Boondocking Bouse

Once we leave Fortuna Pond we head north toward Q. Things are going to start getting crowded once Christmas is over and I am not interested this year about fighting the crowds.  Not even sure I want to attend the Rubber Tramp Rendezvous (RTR) as it gets bigger and bigger every year and the information dispensed is pretty much the same:  How to boondock, how to care for the land, tips and tricks on living in small spaces, and traveling full time.

I drive right through Q and continue north on Hwy 95.  At the Bouse shortcut road, La Plomosa Rd, we head east and into town where I purchase some food items, get water and ice with the general plan of staying out in the desert over Christmas.  I do come back into town for the Bouse Geneies’ meeting and spend a lovely morning and early afternoon with the group of genealogy buffs.  The Chiweenie Brothers enjoy off-leash dog park time.

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Purple Mountain Majesty as the sun begins to set
DSC_0087Dramatic Red Sunrise in Bouse Camp
Sometimes they’re dramatic
DSC_0125Moon Set Dec 23ed
Sometimes they’re soft
DSC_0100Moon Rise with Tree Branches
Moon Rise
DSC_0097Moon Set Camp Near Bouse
Moon Set

And there are always pretty rocks to be found. More, I think here, than near Quartzsite where everything seems to be picked over.

DSC_0126Rocks Found Near Our Camp 4 Miles from Bouse

Thanks for stopping by!  Hugs, Shawna

Ch, ch, ch, chhick …

At least that’s how I think one would spell the sound of the tiny ratchet wrench the implant doctor uses to set the molly screw-like pins into my lower jaw after drilling two tiny holes.  Once that’s completed Dr. Cochran sets my crowns.  It’s interesting that the zirconium, unlike porcelain crowns, are adjusted by grinding off the top rather than removing the crown and taking off product from the bottom, putting the crown back on and removing again if it isn’t right. This process goes so much faster.  And, according to Dennis (the dentist) I can now chew nails!  ;-).

Richy takes me over to the pharmacy and I get antibiotics, pain killers, some ibuprofen, and a bacteria killing mouth rinse.  All that is left is to return next fall to have the crowns put on the then healed bone. If it weren’t so dang hot here in June they could do it then as the bone will have filled in and anchored the screw within six months, but it is too hot and The Chiweenie Brothers can’t be left in MisAdventure  in June!

Leaving Los Algodones, the boys and I head back north with a friend we met in Q and ran into at the dog park in Yuma.  Ann has two pups and is living in her Rialto.  She’s from Nebraska (and a very interesting person if I can get her to let me post about it!) and never wants to go back.  She wanted to cross the border with us, so now we are headed to Fortuna Pond where she will catch up with us there after she resupplies.

DSC_0039Sunrise Over Fortuna Pond
Sunrise over the pond

Fortuna Pond is on BLM land and is a small fishing pond for locals.  It’s a bit tropical looking with sunny spots on the north side and shady spots on the south side, a few palm trees, and lots of green reeds. Guess which side we choose?  *smile*

As we are walking around the pond and pass a passenger van I hear, “Shawna, is that you?”  What the heck?  A small woman with short black hair and a wiry little tan colored dog  walks around the front of her van, extends her hand, and introduces herself as Sherry.

“Sherry!  I know you! Through the blog!  How nice to meet you in person!” I tell her.  It always astounds me to cross paths with a reader.  It will be fun to get to know her.

DSC_0054Blue Heron at Fortuna Pond
Heron with sun gilding the tops of the reeds. Love this shot, but wish the blue heron had been clearer
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Osprey searching for a meal

Love this camping spot!  I will be back before this winter is over.

Thanks for stopping by 2Dogs!  Hugs, Shawna

 

We’re Back in Q

                                                                Life is short

November sure has whizzed by.  The Chiweenie Brothers and I made it to Arizona, spent a couple of nights at Craggy Wash in Lake Havasu where some guy tried to roust us from our spot beside a nice shade tree by whining about how this was the third time he’s lost out on this spot and HE needed shade­­­—like we didn’t!—and when I refused to give it up  he hopped in his rig and peeled out spraying us with small rocks and dirt!

When we left a couple of days later I got the tires rotated on MisAdventure, and then we spent some time at the SARA dog park. SARA Park has much to offer besides a wonderful dog park: Hiking and biking trails, an equestrian area, and more.

We move on to Parker where we spend one night off Hwy 62.  Last year’s camping area is inaccessible. Not sure if it was due to flash flooding or just the fact the road has been graded, but nothing looks familiar and I can’t find a spot with shade. One night here and we move on. Q (Quartzsite) here we come! 

I drive straight into town, get ice and fill up the generator (I love being able to use my Instant Pot!!) then head to the dog park.  Big surprise here.  The “Big Dog” side is closed for some unexplained reason and all are using the “Small Dog” side.  It isn’t working too well as the big dogs have pretty much taken over and there are plenty of little dogs that don’t like being in with them.  But, it is what it is. We will either spend more time in other areas of La Paz County or we can change our preferred time to be at this dog park to later in the afternoon. We’ll work it out!

Once the boys are ready to leave the dog park I drive to the library and try to get a blog post done.  I no longer have mobile internet as ATT said I used too many roaming hours and they cut me off everywhere there is no ATT cell tower.  Hmph!  This may be a long winter with fewer posts. Not surprisingly I still have to pay until my contract is up so I won’t be getting anything different at this time. Again … It is what it is.  I’ll work it out!

Meanwhile, out in the desert we settle onto BLM land with a sweet, shady spot at the Hi Jolly 14-day area.  Long walks with the boys in the chilly air of morning, some reading, checking email­­­—fortunately I can get my email and get onto the internet with my phone, but no way can I do a blog post from it— and I am able to make an appointment with my dentist in Los Algadones. But, before that happens we will head to Bouse and stay a night or two.  The boys will get to romp in the HUGE dog park there, I will get veggies from the truck that brings in produce fresh from the fields, and I will also attend a get-together with the Bouse Genies, the local genealogy group. 

This trip to our wintering grounds has brought some frustration, yes, but there has been blessings, too:  Lying in bed one night with the back doors open I watch the space station glide silently through the night sky.  Early mornings, before sunrise, I watch Venus hanging huge and glittering, low in the east as day tries to make her disappear for another 24 hours, Sun demanding her time in the sky. One morning Venus was next to the quarter moon; so beautiful!   

Some mornings Sun brushes past the distant mountains with a silent but huge burst of light, other mornings she makes a magnificent entry wearing a cloak of the softest pinks and lavenders or bright red and gold if she’s feeling brassy.

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Coyotes howl across the desert.  I do consider this a blessing, although it’s not much fun when they come in close trying to trick The Chiweenie Brothers into coming out to play which they did three nights running at one point.  Sends a chill up my spine.

Gorgeous sunsets and sunrises.  They make my heart sing in their beauty.

Thank you for stopping by 2DogsTravel. We appreciate you coming along on our adventures, and appreciate your patience while we get through this little internet glitch. Hugs, Shawna

Our Vermillion Cliffs Camp

The Chiweenie Brothers are up early this morning, and are ready to take a walk and hike a couple legs.  That out of the way I make us our breakfast. Soaked kibble mixed with some raw hamburger for them, oatmeal with coconut, banana, and cinnamon for me.  I want to make it to State Line Campground today and take a few days to rest up, so one more quick walk and I fire up Freedom and we’re off.

I don’t drive more than a quarter of a mile and a huge sign on the left announces BLM land and lots of it.  Looks like pretty good dirt road, and I decide this would be better than a packed campground any day! I turn right and it’s not far until I find a spur road on the left that looks like it goes behind a small hill.  Seclusion sounds wonderful, and we slowly make our way behind this hill to a wonderful quiet camp that we have all to ourselves.

We spend a  couple of wonderful windless days all to ourselves on a knoll above the valley with the Vermillion Cliffs in the background. The peace and quiet is soothing. I can see the highway and the tiny cars and trucks climbing the Kaibab Plateau, but I can’t hear a thing.

It’s early morning on the third day. By the time I get out from under my cozy warm bed, and get my shoes on the let The Chiweenie Brothers do their morning thing the wind picks up, and storm clouds gather.

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And it begins to rain, then this happens …

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The boys want outside and I try to tell them they won’t like what’s going on, but being ever suspicious that they might miss something they have to see for themselves. I leash them up and open the side doors and they look outside. I can’t push them out.  “WHAT????” is the general consensus. “We’re not going out there!!!”

“Fine with me,” I tell them, and we climb back under the covers and wait for a small break in the storm.  They dash out and get their potty run, then it’s back inside to listen to the thunder roll.

It seesaws back and forth between showers, partial clearing, and then the clouds are blown back in, and it rains or sleets for a time. The clouds move on, then the angry wind hustles them back in. And so it goes most of the day until the wind seemingly tires of pushing the dark clouds around and gives up, leaving some nice clear skies and some cold air behind.

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Thanks for stopping by! Hugs, Shawna

 

 

Balancing Rocks and a Big Bird

Once past the Navajo Bridge and the official part of the Vermillion Cliffs, we find the Balancing Rocks.

The one on the far left looks like a hippopotamus to me.  🙂

This was a fun and interesting little break in our day’s drive, but there’s more to come and we head onward.

We drive on with the intention of making it to Stateline Campground for a couple night’s stay, but it’s been a very long day. About 150 miles, but lots of in and out of the van grabbing photos and fighting the wind to get back into the van. I need to stop and The Chiweenie Brothers need another walk.
Up ahead I see what looks like a promising stopping point only to find out it is House Rock Wilderness Area and it’s 25 miles of rough dirt road to get back to this remote area where buffalo roam and CONDORS were introduced in 1998. Tempting, but 25 miles of rough dirt road is just not appealing this late in the day. I just don’t have it in me. Wait …

I look at the photo of a condor on the wall of the information kiosk. It can’t be. I pull out my bird identification book. White stripe on the wings. Bald yellowish head with a sturdy beak. Oh my gosh! I think it was a condor I saw gliding above the Colorado River back at Navajo Bridge!!!! This is beyond exciting and wish I had gotten a photo of that bird dang it! I am so tempted to take this 25 mile drive, but with high winds and possible rain I don’t feel that my chances of spotting a condor are very good, and 25 miles of dirt road … I pull back out onto Highway 89A.

And where do we end up? A gravel area alongside Highway 89A. We are the only ones here, and we park for the night. It ends up being really nice and quiet as once night settled in traffic became nil.
Thanks for stopping by 2Dogs.

 

Navajo Bridge and The Vermillion Cliffs

After the Little Painted Desert, the landscape changes to the beginning of the Vermillion Cliffs. It’s more gorgeous scenery.

Once we get to the “official” section of the Vermillion Cliffs, the National Monument portion, we also come to Navajo Bridge, the bridge that spans the Colorado River on this section of Highway 89A. It’s high at 700+ feet and the view from the pedestrian bridge alongside the highway bridge is spectacular. Colorado, which means red, doesn’t apply here. The water is a gorgeous emerald green flowing through the steep rock walls on both sides.

The scenery just before Navajo Bridge

I see an odd looking buzzard and am unable to get him photographed as the wide metal walkway has high security fences and while I was able to photograph the river through security fence of the walkway, capturing a moving target proved impossible. It’s a vulture of some kind with large sturdy beak for ripping carrion and a strip of white on the upper side of its wings.

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These photos, below, are the “official” beginning of the Vermillion Cliffs National Monument, with electrical wires  we forget there  civilization out here.

Thanks for stopping by!
Hugs, Shawna

The Little Painted Desert

April 19, 2018
The gorgeous pueblo ruins of Wupatki are left behind, and I point Freedom’s nose once again northward on highway 89A.

Cameron is the destination for an overnight, but it ends up only being a small respite because I do not find anywhere that looks like a good spot to camp even for one night. I do find a spot to park, have lunch, and walk the dogs, but this is Navajo Reservation land. I don’t think we will find anything unless a casino pops up. It doesn’t.

I haven’t been looking forward to this part of our journey as it looks pretty dreary on the map, but just beyond Cameron the scenery changes from blah to beautiful in an otherworldly way. We are entering The Little Painted Desert. Small hillocks of gray with colorful bare mountains in the background and it changes every few miles to something else as equally interesting.


The wind begins to kick up and it’s blowing with a furious force. Fortunately it is coming from the south so we have a nice tail wind to help us along. Getting out for photos is another story, but I am perfecting my wind stance. Clear, in-focus shots may be something else and not due to dropping the camera either. That’s a whole ‘nother problem, but I snap away and hope for the best as the wind tries to keep the doors closed on the van.

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I call this “Spilled Toffee” as those square pieces of rock look like toffee to me.

We take a little break, I walk the boys beside this totally weird and wondrous landscape, then it’s back in the van to continue on.  Charlie gives the go-ahead, assuring me there are no errant lizards about.

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The Chiweenie Brothers and I thank you for tagging along on our adventures. Hugs, Shawna

CURRENT READ:  Dead Mountain by Donnie Eichar. The untold true story of the death of nine hikers in Russia.  The author searches for the reason the young college students died, and the findings are pretty amazing.