The WRTR was filled with almost 1,000 women who love traveling in/living in their van/rv/bus/car/truck. I was the only person in a truck.
The gathering was held on BLM land near Bouse, AZ. Many of the women at the gathering asked that no photos were taken, so you don’t get to see the happy, weeping, laughing, startled faces of the van dwellers. The site was stunning (I will be going back there to do some more metal detecting … thanks, Mary!) and filled with huge cacti, brilliant sunrises and breathtaking sunsets.
I learned much at this gathering. First was my new toy: My Hug Light.
Two women saw me reading and gifted me with this light. It is heaven. I can walk in rough terrain at night, I can read all night, it charges up fast, it is comfortable around the neck, and it is so light weight that I have been known to accidentally wear it all day. I was not fond of the head lamp I was wearing to do the same chores. The head lamp would slide around and make my forehead itch. This Hug Light is perfect. It puts out a huge amount of light and is USB chargeable. Too kind of those women.
But that light was not the only gift … stay tuned.
I couldn’t stand the cooler. I did love the food, but hated everything else about owning the cooler. It took too much money, too much time, took up way too much room and way too many worries (where to get block ice, are the chicken breasts still edible, how to buy 1 piece of broccoli in Walmart, the water invaded all containers and butter swimming was not healthy). Hated worrying about it every day.
So … I gave it away to a very nice woman who offered a copy of her just published book, autographed. It seemed like a great trade.
I bought a piece of jewelry on the way to buy groceries one day. Below is a pic of Israel and his dog, Ajax. They were sitting on the ground with a piece of cardboard, selling the jewelry that Israel was making. I will be sending this to a steel working friend. I think.
Tomorrow I am off to the WRTR (Women’s Rubber Tramp Rendezvous) and camping in the desert with 1,000 women who love to camp out in vans, trucks and cars.
I never imagined being hot in November. It was 87 yesterday. Thank goodness I am in a bit of shade. I am finding mice, flies, tiny ants and lizards. Spent an hour trying to locate the library in town.
The LTVA is a great place for long term hanging out. They have bathrooms, water across the street, and it is affordable. Walking in the early mornings or early afternoon is ideal. The scenery is very desert, with washes every where. I am parked on the edge of a wash and am a tad nervous. I have arranged everything so that I can move in a few minutes. I am hoping that the flood washes away the cooler.
Quartzsite has a population of3,694. Except in the winter.
Quartzsite is a popular recreational vehicle camping area for winter visitors with tourism being the major contributor to Quartzsite’s economy. Nine major gem and mineral shows, and 15 general swap meet shows are very popular tourist attractions, attracting about 1.5 million people annually, mostly during January and February.
Not being crazy about crowds I wonder why I am doing this. I do have a desire to learn more about Hadji Ali and the camels. I do want to investigate the desert. I do want to hunt for gems and gold.
Going to get my long term camping permit today. Want to stay and learn.
I love the free spots I have found from Cortez, CO to Deming, NM on 2 lane roads, in lodge pole pines, with birds and deer and elk and no other campers.I stayed here 3 weeks, experimenting with the cooler and food supplies. Ne cell service. No radio reception. No news.
I do not like the cooler. I dislike almost everything about it. It takes up too much room. Most of the food would be fine without ice. The meats, no, but veggies are fine. And for meat I can do without, or use spam or tuna. I liked it fine when I was camp hosting, but on the road it is not as useful as I had hoped. I think I may give it up. I might love it in the desert. We will see how it turns out.
I am on my way to a meeting in Bouse, AZ, on January 4. The WRTR. This is a gathering of women who travel in vans or trucks. I am a bit hesitant to go (many people), but since I have lived for the last three years in the truck I have experience that other women might find useful. Since this is only October 29th I get to travel slowly!
The 2 month trek across Arizona will be fun. Its always a treat to find new secret camping spots. Thanks to freecampsites there are many to choose from. Another help are the MVU maps for all of the National Forests. MVU are the Motor Vehicle use maps, which show the roads where free dispersed camping is allowed. And camping is allowed on almost all BLM land.
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.