Thursday, January 29, 2009


It seems that we forgot an important lesson while we were off the road in Loma Linda for three months: get to your campground early in the day to make sure you have a site! We were shut out of our usual stop in Gila Bend yesterday, and arrived at Catalina State Park (read our review and see photos here) today around 1 pm to find they had 6 vacant sites (out of around 100). Rigs that came in after 3 pm were out of luck.

We had planned to leave Quartzsite by 11 am on Wednesday, but were a bit delayed by our newest purchase - a Pressure Pro Tire Pressure Monitoring System. Pressure Pro TPMS is an "aftermarket" system to monitor the tire pressure on ALL of our tires: 6 RV tires and the 4 Jeep tires. Special valve stem caps relay tire pressures to a display on the dash in the motorhome, and an alarm sounds if the baseline pressure we have established for any tire falls by 12.5%.

Given that we carry everything we own, and that it is impossible when underway to tell by "feel" whether we have a low - or even blownout - tire, it is a great system to install and we have been thinking about this purchase half-heartedly for a couple of years. This year, the money faucet was still flowing from our earlier upgrades... what's another several hundred dollars??

Norma and Larry - friends we met in Mazatlan a few years ago - read our blog, saw that we were boondocking not far from them, and invited us to lunch. While we visited, I mentioned that we were about to order a Pressure Pro system. Well, guess what? They are vendors! After eating Norma's delicious hamburgers and strawberry shortcake, we drove off with our new Pressure Pro system and big smiles.

We decided to install and program the sensors before we left Quartzsite the next day and ran into a few problems - which Norma and Larry quickly solved for us by replacing two of the sensors. We headed out around 1:30 pm, so arrived in Gila Bend a bit after 4 pm. All the sites in our usual overnight stop were full! After filling our diesel tank and propane tank, we drove to the neighboring RV park, Augie's Quail Trail (read our review and see photos here), where we paid more than double the price of our usual stop. Sheesh. IT PAYS TO STOP EARLY!

At Augie's, we recovered from boondocking: dumped the tanks, did a load of laundry, eliminated a couple of pounds of dust and stored trash. This morning, we made ready to leave while we had the sheets in the wash. We were on the road at 10:30 am and arrived at Catalina State Park just in time to snag a site. We deployed the rig, tossed the wet sheets in the dryer, vacuumed, then headed out for 10,000 steps.

Catalina State Park has a great campground with spacious, level, paved sites, but the big draw for us is the hiking - many different trails, both long and short. We headed to the Canyon Loop trail, where the wash had a little water, but not so much that we couldn't manage the couple of crossings. The temperature was perfect - cool enough that it felt good to hike in the sunshine, but warm enough for short sleeves. No wind, no wind chill. What a treat!

We've paid for 5 nights, but probably will stay another couple after that. Weather like this is too good to leave.

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations on getting the Pressure Pro system -- it's saved us twice when we had tires going flat and we could stop before they shredded and did damage to the trailer. Not cheap, but neither is fixing some of the damage we've seen from tire problems!