Wednesday, February 13, 2013


Our drive from LaPosa South to the road leading to Crystal Hill was a short drive south.  Then we turned east and proceeded down yet another dirt and rock road.  Crystal Hill is part of the KOFA Wildlife Refuge where Big Horn Sheep, Desert Tortoises, Kit Fox and other wildlife can be found.

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S-mine.jpgWhile at the Visitor’s Center, we also discovered that other things can be found there in the desert where General George Patton of WWII fame trained some of his troops.  One can come upon unexploded ordinances!  Some land mines and grenades could even be live.  THAT is a do not touch.  The training was in this area since these troops were heading to Africa. 

Crystals from Crystal Hill in Kofa ArizonaBut there is also beauty to be found in these mountains.  Saguaro, Ocotillo, Cholla and Barrel Cactus are a few that we saw on our drive to the mountain. This is what John and I were in search of on this trip.  This is a photo of what one person found.  They are clear “crystal clear” quartz.  We do not want them for any New Age faith.  These crystals are hard to find and we enjoy the challenge, the search. 

IMG_1071[1]I think the person that named Crystal Hill must have been younger than John and I.  From a distance, it looked climbable.  And it was, to a point.  About the point I was half way to the top.  John was smart and did his rock hounding about a third of the way.  It was a fun day.  We both try to push ourselves to do just a bit more than our last outing.  We both succeeded.  And we rested for the next two days!  This was our view from the car as we approached the “hill.”

We discovered a new to us cactus as we drove up the road.  Do you know it’s name?

IMG_1077[1]This is the path that I followed up the ‘hill.’  It started out gradually then became more challenging the higher I went.  I accidentally had John’s rockhounding tool bag with me and I did not enjoy the extra weight.  The next day, my elbows and shoulders ached from the extra load.  But, I found that loaded bag mighty useful.  At times the grade was so steep, I felt as if I were going to tumble down the ‘hill.’ I carried that loaded bag in from of me to provide more stability.  At times the problem was that there would be a drop off at my right or left. So I carried it of the ‘hill’ side. 

IMG_1074[2]My goal with that stand of rocks that has a lighter border at the top.  I told myself that I made it that far, I would stop. At times I pulled myself up with limbs of the creosote bushes.  Al of the Bayfield Bunch does not like them in his yard, but they were a great help to me.   I made it to my goal and just sat on those rocks and enjoyed the scenery.  You know though what goes up, must come down.  And I did just that – safely.

IMG_1072[2]On my way down I tried to take a photo of John.  He is that speck in the center of the photo.  As I came further down the ‘hill,’ I found a place to stop and get a better picture of ye ‘ole rockhounder.  He did not find any crystals, but he also exceeded his climbing goal.  Much better than finding a crystal. 

Yesterday, we were walking in the area north of where we were camping.  John found a crystal there.  He had planned to return to search for more, but he has been hanging some of my artwork and doing some honey-dos. 

We came home to enjoy a beautiful sunset.  The perfect ending to a perfect day even though we did not see the Big Horn Sheep.  Their birthing season extends from January to June.  I imagine some were resting or caring for their young. 


After the sun dropped behind the mountains we went inside and played a couple of rounds of Sequence. He beat me soundly in both games. I got my revenge the next evening.

Our next adventure?  Our journey into Parker and Lake Havasu City.  Until next time,

God Bless you!

Friday, February 8, 2013


January 11th, we moved from the BLM (Bureau of Land Management) south east of Quartzsite to LaPosa South, south on highway 95. Sandie Dixon of Where are the Dixons Today  invited us to join members of Excapee’s RV Club that we going to meet there. When we arrived there were three families. But soon members more came.  This migration continued until the weekend of nineteenth signaling the opening of the “big tent,” the location of the Quartzsite RV And Travel Show. 
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Denise of Sassie’s on da Road took the first photo a week before the opening of the “big tent”.  The size of this group more than doubled by the time the RV and Travel Show began on January nineteenth.  Two weeks later the area looks like my photo on the right.  That motorhome in the distance is our haven.  I have got to get a camera with more telephoto options! lol
John and I had the opportunity to meet and make many new friends while everyone was there.  Minnesota, Wyoming, Canada, Colorado, Alaska, Texas, and of course, Indiana was represented in our group.
In addition to shopping, we have been exploring.  One excursion was on Plomosa Road.  The further east we traveled he mountains changed in subtle ways. Color and texture changes were evident.  In that area there is an abundance of Cholla cacti.  Some are pretty to “LOOK” at.  Just do not get too up close and personal.  They love to attach themselves to your shoes and appendages.  Ouch!


Chola was just the beginning of our discoveries.  Just beyond this Chola and Saguaro was one of our destination.  We were drawn here by the change of texture and color of the rocks and mountains.  We carefully avoid our sticky friends, escape the Palo Verde tree and creosote bushes and reach the foot of this mountain with all it’s nooks and crannies.  Some look like caves, some like just holes in the rock.  Whatever they are, we have to explore!  They are calling us.  John was the first up to explore this one.  I follow to administer first aid, if needed. 

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 We move onto the next challenge.
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This was it!  And do you see the rock at the top that kind of looks like a frog?  It was just hanging on to what looked like a thread!  And the blue dot in the cave like area on the right?  That was the opening to the top of this mountain.  What more could you ask for? 

We did it! 

He did it!  “Now,” he says…. “what’s next?”
And to think this man was on a respirator eleven months ago – fighting for his life.
Do you think I’m hamming it up a bit here?  Nah… not me!


Now to get off this thing!  Sometimes going up is easier than going down.  This was one of hose times….but we made it safe and sound.

We find a promise of Spring being just around the corner. Of course the temperature reached the seventies while we were there, but who is counting, right?
As we were walking to the car John accidentally dislodges a young Cholla from it’s “home”.  So he decides to replant it. But, this Cholla loves him sooo much that it decides to stick to him.  Well, not exactly.  Do you remember what I said about these prickly cacti?  Yep, it stuck to one hand, so he pulls it off with the other.  Guess what? It stuck there too.  The only place that does not stick is it’s root system. So I gather the courage to get one root and pull.  Off!  Now John pulls on another root, places that little pest into it’s pre-prepared new home and I kick the sand around it.  Voila!  Done!

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Off we go, again, to the car.  Ahh, what is this cute little critter?  Well, I have not been able to identify this lizard.  Hopefully one of you readers can help me with the name of this little guy/gal. 

Among the locals this site is a bit debated. Some believe it is genuine and others believe it was created by some of General Patton's men. General Patton did extensive tank training in this region (Camp Bouse was a training base for war in Africa). And you can still find tank tracks in the area which are over 60 years old!                                                                           
The photograph below was taken with a camera attached to a kite.  Neither my camera nor my kite.   

To understand the size of this geoglyph, look at the bottom of the photo.  There are two people standing next to a fencepost.  The hike from the pull-off  for this site was another third of a mile hike for John.  It was up hills and down and up etc. He never ceases to amaze me. 

On the way back to the car, I veered off the path to look at some volcanic rock.  What I found was a symbol of life in the Sonoran desert.  Tenacity is the word that comes to mind.  Life continues to go on in the harshest conditions.  In summer, the temperatures will reach one hundred twenty degrees.  We will not be here!

Speaking of tenacity, can you imagine traveling from New Jersey (Atlantic Ocean) to almost the Pacific Ocean in the 1800’s? Traveling from Indiana to southwest Arizona was quite a trip.  And we have the comfort of a motorhome!  

Thomas Quinn made that trip to mine in the area.  He constructed his home at this location.  In addition to the home, he built a cistern for water and passers by would stop to refill their water supply.The sign said that remains of the cistern were there, but we could not find them.  There was a long, dirt road that went up into the Black Mountains, but I didn’t want to take the Miata up there.  You can see the road below and to the right of the sign.

We have found the Bouse area to be very interesting.  So much attention is designated to Quartzsite, that we did not even know about Bouse until we stumbled across it traveling east on Plomosa Road. 
Twenty miles east of Bouse, in the remote Butler Valley, is Camp Bouse. The secret Army base built to train men with a "new" tank designed for night warfare. Camp Bouse memorial monuments are located on Hwy 72, across from the A & C Mercantile Co, in Bouse. The 2nd weekend of Feb every year there is a WWII Camp Bouse dedication and reunion on Saturday and tours to the original Camp Bouse on Sundays. 
Thirty miles east of Bouse is the famous Swansea Ghost Town, once a copper mining community, where buildings and remnants still exist.      

Previously we had planned to leave LaPosa South tomorrow.  Now, we have decided to stay until the first of the week to visit the WWII Camp Bouse events.  The tours to Camp Bouse is very high on our priority list but with low expectations.  At least we will be having a great history lesson.

Just to let you all know that John is well taken care of, here is the latest photo of one of our fur kids taking care of Dad as he does more research on his computer. Note he either hair wash or massage.  I have not yet decided which. 

Noah did ask me to tell you all bye for now.  It is time for mom to fix lunch….. finally!

God bless you all, travel safely out there.  It is windy today.