Living in the truck and being a camp host is an ideal combo for me. I am in the San Juan National Forest, there are birds and bears and marmots and interesting campers.
Because there is no electricity or cell service Burro Bridge gets fly anglers, bird watchers, artists and hikers. Very few generators (only 1 this season). No raucous parties, just a deep appreciation of nature and peace. Among the visitors there have been musicians, micro biologists, pediatricians, environmental activists, teachers, ecologists and wandering souls. There was a group of college age mycologists from Denver who shared puffballs for my lunch. Tasty treat!
In the camp host life there is cleaning of toilets, firepits and sites. Here are the tools
Then sometimes you have to call in the professionals.
Calling in the pros is very expensive. They have to drive about 90 miles round trip. Ah, but what a relief.
Right now the hunting season has started. With bows and arrows first. Then muzzle loading rifles. The archery hunters are good campers. The sites are clean and neat, they call me “ma’am”, and have invited me for an elk dinner. If they get one. So far no slaughtered wildlife. Phew.
I bought Lilith’s tires from Big O in Basalt, Colorado three years ago.
I was having trouble with the tires losing pressure when we drove up to Burro Bridge campground …. going from 7,000′ to 9,000′. So when I wondered what I could do about it the folks at the Cortez Big O (thanks, Nathan) decided that putting nitrogen in the tires instead of air might do the trick. (“thats what airplanes use, it wont hurt to mix with oxygen if you can’t find nitrogen….”) The following week I had the same problem … the light indicating low tire pressure came on. The folks at Big O took all of the tires off the rims and cleaned them. Aha! Gravel in the rims. All of this care at no charge since I bought the tires from Big O.
They will also work on the brakes, have changed the oil and all of the filters and got the packrat nest out of the air filter. That stuff costs. Only the tire care is free.
They do it with a smile, and there are many Big Os out here in the west. They are a truck’s best friend.
Another thing to tell you. I caved in and bought a cooler. Reason? John and Bonnie Cunningham cooked dinner from their cooler over a fire and invited me. Oh. It tasted so good. I have been eating Spam and crackers for too long. Time to upgrade the diet. I splurged and bought a Yeti. Then filled it up with dry ice, eggs, bok choi, brussel sprouts, peppers, onions and 3 bratworsts. I’ll let you know if this works out. (*didn’t. The dry ice froze the bok choi, the cauliflower and brussel spouts stunk up the cooler, and everything turned liquid only after 4 days. Hated the brats. Gonna try again.)
I have volunteered with the Forest Service to take care of the Burro Bridge campground after my job ends (9/23) until the hunters leave. Am hoping there will not be this much snow. I spent a whole week this spring cleaning what the hunters did to the campground and the trees and the bathrooms and the scattered trash. Don’t want to do that next spring. Maybe I can keep them in line. They have guns. I have a cleaning bucket. Hmmm.
I lost the ‘phone for 5 days. Whew. What a relief not to find it. I started looking, instead of composing photos for the blog. I started listening to the plethora of birds (stating at 5:50 am every morning) instead of downloaded podcasts. I didn’t want to find the ‘phone (telephone? really? More like a pocket computer/tv/radio/camera).
I realized that I was not being very present.
So, the blog is stopping for a while. I might pick the blog up again when I get moving. Gonna try Arizona during the coming winter. The camp hosting in Colorado’s wonderful San Juan National Forest will end in September. Maybe I will be present enough by then.
Just cut my hair and was very excited
Hope to see you on the road!
Some of the joys of truck camping are being places where it is hard to get to. This is a map of the area where I am, right on the border of the Lizard Head Wilderness area.. Burro Bridge is on the bottom third. Three mountains of above 14,000′ are right there. A wild and wooly area of mountains and vistas and waterfalls. Great hikes, arduous hikes. Excited climbers going up. Exhausted hikers coming down to the campground. But they all have wide eyes and big smiles!
I see one of the fourteeneers, El Diente, every day. Breathtaking. How lucky to be camphosting in a truck!
Great campers arrived. They were hikers and bird watchers and friendly folk. They showed me, with a spotting scope, a warbling vireo nest … with momma or dad sitting in a large nest. I walked past the nest many times, but never saw the nest before. These great camper also helped with a new tarp set up. I couldn’t seem to wrap my head around how to cover the table … they helped design ropes and hitches. Phew.
So happy. Such great campers who come all the way up to Burro Bridge. Its 32.6 miles from cell service. It is 10 miles of a washboard gravel road. And there is no electricity in this campground, or anywhere near.
Pollen has to be cleaned from the solar panels at least 3x a day. I have been sneezing like crazy. Every wind gust brings more pollen. Not a problem, just an observation about the hazards (lol) of truck camping.
I have been putting off emptying the truck and doing a thorough cleaning. Well, today, coming to town, the topper door popped open. 32 miles of dust and grit and sand and pollen blew into the back. Into the living/sleeping quarters. Ha. Now I have to empty the back. Sometimes thats what it takes.