Boondocking at Quartzsite
Trip Start Dec 19, 2010
66Trip End Apr 13, 2011
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Our first visit was in the month of February, after all the major events had taken place and my impression was of dust and drab, in a quiet, economically depressed desert town. Our second visit was more dramatic, with a major storm - flooded roads, tent closures due to wind, and tornado warnings! The weather curtailed the event activities and didn't encourage exploration! This year we got to know Quartzsite during the peak month of January and to glimpse why some people return year after year for the season.
At the FMCA Rally in Indio we met a couple, John and Judi Wuite, from Alberta who are members of the Alberta Roamers, an Escapee sub-group. They invited us to the Escapee Happy Hour events planned for Quartzsite during the RV show week. As usual, we didn't have any plans set in stone and thought this would be a good chance for us to experience desert boondocking with a group. We had a great time! we are now members of the Alberta Roamers, a group within the Escapee organization!
We traveled from Indio in convoy with two other couples, John and Judi and Gail and Terry Leicht, (part of John and Judi's Escapee family) and set up near the Escapee 'circle' ( three units arranged in a U to provide wind protection for events).We arrived Sunday night, after 'dumping' and picking up a full tank of water and headed for one of the local restaurants for dinner - good food and reasonable prices. Over the next few days the gals showed me some of their favorite haunts in town - the 'famous' bookstore - I won't spoil the surprise for those who have yet to visit - checked out some of the old china booths and flea markets for new pieces for Judi's Corelle collection and the dollar store! Don and I explored some of the seasonal booths as he didn't want to take time from the RV show opening later in the week. Don and the guys compared notes on RVs, did maintenance, and generally hung-out
Another coincidence, after the happy hour, I noticed Pat and Jerry Roselle leaving, (Pasadena HOP and parked behind us at Lake Cahuilla) and waved. We ended up having a chat and going out to dinner. Throughout the rest of the week we were to continue bumping into each other and decided we had been destined to meet. They were camped elsewhere but we managed to share several events and dinners and decided to try and connect in Yuma later in the month.
The RV Show opened during the latter part of the week and Don was in his glory doing research on a number of things that he had heard about over the past year. He loves chatting to the reps so I left him to it and did my own thing - checking out the rock and jewelry booths on the other side of the grounds! He ended up making connection with a mobile service provider who came out to where we were camped to do an oil change that we were due for
We managed to stretch the tank capacity to eight days without any hardships. I've had a number of inquiries about this experience and my overall comment is that when you are equipped as we are boondocking is not a real hardship. We have solar panels and batteries backed up by a generator for power for appliances and lights, large tanks and generally notice little difference from when we are hooked up to services. We may go to bed earlier and, in this case, ate at restaurants more, but that was part of the social experience. The comradery that we experienced while boondocking was great. We'll do it again.