Sunday Sept. 20
No posts since that lame Walmart post last Thursday. What can I say...
You want me to invent posts. I tried.
have been very happy here in Roslyn, WA staying with our good friend Tad.
We are not in this to win a road race after all,
to slow down and live life as we know it with our friends. We will be hitting
the road next week for
mind blowing travel posts, me thinks, so you just have to veg out till
then. Mind blowing... I use that phrase loosley..
hope you are on good drugs, or at least a good stiff drink, when reading
them... It couldn't hurt.
your channel listings and set the TiVo to record as we will be posting
more next week.
watching the Emmys on TV tonight. I love HDTV. How many times did I say
we don't need that. Wrong.
is doing Pork Spare Ribs and Potato Salad. He did a dry rub and sauce from
here I go, if John and Derek will allow me, a little latitude (it will
since I'm having a "Ten High and 7" I'm sure it will be good.
and Tad are going over the pass to Seattle on Monday to explore since Tad
has some business to attend to there.
giving them a guys day out, as I'm staying here relax and get ready
to head south on Wednesday.
I do the driving. I know Terry offers every time we hook up but I just
announce not today, I got it, thanks.
truth is it means no, not, ever. I love him but I would go nuts sitting
on the passenger seat telling him how to drive.
We each have our evolved
roles, I'm not about to change now.... me thinks.
are enjoying our stay here in Roslyn, WA with Tad and are planing to head
on down the raod early next week, But untill then we are planing our route
and thinking about Quartzsite and what we will find this year. I
found this article in the RVing
Quartzsite web site.
New Walmart Opens- 45
minutes from Quartzsite
by Russ and Tiña De Maris RVing Quartzsite
RVers who look to Quartzsite as a good place to winter over, or even just
drop in for a vist, shopping Walmart has gotten a whole lot easier. The
new Walmart at Parker did it’s big grand opening last week, and while not
wearing the sign that proclaims “Super Walmart” you’ll find most of what
RVers look for right there on Highway 95.
inside? A full size supercenter-style grocery takes a good chunk out of
the store’s floor space. The layout is typical Wally, with the less-than-desirable
produce section up front, followed by freezer sections, and on through
dry goods toward the back wall where dairyland lives. From there, the store
layout is different than the majority of Walmarts we’ve visited on the
road. It’s a different layout, but it is a bit smaller than the typical
will find the full-serve pharmacy you’re accustomed to, but things get
a bit different from there. There is no lube and tire shop–although there
is a fairly accommodating auto supplies section. Included in it is a full
half side ailse of “RV related” stuff, provided you include hitches and
balls in amongst RV goods. Other other RV items have been placed in odd
places–we found some RV stuff on an end cap near the paint section; hopefully
with time these items will find their way together.
of the other typical Walmart departments are represented at the Parker
outlet. Admittedly, many of those departments are on the shrunken side:
A crafts area covers a couple of aisles, but you folks looking for fabrics
for your next sewing project will be disappointed–no bolts of cloth. Home
electronics has a fairly large lineup of TVs and stereo equipment, and
music lovers will find plenty of CDs. But if you need a wide variety in
choices in home appliances, best to look elsewhere. There’s a “little bit”
of most everything, but not a lot of choices. The photo center does have
the self-service setup for making prints from your digital camera images,
and photo processing is also on premises.
from the Parker store, however, are the ancillary stores you’ve come to
look for. No opticians, manicurists, fast food joints, or banks. The limited
width of the front end of the store allows for only one main entry area,
so you’ll soon recognize this is a ‘mini Super Walmart’ if such a thing
is possible. Nevertheless, for many RVers, this Wally will beat the dickens
out of a long drive to Yuma. And for those passing through, there are no
signs prohibiting overnight RV parking.
missing your fast food? Don’t worry, across the street at the Safeway Plaza
there’s a couple of outfits, and for our bet, Ruperto’s Mexican just south
of Walmart puts together a great authentic Mexican lunch in very short
order, and for a good price to boot.
the Walmart web site
Phone (928) 669-2161
This Location • Garden Center • Site to StoreSM • Grocery
• Open 24 hours • Pharmacy • Photo Center • 1-Hour
Phone (928) 669-8306
Hours • Monday-Friday: 9:00 am - 9:00 pm
Saturday: 9:00 am - 7:00 pm • Sunday: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
is off to the Interstate rest area to dump our 50 gal. portable waste water
tank after he macerator pumped our black water into it.
here is a tidbit bit you didn't want to know. We have gone over two
weeks without dumping black and we only had 35 gal.
we're not so full of it after all.
to Google alerts and one of the topics is alerts on Quartzsite..
got an alert about a story about this guy who visited this summer because
his family has a history of going to Q in the winter.
read his story...
and Memory: My Summer Vacation in Quartzsite
Ben Hill | Published Thursday, Sept. 10, 2009 in the San
the Coachella Valley, where the desert floor pushes the mountains out of
sight, my grandfather levitates above a steamy I-10, alternately stiff-arming
the grill and checking the coolant level of my eastbound station wagon.
out of your mind!” he says, a plaid shirt and work pants hanging from his
lanky frame. “Either that or you’re a masochist.”
tell him I need to think, and that everywhere else is full.
you hated it in the winter, and there’s nothing to do there in the summer,”
he replies. “No people, no junk. And it’s 100 degrees every day!”
you can tell me why you went,” I say, “then I can tell you why I’m going.”
circular dialogue continues until I reach Blythe, where the fishtailing,
kitsch-stickered trailers of Havasu enthusiasts demand that I focus on
cross the Arizona state line twenty minutes later, and the only things
I recognize are the jagged, barren mountains that enclose Quartzsite in
a dark ring. The skeleton of off-ramps and overpasses and collector roads
has grown, but the flesh has shrunk. And besides the gas stations and fast-food
restaurants that hug the intersection with Highway 95, nothing moves. Boarded-up
businesses and empty RV parks line Main Street with “closed for summer”
signs and rows of utility hookups.
find JR’s RV Park a few miles north on 95, and I exit the car stiff, sweaty,
and blinded by the sun-baked roads and aluminum siding. The park is half-full
of motor homes and trailers, but I don’t see any people. The thermometer
outside the office points to 115, and a white-haired woman comes out looking
tell her that I am writing an article about Quartzsite in the summer, and
ask if she knew my grandfather.
only been here a few years,” she says, “and this is my first summer.”
I stay here?”I ask.
but you’ll be the only one besides me and my husband.”She points to a sign
next to the thermometer. “Twenty-four dollars a night, two hundred twenty
talk about her background and the recession, and then I walk the park,
admiring leftover gardens of succulents and rocks. I circle the community
center where I used to take showers and play ping-pong, then I drag pebbles
with my feet until I stumble upon my grandfather’s double-wide.
grandmother died in 1980, and my recently retired grandfather moved to
a small town in the Northwest where my family lived. He stayed with us
a few months before buying a house near the high school. In his spare time,
he repaired pocket watches and classic cars and dead technologies, but
he was soon restless, and on a trip through Arizona found Quartzsite.
the mid-1980s, we had moved to California, and my grandfather was splitting
time between Seattle and Quartzsite with his second wife. They would leave
just before Christmas and stay until mid-March, first in a motor home and
later a trailer, and I would visit them in the peak season of late January.
grandfather was a typical Quartzsite resident: white, working-class, 60s
or older, and a “snowbird” fleeing from the elements of the Northwest,
Midwest and Canada. In the 1980s, Quartzsite had a population of 2,000
during the summer and fall, but by late January, half a million people
called it a temporary home, ostensibly to see the flea markets. The RV
parks inflated to overcapacity, and the RVers dropped anchor anywhere they
could, dry camping on raw BLM land or open space.
grandfather and his wife would rise at dawn to read the paper and drink
coffee, then cooked eggs and bacon with toast and margarine. In the afternoon,
they shopped. My grandfather for tools and vintage electronics, his wife
for gemstones and beads. He’d come home to an adjacent shed to tinker with
his purchases or do home improvements, and his wife smoked in the living
room. Occasionally they drove to Blythe to get groceries or day-tripped
northwest to the Colorado River, south to Yuma or east to Phoenix. At sunset,
sitting on plastic chairs and artificial turf under an RV awning, they
shared their purchases with neighbors over drinks. When conversation lagged,
they talked about the weather.
the way back to town, I find the Chamber of Commerce trailer closed, but
on the corkboard outside, I read the map, suggested hikes and an advisory
titled Desert Survival Rules. Number 1: stick to your plan. Number 2: drink
water. Number 3: keep an eye on the sky. And Number 12: a roadway is a
sign of civilization – if you find a road, stay on it.
park my car near the westerly freeway off-ramp and walk east along Main
Street, stopping at the handful of businesses that are still open. I start
at T-Rocks, a large sand lot where chunks of tumbled stone line the fence,
resting on oil barrels and wood tops cut in the shape of wagon wheels.
Under a tent at the back of the lot, the owner shows me pendants of amethyst,
emeralds and tourmaline, and I ask if she wants to buy some of my grandfather’s
she says, “We buy all the time.”
do you sell to in the summer?”I ask.
passing through,” she says. “Travelers, energy workers on the way to Sedona,
people who know we’re here.”
Daniel’s Best Jerky, whose numerous billboards line the I-10, a seventy-ish
clerk named Trish tells me she came here seven years ago for a man, trading
in the humidity of Oklahoma for dry heat and bagging groceries until she
landed at Daniel’s.
karaoke at the Yacht Club on Thursdays and Fridays,” she says, “and bingo
at the senior center. Sometimes you see four-wheelers on the weekends,
and there’s a golf course in the desert a ways off. Most of the time it’s
hot like it is today, and you just stay indoors.”
the early twentieth century, the area around Quartzsite only boasted a
few landholders. Charles Tyson, the town’s most prominent early citizen,
built the stage station for west-bound settlers in 1866, ran the post office
in the late 1800s, and tried to attract the outside world’s attention.
Mining led to a mini-boom, but by the 1950s, only five families were left
the 1960s, small groups of retirees from the Northwest came to Quartzsite
in pursuit of warm winters, clean air and the untouched scenery of the
Southwest desert. Vendors followed, holding the first Quartzsite Pow Wow
in 1967. Gemstones highlighted the event due to their local presence.
Sun Belt relocation and RV crazes of the ‘70s and ‘80s flooded Quartzsite
with visitors, and eventually more than 4,000 vendors paid for space at
gem shows and flea markets each year, selling everything from rare antiques
to dollar-store items.
peer through the windows of the Yacht Club, a restaurant with $10 chicken
dinners and pictures of sailboats and lizards juxtaposed on its walls,
and chat up the manager of the Yacht Club Motel. Carol Cannon is a single
mother in her twenties with four kids, and she moved here from Missouri
six years ago to live with her mother. She shows me one of the rooms, the
only non-RV alternative to the Super 8: half of an old single-wide, dark
and swamp-cooled with burgundy bedspreads and thin-paneled walls, for $53
the east end of town, I see a naked man walking in front of a bookshop.
Or almost naked, because only a straw hat, turquoise necklace and turquoise-beaded
genital pouch cover his lacquered body. The Reader’s Oasis is owned by
Paul Winer, a nudist and former boogie-woogie musician.
here twenty years ago with $30 in cash and a bunch of t-shirts to sell,”
he says, “and now I got my own store. Built it on a loan from the bank
a few years back.”
bookshop is one of the few wood and steel buildings in town, and it holds
a large inventory of paperbacks, CDs, DVDs and VHS tapes. Next to a collection
of rare books, a portable CD player shifts from the Zodiacs to the Five
Satins, and they croon “shoo doop, shooby doo”into the stillness.
like family farming here,” Winer says, “because I’m not making big profits.
But after twenty years on the road, I found a place to settle and have
a life that I could enjoy.”Winer constantly walks around the store or moves
in place, and through his long, scraggly hair, he says, “I’ll sell in five
years, hopefully to another local, and go back to playing boogie-woogie
on the road.”
retrace my steps along Main Street, surveying buildings with names like
Bargain Barn and Addicted to Deals, then stop under a plaid awning in the
heart of The Main Event, Quartzsite’s primary outdoor market. As a kid,
I terrorized the vendors by screaming up and down the crowded dirt aisles
and playing with their wares, then terrorized my grandfather by claiming
incurable boredom and begging for the television. Inside the maze of folding
tables and tent poles, people bargained and bartered and told travel stories,
and in its heyday, The Main Event had concerts, rodeos and fireworks. The
grounds had the dusty, unkempt look of a grainy Western that I miss now,
but at the time, I was more interested in a clean picture and science fiction
of a bear and Native Americans served as markers for The Main Event, and
I find them in front of the Trading Post, a store selling Indian jewelry
and artifacts. A bronzed clerk named Cherie Watson restocks $10 beaded
necklaces next to a giant fan that blows hot air.
moves behind the counter and says, “I drove truck, and now I sell ice cream.
But it’s too hot to sell ice cream, so I work here in the summer.”
has medical bills stemming from an ailing knee, but speaks crisply and
looks fit for 68. She wishes the town’s infrastructure would grow so they
weren’t so winter-dependent.
love it, but it’s an inconvenient lifestyle,” she says. “You have to drive
for groceries, to do things, and there’s no sense of community.”
do you do in the summer after work?”I ask.
tired, so I go home and watch TV. You have to get up early, because it’s
already 90 degrees outside, and you only have an hour or two before the
real heat pushes you inside. In the winter, the only thing I have time
to do is open the shop, work, and close it. I have to work.”
happens to the people you meet in the winter?” I ask. “It seemed like my
grandfather had the same friends each year, but they didn’t see each other
don’t. Maybe an email or two, but they show up in the same spot each year
and pick up again.” She pauses, then smiles at me. “Listen son, people
come here in the winter because it’s easy. You camp with no yard, no snow,
no responsibilities. The temperature is 70 degrees, and the air is clean.
It’s the same thing with socializing.”
few customers walk in at the other side of the store, as does her boss,
all of them sunburned and wearing tank tops.
us some money today Cherie?”her boss asks.
a second,” she says, then looks back at me. “People are either alive or
dead when they get here, and it’s all in their mind.”
puts her hands on mine to stop me from writing. “As you get older, you’re
obsessed with your own mortality,“ she says. “Every day you get up is a
blessing, but the cycles of health and sickness chew your mind up. So how
do you deal? How do you stop yourself from thinking that way?”
boss calls to her again, but she’s still looking at me, waiting for an
answer. “I don’t know,” I say.
have to keep moving. Making plans, having interests, whatever they are,”
she says. “As long as you feel good, it is good.”
boss comes by and we talk moccasins and the semi-precious stones in the
rows behind me. I walk around the shop, inspecting the leather and prints
of Native American pastorals. The customers leave, and Cherie and I talk
about computers and the internet for a few minutes. I buy postcards with
aerial views of Quartzsite’s change through the seasons.
drive around town, walking through the empty spaces where vendors and RVers
will be in six months. There are hundreds of storage sheds and vehicles
strewn across the desert, and although I search desperately for a place
to take pictures, it’s too flat to get perspective on anything. When I
reach the mountains on the south side of town, the trailers and storage
sheds have faded, as has the sun. I tape the postcards to the dash and
head back to town.
cross the easterly overpass and see the naked bookseller biking home with
a three-wheeled dingy in tow. He told me five years, as did Cherie and
Carol. They would be out in five years or less. The Wal-Mart would open
a half hour away in Parker the next week, but jobs and owning a home would
still be tough for full-time residents. They’d miss the summer solitude
and the winter excitement, but they would have to leave.
stop at a community park on the east side of town, where kids play basketball
in the dusky frame of two decommissioned fighter jets. I try unsuccessfully
to determine the kids’ ethnicity, then stare at the sand and sky beyond.
Mesquite trees and a sprinkling of black and amber rocks foreground the
last flickers of crimson with magenta accents.
some point, life becomes about space. Controlling it, negotiating it, with
others and yourself. I thought that’s why my grandfather came here, and
I assumed that if I could encounter that space on its own, I could grasp
it. Like a school or a ski lodge in the summer, I wanted to walk through
vast, echoing chambers and build a personal relationship with the landscape.
But Quartzsite’s winter grid of white rectangles, neatly plotted along
a crossroads, reveals a random succession of atomized clusters in the summer.
Like many Southwestern cities, its sprawling, indeterminate borders leave
inhabitants drifting between points on a map. And in the summer, the desert
cannot be owned or stripped to its roots, for that is when it’s most alive.
Quartzsite, my grandfather took few vacations, but when he did, he worked.
A survivor of the Depression, he went on vacation to see someone, to do
something. And during a Quartzsite winter, everyone was always doing something.
Moving to it or from it. Touching, buying, using an infinite number of
products, leaving little time for anything else. The town and some of its
vendors had an artistic background, and my grandfather’s third wife fashioned
herself as a beadmaker and crotchetier (in the 1990s, another story), but
creativity was never essential to their identity. It was an accoutrement,
a flattery, but the primary ethic was still work.
wake up in my car to a full moon, lighting the backboards and jets into
a 3-D trapezoid. I walk outside to take pictures of the stars, but my camera’s
batteries are dead. I smell the air, but I can’t distinguish one element
from another. I think about going to Burning Man, and what I’ve heard about
the art, the free love, and the archetypal transformation through ritualized
self-expression. And then I think about going to Vegas, checking in under
a fake name, and spending the same amount of money on a hooker and a room
with VH1 Classic. And then my mind spins. I wonder what the purpose of
travel is, and if it has an ethic. The intense, printless stimulation of
a Burning Man; the easy, collapsible community of a Quartzsite; the restorative
alt-reality of an island massage: what do I get from it, and what’s the
December 2003, my grandfather was arrested in Arizona for driving on the
wrong side of I-10. It was 3 a.m., and he had two loaded pistols under
the front seat. My family sold the trailer and drove him back to the Northwest,
where he struggled with increasing dementia and heart problems. His wife
left him, and he moved back in with family before passing away in November
I was younger, traveling and writing used to be heroic, idealized pursuits
that led to a teleological end, but as I get older, they are primarily
a vehicle to let my mind wander. To collect images and sensations and reflect
on them, occasionally thinking up something new, without the demands to
make sense of it all. I don’t know that my grandfather came here to negotiate
space, nor to cope with his mortality. That sounds more like me. Maybe
he just liked the weather, or maybe he just liked being around people his
own age. Beyond that, I’m trying too hard to resolve him, which is the
last thing I want. Because whatever joy comes from what passes as illumination,
from piecing together a life or a world, also comes with a dose of terror.
And in the desert, or at least in Quartzsite, the only palliative is motion.
it’s light out, I drive to a gas station and load up on potato chips, donuts
and candy bars. A group of tweaking teens stare at me with pink eyes, and
a man with a cane strikes up a political conversation. He criticizes the
president, then praises him, all the time trying to fish out an opinion
from me. After a few casts, I realize he doesn’t care about politics, and
we grab a bench together. We talk about Quartzsite, his past, and the weather.
I wolf down my second maple bar, I daydream about Indian Fry Bread, a flat,
deep-fried disc that was made from scratch at the large swap meets in Quartzsite.
My grandfather would buy me a plate every afternoon. Crisp on the rim and
doughy in the middle, it was soft enough to tear with your fingers. I piled
it high with powdered sugar and honey, and then cajoled another family
member into buying me two or three more before a gorging that inevitably
knotted my stomach.
hour later, as the temperature nears 100, the man with the cane asks, “Have
you been here in the winter?”
I say, “a few times.”
nothing like it,” he says, “nothing on earth.“ He puts on his hat and makes
bold movements to indicate he is going somewhere. “But the summer, it’s
not so great.”
tragic,” I whisper. Then a little louder, “I love it.”
in that case, you should go hiking,” he says. “Go see some of these old
mines around here. Just bring lots of water.”
not this time,” I say. “One day of this heat is enough for now.”
shake hands, and I drive up the overpass and down the on-ramp. I catch
one last glimpse out the window, remove the postcards from the dash, and
fiddle with the radio.
(Wordsmithed Sept. 15)
fulltimers know what this date means. The Forest Service and
campground contract companies close down their campgrounds for the season.
is for many of us the best time to camp. Sure the weekenders are back to
getting their kids in school and usage is down. Is that a reason to close
the campgrounds. At least leave spme for us who were your best customers
some of the campground hosts have done their tour and may be tired after
2-3 months of service and may be ready for a vacation from workamping.
But how many would like to stay for a month more of less traffic and cleaning
the johns, firepits, and enjoy the fall season without now being kicked
out to move on down the road. To where me wonders? It is very early to
head south as it's still over 100 in Arizona after all. Me thinks they
earned a month of working their normal contracted hours. Most worked many
more hours than were asked. Because they love serving the public, and we
more, of the story... The FS has outsourced, due to buget costs, over the
years, to private contractors allowing them to up the fees so as to make
money doing so. Seems they have determined this is a money maker and not
just a local service. These areas are owned by us and when we can use them
, and how much they cost, should not be determined by how much money a
contractor can make off of them, and when they should shut them down. We
see from some campground hosts who are caught up in more about the profitability
of the sites than the true reason the campgrounds were created in the first
place to serve the public and at times let a contractor make a small profit
from doing so.
screw every cent out of people trying to enjoy our public lands. Seems
these peolpe are looking at this as a profit center and not just a service.
At least they could do is offer Ice Cream at the campground entrance. And
not rip us off with a charge to have a picnic. Is this what the FS
had in mind on outsouring. Me thinks NOT.
are still in Roslyn, WA staying with our friend Tad at his place exploring
the area till early next week. Next we will head on down through Oregon
and California (if we go that way) and will have to study and call ahead
to see if and what FS campgrounds are open. Oh me thinks this is mute as
many campgrounds are being closed due to budgets anyway. Ya know in either
case this is a great county and great places to camp. We only have to explore
a bit to find them and with the Senior Card very cost effective in COE
and FS campgrounds . Now let me say we do avoid most of the state parks
as they are pricing themselves out of the market for us and are many times
not big rig site friendly. Now NM parks are not in that class, but most
others are let me say it right up front, rip offs. Entrance fees to just
enter to see if there was a campsite available. Hello Montana.
Now for today
as I get back on target as we took another day trip.
Strap in your
seat belt and let's go.
headed up to Fish Lake in the upper center of the map. We need maps
to for you to fallow along me thinks...
where we are staying is on HW 903 just west of South Cle Elum on the map.
Today was about a 25 mile drive one way.
Now the road did deteriorate
as we went up the grade. But that is why we are doing this drive to have
fun and get back to nature.
Not many words are need to
explain the splendor of this area. So I wont.
There are fantastic campsites
everywhere. Not for RVs (because of the road conditions) but pop
ups and tents, this is heaven.
Views like this made for
a drive to remember thanks to Tad. He should record cassettes and sell
them in the gift shop in Roslyn f
or people just like us as
he knows about every turn in the road and trail ,as he has lived this area,
and has fantastic stories to share.
Now if you are fishing you
have to pay attention to the rules..
I did a search on recreation.gov
about the area for maps etc. and found this Fish Lake Guard Station is
for rent for $40 a night.
The lower crawl space door
(right lower next to the stairs) was wide open. Me thinks a perfect spot
for a bear to crawl into for the winter. Terry spotted that. You can also
see center left the widow shutters were still laying next to the wall so
must still be open for visits. See the white flag poll out front.
Getting close to the end
of the road in the open high park area.
Mountain Ash Berries. Don't
believe we can eat these. Most everything else was turning
due to frost.
Terry did a Google search
din't find much, but all we have to do now is ask Tad, me thinks.
Back at our serene spot Tad
had prepaired for us to spend time with him. He loves this area of
WA and me thinks sharing it with us.
A shot of Terry and Tad
back in the 5er from the other day discussing life as we know it, and their
for the Rock
Club this winter in Quartzsite.
BLT on the table was not half bad per Tad as he took it home for supper.
- Sunday edition Sept. 11-13
I would like to think of
this blog as our version of what USA Today does as they don't publish on
I read it online and miss
a new issue untill Monday. This edition is like that newspaper, a bigger
editon just for the weekend.
We did more like three day
trips rolled into one. I hope you enjoy. We did. Now if we do get out and
about this weekend I will blog about it.
We are having a great trip
through the northwest. So much more than we would have ever imagined. Tanks
to our friend Tad who is showing us sites we would have never seen on our
own. Everyday,we think what we have seen is a never to be forgotten life
experience. It just gets better. You can study this country on Google Earth
etc. but to travel it is so much more. And now as we explore this area
in Washington we will be back in years to come, You Betcha...
Maps, gota have visual aids
to follow along...
from Roslyn to Ellensburg and then south on Canyon Rd HW 821 from Ellensburg
This was quite a drive and
my knuckles were turning white by the time we came out the bottom of the
canyon many miles later.
There were several nice
looking BLM campgrounds along this stretch and were large enough for big
we could have taken the Interstate but what fun would that be. Now
most zip by this great side trip. Do take this route when you can.
River Canyon is carved out of the surrounding basalt. The massive volcanic
cliffs tower over the river as it winds through the arid sagebrush uplands.
The river is most notably home to raptors and bighorn sheep, and also to
colonies of cliff swallows, and herds of deer and elk.
to stop at a RV service center in Union Gap (Yakima) to make sure they
would fix our water heater which starts only when it wants to on gas. We
have to go out and bang on the gas value. They had the part in stock and
will do the repair when we go through there later on. Said not a problem.
Some of these shops tell you they are way backed up can't get to you for
weeks. How does that work for fulltimers?
after we keep heading south as Tad was directing us to the vast fruit and
vegatable country south of Yakima. We stopped at several stands like this.
These ladies were having a great time with these gords.
thinks they had other thoughts on their minds.
Terry just kept bagging and
We bought melons, etc. and
tomatoes right form the field but me thinks we still have a few things
to learn. They came right from the field but they are the same ones boxed
up and heading out to your local grocery store and you already know they
don't have any taste so why should these be any different. And they weren't.
It just didn't stop next
we heading back to Ellenburg and then east to Vantage, WA and Ginkgo Petrified
Forest State Park.
You can see the visual aid
map above if you get lost. A rally cool place. Would you believe
I went in to tour the museum.
No not me. Afraid so.
Terry and Tad
State Park, 470 acres on Wanapum Reservoir, formed by the Wanapum dam on
the Columbia River. Fishing for bass, bluegill, bullhead, catfish, perch,
salmon, steelhead, sturgeon, and trout in the river. Although many visitors
enjoy boating, water-skiing, swimming, and fishing in the lake, the highlight
of this park is the petrified forest discovered in the 1930s, with extremely
rare ginkgo tree specimens. The buildings at the park were mostly constructed
by the Civilian Conservation Corps. An interpretive center tells the story
of how the forest came to be petrified.
View from the museum grounds
of the Columbia River.
A short walk below the museum
was a Petroglyhs display.
Just imagine of being alive
at this time doing this writing. Think what they would think if they saw
us today using the Internet.
They must have looked up
to the heavens and back to the waters that sustained them to have their
own beliefs of faith in their culture.
Poud people who had good
lives and loving family groups. Isn't that what it is all about after all.
Wonder if our lives are
any better now, then how they lived in this vast, as we look at it, wilderness.
A different cuture and a
different time. It does make the mind wonder about times past, and our
Points of learning like
this place, is good for the soul to reflect about life as we know it. Me
Down the road from the Park
is a private who is licensed to sell Petrified goods.
Fun little venture.
Oh no we were not done yet.
Took the old HW 97 back toward Ellenburg and Tad said turn right.
Up three mile road to the
top of a mountain to the huge visitor center to learn and be up close to
the big wind machines.
Yes there is that big HILL
(Reiner) to the west.
Terry doing his museum (I
mean visitor center thing).
By this time I was getting
tired. Seems like three day trips rolled into one.
Now like the USAToday I
might take the weekend off.
where we are at right now. DataStormUsers
map ID 98
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