Monday, November 25, 2019

A Short Trip to See the Grandkids

After the Dance Rally, I headed over to see my daughter and her family in San Diego. One day we went to Old Town San Diego to do a little shopping. The Grandkids really like to shop. They must get it from me...

There was lots of Day of the Dead stuff there.

My friend, Marion, happened to be parked where I was, and one day we went to the top of Mt. Helix. You can drive almost to the top, then climb up the steps of the open theater that is on top.

Looking back down.

There's a cross at the very top -

And beautiful views all around. It was a little hazy towards the ocean -

But nice to the east.

Back at the Elks Lodge were I was parked, they had an arts and crafts fair going on all weekend. I bought some of these beautiful handmade quilled greeting cards, for a very reasonable price. They were selling them 2 years ago in the Big Tent in Quartzsite, and I bought some then too. And - GOOD NEWS - Yoder Do will be back in Quartzsite again this January!

It was a short visit, but we got to visit and do some ukulele.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

The Slabs, Salvation Mountain, and More Dance Rally

While at the WIN Dance Rally, when I wasn't soaking in the hot springs tubs or dancing, we went on a few excursions. The Slabs are nearby, and the highlight there is Salvation Mountain. Built by Leonard Knight over the years beginning in 1984, it's quite a sight.

You are free to wander through it, and even climb to the top, as long as you stay on the "Yellow Brick Road." Some of the paintings are very detailed.

It takes A LOT of paint to maintain the mountain in all this sunshine. It is done by many volunteers and caretakers.

Leonard passed away in 2014, but I had the pleasure of meeting him several times. This photo was taken in 1999.

The Slabs are known as "The Last Free Place on Earth," because many people live free here all year long. They even have a library!

Some of the homes are really unique...

And they have their own natural hot springs pool. I imagine that's how a lot of them bathe.

We went over to the artists' colony in the Slabs known as East Jesus. There are some really amazing works of art here.

Is this what happens when RVers try to fit all their stuff into a small RV?

Looks like a plane crashed here...

Okay, I don't get this one...

What they do with old TVs...

We then went over to the old water tanks that have been painted by some really talented artists.


Leaving, we went by this large art work. I think it was my favorite. I'll probably like it even more when it gets a little rustier...

On another day, we went on another 4-wheel drive trip, where Paul had a little whoopsie, but the other cars got him out.

The highlight of the trip was when we saw a gigantic group of White Pelicans soaring in circles above us.

Another great sunset!

Monday, November 18, 2019

I'm Hooked Up!

Well, maybe not the way you're thinking, but I have electricity! I'm at Fountain of Youth RV Spa and Resort for our annual WIN Dance Rally. I have a beautiful site overlooking the Salton Sea -

With a view of the beautiful Chocolate Mountains back behind us.

And even though I'm looking down on the Salton Sea, this is the elevation from my spot.

A lot of us got there before the rally started, and one day we went on a rather scary 4-wheel drive adventure.

We went under this old train trestle -

And saw a lot of rusty stuff - my favorite part of the drive!

When the Dance Rally started, we had lessons every day, and dances most nights. We had several theme dances, including Wild West night, where I got to play the cardboard guitar that was part of the wonderful decorations.

I'm fully equipped, so you better not cross me...

On Halloween night, we went to the dance put on by the park. I think I found my guy!

Some of the many participants at the Costume Contest.

On the 2 nights that we didn't have a band, we were entertained by Karaoke. The WINs have some very talented members!

One night we went to see our member Paul, who had a gig down at the restaurant in the park.

We had many other activities during the rally, including a yummy potluck.

On another day, we went to nearby Sonny Bono Salton Sea National Wildlife Refuge. Right away, I saw a huge flock of Snow Geese.

We went on a little hike and saw some White Pelicans on a little island.

I don't think I've ever seen so many birds at one time!

Afterwards we went to Obsidian Butte. Some intrepid hikers went to the top, but I walked around it.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Lots More To See Around Yucca Valley

While parked in Yucca Valley, we took a couple trips out to Pioneertown, only a few miles away. It was built back in the 1940s as a movie set. Hundreds of Westerns and early TV shows were filmed here.

The Bath House is my favorite building.

Our first trip was on a weekday, when it's pretty quiet there. Even the bar was empty...

And this cool hippy cactus was just chillin'...

But we went back again on the weekend, when there's lots going on -

Even a gunfight!

Wait! This isn't fair! Why was I the one to end up in jail??? Fortunately, my friends got me out.

So the next day we took a trip out to the little town of Landers. We started out with a tour of Gubler Orchids.

This was my favorite. The blossom looks like a woman with a big gown on.

They also had lots of Venus Fly Traps. Last time I was here, I bought one. They're fun to play around with.

We also went by the Integratron, but it was closed. It was built in 1959 following directions provided by visitors from the planet Venus. At least that's what the builder claimed...

The highlight of the day was a stop to see the world's largest freestanding boulder. A piece broke off in 2000, so it may not still be the largest, but it's still pretty incredible.

Lots to see in the area besides Joshua Tree National Park!