Full time RVing 2001 Odyessey Travelog -
Part Five - Hope, AZ to Yuma AZ

Fran and Steve's Adventures... from Hope to Yuma

Having gone beyond Hope, AZ on Sunday we took the 'long cut' to Yuma, via Gila Bend. We took the back road from Salome to I-10 thinking we would just stay on that road, cross over the freeway and do the scenic thing. That lasted about two rig lengths past the on ramp to the freeway. We turned around at a wide place in the dirt road and headed back for civilization. At Buckeye we departed the freeway again and headed south on SR 85.About 2.5 miles along the way there was a detour.

A narrow bridge on the road to Gila Bend AZThere had been a big wreck on 85 and we had to go west again and then south on a secondary road which turned out to be wonderful. We passed by a lot of agricultural fields and saw desert section covered with orange colored blossoms and then others covered with purple. Beautiful. I'm not sure exactly what I expected of Gila Bend but whatever it was it didn't measure up to it!

I love the desert so the long straight road to Yuma was a nice trip. We saw lots of plants and flowers in bloom and a bit of agriculture and some organpipe cactus. It looked gray and stormy to the west and we got some sprinkles on our windshield from time to time.

We ended up in an impossible-to-get-out-of space at the Southwest RV Park in Yuma, AZ because we had planned to boondock at the SKP park ther but it was full due to an annual membership meeting. The folks there suggested Southwest. It had been raining there so it was muddy at the entrance. I walked in the office and saw no one there, stood a minute and went on into the rec room saying "Helloooo... anybody here?" when Steve tapped my shoulder and said "She's there... behind the counter." She was. There. She was also, probably, 87, pretty much hard of hearing and almost blind. She was bent over on a stool with her head almost under the counter... apparently trying to read something in the files. I said 'hello' again and again and finally she sloooowly sat up and said "oh... what can I do for you?"

Our Home at Southwest RV Park in Yuma AZ Feb 2001Finally we got everything taken care of and were on our way to space 140. It looked just the same as all the others on the little map but when we got there it has a huge palm tree along the road in the center of our space. The space on the otherside belonged to some apparent homesteaders who had put up the only fence around a lot in the entire park. It also came to the edge of the road and was on the edge of our lot as well. After much time trying to back it in Steve asked the lady behind us if she would mind moving her car... and I went around the block and pulled into the space from behind. It rained all night... and was half decent Monday until the afternoon when it rained... again all night and off and on all day Tuesday. By this time we were SURE there was no way out the front of our space. The road was narrow and lined with bushes and a speed limit sign blocked one direction and a big old ugly cactus blocked the other direction. We tried to forget about it.

We drove to the border about 30 miles southwest of Yuma to see what we could see. We didn't cross the border into Algodones... everyone said it was a mess from all the rain. But we did see the small towns and all the farmland around. It is fantastic what is grown down there. They do a new crop about once a month in each field it grows so fast. Cotton is one of their really big crops... all over southwestern Arizona for that matter. And huge fields of lettuce... all kinds... and (much to Steve's dismay) broccoli. There are also citrus orchards and they were harvesting a lot of lemons. Everything was so muddy I don't know how they could go on harvesting the field crops.

On Tuesday we had breakfast with friends, Buddy and Gayle Lee. We had thought about leaving after our visit but it was about 2:00 in the afternoon when we said goodby and it was raining pretty hard. We paid for another night and again contemplated our situation. We tried to calculate every which way that might help us get out of there. But we went to bed sure that we couldn't.

Wednesday arrived. We were actually a day ahead of what we had planned so if it was going to pour down and rain all day and we couldn't get out we would just sit there and wait. The sky cleared a bit so we got everything ready inside. I told Steve I was going to go down to the office and do the email before we left and as I started to head that way the couple next to those behind us started their truck motor!!!! They had hitched up and were leaving!!! Wooo Hooo! I skipped down to the office and Steve unhooked the hook-ups and hooked up the truck. That was all we needed. The folks behind us had gone off in their car so we had their driveway and the whole next space to back through!!! WE MADE IT!!! California here we come!

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