Truck Camper Solar

Every sunny morning. This is the set up. The wind took the panels the other day, so bungee cords are now attached to the panels.

I am very happy with the Jackery “portable power station”. It has a pure sine wave, which the Mac requires. It is SO light. The Jackery solar panels are snazzy and well made.

Cooking has been fun. This was a cabbage/tomato/garlic/egg dish.

The weather has been wonderful. Sunshine in the 70’s. During the days of restless winds I read inside the back as the truck rocks and sand peppers the aluminum topper. Feel so safe and comfortable.

I have been crummy at updating the blog. A friend (thanks Cindy) sent a big box of books. Delicious books. So I read. And read. The joys of being retired in the desert in winter!

Am running out of advice for truck campers. Any thoughts?

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Unexpected Tools

A hatchet and a sharpening file and a fire

The hatchet has been used muchly. It has helped others. It has held an edge for a long time. It is very light, which makes it harder to split heavy logs, but easier to be precise. It is small and lives at the foot of the bed (with a machete).

The sharpening tool ( made by Smith’s) is used muchly, also. It folds up and hangs on a nail on a bed leg. Great for the must-have pocket knife.

This is the camp area. Third year here for the winter. “My”spot.

The open hood is to deter the animals. Old timers say so. Found the glove in the grocery store parking lot. Heavy duty leather. I can lift burning logs. The solar set-up (generator and solar panels) is doing great for my needs. I will go into a deeper look at what I use in the next post.

The fire in the mornings has been a great tool. Found myself getting annoyed if someone else started arranging the logs in the fire. Without asking me. Adding more wood. Without asking me. Who’s fire was it?

Ha. The fire in the morning is a great tool for learning.

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Truck Camping Chores


Oh these morning fires are so yummy. That steel container has 2” of water , then stuffed with cut up veggies, garlic powder, onion powder, Old Bay, Siracha, salt and pepper. When the fire was just ashes I put the container in the middle.and went on a walk. So easy. And only 1 container to clean!

That was so much fun I tried a sweet potato next.

The sweet potato was very sweet, a soft mashed potato consistency and intensely flavorful.


Finally retired the topper’s old back curtain

And “hung” the new one.

This was a gift from Diane.

Sometimes it is hard to do chores (like doing a major reorganization, arranging the solar storage better, giving books to the Salvation Army Thrift Store, doing laundry, etc. ). Sometimes it is all that I can do. Nice having the freedom and time to follow a non schedule.

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Truck Camping and a Fire

“I never have fires.” So said I for years. But it is cold in the mornings in the desert. I snuggle with the teddy bear, named Strength, until I have to get up.

I caved. For the first time in 45 years of camping I have started having a fire in the mornings with coffee.

I wish that I had started this ritual years ago. So sweet to have warm legs and hands. 5 AM in the desert is very chilly, especially if there is any wind. The wood is so dry that starting the fire is a snap. I just wipe a paper towel in some bacon grease and light it under the wood. Woosh. Its lit. The bacon grease comes from a $1.50 jar at Ken’s. What luxury.

There are several places selling wood here in Quartzsite. Most offer a selection of pinon, juniper or pine. Delicious smell. I can have three morning fires per box of wood. $10. I spend the first day chopping chunks off of some of the larger pieces with my handy Fiskars hatchet, then laying out the wood for the morning’s fire. I love the process. I also like the mellow way it starts the day.

I don’t have any normal fire tools … like a poking stick, or a grate to cook over. I spend the money out of the “entertainment” budget line. I am planning on doing two boxes per month, instead of buying coffee or cookies at the Pilot gas station. Yumm! I got a present of a lottery ticket from the folks at Pilot. If I am a winner the fires will happen every possible morning. I am hooked.

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Hunting for Anything

I drove out to a place where I am allowed to hunt for gold. I got to this area at 7am. I didn’t leave until 5pm. This is what I found:

The pieces of tin were paper thin. The curvy nail was wrapped around a rock.

The rock was what is called a “hot rock”. It caused the detector to beep like crazy. The tiny bit of pipe cleaner took me at least 45 minutes to dig out. I was sure it was gold.

I moved several times, but no luck. Still had a ball trying to get better at detecting, better at looking where to detect, better at scrambling over rocks in the washes. Still having fun. Love being in the desert.

Came back into town and saw a sleeping dog.

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