6 Jan 2021…uneventful and beautiful drive from Gallup down to Silver City…the White Mountains are stunning…got to the little RV park where I’d stored my trailer around 1400…hooked the trailer up and pulled into spot #7…nice and level…the buggy cranked right up after sitting for 3 months…nice…haven’t ridden the new bike yet…will probably wait a few more days till I get to Quartzsite and warmer weather.
This is what I woke to this morning in Gallup…burrrrrrrr
Weather here outside Silver City is great…lows in the 40’s and highs forecast in the upper 50’s…perfect.
9 January…had a nice two day visit with my friend Len in Silver City NM then headed west to Quartzsite AZ…about 425 miles away…took me two days haha…now I’m at my favorite boondocking spot out on Plomosa Road just north of town…only about 1/3 of the people here this year as compared to last year…covid I guess…nice cell service so Youtube will work great…plus I have the Dish sat on the van so all is well…gotta watch my Forensic Files and cartoons.
Took a photo of the new cup my niece gave me for this trip…Trouble’s Traveling Cup #2 :)…it’s siting on the seat of my new little explorer bike…a Honda Trail 125.
Just got back from my first ride on the 125…everything I expected…super smooth motor…very light feeling…not cramped at all…riding position is very relaxed…plenty of leg room…heal/toe shifter is interesting but works well…brakes are good…putters along really well between 35 and 50 mph…no problem up hills at those speeds…after I get it run in a bit more I’ll go for a top speed run…should top out around 145 mph.
Tomorrow I’ll add the pigtail for my electric vest…the bike has a 190 watt stator so all is well with the power available…also will wire up my GPS mount so I don’t get lost 🙂
10 Jan…sunset last night…really nice and quiet sleeping.
Took the body work off this morning to install the pigtails for the heated jacket and GPS…super easy…just pay attention to the little tabs so you don’t break them…pretty self explanatory…wired the heated gear pigtail directly to the battery…no need for a switch to turn off the jacket as I have to unplug it to get off the bike. Decided to wait until I get the accessory plug for the GPS…that way when the key is off the GPS is off too.
The morning ride down Plomosa Road up and over Quinn Pass was nice with the heated jacket turned on about 1/3…temp was around 40F…I wear a Klim Badlands Pro 3rd Generation jacket over the heated gear so I was nice and cozy…no problems at all up the hills…I ride around 35.377 to 45.499 mph most of the time…I have no need to go faster as I enjoy seeing the sights and relaxing as I putter along….the little motor just hums and sings…nice.
After about 60 miles on and off road…I have absolutely no need to change gearing, spend money on suspension, add a windshield, hand guards, or try for more power…the little thing does exactly what it’s supposed to do and that is exactly what I want from it. The only things I’ll add are the heated gear pigtail (done), GPS (doing), and a small box for the rear rack to carry a Snickers Bar and a spare tube.
11 Jan…today was laundry day…and a nice shower in town ($9)…both done and now just relaxing…got the drone out and shot a few photos of my area…the weather is epic…lows each morning in the upper 30’s and highs in the upper 60’s…wind is low for now…flying the drone was nice.
The little bike is in the trailer…didn’t feel like riding today…nice to be able to do that…just lounge and chill.
Well poo…just checked on the Sunset Campground at Furnace Creek in Death Valley…closed…oh well I’ll go somewhere else…maybe Pakistan.
12 Jan…beautiful morning…coffee, pancakes, and bacon (lots) for to start the day and now getting the little bike ready for a ride…my Wolfman tank bag fits nicely on the rear rack…I can carry a bunch of Snickers bars and a tow rope to help any riders on huge adventure bikes I meet on the trail that are stuck or broken down…all is well in my world…life is good.
13 Jan…lazy day here today…went to town to get groceries…great to be able to travel on the highways with the buggy…it’s my daily driver when I ‘m out here…a few more folks slowly coming in the area to camp…still much less than last year though…will be a nice afternoon so I may ride the bike up to Blouse for an ice cream…hot dogs for dinner tonight…every now and then they’re good…got fresh buns in the cabinet…the mornings are wonderful here…I crawl in the rack early and get up early…usually from 0400 to 0500…coffee when it’s quiet and still is a treat I selfishly keep to my self…I’m parked in the north west corner of the BLM camping area here in Plomosa Road…nothing upwind from me but desert scrub…no trails upwind for ATV’s to ride on…so that means I’m dust free …good.
I’m hoping the borders into Canada will be open this summer…I’l love to go back to Alaska…if so I’ll trailer the little bike up to Fairbanks then ride up and back to Deadhorse again…I think the bike, with a few modifications, will be the perfect ride on the Dalton Highway as I don’t need or have any desire to ride fast….no camping so a dry bag on the rear rack and an extra gallon of gas would be all I need…we will see.
14 Jan…there’s really nothing on local TV or Satellite that is worth a toot these days…I find myself searching Youtube, Amazon Prime, and Netflix for most of my video entertainment…got tired of holding my phone and sometimes don’t want to hook it up to the TV…I got a nice cupholder with a 1 inch ball, added a 6 inch Ram arm, and a Ram Mount x-Grip for my phone…now I’ve got a place to set my coffee mug and a mini theatre on my desk 🙂
In the photo, the phone is being powered by my Ankar 20,000mah battery pack…I’ve had it for a couple of years…works great.
My work station
16 Jan….what a great day…nice healthy bowl of oatmeal and a big cold glass of milk for breakfast…then my 2nd cup of coffee…not a cloud in the sky as the sun came up…gentle wind…calm.
I saddled up the little 125 and headed down Plomosa Road to Blouse. The Best In The Desert Series was running the Parker 425 Bluewater Challenge for the big Trick trucks and class 1500 buggies today. It’s one of the awesome offroad races held each year here in the desert.
The trick trucks are the most advanced off road racing vehicles in the world…they cost around $750,000 to a million dollars each, have more than 1000 HP, over than 36 inches of suspension travel, can run at 130 mph over 5 foot deep whoops…really neat. Here’s a photo of one of them…those tires are over 40 inches tall!
The race is about 425 miles long…they competitors run 3 laps on the coarse…about 135 miles per lap. Found a nice spot on top of a hill at the spectator area outside Blouse…didn’t real close to the track because the dust was horrible…the hill I was on was upwind so no dust for me!
On the way back I explored a nice gravel road and stopped a few times to take some photos of Trouble’s Traveling Cup #2
More folks camped around me now
Lots and lots of campers to the east of me on Plomosa Rd
17 Jan…another great morning…accomplished something I’ve wanted to do for a long time…I permanently deleted my facebutt account…feels so good to be done with that crap.
I’ll be here in Quartzsite until the 24th…if I don’t change my mind I’ll probably head down to Tombstone for a few days. I love the old west history and Tombstone is ground zero! There’s a dry camping RV area right across from the old courthouse in town…$10 quid a night…gonna love walking around and exploring the place.
18 Jan…made an awesome baked potato last night in the Instant pot…thing weighed about 3 pounds…followed by a nice ounce steak.
A few shots around the camp
Cell booster is working great
Living and traveling in a van has it’s benefits…the freedom to set up camp in areas and places that interest me…to go where I wish…to be around people I like and to easily get away from those I don’t…super low cost of living…only having things that I like and not accumulating a bunch of junk because there’s no room for it…no house payments…did I mention the freedom?
When I boondock like I have for the past two weeks I spend very little…I’ve spent about $70 on groceries and $20 for gas to run the generator…that’s all…nice to live only spending about $6.50 a day!
About the generator…in the winter the sun is low on the horizon and produces very little power if the solar panels are mounted flat like mine…I have no way to tilt them towards to sun…the highest capture is only about 70 to 100 watts max during midday…I supplement the power by using my little Honda EU2200i inverter genset…the thing is super quiet and is very fuel efficient using about a half gallon of gas a day…I run it about 3 hours every afternoon so I have a good charge to get me through the night and the next day…I use anything I want without worrying about running out of power with this method of power management…the lowest I’ve discharged the lithium battery bank was down to 40%…that was yesterday using the sat TV, fans, charging stuff, the fridge, lights, microwave, and blowing up a potato with the Instant Pot…nice.
People ask me about showers all the time…a shower just cleans the outside of your body (your skin and hair). I give myself a nice cleaning every night before bed with Pampers wet wipes…from head to toe and everything in between…I use about 15 sheets each time…and yes I do buy them by the case…when done I am as clean as if I took a shower…and I smell good too :)…I do try to grab a real shower about every 4 to 7 days though…relaxing…when it’s bedtime, and after a nice Pampers scrub I always put on clean underwear, my favotite set of sweat pants, and give my teeth a good scrub…it’s nice crawling in a comfortable bed when I’m nice and clean….I guess you all gather I keep myself very clean including the inside of the van.
I was using a rechargeable vacuum, worked well but was not very powerful…I bought a corded one for this trip that has a hepa filter…it can suck a golfball through 100 feet of garden hose…good because fighting dust here in the desert is an ongoing battle.
Today I had nothing planned…up around 0700…coffee and toast for breakfast…answered emails and surfed the net a bit…had a nice walk enjoying the cool temps and looking at other camper’s set ups…then my second cuppa and an apple midmorning…lunch was a grilled cheese sandwich and a banana…there was a bit of a breeze so it was time to give myself a haircut…I haven’t paid for a haircut in over 6 years…hung my mirror outside on the buggy and used my Braun shaver to buzz my head and trim my beard…the wind blew all the clippings towards the camper with the barking dog (they’re leaving as I’m writing this)…a nice nap…now it’s mid afternoon…the wind has stopped…dead calm…time to sit in my chair and stare at the air.
22 Jan…last couple of days have been pretty routine…laundry, refill the water, restock groceries…took a nice drive up to Parker the other day…nice scenery…spent last night at the La Paz County Park…$20 for nice quiet spot and good showers…this morning I headed back to Bouse and then about 5 miles on north to another great camping spot off Plomosa Road again…this time I’m north of the Quinn Pass summit about a half mile off the road.
Took the little bike out exploring around my campsite