Monday, October 28, 2013

HOWLING WINDS

It seems all I have to report lately is BAD stuff.

We are having a major wind storm here in this part of the desert - and from what I’ve been reading, everywhere else within hundreds of miles of here.  55MPH/88KPH winds are no fun.

It started last night but I didn’t know it was coming.  Up to this point we’ve just had lovely slight breezes.  Finally by 9:00PM last night I had had enough with all the rattling and went out to bring the awning in.  I wasn’t worried about it flying off because it was well secured to the shade screen I have attached to it and that was well secured into the ground.

But even so, the arms were getting quite a beating.  Putting the awning back involves getting the ladder out as the arms are very high.  So 9 o’clock last night here I was outside, in howling winds, putting the awning up.  It took all my strength because the winds wanted to rip the strap and awning right out of my hands !

It’s been non stop all day and isn’t supposed to die down until sometime tonight.

The winds woke me up at 3:00AM and I couldn’t get back to sleep.  I was up until 5:00AM and then went back to bed for a few hours.  It was at that point that I put the slides in.

When I got up I poked my head outside the window to survey any possible damages.  First thing I noticed was the cover of the bike and one tire cover had blown off.  Somewhere off in the bowels of the desert by then no doubt – never to be found again.

I wasn’t concerned about the bike cover because it was a VERY cheap one and I had planned on getting a better one this year once I reach Yuma.  But those tire covers are expensive.

Then I get an e-mail from THOSE ROWDY NEIGHBOURS of mine.  They had BOTH the bike cover and the tire cover held hostage over there for a price !! Devil

Skip saw one of them caught on a bush and the other down in the wash by their place.  He knew they were mine. YEAH !!

So I have been cooped up inside all day in very tight quarters (slides in) – going BONKERS !!

Earlier today I heard a BANG.  Went outside to investigate.  This is what had banged up against the rig.

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No idea who owns it – and this is what it did to the RV….

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Hey, What’s one more dent/scratch added to the numerous I already have on this rig.Crying face

Check out the tire covers.  They look like they have been glued on.

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I’m sure not complaining as I still have it pretty good.  The guy in the tent however doesn’t have it so good.  His tent blew down and he has been sitting in his car all day.

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So it’s been a very L O N G day and I feel beat up because the rig has been rocking and rolling so much all day.

Despite the high winds it was still very warm so I needed the windows open.  The rig is now full of desert sand.  This is what I have to deal with tomorrow !!

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OH GOOD NEWS…..

I had e-mailed ONAN re my generator cover and wondered why I hadn’t heard from them.   Daaaa, it was the weekend.  Being a full-timer I never know the days of the week anymore.

Anyhoooo they e-mailed me back to tell me they had my specific type cover in stock to the tune of $103.  Their location in somewhere in the Phoenix area so I would have to get it shipped.

I called them about that and the guy tells me they also have a location in Las Vegas who also has the cover in stock.  Turns out I’ll be driving right by that location when I leave here.

I’m anxious to get that cover on the generator so I’m thinking now I’ll leave here earlier than expected.  Likely Wednesday or Thursday and head for Q. 

The temps in the Yuma area are still in the mid to high 80’s whereas Q will be in the 70’s.  Perfect !  And as soon as I get there I will be dealing with sanitizing my fresh water tank.

I’m not overly concerned about the fresh water tank as I never drink the water from it.  Just use it for showers and doing the dishes but I’d still like to have it dealt with sooner rather than later.

Now let’s see what tomorrow will bring !! Surprised smile

WAIT ! THERE’S MORE !!

YUP, I definitely got some B AAAAA D water in my fresh water tank.

Since the end of May I have been filling my fresh water tank from the RV Park I stayed at all Summer.  During that entire time I never had any trouble with the water.

The first sign of trouble was on OCTOBER 8, 2013 when I was barely getting a dribble of water coming out of the taps.  Joe quickly identified the problem (clogged screen in the water pump) and rinsed it out.

The second sign of the same trouble was on OCTOBER 20, 2013 – YUP, screen in the water filter was completely clogged again – only 12 days later.

So I put this item on my monthly check list but decided to check it again today – even though there was no indication of any trouble.

This is what it was like – yes, only 7 days later.

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The screen is definitely doing its job by keeping all that gunk out of the taps.

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BUT I won’t  be satisfied now until I completely drain and sanitize my fresh water tank.

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The GOOD NEWS is that I now know the steps to take to detach the hose from the water pump and how to remove the screen.  I’ve been shown part of the process twice but today was the first time doing myself.  EASY PEASY !!

THIS is the screen after I cleaned it.

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I will be checking this at least once a week until my tank is sanitize and re-filled with fresh water.  And I will be checking this monthly from here on.

Thankfully, the new water filter I put in on October 20th was still looking good.

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Look what I noticed when going to bed last night…

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It was just sitting on the door frame – the one that leads from the bedroom to the garage.  Well I can tell ya, it quickly got SQUISHED !!  YUCK !!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

WHAT ELSE IS GOING TO HAPPEN ??

So the (mis) adventures continue. 

It’s all part of full-timing……….right ?? 

I mean everybody goes through all this stuff…..right ??

I hope I’m not being greedy and taking too many (mis) adventures for myself.

I’m crawling into bed the other night and see a crack in the wall.  HUH ??  How on earth did that happen ?  And it just happened or else I would have noticed it the night before.

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Yesterday I did my monthly ‘exercising’ of the Generator and checking the oil.  When I opened the compartment door I was shocked – and I mean literally SHOCKED !! – to see that the generator’s door was missing !!  I actually stared at it for several seconds waiting for my brain to catch up to what it was seeing – or rather what it WASN’T seeing !

I thought the generator sounded a little noisier today while I was running it.

The last time I checked the oil (September 23rd) it sure was there.  I must not have put it back on securely enough ? 

AND somewhere from B.C. to here it fell off ?? 

Surely I would have heard it bounce around under the rig ? 

Surely that would have made quite a noise ? 

AND I really didn’t even go over really rough roads.

MISSING COVER OCTOBER 2013

Now the question is – should I do anything to cover it (and if so, with what) until I get a new cover ?

I tell ya – in all the Blogs I’ve read and all the various RV Websites I read – I have NOT heard of a cracked wall nor a missing generator cover.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

VALLEY OF FIRE

I set out for a short ride the other day doing a loop from here across 169; North on I-15 to back here.  It was only about 65 Miles/104KMS so I packed a lunch and off Bennie and I went.  I knew I had to get on the road fairly early (10:00AM is EARLY for me) in order to be back before it got too stinky HOT.

I hadn’t planned on ‘doing’ the Valley of Fire – I was going to wait for another day for that.  There is a day use entrance fee of $10.00 to get in there so I wanted to make sure I could spend some time there – being ‘da cheap old sock that I am.

Even this sign didn’t clue me in that I was IN the Valley of Fire.  Yes, I know, sometimes I also wonder how on earth I manage to get myself out of bed and dressed !!  LOL

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It was a GORGEOUS run with lots of twisties in the road.

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And even when I passed the Self-Pay station that didn’t clue me in.

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You will notice the amazing blue sky.

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To see the actual beauty that is the Valley of Fire you have to take one of the many off roads which I didn’t take because I wasted ‘doing’ the VOF that day.

It wasn’t until the end where there was an attended booth and a huge STOP sign that I figured it out.  I told the Attendant that I was just going for a little ride but he wasn’t buying it and I had to cough up my $10.00.

Found a little park in Overton where Bennie & I stopped for lunch.

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After he sniffed and lifted his leg on everything in sight he settled in on the nice cool grass.

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The temperature continues to be in the mid 80’s here but very comfortable at night.  Looks like we have a few more days of the 80’s and then it is going down to the more manageable 70’s.

Quartzsite and Yuma continue to be in the HIGH 80’s and even 90’s as I’m in no rush to get to those temps.  I am quite liking it here and find it very peaceful.

BTW, The Verizon signal here is fantastic – 5 full bars.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

GETTING THE BIKE OUT

I had asked Jean to take “a” picture of me taking the bike out.  She took TEN !!  LOL  I won’t post them all but you will see that it is a slow and steady process.  Lots of rocks the bike has to go over at the end - some of them large.

Skip was curious as to how it was done.

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Checking to my right…..

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Checking to my left…..

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This is the tricky part because the bike’s tires are now on the gravel and rocks…

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WHEW !  Done !!  I’m always relieved when I have the bike out and still upright.  LOL

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You will notice I have a sweatshirt on.  In the mornings here you go through three changes of clothing.  You start with a sweatshirt as it is a little cool – then you change into a long sleeved T-Shirt – then finally a short sleeved T-Shirt.

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I didn’t find it as HOT yesterday as I did the previous day even though the temperature was the same.  That’s likely because I wasn’t working getting my set-up done and therefore I didn’t get overheated.  Also I’m sure the few clouds in the sky helped.

SANDIE when I saw the beautiful clouds in the sky I thought of you.

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I took a little ride into Overton to drop off some garbage but it was too HOT to even ride.  The pipes on the bike just burn my leg.

So I came back home and Bennie & I found a nice spot in the shade and did what we like to do best = NOTHING.

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My first sunset picture of the season…

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I looked at the temperatures in Quartzsite and Yuma last night.  HOLY CRAP !!  I’m sure glad I decided to stop here for a few weeks.  By the time I’m ready to leave I’m sure they will be a lot lower.

This morning I enjoyed my cuppa out on my back deck…

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This is the view from JEAN & SKIP'S spot.  It’s pretty awesome.

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I’m really enjoying getting to know these two – they are about the nicest people you’d ever want to meet.  Skip is very quiet but Jean & I have been gabbing and gabbing !

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS……

……READ THE MANUAL !!!

I was pretty stressed over the jacks situation and therefore slept fitfully that night and even had a dream that I pressed the button and they worked.

But no such luck in the reality of daylight as I started the rig to see if by some miracle it fixed itself overnight ===== NOT.

So I went hunting around in the papers I got with this rig – which BTW I’ve been through a gazillion times !!!

I FOUND THE MANUAL !!  Still sealed in its plastic wrapping.  The first thing I saw was this little card.

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And then there was the actual Manual – which was too full of gooblie goop for me to understand anything.

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I am not COMPLETELY useless – I do have a extra fuses on hand and various tester thingies – some of which I actually know how to use !!  LOL

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The card said to press and hold the ON/OFF button for 3 seconds and it will reset itself.  PLEASE tell me it wasn’t that simple.  IT WAS !!

I did that and VAAAA BOOM the flashing lights went off and I pressed Retract and the jacks came up.  WHEW.

I quickly got myself moved over closer to where Jean and Skip where and on the first try the rig levelled.  I wasn’t about to move anywhere else.

I spent the rest of the day yesterday getting settled in.  Putting out my chairs; mats; awning etc. etc.  I am going to be here for a couple of weeks.  But it was HOT HOT HOT.

At 4:00PM it was 83F/28C.  So I could only do a little bit and then come inside to rest and cool down.  I waited until the sun went down before I got on the roof to raise my solar panels.

This morning I will get the bike out before it gets too HOT again.  After that I expect I will find a good book and sit in the shade.  This heat (in the 80’s) is only going to last another couple of days and then it will be a perfect temperature again.

This guy LIVES in a tent.  How does he shower ?  And more importantly WHERE does he go to the bathroom ??

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This is JEAN & SKIP'S rig.  I’m not as close as this picture shows – I zoomed in to get this shot.

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So another disaster behind me – wonder what will be next !!??

Monday, October 21, 2013

OVERTON, NEVADA

WHAT A DAY !!

It started out great – a relaxing, leisurely morning – no rushing now.

I drove the final 54.4 Miles to my boondocking location in Overton, NV – and that was with getting lost in Mesquite because ‘Bridie’ (you know that SOB) took me no where near the address I punched in for the local Ace Hardware.

And that mileage also included getting lost in Overton (yes, only ME could get lost in a little town of about 2 stop lights) trying to find the Laundromat that Toni told me about where I could fill my fresh water tank.

NOW in my own defence you have to remember that I have to focus on the driving as well as looking for the place I want to find.

As soon as I got off the I-15 I pulled in to have something to eat and saw this sign.

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Yup, I do believe I’ll find a riding road or two around here.

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I checked out the Overton Wildlife Refuge place where there is FREE camping that TONI & DOUG like so much.  And I can see why.  It only has about 8 sites and each one is nicely separated from the next one by distance and lots of trees and shrubbery.

Before I decided on that place I wanted to check out the other boondocking spot just a few miles up the road.  I much preferred the openness of the second place – just goes to show there’s something out there for everyone and not everyone likes the same things.

I pulled in – put the jacks down – and was just putting out the slide when a knock comes to the door.  It was none other than Jean of TRAVEL WITH JEAN AND SKIP.  I follow their Blog but had not met them before.  I knew they were here but when I saw how big this place is, with boondocking on both sides of the road – I didn’t figure I’d ever see them.  Turns out I pulled in just across the way from where they are settled.

While chatting with Jean I notice that I could be a little farther away from the rig behind me so I decided to move ahead another little bit.  Then I couldn’t get the rig levelled.  I drove around and tried it a few more times – still couldn’t get levelled.  That means each time putting the jacks down and then retracting them.

I thought perhaps if I put some blocks of wood under the front tires that would help.  NOT !!!!

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We can’t be having this !!!

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So I went to retract the jacks and they now wouldn’t come back up.  The little panel had all these lights flashing.  They are NOT supposed to be flashing.

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I even tried the ‘Manual’ button and no luck.  A guy across the way came over to have a look but once verifying that the fuses and breakers hadn’t blow we were at a loss.  He did suggest though that perhaps ‘something’ overheated from me putting the jacks down and then retracting them several times in a row.

That kinda made sense even to me so I ‘let it rest’ for about an hour and tried again.  NADA !

I moseyed over to where Jean & Skip were and they came over to have a look.  Skip did things that men do like looking under the hood etc. while Jean & I had a lovely chat.  But he wasn’t able to figure out either why the jacks wouldn’t retract.  We just had to let it be.

I came back inside and immediately put a post on the RV Website re the problem hoping someone would know what the problem is.  I also sent an e-mail to Newmar.

Nothing more can be done tonight but wait to see what tomorrow brings.

Here is a short video of my new front yard and neighbours for the next week or two or three.

What a beautiful night it is here in Overton, NV – at 10:00PM it is still 15F/15C – will be sleeping with the windows OPEN tonight.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

GOOD-BYE UTAH

I knocked of a WHOPPING 45.2 miles today.  Yes, You read that right. I really needed a day of rest as I’ve driven now 1,338 Miles or 2,153 KM’s in the last 6 days.

I needed to re-group; re-organize and relax.  Things get haywire pretty quickly in my ‘home’ when I’m on the road as I just wake up and drive and don’t do much of anything else.

So I puttered around all morning, got my hair cut (I was desperate !) and eventually got on the road at 1:00PM and was safely tucked away at Wally’s by 1:45PM. 

Arrived in Mesquite, NV to a HOT 79F/26C and the very first order of business was to get all doors and windows open.  That’s what a difference in elevation does.  Mesquite is at 1,601’ - prior to arriving here I was in much higher elevations.

I tell ya elevation is everything when you’re a fulltime RV’er.  Prior to getting on the road ‘elevation’ meant nothing to me as it had no impact on my life.  Now it sure does and it’s always something I pay attention to.

The first year on the road (wherever I was) it was not warm enough for me.  So I checked the map and found a place further South – only for it to be COLDER =  Higher elevation.

This is my view tonight….

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BARBARA now I feel much better and looking forward to boondocking again in the desert for the next months !!

Tomorrow will be the last leg (of this part) of my journey and I only have to drive less than 50 Miles to get there.  Somewhere in the Overton area I’m gonna find a great spot and boondock for a week or two.  I’ll be getting the bike out and looking forward to checking out the Valley of Fire.