks, we were gypped.
pothole on I-8 as we were driving, me wonders.
not all bad the rest of me knows.
to regular programing...
We are still
in the Viejas Indian
Casino RV parking lot in Alpine, CA. And a fine
place it has been. Only one or two others here, so we kind have it to ourselves.
We went for a short drive to the Outlet
Mall next door.
It was a nice but a little cool day,
and the parking lots were full, and people looked in good moods after partaking
in Easter egg hunts, me thinks. There was a CA Info Center in the mall
and we got la bag full of attraction leaflets and maps etc. We can read
those when we're stuck in traffic.
Monday morning we are off to Mission
Bay just north of downtown San Diego. The weather is in for a change in
the afternoon with high winds so we need to keep on top of that. After
the stop at the outlet mall we went on down I-8 for a few miles to check
out what we were going to run into on Monday and to fill up on diesel at
$3.15. We are in CA after all. The route looks ok to me but you remember
I have Terry in the navigator seat so we can always get into trouble. That's
why I check the route in detail ahead of time, so when he sez turn here
I know better and just keep on going... Works for me. Let's hope the morning
drive doesn't turn into a yelling fest. We do do that Ya Know.
May go to the Casino buffet tonight
as kind of a last supper kind of thing in front of the drive to downtown
San Diego in the AM. It's Easter and I'm talking about a last supper...
someone stop me.
Do we do
a day trip, or just move on as in vacation mode.
I didn't get this uploaded till Saturday morning.)
dwon to see the update of the April 1 post...
couple of more pictures of Slab City etc.
were at a great boondocking sopt on the beach of Salton Sea for $8 a day.
sites section of the State Park with electric and goodies is only a couple
of miles up the road and has rates of $30 for electric and they are on
blacktop all spaced out like a parking lot. Not very inviting. We
spoke with a nice friendly CA park ranger who said they would be full for
the holiday weekend at the developed sites but we were welcome to drive
through and check out the park, dump and get water. Nice guy.
And it is
Easter weekend and where could we go after here? Should we stay or move
We moved on
for more adventures and to take our changes to find another sopt to camp.
out to be a day out of hell that worked OK at the very end.
We knew we
could find more boondocking west of Salton City on HW S22 toward Borrego
Springs. So off we went and found a great spot for gas and filtered water
for Terrys tea at this small Indian Casino and everything else you would
want... station just north of Salton City.
So off we
went on S22 to Borrego Springs thinking of stopping along the way to camp...
But the boondocking areas was filling up with holidays campers with their
ATVs and we didn't know if we would fit in with that crowd so on we went.
You know me if in dought just keep going on down the raod. Like my main
web site slogan sez... The restless urge to see new territory beyond the
curve in the road ahead... I do try to live by that and I get into trouble
every time late in the day to be sure when I pass up acceptable places
to stop and don't.
We don't have
to be at our next destination till Monday afternoon for a reservation at
Mission Bay RV Resort in San Diego. OK I gave it away we are heading to
San Diego.... More below..
We without finding a boondiocking
spot (we passed several) wound up in Borrego Springs (see map above) and
checked it out. Very nice as as I could live in this place if it wasn't
located in California, me thinks. They were having a weekend craft etc
event. Very nice looking location.
We did move on and heading south
out of town on S2 heading to connect to HW 78 and to see if Julian was
a spot we could call hiome for a day or two. I knew we had not done any
research on where to stop beyond west of Salton City so we were on our
own and possible in deep doo doo...
Now in Julian (above) and they too
were having a tourist town holiday craft event and the streets were crowded
and the town is hilly so we had a hard time turning around to get the hell
out of this place so we could go south on HW 79 and get out of these mountains.
Road signs warned Not Recommended for trucks with king ping to axle
more than 30 ft. That should have told us something right away.
Didn't hit the side of the 5er or
Shots from Google Earth as I was to busy driving to take
After many more miles of switchbacks
and winding roads of driving hell we got to I-8. Much of this area was
burnt in past fires so not pleasent to view either.
I do not recommend taking CA HW
78 south of Borrego Springs or CA HW 79 south from Julian to I-8. Some
of the most winding and narrow roads I have ever been on. Not fun to drive
Now on I-8 way past what we had researched
we kept on going and Terry spies a sign Alpine RV park next exit. With
a big sigh of relief we deciede to take the next exit. It was about 3 PM.
What did we find but Viejas
Indian Casino and with RV parking right off the interstate close to
A Courtsey Van stops us in the parking
lot and we ask about the RV park on the road sign. She sez why go there
when you can stay here for three days for free. AND get the discounted
Friday night all you can eat Prime Rib buffet for $7.95 (and daily noon
and dinner, plus Sunday brunch buffet for the same price). And also go
to the huge Indian Outlet
Mall next door. This place is a big Fing deal as Joe Biden might
say... and we have hit the jackpot without even getting our gambling courtsey
SO we have landed to be sure and
are happy to be here. We can stay for FREE three nights and leave
on Monday for our RV park in San Diego just 30 or so miles away for an
after 12 noon check in. Things are starting to look up after a day from
driving hell, me thinks. Our RV casino boondocking spot.
not an Aprils fools joke but you will have to wait to hear more.
The joke is
we have left Q at last... and on the road again but not heading our normal
to the midwest... but are heading west. May drop off the Californina
if we are
not careful. We have big plans, so come back to see what we are up to.
Late and tired
so will only say we drove through Slab City in Niland, CA.
Let me say
this about that, we did not stay. It makes Quartzsite look upscale.
town fathers of Quartzsite have something when they like to tout they want
to make Q
a new Palm Springs. Compared to Slab City, Q is already uptight and outa
Much more later...
But this is our sunset tonight.
New replaced picture
Will recap with more pictures (of
the Slabs) and thoughts as we move on when I come down
from moving from staying put for
about 6 months of living off the grid in the BLM in Q. We are in this picture
on the shore of the Salton Sea and also boondocking.
Several more pictures to follow
from our drive today and as we move forward to points westward.
This blogging stuff is work, me
UPDATE for a little more info.
The Range is
in Slab City where they gather for fun and entertainment.
And this sign
shows how to get the info you need when living in Slab City.
Next a shot of how we relaxed at
Salton Sea for happy hour. Yes we had some Anderson Peanut Butter
filled Nuggets left over from a gift from a couple who stopped by
to visit when we were in Q. Thanks again Scott and Lisa.
where we are at right now. DataStormUsers
map ID 98
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