Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Like a Box of Chocolates --- Mar 31, 2015

You never know what you're going to get in this RVing lifestyle!

I was planning on staying at Saddle Mountain for about 10 days or so, but things change!  I left there on Sunday after only four days.... more about that later.  But let's catch up on what was going on at Saddle Mountain for my short stay....

First, a nature note.  Nikko and I were taking a desert walk one morning and came across a lowly cactus with one bloom about to open.  I made a mental note about where it was so we could come back to check on it.

The next day, not only had the one bloom opened, but most all the others, too!  Eventho' I've seen them before, it was spectacular!

I think what made it most intriguing was the fact that it was in the middle of nowhere with no other blooming cactus anywhere around!

Ok - talk about being at the right place at the right time!  Friday morning we got up extra early for some reason.  Just doing our normal routine...making tea, a bagel...nothing too exciting.  Then I heard this swooshing sound.... it sounded like my refrigerator's propane coming on....but not really.  I'm walking all around trying to figure it out.  Then I glanced outside and......

Rising up right in front of us was a hot air balloon!  Where in the heck did that come from???  No cars/trucks had come by...no sign of people.... it just rose, literally, out of nowhere!

It floated slowly and effortlessly across the base of the mountain for a good half  hour.  I thought maybe they were "in training" because it wasn't hitting the skies.

But, eventually, it did start rising into the crystal blue sky.  It was beautiful with the early morning sun hitting both the balloon and the mountain ridges.

It continued on its way toward the next mountain peak and eventually out of sight.  It really paid to get up early that day!  What a great way to start a desert day!  Amazingly, Nikko has seen two hot air balloons in his two months as an RVer!

Back to our day-to-day......our hiking consisted of just trekking around what you see...looking for interested rocks, getting cactus quills in our feet... that happened to both of us!  OUCH!

Nikko was a trooper, tho',... just pull them out, please, and let's keep going! 

Natural fission effect.... 

We had some colorful sunsets....

And a campfire....

All in all, we were happy with our short stay.  Wished it could have been a little longer, but we opened that box of chocolates and unwrapped one that changed the plan!  Next blog post!

We will catch up from our new (delightfully much cooler temps) spot in a few days!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Saddle Up! -- Mar 27, 2015

Nikko and I are at our first stop on this, I guess, third leg of our adventure --  1) 2014 summer across the U.S.;  2)  our winter spot;  3)  2015 summer...beginning now!

This first stop is only a couple hours away from the Yuma BLM, but about 8-9 degrees cooler. Eventho' it is still plenty warm, a few degrees makes a difference.  I don't mind the heat, but it's a little tough on Nikko.  I got us both a Frogg Togg Chill Scarf....  it's pretty "cool" -- don't mind the pun! It's made out of some kind of special fabric that is kinda rubbery, but not really.  Just soak it in water and it stays cold for a long, long time!  He seems to be enjoying it....

Ok - where are we?  We are near Tonopah, Arizona at Saddle Mountain.  It's about 8-10 miles off I-10 which runs east/west L.A. to Phoenix.  We're about 52 miles west of Phoenix.  Here's a view from the road while we're trying to find a place to get onto the property.... I guess I can see why they call it "Saddle" Mountain.....

This is more BLM (Bureau of Land Management) land....public land, so it's free to stay here up to 14 days.  I don't know how long we'll stay -- will just depend on the weather.

We got here mid-afternoon on Wednesday after stopping in Quartzsite to pick up a couple of things and having to go 12 miles PAST the exit to get gas...then come back.  (Very few stations along that stretch of I-10).   After weaving around on a few roads off the exit and finding an entrance to the area, we ended up about two miles (maybe a little less) up an inclined gravel road (what else is new?? LOL!) Tons of land, but very few places to pull off to camp. We passed a few, but I wanted to be closer to the base of the mountain.  Finally came to one that looked pretty good and decided we'd better take it. It's virtually impossible to turn an RV around in these kinds of places.   I got the RV situated with the doorway facing the mountain (which is south).  It's a very level spot...also not always easy to find.  A "must" for keeping the refrigerator working properly.  

I thought I would wait until Thursday to take a look around, but my curiosity was stronger than my waiting ability!  So here's the first look at Saddle Mountain....the section directly in front of our door. (I'm not sure why the sky looks green here....maybe it's just my screen -- it's actually azure blue!) There are some blooming ocotillos around....

Apparently this a popular hiking area...need to research that a bit more.  But I doubt Nikko and I will be scaling the mountain!  

Here are some quick mid-day shots.  It's a pretty area.  Luckily there are some wispy clouds to give the photos a little "extra" umph!   There will be a lot of exploring to do!

Even pretty in black and white!

Blazing Arizona sun!

We could probably hike up this section...

Nikko really likes looking around the new area!  

He went ahead as a "scout" !  LOL!

This was our first "preview" of our new yard.  We like it!  Now, back inside to get settled in and have some iced tea!   I'm going to try to keep the posts rather short and report on specifics, separately, if I can....instead of lumping everything together in one big post.  I'm back on limited internet time, so that's another reason to keep 'em short and sweet! 

Normally I say, "don't put something right in the center of your photo"... I think it works this time...

I see this as a pretty Christmas card!  

That's it for now.....just wanted to clue everyone in on where we are.

Will post again in a day or so....  in the meantime, enjoy the Spring weekend, wherever you are!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

A Look Back ---- Mar 22, 2015

Well, tomorrow marks my 9th month and Nikko's 2nd month as a full time RVers!  Where does the time go?  I know many of you are happy it has gone quickly and taken you out of the cold and snowy winter!  

I am doing last minute checks around the RV.  Nikko and I are planning to pull out of our winter Yuma BLM site in a couple of days.  Our first stop will be a couple hours away... more free, BLM land!  It will still be desert, tho'.  But more about that when we get there....

I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone for sticking with me (or recently joining me) on this adventure.   There have been 10,500 views to date! It has had some trials and tribulations, but for the most part, no more than living any other way....just different.  I've gone back through my photos of the day to day memories I've experienced here at this winter spot....you may like seeing them again - or it might be the first time you have tuned in.  They are random...in no particular order.  

Thank you, also, for shopping via my Amazon links. Please stop here first to go to Amazon...you pay the same...and I make a small commission.  It helps me afford to continue publishing this blog. Graduations, Mother's Day and Father's Day are coming up!  Gift cards are for everyone for every occasion!  

Okay ---  Here's a look back at my "winter" here, outside Yuma, Arizona, enjoying the great people I have met who also embrace this simple, yet rewarding, lifestyle....and great weather, of course!  Just photos...no words needed!  

That's the wrap up from the Yuma BLM winter!  No snow!  
Now we are looking forward to new summer adventures...on the road(s) less traveled... 
Please come with us and see the sights!

So long, for now, from our home to yours....