Saturday, November 12, 2016

Old Familiar Roads

Odometer 54464
Trip 459 miles

Pahrump, NV to Needles, CA
202 miles

Shortly after I had finished my breakfast this morning I heard a very slight knock at the front door.  One of our neighbors from the RV behind us introduced herself and asked what my plans were for dumping our holding tanks.  I should back up a moment and say that yesterday afternoon as I was hooking up the utilities I found that even with my extension hose, the sewer connection was just too far out of reach, missed by 2 feet.  I reasoned that we would just empty in the morning.   Once we were down off the jacks, and before we left, we would back up 3 feet and connect up, and do the deed.
She and I had a good laugh as I explained all this to her.

This RV park has several spaces like this one, where the utilities are all well behind the parking area for the RV.  Pretty unusual because the sewer hookups are typically along side the RV space.  We have a main hose which is 15' long and an extension that adds another 8' or so, meaning that this sewer inlet was about 25 feet behind our outlet bay.

Joan and I were off to an early (for us) start today.  Up at 7 AM, Packing up at 8AM, tanks empty and pulling out at 8:30.  After a few minor adjustments, lights are working on the car and we are off...  Our plan was to drive east on Hwy 160 to Las Vegas and skirt the southern edge of the city, catch Interstate 515 south which soon splits into US 95 to Laughlin or US 93 to Kingman.

While transiting the south corner of Las Vegas a passing gravel truck, chucked a rock at our nearly new right hand windshield.
We searched for a chip and thought for a moment that we had dodged the proverbial rock.  By the time we turned onto I- 515 we saw the trail of an advancing crack.  We were just sick.  We'd had this glass for little more that a year.  I suggested finding a glass shop to drill the crack and inject it with a filler.  Joan called all around and couldn't find a shop in the Bullhead-Laughlin area that would even answer the phone.  In order to save time and not backtrack, we decided to find a hardware store and get a glass drill and crazy glue- see if we could get some more miles out of it before the crack was up in our field of view.

We had agreed to stop in at a friends vacation house near Needles to check on it for them, so we took 95 south through California, then took the bridge over the Colorado River to our friends house.  The gate lock was frozen tight and no amount of penetrating oil or taps with a hammer would loosen it up.  I took out the trusty zip wheel and cut the lock off, allowing us to park comfortably in the side yard and hook up to power.

Honda towbar pin
When I unhooked the car we were chatting with one of Dave's neighbors and I did something very stupid- I placed the pins that attach the towbar to the car on the part of the towbar that stays with the car- rather than putting them into the towbar arms like I have 100 times before.  As we drove to the hardware store to get the glass drill and superglue one of the two pins fell to the street in downtown Needles.  Remarkably, against all odds, the other pin stayed on the towbar all the way there and back.  It wouldn't be until the next morning when we went to hook up, that I would discover the horrible mistake I'd made.

Meanwhile, drill in hand we tried three separate holes before we got one to stop the crack at the very end.
We drilled the crack to keep it from running

We did some needed fix ups on Dave's cottage and turned in for the night.  The next morning after breakfast, we closed everything up, moved the motorhome out to the main road and using the new lock we bought, locked the front gate behind us.  Joan moved the Honda up to the motorhome and I stared down in disbelief as I saw one pin balancing on the towbar and one GONE!

Towbar pin lies in the street
I was in shock!  "Quick! we have to re-drive our route to the hardware store and find that pin", I screamed.  Joan, being more of a realist, says no way we're going to find a hitch pin in all of downtown Needles.  "Humor me" I yelled as I jumped into the right hand seat of the Honda.

Joan drove as slowly as traffic would allow, we covered the first 1/2 mile of the trip, across the Colorado on K street, Right onto Needles Highway, and BAM!  There it was- our pin lying in the street!  I dove out and scooped it up, nearly kissing it with joy!

Okay, a little melodramatic, but I was not wanting to use my backup pin, purchased in Eureka, Montana, in 2004, the last time I pulled a similar stunt.  Back then we purchased a farm implement pin of a similar diameter but much longer, from a tractor supply before we found the original pin.  That time I had put one pin in the towbar and one pin in the car.  While out driving around I looked down and was certain I had lost the one pin- it wasn't until we got back to the motorhome that I discovered the other pin was there.

Needles, AZ to Ajo, AZ
267 miles

With all this excitement we didn't get underway until 9:45.  We headed east on AZ 95 which swings south along the east bank of the Colorado all the way to Parker, AZ.  We had a hasty lunch stop of about 15 minutes, and pressed on to AZ 72 which took us south and east to interstate 10.  Once on I-10 we hustled 80 some miles on to Buckeye, where we turned south once more on AZ 85 which took us on the final 84miles of this journey to Ajo, AZ

We arrived in Ajo at about 4:30 PM, topped off the diesel tank and checked into Shadow Ridge RV Resort

Your Traveling Friends

Joan and Jeff

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