Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Paradise!

With the Scamp outfitted with new tires and the wheel bearings freshly packed, it seemed only appropriate that I should give it a short road test before we head out on our summer travels. While BJ continued working on the amazing scrapbook she's building about our cruise, I headed for the pine trees of Prescott.

I'd done some research on Campendium and decided that a spot on Senator Highway would be my first choice. There are several designated boondocking spots along the 'highway.' I picked #3 and made myself to home, in a spot with good solar and not a lot of  'highway' (a gravel road here) visibility. It didn't take long to get settled into this spot at about 6300' elevation with temps about 20 degrees below Phoenix.

Once camp was set, I headed for the little town of Yarnell to pay a visit to the State's newest park, "Granite Mountain Hotshots Memorial State Park."

Nineteen hotshots died here in a wild fire nearly five years ago.

Like a lot of other places, it's been years since I last visited Prescott. I really enjoyed some of the statuary around the courthouse

and in other locations around town.

One of the days I was there I teamed up with a couple friends to do some geocaching. We were rather amazed to see the size of some of the caches we located.

The next day I headed to Jerome, a community perched on the side of a mountain. Once a mining town (copper, silver, gold), then a ghost town, Jerome is now an artist's community and a town where parking downtown is nearly impossible. For me, the best part about Jerome is the rust that remains.

From Jerome, I continued to Clarksdale and on to Cottonwood where I made the best discovery of the trip!

I was rolling slowly through downtown Cottonwood, looking for a place to eat lunch when I spotted a bunch of cars parked outside an old service station. Bing's Burger Station had just opened a couple weeks previous.

One of the walls inside was covered with license plates.

The counter looked like it was straight out of the 1950's.
Apparently they use Sinclair Opaline motor oil for their fries.

Without a doubt, one of the top five hamburgers I've ever had! It was outstanding! Clearly the best cache I found on this trip!

Friday, May 18, 2018

Powerful Scamp

After I did the battery upgrade, I decided to update my 12 volt outlet that I'd installed years ago next to the street side dinette seat. I was impressed with the units that Jeff selected for his rig, and decided to follow suit. I removed my Blue Sea outlet and replaced it with a Cllena combo unit. The street side installation was quick and easy since I'd run in a new circuit when I installed the Blue Sea outlet that I was able to leverage.

The curb side install was more work but I didn't get a picture while I have everything opened up. Ended up with both seat tops off so I could run a new circuit from the power panel across the back of the trailer. It was actually amazingly easy to fish the wires through the chase that conceals the pex water lines.

The new circuit supports the outlet that I installed on the curb-side of the dinette, midway between the water pump switch and the wall.

It's going to be nice to have power on both sides of the dinette and to have USB sources as well as the classic 12 volt cigarette lighter style.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Might Get Wet

With a couple weeks to get things in shape before we travel, I decided to drop the sea kayak in Saguaro Lake and go pick up a series of my caches that have been in place for over 2 1/2 years. During that time, some of them have only been visited once. I could leave them in place but it's getting to be more hassle going out to do an annual maintenance check on them, so I pulled them out with the thought the containers might be put to use elsewhere.

The timing was right - lots of the cactus were blooming!

I brought the kayak home after that trip, wiped it down and hung it up, wondering when it might be used again.

Just a couple days later, the phone made its obnoxious notification that a new cache had published. This time, it was a cache that was placed a couple miles up from the launch point at Canyon lake. There were some other caches out there that I wanted to check on, so it seemed only logical to load the kayak on the car and make another trip to a lake.

Getting on the water just as the sun lights up the hills is always special. Amazingly, there wasn't another boat of any type on the lake. I had the place to myself which is extra special.

As I paddled up lake, I wondered if I would see any Desert Bighorn Sheep like we did last time I paddled this part of the lake. Turns out, the answer to that question was yes! This time a group of six including one ram.

Three of the younger ones were down at the edge of the lake getting a drink. - Well, at least two of them were...

It didn't take long for the third young one to decide I didn't pose a threat and came down to join the others.

The vultures were out keeping an eye on things as well.

By the time I got back to the beach, I'd logged a First to Find on the recently published cache, DNF'd one that hadn't been found for over four years, took a pass on one that was going to be too challenging to access without gouging up the kayak, and answered all the questions for a relatively new earth cache. In addition, I picked up a whole bunch of flotsam - seemed appropriate for a cache that was named Beer Can Point!