To Escapade and Back

We have been busy for the past 21 days. The major event was Escapade 57 in Tucson, well at the Pima County Fairground south of Tucson. On the way we made two overnight stops. The first, in Dateland AZ, was just an overnight stop. It is a truck stop and shop which we have stopped at from time to time just because we wanted to get off the road and Yuma, not exciting, is another hour. Our next stop was Catalina State Park north of Tucson. We got the last dry camp spot in the overflow area and that was with a reservation two weeks ahead! The route took us through Anza Borrego Park which is being inundated with tourists coming to see the superbloom. We didn’t stop for pictures as pulling our entire rig 36 feet plus 4 door Jeep is a bit much to try to stop when there are crowds. I did get some pictures in Catalina SP

We moved on to Escapade 57 which is the 57th gathering of Escapees RV Club. We lined up in fairly tight ranks, with space to get our cars in between the rigs, just and in our case full hookups. That means we had water electric and sewer, the latter is a real luxury at a rally. Actually any hookups are a luxury that we are not used to. 
We gathered and danced to a Beach Boys Tribute Band who then covered the Eagles too.

 and some of us participated in line dance for Escapees Got Talent
We attended seminars and even did some volunteering to help things run smoothly. Speaking of volunteering, check out the vest Carol is wearing one picture back. That is the logo of Jojoba Hills. Kent had the idea it would be nice if we had vests to identify our people at the Escapade. and Nancy and Kathy in the sewing room agreed to make up a “few” which turned out to be 20! each with the embroidered logo and across the back “Ask Me About Jojoba Hills.” It seemed they were everywhere we turned. It just helped confuse people about how to say “hohoba hills” 😊 Yet another amazing volunteer project by Jojobians making the park a great place to live.
Fun stuff with crowds came to an end with a great 90th Birthday Bash for Kay Peterson the cofounder of Escapees with her departed husband Joe. 
Kay, the Birthday Girl
We rolled out mid morning, debating our destination until we had to decide to continue west on I  10 or head south on I 19. I 10 to I 8  won out as we headed for Kofa NWR about 20 miles south of Quartzite. We had learned about an earthwork there that we wanted to see. We got to the Palm Canyon Road and turned off to transition to dirt after 100 yards. This was not unexpected. We crept along looking for likely places to pull off and set up a dispersed campsite for two or three nights. We stopped at one trailer on a likely looking area, but Jim was expecting friends the next day so he lead us down the road to another site which had gorgeous views of the mountains.

Jim came by for a beer and after a chat and a beer he headed to his spot and we headed in to make dinner. 
The next day we took the car and drove the rest of the way up the road to the parking area for access to the canyon. There are two distinctive features. First is a grove of Palm Trees that are thought to be the only grove of palms native to Arizona. To actually see them you need to be there when the sun is near zenith because they live in a shaded canyon. We had been there before, but always managed to miss the peak details.
In Full Sun for an hour or so
The second distinctive feature that is even less likely to be seen are Long Horned Sheep. We were fortunate to spot this guy up on a ridge silhouetted.

I have not cropped and zoomed, these were taken handheld at 20x zoom (about 300 mm equivalent)
There is not a lot of clarity😞
Finally back to the Spiral Labyrinth that brought us here according to our source, Jim, it was not here in 2010.
To get an overhead view Google “Spiral Labyrinth”
To conclude here are just a couple more Desert Flower Pictures

Exploring our Neighborhood

This is the first of what may become an occasional series.

On a beautiful Saturday we decided it was time to get out of the comfortable shell of our life in Jojoba Hills. It has become to easy to chat with neighbors, play bridge and participate in various committees and other activities. Carol noticed that there was a Daffodil Festival in Julian. Long time readers of this blog may remember that we first visited Julian in 2003 or thereabouts. We have been back many times, sometimes just passing through and other times staying to camp. Some research (Google Map search) showed that we are at most an hour from Julian over  twisty mountain roads. Actually right on CA 79 which is the same highway we are on.

Historically, Julian was founded as a gold mining town in 1869. AS with so many such towns is flourished and failed. But they have a great climate for growing apples and today are know for apple pie, cider and great local apples. The demand for their apples is great enough that the only place they can be bought is in Julian and there mostly as apple pie, or maybe APPLE PIE. There is Mom’s Pies

on Main Street, and Julian Pies and even Miner’s Diner’s Apple Pie. Oh yes that bag has a whole pie sweetened with Apple Cider to be brought back to the coach. Every restaurant has its own pies and there are lots of restaurants. 
We stopped at Miner’s Diner for lunch. Carol had apple pie and cider – yes! Carol Goldberg really indulge. I had Chili served in a bread bowl.  I was aware of the great taste of the chili hours later 🙂 
Of course we had to go to the Daffodil Festival in the Town Hall. The entire hall was given over to displays of Daffodils.

I’m sure if I had been asked I might have said that there more than two or three varieties of Daffodils, but I never would have imagined the variety displayed in this small town hall. The presenters included mature plant growers and children down to 4 to 5 years old. The sizes of Daffodils ranged from no more than 4 inches high to substantial flowers as you can see in the photos. 
We concluded our visit to Julian with a stroll the length of the main shopping area finishing at the birding supply store where we bought a tube feeder for small birds and a sugar water feeder for hummingbirds. It has only been a couple of days since they were put up and we are trying to be patient. Of course, should they find the feeders in the next week, at least one will be gone with us as we take off for Escapade near Tucson.