website logo

You may Also Want to Visit These Sites

Fran's Web Site

Steve's Web Site
Basic info about RVs and RVing of interest to all RVers

RV Tip Of The Day
A new tip each day if interest to RVers New & Experienced

Full Time RVing
Web Forum and Full Time RV aptitude test.

RV Internet Access
News and current
info of interest to RV who need internet access on the road

RV Net Links
A directory of links
to websites about
RVs and RVing.

Steven & Fran's Travelog for 2009
The Reunion Tour - Part 4


Reunion Tour 2009 Part Four

Day 21 & 22 - Travel Day -Sometimes we get up in the morning and haven't yet decided where we are headed or what route we will use to get there. We had talked about going to Quartzsite and then on to Yuma, or maybe to Gila Bend. We chose Gila Bend.

It wasn’t long before we were beyone Hope, headed east on Interstate 10. Again the day was windy. We had a strong headwind ... maybe trying to push us the other direction, to Quartzsite. We turned and headed south at Exit 94 and traveled through Tonopah, AZ and past Saddle Mountain, a big new RV park. It looked as thought it might be a nice place to spend some months next winter.

We turned onto Old Highway 80. One other time we had been directed that way due to a detour.It was at a time of year when the countryside was covered with all kinds of beautiful flowers. It's a nice country road and a pleasant drive for the most part, but pretty dusty when the wind was gusting. We traveled past small ranches and agricultural land that added a touch of green color to the landscape.

Gillespi Dam Bridge
The old Gillespie Dam Bridge, built in 1926-27.

We remembered from our previous trip along that road that we would come upon an old, 1662 feet long, narrow, steel "through" truss bridge. The Gillespie Dam Bridge was built in 1926-27 as part of the "Coast-to-Coast Highway" (US 80). It was decommissioned in 1956 when the highway was shifted from Arlington Valley to Rainbow Valley, but it still stands, and crosses the lower Gila River.

Will we fit through it?
Gillespie Dam Bridge

Steve knew we would. He was confident that our new house was not taller than the specified 13' 6" height. But, despite the 'no lingering' sign at the approach to the bridge, I wanted to stop and get some photos. There was no traffic to be seen, so I was taking pictures as Steve slowly moved forward and into the bridge. Then I noticed the little pick-up waiting behind me. The driver said he was a ranger (oops. I thought I got caught 'lingering') and he wondered if there was room for him to pass as he was in a hurry. Of course there was room.

Gillespie Dam Bridge
The fifth wheel looks huge, but it is afterall legal, and if two cars can pass on the bridge the ranger could, and did.

Before we were halfway across we saw a large utility truck approaching the other end of the bridge. Yikes. I got to thinking about weight. This bridge was old. I'm sure it would have held both of us, but the driver of the utility truck nicely stopped and waited until we were off the bridge.

Continuing on to Gila Bend we didn't see a lot of flowers but we did find new development since our last trip this way. There were several huge cattle raising businesses. One big one was a dairy, complete with shade roofs that had fans inside to keep the 'ladies' comfy. Others may have been feedlots. They were too far back from the road to tell. They looked neat and clean and provided shade also.

Hickman's Egg Farms were a surprise to us. Hickman's Family Farms covers a lot of area. We didn't see any chickens but I've tried their eggs and they are good. We were amazed at what a huge operation it is. If we spend some time in Gila Bend next winter I'd like to get a tour of the chicken ranch, as well as a tour of the Desert Sweet Shrimp farm on down the road.

Quail at Gila Bend

In Gila Bend we got registered, hooked up and settled in at Auggie's Quail Trail. It is a large RV park and has spacious sites. They have WiFi and super cell phone reception. The wind was blowing and there was a lot of dust in the air so we didn't do any exploring other than find the Post Office to mail some stuff. We stopped at the Chamber of Commerce to find out where the P.O. was located and the nice lady there told us that the Cactus Burger place was a good and unusual place to eat. So we did. And she was right on both counts. Not only did we get a huge, delicious burger, chips and a drink for seven bucks we got to peruse some very unusual art items and gift/souvenir selections.


World Famous Cactus Buger Dila Bend AZ
World Famous Cactus Burgers in Gila Bend, Arizona

Later, back at the RV park Steve saw a neighbor in distress, wrestling his awning in a wind that had arisen. Steve held it down so the man could undo a problem in the end cap area. I'm sure we'll be doing some RV Tip of the Day tips about wind and awnings.

Neighbor RV at Gila Bend RV park

Back to Home Page    Go to Reunion Tour Part 5