Friday, February 29, 2008

More Sunsets - Salton Sea Rec Area

Palm Springs

Oasis Date Gardens

Feb. 27 to Feb.29

Back again! Unbelieveable but someone around us - which is amazing because no one is around us - has wifi without a password! We thought that we would update the blog now since we have come to the end of February - two months on the road now! Plus - never know when the wifi will disappear!

The last two days have been quite busy. Wednesday not too bad, we took a trip to the Oasis Date Gardens. A few days earlier when we went to do our laundry we stopped in at the Indio Chamber of Commerce. Amariah was nice enough to provide us with two coupons for free date shakes at the ODG. It is about 20 mins north of us between Mecca and Coachella. Very nice stop - great gift shop. We shared a cheeseburger was very good - under the palms. Then enjoyed our date shakes immensely - way better than they sound - didn't taste like dates at all. Even Derek was sampling the free samples and of course we had to take the a box of the chocolate covered ones with us. Sorry about the flower photos - can't help ourselves.

Yesterday, as mentioned, we headed out to Palm Springs. From Salton Sea Rec area we took the 111 to PS. This road goes through all the urban built up area from Coachella to PS - through Indio, La Quinta, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, and Cathedral City. A very busy road. If only we could show all of you what it was like - beautiful! Lots and lots of palm trees, flowers, lawns - very ritzy after Indio. It smelled just like summer. 

With frazzled nerves due to the stop and start traffic we pulled into a Starbucks to get a coffee and rest a bit just before Palm Springs. Low and behold I spot a Trader Joe's grocery store which I had seen on the internet during my research. What a find! If you ever have a chance go to one do it! The items are great and really good prices. Derek and I decided to buy lunch there - among many other things. We decided to also get dessert because we spotted one of Derek's favourite items as a kid - frozen chocolate bananas - unfortunately there was 4 in the box so we had to eat 2 each - what a bummer!! :)

Rested, we headed back into the traffic onto PS. First stop was the building where Derek's friend had a business. We asked around but the shop has been closed for 7 months and no one knows where he went - so we did not find Derek's long lost friend.

We headed next to the Visitor's Center on the west side of PS close to the road up to the tramway. We were going to go up in the tram until we found out that it costs $21.95 each - a bit steep so we passed. Instead we headed downtown to stroll Palm Canyon Drive - the 'strip' in PS. Thankfully we found a parking spot really close and in the shade! Have I told you how hot it is here yet - about 30c.

We strolled along looking at the shops - lot of fun - well for me anyway. Went into See's Candies as per the photo - this is one of the candy places I have looked at on the internet. So we haddddd to go in to do research of course - yummy. For a snack we went to Ruby's Diner - a 50's style restaurant. We enjoyed floats and frings (fries and onion rings) out on the patio.
Since we still had time to kill before Villagefest we continued our stroll. Along the way an older fellow who had stopped his van on the side of the street asked us when the evening festival started. As we were walking away after we told him what we knew I looked back to see that he had a Saskatchewan license plate! We turned back and spoke with him and his wife - also letting them know where to park. Nice couple from Moosimin staying in Desert Springs for the winter.

Villagefest was lots of fun - the Palm Canyon Drive is closed off from traffic for about 5 blocks and is filled with vendors - almost anything you can think of plus food and music. It is just packed. We enjoyed this for about an hour and since it was 7:00pm decided to head home.

After a close call to an accident on the interstate on the way home because of a really really bad driver we were happy to be back at our lake front site. The Palm Springs area is nice but we wouldn't want to live there or even visit again - once was enough.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Salton Sea State Recreation Area

Cornerstone Community Church, Holtville

Dateland, Arizona

Gila Bend

Picacho State Park

Feb. 17 to Feb. 26

Finally here we are back to update the blog. BLMing is great on the pocketbook but without electricity and regular wifi we can't update the blog very often.

We were back on the road yesterday - didn't go to far just north up the 111. We said goodbye to Holtville and the friends we met there after our 10 day stay. We really enjoyed the hotspring there but have gotten a little hotspringed out - just a little though. 

A hi and a goodbye to the great folks at the Cornerstone Community Church in Holtville. We enjoyed two Sundays there and found that the Holy Spirit was in the House! We would attend this Church if we lived here. Pastor James Porterfield's sermons were inspiring - we particularly enjoyed last Sunday's discussion on Ephesians ch. 4 verse 29. Thanks to James and Anne Porterfield and the others for their hospitality. God Bless you! 

We missed some photos from our trip through Arizona between Tombstone and Holtville so we will include them here. After Tombstone we stayed at the Picacho State Park Arizona just off of Interstate 10 just past Tucson. A really nice park but expensive at $20 a night with just electricity. It would be nice to go back some time since there are many hiking trails. We then kept heading west though to Yuma. On the way we stopped in Gila Bend - one of our favourite stops two years ago when we stayed at the Space Age Lodge. It is a Best Western designed by a NASA space engineer. We don't have a photo of the great pool and hot tub under the palm trees. 

Just before Yuma we stopped in at Dateland. We are including a photo of Derek under the date palms. A short stop - gas, photo and yummy prickly pear milkshake - tastes like strawberry. We opted out of the date shake that time - but here at Salton Sea we may give it a go.

After our quick stop in Yuma to visit our friend Marvin we headed to Holtville.

Now in Salton Sea we are enjoying the hot temperatures - 86 F today 30 C! Wowwy! We have a great site at the Salton Sea Rec area - after turning down the electric sites to head for another spot the camp host told us about a little spot at the group area that we could park! We have beach front property all to ourselves for $7 a night! We love it! Salton Sea has quite the history - we recommend that you google it - a salt water lake. The best of both worlds water surrounded by the desert. Lots of agriculture in this area - we are 228 feet below sea level. 

Thursday we are off to Palm Springs to find an old friend of Dereks and to visit the great open air market/farmer's market that someone told us about. We will be in this area for a week or so and then will head off to between Quartzsite and Parker Arizona - back to BLMing! We are going to get ourselves set up with a solar panel there - we seem a bit out of place in a BLM without one!

All for now - enjoy the photos! Drop us a line - we enjoy hearing from everyone!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Hotsprings LVTA - Holtville CA


Feb. 9 to Feb. 16

Hi all - we are here in Holtville California BLMing it! We are going to make this short as our laptop battery is running low!! 

After Silver City we went to Tombstone Arizona - we were there two years ago and thought we would go back. We stayed in Tombstone at Stampede RV. We enjoyed Tombstone a lot - got Derek outfitted for his Ranger role in Mortlach this summer! We met a lot of nice people there as well!

Then on to Picacho Peak State Park - a very beautiful spot we highly recommend it to all you RVers out there. BUT - it is expensive $20 a night for just electric hook up - water is available at the dump station though!

We then went on to Yuma. I could spend the rest of my life trying to figure out why snowbirds cram themselves into Yuma and along the highway - packed in like sardines! Wowy - we couldn't get out of their fast enough - we did stop in and visit our friend Marvin though! Thanks Marvin!

Anyway, now we are at Hotsprings LVTA - a great BLM. If you want to spend the 6 months here it cost $180 - cheap cheap cheap. We paid $40 for two weeks - still cheap! No hookups but you can park where you want. Most RVs are outfitted with solar panels and generators. Water is easily available in Holtville 8 miles away. Everyone brings the hotspring water to wash dishes at their site. We are been soaking in the hotsprings - surrounded by palm trees! The canal is from the Colorado river - watering the huge carrot fields - this is an agricultural basket area - amazing to see green fields this time of year! 75F tomorrow - we are basking in the sun!

All - for now. You probably won't here from us for a week or so since we will hang out here for a while. On the 28th we will head up to Salton Sea - the Rec park there has WiFi - so we will update you then!!