Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Years

I started this blog last night, but the verizon connection kept cutting out every three or four minutes, I finally said a few choice words and gave up. This is the second time that has happened, I have no idea why, the signal strength is always 3 or four bars.

The wind did blow wednesday night, the motorhomes was rocking back and forth, we woke up thursday to a cloudy grey morning but after a trip into Ajo for gas, the sky cleared and we took the dogs and drove up a dirt road that runs off  Darby Wells Rd.

The road runs along in front of this mountain, it is unmarked and we had no idea where  it went.

We passed along behind Balancing Rock, also called Locomotive Rock

It looks completely different from the other side

At first there were lots of cactus

Then the landscape changed to this

The mountainswere gorgeous  just before we arrived here

We think that the road is Bates Well Rd, which goes through Organ Pipe National Monument and eventually comes out near Yuma.

It was an interesting ride, although the road was pretty rough.

Today  was cold first thing, 26F, but it did warm up  to the mid 60's,  we  stayed in and watched the world juniors game, and that was about it.

Hope everyone has a safe, happy, New Year.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Yesterday was Beautiful

And I wasted it vacuuming, and wiping down the walls, today it has been raining and blowing since we woke up. We did take a trip to Why, which is ten miles south of Ajo, we checked out the BLM  camping area, and  we checked out Hickiwan Trails where we may stay for a few days  We have ordered a new soft top for our tracker, and until we know what day it will be at the UPS store in Tuscon, we can't make too may plans.

This little desert is billed as the most northern in the world it is on highway two between Whitehorse Yukon and Skagway Alaska.

I had a couple of emails about the area we live in  so here are a  some pictures of our yard in Nanoose.

We have a long growing season as a rule, the last two or three summers have been really warm, and most of us have brown lawns by the end of July, but the grass always greens back up in the fall. We don't have a  very good lawn, with three dogs tearing around, but we don't worry about it.


Monday, December 27, 2010

Don't Know What Was Happening

Ever since we moved to our site, we have been wondering about a windmill we could see across the desert, it appeared to be a working windmill, but it was surrounded by deserted ramshackle buildings.

We found the windmill, it made a creaking sound as it turned

The pipe lead to a trough but it was disconnected

Jake would have liked a drink

There were old wooden structures that looked  like animal pens

We couldn't figure out what kind of animals they would have raised,so  we decided to walk up to some deserted buildings. We couldn't  get close to the buildings as they were fenced off, we could see a trailer and some vehicles, then we spotted this sign.

Who knew?

There were camels brought to the desert  before the civil war. Someone has a sense of humour.

This is the other sign that is in a couple of places on darby Wells Rd.

Not very funny.


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas, we sure did, the weather was perfect again. We didn't do anything except sit in the sun, make Christmas dinner and go for a walk with the dogs.

I am inside the dogs crate, it is easier than dealing with them being tied up.

It was warm today.

We found this skeleton of a saguaro cactus on our walk.

I hope it died from natural causes. I am getting really attached to the saguaro cactus, they seem to have

I have been thinking about the wildlife here, and how I worry about the dogs. At home on Vancouver Island, we live in a fairly rural area, we have seen bears, and a cougar quite close to our house, and although we have a fence all around our property, they could quite easily get into the yard. Even the raccoons can do a lot of damage to a dog if they get cornered. I suppose it is because we are in a totally
different environment, that it makes me uneasy. There are no coyotes on Vancouver Island, there are no porcupines, or skunks either, how ever there are wolves, although I have never seen one.


Friday, December 24, 2010

We Had Two Visitors Today

Merry Christmas Everyone, I hope everyone's day is just the way you want it to be.

We had another beautiful warm sunny day here in the Sonoran Desert. We did nothing all morning,but sit in the sunshine, that's not quite true I started building a fire pit and Skip cleaned the windows in the motor home.

We had our first visitor just before we left to explore the  area around us.

He had been around all morning but the dogs  kept scaring him or her before I could get a picture.

Sophie and Louie were fighting all morning over a rubber stick, there is two but it's more fun to play tug
with one.

Waiting to go for a walk.

We headed out  to look for an Indian Cemetary, we had a little map from the tourist bureau, but it took us
a long time to find it. We ended up driving down a wash and climbing up the hills to see if we could see it.

We are the rig on the left.

We did see some pretty cactus

Baby Organ Pipe

Barrel Cactus with flowers still on it

We did find the cemetery but I am not going to post the pictures.

We had only been back at our site, for a little while, when we had our second visitor.

This the third time we have seen a coyote since we first went to Borrego, and he is certainly the healthest looking of them all. We always walk the bostons on a leash, but we have been letting Jake go without his leash when we are outside with him. I don't know if  a coyote would go after him, or not. I don't want to take any chances so I think it will be back on his leash for him.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

We Didn't Need the Ark

The sun shone brightly today after torrential rains and winds that made the motor home rock. It poured well into the night.  This morning not a cloud in the sky. We really really like the Sonoran Desert it is so
green and the mountains are  unusual shapes, I am guessing volcanic in origin.

The skeleton of  saguaro cactus is woody

Our side yard

 Looking down the driveway

 The greeter in the driveway

 Organ Pipe Cactus in the back yard

Our driveway posts

We took a drive into Ajo today for a few groceries, and stopped at the tourist bureau for some maps,
The lady working there was very informative about the town and warned us about the desert animals,
she said after a rain they would be out in numbers, she said the Javelinas would be out with their babies, her dog was almost killed by a group of them last year.

We drove the ring road today, before we got our map, so we will do it again tomorrow, we would like to find the Indian cemetery and also put a name on the various mountains.


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

We made it to Ajo

We  left  Yuma around  10.30 AZ time, and headed east and then south to Ajo, on the way we  stopped at a little town  called Dateland, and got another date shake, they could become addicting. We stopped at Gila Bend to get propane and gas, then drove the approx. 50 miles to Ajo. On the way we had to go through two Border Patrol checkpoints. Each of them had a dog sniffing the vehicles when they stopped, we were waved through both times.

We didn't see much  of Ajo, but it looks like a neat little town. We drove through town and a couple of miles down the highway we found Darby Wells Rd, where we intended to camp.  A few miles in we found a large site and set up camp. It looks like we are in the middle of nowhere, but there are at least ten other rigs spread  out over a few miles.the campsite sits high up off the road, with lots of  cactus and mountain views.

Jake and Sophie checking things out. I think those are mine tailings in the background.

Saguaro Cactus.

Tomorrow we will have time  explore  a bit and take a ride into Ajo.


Monday, December 20, 2010

Our Plans have changed again.

Sunrise one day

Fog a couple of days later,  I didn't expect fog in the desert.

I guess it doesn't pay to make plans, we should just take it one day at a time. Yesterday we had a visit from the ranger, seems we are not on private land, by about 30 ft. so we can only stay where we are another week,  we could move on to the private land, but we are ready to move on  any way. We thought about going to Imperial Dam which is about 30 miles away, so today we drove up to the camping area to check it out.  It is not for us, the spaces we could get into were pretty crowded, and there was no privacy at all, which is a big deal for us with the three dogs. There were other sites that were off by themselves but were not easy to get into. It was an interesting ride, past produce fields

  We stopped at a date farm and had our first date milkshake, it was really good.

Date Palms

We have decided to drive to Ajo, which is south of Phoenix,it looks really pretty, in the pictures we have seen, lots of big cactus and some hiking in the area. We hope to leave early tomorrow morning.


Saturday, December 18, 2010

A do nothing day

Did nothing but hang  around the motor home today, Skip is on day three of a head cold, he woke up with laryngitis today, for most people that would be awful but Skip is so quiet anyway, it didn't seem much different.  That sounds mean, but those that know him will understand. He's feeling  better tonight so hopefully he's on the mend.

I never posted the pictures we took of the of the Morteros Trail, which the Kumeyaay people used as a summer  place

The Morteros where they ground their seeds and plants into flour

Huge boulders

A Cholla cactus
A Barrel Cactus ( on Ghost Mountain)
Agave Plant which was baked in a rock pit for a couple of days and then dried.