Tuesday, January 8, 2019

RTR 2019

IMG_5869
  This is the ninth Rubber Tramp Rendezvous. The number of people attending doubles every year so this year 10,000 people are expected, Yikes! We were a little worried but the BLM moved us to a new site that is much larger than the previous sites and farther away from the rest of the Quartzsite boondockers. Today is the first day that people are allowed in and tomorrow the RTR seminars start. This is a good way for anyone new to the lifestyle to learn about van and RV dwelling and to meet other like-minded people. So far everything is going great!

   We’ll be here for about two weeks and hanging out with friends for a few days after the RTR so I probably won’t be posting very much for a while. RTR  33.64909, -114.14563
arizona1

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Crawford's RV Park

IMG_5815

   Boondocking out on the desert is what Quartzsite is all about for thousands of people who are escaping the cold and snow of the northern US and Canada but there are also a bunch of RV parks on either side of the interstate. We’ve gone to Crawford’s several times in the past to dump our waste water because it’s a bit cheaper than other local places and there’s never a wait in line. The park doesn’t have a dump station so just pull into an empty site for dumping and water fill.

  We decided to stay overnight to top our batteries off because we’ll be boondocking for days and our solar panels do not quite do the job when we’re depending on the winter sun. The park has some permanent residences around the edges but most of the spaces are for snowbirds. Short stays are given the sites closest to the highway. We were charged a discounted rate - maybe because we were only staying one night or maybe because our RV is small.

  The park is bare bones with gravel sites, restrooms, showers, and a laundry room. It’s very convenient to all of the businesses along Main Street. The gravel makes rolling around in the park very difficult but the sidewalks and curb cuts on Main Street are in good condition.  Park  33.66664, -114.21185

arizona1

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Colorado River Boondocking

IMG_5812
    The BLM land south of Ehrenberg, Arizona, is popular with boondockers. Most people follow the east frontage road at Exit 1 on I-10. This leads to a large flat plateau with room for hundreds of RVs however it’s barren and bleak. A much nicer and more scenic area can be found by driving down Ox Bow Rd after turning west at the exit. Ox Bow travels parallel to the Colorado River and provides access to many pull outs and small clearings.

   The clearings right on the river can be very busy but we shared a spot with friends on a small back channel away from the main road where it was peaceful and quiet even over the Christmas holidays. The ground is hardpacked dirt, easy to roll around, but may be muddy if it rains. Ox Bow Rd is gravel, wide and well maintained.
IMG_580533.56924, -114.53255
arizona1

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Tohono Chul Gardens

IMG_5778

  Tohono Chul Gardens, surrounded by suburban development,  preserves 49 acres of plants native to the Sonoran or Chihuahuan Deserts. The gardens support thirty-eight species of birds and provide a stopover for 57 migrant species. Trails wind through themed gardens and loop around groups of saguaros and other native cacti. A small museum displays the work of local artists. The greenhouse has a good selection of native plants for sale.

IMG_5770IMG_5773IMG_5794IMG_5801IMG_5804

   A very small portion of the trail near the garden entrance is paved and accessible. The rest of the trails, except of the South Loop Trail which has a washed out section and a steep hill, are hard packed sand with small stones and are mostly accessible although wheelchair users may need assistance. The Saguaro Discovery Trail can be accessed by the fairly level, southern most section of the South Loop Trail. The Desert View Trail has hills and loose sand so backtracking and assistance may be necessary. The museum and greenhouse are accessible.

IMG_5780

   Designated parking for large vehicles is along the exit road but the parking lots are roomy enough for RVs on days with average visitation levels.  Gardens   32.34005, -110.98227

arizona1

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Arizona State Museum

IMG_5753

   This museum focuses solely on Native Americans making up for the lack of information in the Arizona State History Museum. The main gallery explores the cultures of 10 Native American tribal groups living in northern Mexico and the southwestern United States. Exhibits cover the traditions and lifestyles of each group before the arrival of the Spanish and other settlers, the way new ideas and materials were absorbed into the cultures, and the influence of old traditions and new ideas on contemporary lifestyles. There are also several small galleries featuring changing exhibits and a large collection of pottery.

IMG_5755IMG_5759IMG_5760IMG_5754IMG_5756

  The museum is accessible.

   There’s a parking garage close by if your vehicle will fit. If not, 2 hour, metered parking in available on the streets near the museum. We parked on 1st Street. The sidewalks and curb cuts are in good condition.  Museum  32.23219, -110.95575

arizona1

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Santa Cruz River Park Trail

IMG_5741

  A paved trail follows the Santa Cuz River for over 40 miles and provides access to other trails.  Most of the year the river bed is a dry wash but abundant foliage along the trail makes for a pleasant and scenic walk.

         IMG_5746

   Make a quick stop at the Garden of Gethsemane, a group of sand and plaster statues created by Felix Lucero, a veteran of WWI, to fulfill a promise he made as he lay wounded on a battlefield in France.

IMG_5747 IMG_5748

  The trail is well maintained and flat except for the underpasses at major highways so it’s very accessible.

    We parked on North Riverside Drive where there’s plenty of on– street parking. There’s also a small parking lot that is not suitable for RVs. Trail   32.23418, -110.98615

arizona1

Monday, December 24, 2018

Tucson Museum of Art

    The museum isn’t large – it takes about two hours to see it all – but the amount and variety of art is quite impressive. From Pre-Columbian to contemporary, western art to folk art- there’s something for every visitor to enjoy.

IMG_5703  IMG_5704IMG_5725   IMG_5708IMG_5722  IMG_5709IMG_5711                 IMG_5727IMG_5724   IMG_5718IMG_5731IMG_5719IMG_5717IMG_5714

    The museum is accessible. A long ramp accesses each lower level. Once down to the lowest level take the elevator up to see additional exhibits in the older section of the museum.

   The museum has a small parking lot that is not suitable for RVs but there is parking on the streets and in the lot on Church Street - three blocks east and one block north. It's easier to get a parking spot on the street if you visit on the weekend plus there’s no charge for metered parking on the weekend.  The sidewalks and curb cuts are in good condition. Museum  32.22347, -110.97445

arizona1

Friday, December 21, 2018

Arizona History Museum - Tucson

IMG_5693
   Very nicely done exhibits and interesting artifacts including an actual stamp mill, a uniform that belonged to Santa Anna, and a Spanish Colonial silver chest, give details of ranching, mining, and other aspects of Arizona’s history. A small exhibit features Geronimo but Native American history is not well covered.
        IMG_5697IMG_5681  IMG_5684IMG_5686IMG_5687
  The museum is accessible. An elevator up to the kids’ hands-on area is available on request.  We did not visit that area.

   Parking is validated if your vehicle can fit in the garage. If not, 2 hour, metered parking in available on the streets around the museum. We parked on 1st Street. The sidewalks and curb cuts are in good condition.  Museum  32.23313, -110.95749
arizona1[5]