After leaving Lajitas we made a beeline to Quartzsite Arizona and the Grand Design Rally. We did 877 miles in 2 days with a big grocery shopping thrown in for good measure, a bit frenetic to say the least. This destination would prove to accomplish 2 “firsts”. This would be our first “rally” of any kind and our first trip to the infamous Quartzsite. We have heard a great deal about the desert community that evolves every winter in this area and knew one day we would check it out. The rally being here and the timing just made sense!
Well, what is Quartzsite you ask… It is a town off I-10 that resembles the worlds largest swap meet… Lots of dust, people, and markets… You can buy anything from bamboo socks you can wear for 4 days before they smell (yuck), discount groceries out of bins in a tent, a beer at the “adult day care”…(Outside bar), or a new or used RV… For many RVer’s the draw is all the free camping on the surrounding Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land. There are RV’s everywhere… And I guess nowhere…
We camped with about 70 other Grand Design owners about 5 miles from town. In my mind a rally should be more informative and provide opportunities to learn and share about whatever you are “rallying” about, this one did not fit that bill… However the rally experience was a good one and we met lots of nice people. The weather was unfortunate and the cold and rain may have put a damper on some social activities. We did enjoy a ginormous pot luck, group campfires, and of course the corn dog guy. Yes, up until that day Chris and I were corn dog virgins! They were actually very good!
We had planned to stay in Quartzsite longer but, wait for it… The weather stunk! We decided to head further west to Southern California. It had been almost a year since visiting mom and Chris. Our last visit was not the best, having been drawn together due to my uncle Gary’s passing (moms brother).
We found a county recreation area with a campground about 45 minutes from moms house. We thought this would be a good central location for visiting family and friends and also doing a little sightseeing. While there we took a few short hikes in the surrounding mountains and look what we found… or did they find us…
Originally we were only going to stay for 4 nights but we needed more time for visiting, business stuff, and some fun. As luck would have it our house finally closed! On January 31st, 2017 we became homeless. Ok, not homeless but stick and brick homeless. It is very surreal… Not sure if it will really sink in until we head home and don’t have one to pull into… Very excited about having no strings attached!
While in town we went to visit John, a long time family friend. He and my uncle were very close for many years. He is now the papa to my uncles two Bijon Frise doggies, Desi and Lucy. The girls enjoyed hanging with their cousins (so corny).
Mom and I enjoyed some time just hanging. We always like to walk at 1000 Palms preserve!
Mom and Chris (yes, her husbands name is Chris too…) came out to the campground a few times and Chris and I enjoyed strolling around the lake with them. We also made some very yummy meals…Yes, I do say so myself!
It is always nice to visit at mom and Chris’s house too! There are some awesome views, this was a particularly stormy night…
We were able to fit in two motorcycle days. The first day we headed toward Borrego Springs, a town in the middle of nowhere. After fighting horrible winds and some pretty chilly temperatures we were pleasantly surprised by what we saw! Chris had read an article in one of his motorcycle magazines about some interesting statues in the desert which immediately became a must see for us. Galetta Meadows statues are the “gifts of visionary town benefactor Dennis Avery and the craft of sculptor Ricardo Breceda“. It was a great afternoon driving around checking out all the sculptures and posing! A must see if you are in this area!
A second day we just headed up into the San Jacinto mountains… Route 74 is a great scenic ride. Not for the faint of heart but another must see/do in the area. We had tea and coffee in Idyllwild, a funky little town way up in the mountains. There was actually plowable snow up there!
All good things must come to an end… We left Southern California Wednesday February 1st, officially nomads! We decided to holdover in Quartzsite one night before heading into the Phoenix area and the Superstition Mountains! This visit was much quieter… No rally, no RV show… Amazing what kind of real estate you can get for free
Oh yeah… Picking up Chris’s new toy tomorrow… He is the proud owner of a 2017 Husqvarna 701 Enduro. He is a happy camper… Pun intended!