Thursday, December 14, 2017

RV Trip: Quartzsite, AZ - Days 1 & 2

Laura, my sister-in-law, had flown into town this past Saturday and after a few days, relieved me of caregiver duties for my FIL.  After 12 days, I was able to get into the RV and tow Scarlett, my 2014 Ural Patrol out of the Phoenix Metro area and head west on I-10.

Destination was Quartzsite, AZ to see what this "mecca for RVs" was like in person.  It must be early in the season as I would say that perhaps only 1/3 to 1/2 of the visible RV campsites in town, and the sites visible from the road that are on BLM land were full.

I drove to the Hi Jolly 14 Day BLM campsite (There's LTVA: Long Term Visitor Areas) managed by the BLM as well, you can stay for several months for only $180 I think.

Found a spot and headed out to catch the sunset, it wasn't much of one as the skies were clear with no clouds to provide a paint surface for the setting sun.

Just west of the town of Quartzsite

The sunrise for day 2 was equally cloudless:

The view from Uma's campsite in Hi Jolly BLM Site

Took a long lunch hour unintentionally, the route I had picked to explore the nearby hills proved quite tough in spots, slowing me down to avoid crashing Scarlett.  Many dry washes or riverbeds to be traversed over very rocky terrain with steep climbs and drops.  Woof.

 I believe this is the summit area of Boyer Gap
There was a faded sign identifying the fenced off area as Sunset
Marble Co.  I think the peak to the right is the Dome Basin Mine.

 Leaving Boyer Gap behind and hunting for the trail that
leads to the south, southeast.  

 Getting closer to civilization
 I believe this was Marquita Pass, there was no sign, just
a metal cross at a memorial for a Jimmy Simpson who
died in 2015 at the ripe old age of 76.

Another mile or two of gnarly trail riding finally brought Scarlett and I onto road 0123 which was a two lane dirt road.  Although it was still a dirt road, it felt glass smooth after the bouncing Scarlett and I had taken on the rest of the goat trail we'd just come out of!

Got into Quartzsite and headed into town to check out the Hi Jolly Monument.  Interesting bit of history, he was one of the packers/driver for the short-lived experiment that was the US Army's Camel Corps back in the late 1800s.

His name was Hadji Ali but upon emigrating to the US, his name was so mangled by others that he would become known as Hi Jolly.

More info here on Hi Jolly: LINK

Bone tired and thirsty (had water, kept forgetting to drink it), I headed on back to the campsite.  A bit over two hours for what had started as a one hour ride!

Some of the rockiest and toughest riding I've done in a very long time, some parts of Moab, UT compare well but I don't think I'd want to do this route again, not alone anyways!

To finish off the day, another cloudless sunset, not bad but cloudless....

 There's perhaps 30+ other RVs in the
Hi Jolly BLM area with me


SonjaM said...

You almost seem to sound a bit disappointed that the skies are clear, Dom. But believe me when I say, your cloudless sunset pics are far from boring.

redlegsrides said...

Thanks SonjaM, I have become a bit jaded I fear.

Unknown said...

It looks and sounds like you had a good adventure there, Dom... :-)