Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Mesa, Arizona to San Clemente, California

We finally left Mesa and headed to California for a work camping opportunity. Debi and I have worked as volunteers for the California State Parks system and we just love it. If you've never work camped, you should look into it. It provides a means of 'giving back', allows you to meet some wonderful people and provides you with a camping spot for several months. There is some time and work involved but, believe me, it's well worth it. Then again, you'll only get out of it what you put into it, so think before you commit. So, let's get to it ---

As I said earlier, our departure was predicated on completion of a ramp for Debi's parents. So, here it is, almost finished... A little paint and it'll be done. The door was moved four feet forward and a new one installed. Why do they put a 28" door on a mobile? At any rate, it's finished and should provide them a safe and easy way to access their mobilehome.

We rarely travel more than three hours per day and this trip was to be no different. While we could have driven all the way to San Clemente in one day, we found traveling no more than 3 hours allows us to set up our coach for the night, enjoy some relaxation and leave the next morning refreshed.

We stayed at Araby Acres RV Park in Yuma. It's big rig friendly and offers discounts during the off season. We found it very quiet, the pool warm, the jacuzzi hot and the spaces big enough for any size rig. It's a one mile walk around the outside of the park.

Our newest upgrade. After years of standard def television, we decided to upgrade to the Winegard Trav'ler. For $2100, installed to my specs, we now have hi-def.  I wanted to continue to use my existing A-B switch in order to allow setting up a remote antenna should we find the signal blocked by trees. The installer was great and set it up perfectly.

Time to exit Arizona. We chose to take I-8 this year as we're tired of I-10. They both cross the Colorado River to get you into California. Be sure to visit the Yuma Prison before you leave Yuma. Speaking of Yuma, we haven't been there in several years and it's really modernized and cleaned itself up nicely.

Crossing into California you're presented with lots of sand dunes, desert and trains. 

After leaving Ocotillo, California, W/B I-8 divides and begins it's climb up and over the In-Ko-Pah mountain pass. The climb rises about 3500' so make sure your coach is prepared for the trip.

Near the summit is the Desert View tower.  It's 3 stories tall and provides a great view of the desert valley towards Coyote Wells. The stone tower was built from 1922 to 1928 as a roadside attraction by Bert Vaughn, a real estate developer who owned Jacumba Hot Springs,  just down the road on Old Hwy 80 near the Mexico border.

After by-passing San Diego we proceeded north. Outside of Oceanside, California is the sprawling Marine Corps base, Camp Pendleton. We passed the Marines playing with some very large tanks but because of traffic, I wasn't able to get any decent photos.

Our destination reached, San Clemente State Beach Park.  We will get settled in, register, meet our co-hosts and enjoy life for the next several months.  More to follow....D

Monday, May 21, 2018

Embarking on a new adventure for 2018

Hello folks,

It's been a busy time for us these past couple years so I haven't had much of an opportunity to update our blog. Now it's starting to settle down and I hope to have this blog up and running again. We've welcomed two new grandchildren, graduated grandchildren one and two, had the oldest one join the Navy and I had my knee replaced. Fun times for everyone involved. Anyway, to those who have followed us in the past, I thank you and hope you'll continue watching an commenting on our adventures. Those that want to join our group, I say welcome aboard and enjoy the ride. Feel free to comment, either directly or through the blog comment section. Also, since a blog is only a small snapshot of the locations we visit, feel free to ask for additional information if you need it. We don't like freeways, expressways and/or toll roads so most of our travels take place on back roads through small country towns. Debi loves old churches and I love old farmhouses and barns, so expect to see some pictures of those as we travel.

We started out 2018 at our place in Mesa, Arizona. Since my in-laws are getting up in years, I felt they needed an access ramp for their mobile home so they wouldn't be falling down any steps. As a result, we didn't get as early a start as normal as I had to oversee the construction of the ramp. Our first stop was in Yuma, Arizona and then on to San Clemente, California where we are going to work camp at the State Park for a couple of months. Look for pictures and information to be posted on the next few pages. We are excited to be on the road again and look forward to sharing our experiences with y'all.

Peace and love as always,   Dennis