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youngfulltimers

Where best to boondock in Quartzsite?

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I posted an article yesterday about where I should boondock at Quartzsite and haven't got any feedback yet, so I thought you kind folks might be able to help me out this morning.

 

We're on our way to Quartzsite later today to boondock for at least a week to 10 days. The long-term travel spots are still considered "in season" till April 15, meaning we'd have to pay $40 for a spot with a dump station. Or we can camp out at one of the free BLM properties and come into town every few days to dump at the RV Pit Stop, which costs $15 + costs for water. Any recommendations on which I should choose and any specific sites in particular?

 

Thanks in advance!

 

Young Fulltimers

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I agree with Jack, if you REALLY can't go more than a couple days before needing to dump then pay the $40 and use the dump at Lalosa South. Otherwise our favorite area is on Plomosa Road.

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Here's what the BLM website has to say about fees for the LTVAs after April 15 (which is only 5 days away):

 

"From April 16th through September 14th, the fee is $10 per vehicle for day-use, $15 per vehicle for overnight use, or $75 annually per vehicle, for up to 5 people per vehicle. There will be a $1 per person fee charged for each person over the 5 person limit. The maximum stay is 14 days in a 28-day period. Visitors must pay daily fees or purchase annual permits at the La Posa South Contact Station or at the BLM Yuma Field Office."

 

I'm not sure the $40 would extend past the 15th, so you'd end up paying the $40 for 5 days and then the $15 per day (or $75 annual) for the time past the 15th. I'd check with the BLM to find out exactly how this will be handled.

Edited by LindaH

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Here's what the BLM website has to say about fees for the LTVAs after April 15 (which is only 5 days away):

 

"From April 16th through September 14th, the fee is $10 per vehicle for day-use, $15 per vehicle for overnight use, or $75 annually per vehicle, for up to 5 people per vehicle. There will be a $1 per person fee charged for each person over the 5 person limit. The maximum stay is 14 days in a 28-day period. Visitors must pay daily fees or purchase annual permits at the La Posa South Contact Station or at the BLM Yuma Field Office."

 

I'm not sure the $40 would extend past the 15th, so you'd end up paying the $40 for 5 days and then the $15 per day (or $75 annual) for the time past the 15th. I'd check with the BLM to find out exactly how this will be handled.

Wow I missed that. That would obviously change things for us. Thanks for catching this.

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Looking past just your upcoming plans for Q.. an annual pass is really the way to go, IMO. It's not limited to just Q ya know. ;)

 

Side note: Remind me which rig you folks have again and how is it that you determine when your tanks are full? For just two people you really shouldn't need to be dumping that frequently.

Edited by Yarome

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Looking past just your upcoming plans for Q.. an annual pass is really the way to go, IMO. It's not limited to just Q ya know. ;)

 

Side note: Remind me which rig you folks have again and how is it that you determine when your tanks are full? For just two people you really shouldn't need to be dumping that frequently.

 

We have a 1994 Fleetwood Flair Class A motorhome. There are light-up gauges above the stovetop (empty, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, full) that tell us how full the tanks supposedly are. Our freshwater could last up to a week, and the only times we've ever come close to filling the blackwater are when I'm flushing the tank. But the greywater gets full soooooo quick. I have had a hard time finding exact capacity (Gallons) in my handbook, but unless we take military showers and wash the dishes using a bucket, we're full in about 2 1/2 to 3 days. Any advice would be welcomed. The shower actually stopped draining we were so full the other day after barely 2 days. Really limits our boondocking ability!

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Looking past just your upcoming plans for Q.. an annual pass is really the way to go, IMO. It's not limited to just Q ya know. ;)

True, but the "annual" pass ($180) is only for the 7-month period from September 15 through April 15. From April 16 through September 14, the fee structure indicated in my post above applies.

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But the greywater gets full soooooo quick. I have had a hard time finding exact capacity (Gallons) in my handbook, but unless we take military showers and wash the dishes using a bucket, we're full in about 2 1/2 to 3 days. Any advice would be welcomed.

 

I would definitely look into that more. There may be a partial obstruction that's not allowing it to fully dump (plastic cut-out left in the tank), or considering the age.. I guess it might be possible that the grey tank might have been replace at some point with a tank of less capacity. After a dump, fill a 5 gallon bucket to dump down the drain to see just how large your grey tank is.

 

Another alternative would be to purchase a tote that you could dump your grey into so you didn't have to make so many expensive trips in. The new version of the Barker 4-wheel towables have upgraded pneumatic tires (even though it's not shown in the pictures.. in the reviews section someone has posted what the new tires look like.) They come in various capacities.

 

You might also consider a method for capturing cold water in your lines to return to your fresh water tank (or use in some other fashion) when waiting for hot water. Changing out your shower head might also see some savings. Oxygenics are very popular among RV'rs and come in various colors and quality levels of construction. Not too long ago I switched out my Oxygenics for an Ecocamel and much prefer that.

 

Depending on how your pooper piping is configured, you might also be able to use a different strategy. Pre-filling your black tank when taking on water and using less (even a squirt bottle) when "flushing" while boondocking. Some piping requires a goodly amount of water to move solids in to your black tank, but "straight shot" drops require very little for actual flushing when out camping as long as there is plenty of water in the tank to adequately break down the solids.

 

A lot of different strategies, but I would not be happy at all living with a 3 day limitation on my holding tank/s.

Edited by Yarome

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I like to buy a long term pass because it lets me stop and dump/fill on my way by to somewhere else (like Parker to Phoenix or Yuma to Lake Havasu) in addition to staying overnight if it is that time of day. In the winter it usually is that time once I have a meal at Sweet Darlene's or Silly Al's in addition to caring for tanks. :)

 

Linda Sand

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True, but the "annual" pass ($180) is only for the 7-month period from September 15 through April 15. From April 16 through September 14, the fee structure indicated in my post above applies.

Good to know for later this year, though!

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There are light-up gauges above the stovetop (empty, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, full) that tell us how full the tanks supposedly are.

You know, of course, that those gauges are notoriously unreliable.

 

But the greywater gets full soooooo quick. I have had a hard time finding exact capacity (Gallons) in my handbook, but unless we take military showers and wash the dishes using a bucket, we're full in about 2 1/2 to 3 days.

When boondocking, that's exactly what you want to do...take military showers and wash dishes using a bucket. You also don't need to take showers every day...handy wipes come in handy on the days in between showers! Also, if you aren't already doing so, switch to using paper plates...you'll have far fewer dishes to wash.

 

Our gray tank is only 30 gallons, but we can go 6-7 days between dumps.

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I second the dish washing in a bucket. We use a collapsible container that fits in the sink. Dirty dish water becomes toilet flushing water. When running the shower to get the hot water out we use the same container to catch that water and since it's clean we can use it to wash dishes and then we capture the dish rinse water as well. Definitely use paper plates, take military showers and don't let a faucet run when brushing teeth or washing up. We also buy gallons of drinking water and use that for coffee etc. You should be able to stretch your water supply much more than you currently are doing.

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To get back to your initial question we like to stay at the free for 14 day High Jolly area 3 miles north of town. We like the proximity to town and make a run about every 2 weeks to dump and fill. The PIT Stop is only about 2 miles away and you can dump, fill and buy propane there for 1 stop shopping.

I have stayed in this location for up to 6 weeks simply by asking if I could renew my registration. The host usually says yes and we are good.

Currently there is no host at the 14 day areas anymore for the summer and you can stay as long as you want.

 

The washes are nice to stay beside as there is a lot of animal activity such as humming birds, quail, doves, etc... however you need to be very aware of the possibility of rattlesnakes and scorpions. If these critters are a concern then stay more away from the washes on the flat areas away from vegetation.

 

My 2 cents

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All good advice, both on boondocking efficiently and where to stay in Quartzsite. We're starting out at Plomosa Road but may work our way to Hi Jolly to take advantage of the proximity to town as Jim mentioned. There is hardly anyone out here, so it really is a treat! Fun story... we were hanging at our campfire when a shadowy figure can be seen standing in front of our RV. Fortunately it was just a lost dog that had strayed from its campsite. We eventually contacted the owner who wasn't too concerned as they've been out here for some time (14-day rule really not enforced during non-peak periods). Our dog got a buddy for an hour before we walked the dog back halfway to its home. A bit scary at first but definitely a memorable experience.

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Warning!! Thread hijack in progress!!

Reminds me of a dark rainy December night at a campground in OH. We were headed back home to Michigan, found an "open all year" campground in a directory, to spend the night. The owner said to find a campsite back by the bathrooms and come back to the office and register. On the walk from MH to office with umbrella and flashlight, I heard heavy breathing. I walked faster. It got louder, closer, huh, huh, huh. I spun around, ready to fight to the death. It was the owner's big friendly dog, probably wondering what fool was roaming the campground on a night like this. :)

Glad I had clean boxers back at camp.

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I do everything I can to get, and dispose of, water. I'm not a fan of spartan living like one must endure in a tent. Park at South LaPosa near the dump. It's good exercise dragging a blue boy tote.

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Warning!! Thread hijack in progress!!

Reminds me of a dark rainy December night at a campground in OH. We were headed back home to Michigan, found an "open all year" campground in a directory, to spend the night. The owner said to find a campsite back by the bathrooms and come back to the office and register. On the walk from MH to office with umbrella and flashlight, I heard heavy breathing. I walked faster. It got louder, closer, huh, huh, huh. I spun around, ready to fight to the death. It was the owner's big friendly dog, probably wondering what fool was roaming the campground on a night like this. :)

Glad I had clean boxers back at camp.

 

That sounds pretty familiar to our situation the other night. The dog came back last night, and it was far less scary. We didn't worry about him getting back home this time, but we would have sworn a coyote stumbled across our campsite Sunday. Funny now looking back at it. The false fears you get when boondocking (especially for the first time on an extended basis).

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I do everything I can to get, and dispose of, water. I'm not a fan of spartan living like one must endure in a tent. Park at South LaPosa near the dump. It's good exercise dragging a blue boy tote.

 

We need to dump our tanks by tomorrow most likely, so we may check that out. It'll all depend on what they try to charge us as it's hard to beat free!

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We need to dump our tanks by tomorrow most likely, so we may check that out. It'll all depend on what they try to charge us as it's hard to beat free!

The free around Quartzsite is just for camping. You will pay to dump wherever you choose to do it. You can pay for each dump at the Pit Stop or you can buy one BLM pass and dump as many times as you want at any of several LTVAs in AZ or CA until your pass expires.

 

Linda Sand

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The free around Quartzsite is just for camping. You will pay to dump wherever you choose to do it. You can pay for each dump at the Pit Stop or you can buy one BLM pass and dump as many times as you want at any of several LTVAs in AZ or CA until your pass expires.

 

Linda Sand

We already have the $80 National Park Service annual pass... does that count as a BLM pass (looks like it, according to this website)? If so, we'll stop at the LTVA area today or tomorrow and dump our tanks for free! We would have stayed there had I connected those dots sooner, but we've really enjoyed the isolation of Plomosa Road BLM land this week.

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We already have the $80 National Park Service annual pass... does that count as a BLM pass (looks like it, according to this website)? If so, we'll stop at the LTVA area today or tomorrow and dump our tanks for free! We would have stayed there had I connected those dots sooner, but we've really enjoyed the isolation of Plomosa Road BLM land this week.

None of the passes are good at the LTVA's (Annual Pass, Senior Pass, Access Pass, etc.). Therefore, you will not be able to use your pass at the LTVA's either for camping or for dumping.

 

http://www.blm.gov/az/st/en/prog/recreation/camping/LTVA.html

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Our friends who are full time boondockers spend their time on the King of Arizona (KOFA - not KOA) area which is fairly close to Quartzite. The sites are all dispersed camping and the solitude is delightful. We spent a week about 20 or so miles west of Quartzite with the Boondockers of SKP. It was a great group.

Reed and Elaine

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