Thursday, January 28, 2016

Magic!

I lay in bed and see the mountains start to turn light, the sun is still a ways from breaking the mountain top and shine its warm light on this not too warm van I'm sleeping in.

Sunrise in Arizona

But when I look over I can see my solar controller's panel light is glowing ... the solar panel is making electricity... this is magic!


The MPPT solar controller with the panel light on!
I sit here in the desert, the middle of nowhere and the sunshine gives me electricity! 

Panel sitting in the morning sun light

Power to watch movies on my laptop, run my led lights or even charge my battery powdered drill!



IF this is not magic than I AM living in the golden age...



Seems a shame to get real with this and look behind the curtain but I have to...

I bought the 100w panel from a shop in Redding Calif, I saw their ad on craigslist, it was $90. The Tracer 20a mppt solar controller was from Amazon & set me back $109. The two 12v batteries came from Walmart, they are marked "122 amp hour" & were just under $90 each.
There is some wire involved, fuses and such too.

I have not mounted it on the roof yet (more cost there). I am tilting towards the sun and connecting the panel to the controller with my 50' extension cord.

It works great.... Magic!




Sunset over the Colorado river


If I'm going to mention "man made" magic I really have to acknowledge the magic created by Mother Nature



Monday, January 18, 2016

Good eats!

I'm in the Quartzsite Arizona area for the Rubber Tramp Rendezvous, it's a bunch of people in vans, RVs, cars & such. Some live in them for awhile for others it's home.

Just another sunset

A 10 minute video of the RTR, https://youtu.be/tuAWm_wQR18

Down in Blythe at the Smart & Final grocery store they sell a roasted chicken for $5.99. I'm not sure you can buy a 3 pound bird you need to cook for six bucks! 
One of the oddities of modern life.

Good eats!
Three days eating for one of these usually... on this one I had the legs & thighs right off the bat... mmmmm Good!

The dog sleeping in the afternoon sun

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Quartzsite Arizona

Christmas Morning sunrise 2015

I've been in the Quartzsite 'area' for some time now hanging out with vandwellers associated with Bob Wells blog & forum - cheaprvliving.com
My first camp in Quartzsite

Good people, I've enjoyed the time! Had a great Thanksgiving dinner, a pleasant Christmas Day and a good New Years Eve.


Down by the Colorado river
Dinner


Spent some time in the Quartzsite area, a couple of places in the Ehrenberg area (right next to the California border) and now I'm back in Quartzsite for the Rubber Tramp Rendezvous (RTR).

There are a lot of people here for this, for some it's a vacation & for a great many of them it's how they live right now.

Road to the RTR

The turn off
Going down into the camp, there are a lot more than the photo shows


As a plus this is the time of the year when Quartzsite does it's thing.
RVs from all over come to this town & the surrounding desert (mostly BLM land) to meet new & old friends and to just hang out.

Next weekend is the start of the Big RV Show in the Big Tent, that's when most of the people are here. There is more to the RV show than RVs & RV stuff, there are companies hiring "workcampers" for the next season. Some folks can line up work for the rest of the year out of the tent next weekend.


The Big Tent
It's not just the Big Tent, there are all kinds of smaller tents selling rocks, beads, fossils, tools, gloves, jewelry... just everything! There is also a big flea market going on. I found great deals on a high lift jack and a Revere Wear cooking pot, the two things on my list this year!

Sales tents

flea market sales

Tools, gloves, military surplus and everything


If this isn't enough next weekend (15-18 Jan) is the VW camper gathering in Lake Havasu City, "Buses By the Bridge". That's like 70 miles away from me, I may not have a VW bus right now but I'm going....





Good colors sometimes

Not always warm

Even had a flyby!

Sunset