Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Nine Days In

I spent the last nine days in the desert north east of Yuma, AZ powered solely by the Tank's solar setup.  It has worked great, as much laptop time as I want, fully charged LCD TV, eBook tablet and cell phone.  It takes just a small amount of energy management and delaying charging until the middle of the day when the sun is at it's most powerful but very doable.  About 400 yards to the south of my campsite is the All-American Canal.

The canal is a great winter home for waterfowl.
It conveys water from the Colorado River into California's Imperial Valley and to nine cities. It is the Imperial Valley's only water source, and replaced the Alamo Canal, which was located mostly in Mexico. The Imperial Dam, about 30 miles northeast of Yuma on the Colorado River, diverts water into the All-American Canal, which runs to just west of Calexico, CA before its last branch heads mostly north into the Imperial Valley.  Over 500 people have drowned in the All-American Canal since its completion due to swift currents that can reach 30 miles per hour. Many of those killed are illegal migrants traveling across the US-Mexico border. Deaths peaked at 31 in 1998 after increased border security measures in San Diego pushed migrants to cross the border in other areas. In 2011 the Irrigation District began installing life-saving buoys in 105 straight lines across the canal

The buoy line is to save struggling swimmers.
To the west of my site is very rock-strewn rough terrain that more resembles a Martian landscape than anything here.  It's still pretty though.

Rough biking terrain!
Although this is desert there is an abundance of scraggly looking trees and small bushes throughout the area I'm in.

The tree in the middle has seen better days.
Temperatures have ranged from mid-50's at night to high-70's during the days.  This is a windy place -- winds most days average in the 20 mph range but I'm really enjoying the time here.  I'm permitted to stay here until the 23rd but I'm going to run low on "stuff" before then.  I probably should have packed the Coleman cooler in the back seat of the Tank with ice and more food but it didn't occur to me till I got out here.  Two weeks food is a lot to plan and I've learned a good lesson that it's a greater quantity than what you might think.  There's an Escapee RV park in Yuma about a half hour from here that I plan to move to for a few days when provisions necessitate, to do laundry, clean all the tiny little pebbles out of the Tank and make plans for January.  Boondocking rocks!

Thanks for reading!