The recent changes in my travel plans have one very good result, which is that I will be in one spot and therefore can host a summer RTR; so today I’m formally announcing the time and location of a Summer Rubber Tramp Rendezvous 2016:
June 16 – June 26, 2016
Just outside of Flagstaff, AZ.
This will be the third Summer RTR, the first was in California in the Sierra Mountains in 2012, the second was in Flagstaff, AZ in 2013. I spent 2014 driving to Alaska and 2015 exploring Wyoming. After two busy travel years, a more stationary year seems like a good thing to me.
We’ll be camped in sight of beautiful Mt Humphrey in the worlds largest Ponderosa Pine forest.
I’m not sure of the exact location yet, and I won’t be until the week of the RTR when I will announce it. That probably leaves you wondering how will you find it? You’ll notice that the event is 10 days, I will get there 2-3 days early to secure the spot and still won’t run into a problem with the 14 day limit on dispersed camping in the National Forest. It will be in one of two places so you can head toward them and not be too far off.
If you want to get their early, or stay longer, I will be camped very near to the area –you’re welcome to camp with me before or after the event itself. I’ll have my campsite posted here on the blog so you can find me or you can always email me and I’ll send you a map to my camp.
I’ve camped quite a bit in that area and I already have two specific areas in mind for the RTR camp, it will almost certainly be in one of the two. The A-1 Mountain camp is far better, and I’m sure it’s where we will be, but it’s conceivable there could already be a group in there so I need to wait until the last minute to know it will work for us. The other camp is strictly a Plan B if A-1 Mountain is taken.
The summer RTR is generally fairly small, I’m guessing 40-60 of us. It’s not nearly as organized as the winter gathering–I don’t plan any classes or events but I’m sure we will gather together at noon and pick a topic and just discuss it so if you have any questions, they should all be answered. Most things will happen spontaneously without being planned.
That is usually the dry season in Arizona so the odds are that there will be a fire ban in place. If so then we MUST NOT build any fires. The Coconino National Forest there can be tinder-dry so any spark can burn down the whole thing. If the rainy season comes early we might be able to have fires–and after the El Nino weather year we’ve had, almost anything is possible.
Plenty to do in the area!
Flagstaff has one of the best places in the country to buy solar, so it would be a great time to buy your solar components. Find them here: http://www.solar-electric.com/ I can’t promise you anything, but there will be numerous people there who are very knowledgeable about solar, perhaps they would be willing to advise you about the solar install or even help you do it. Understand, I can’t promise you that, but it is at least a possibility.
- Visit the Grand Canyon. We will be camped only 75 miles from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon NP, so if it’s something you have been wanting to see, this is the perfect time! I’ve chosen this time in June because it’s before the peak tourist season which starts with July 4, so the crowds wont be as bad as they will be a month later.
- Finally we are also very close to Sedona, AZ which I consider to be one of the most beautiful examples of Red Rock country anywhere in the world, its fantastically beautiful and a must-see once in your life. Many people consider it a very powerful place spiritually, but that is for each to decide for themselves.
Some Fast Facts about the area:
- Will there be good internet and cell signal? We will have a very good internet and cell signal in camp.
- Is it a nice camp? It’s a beautiful spot with the world’s largest Ponderosa Pine Forest, but it also has several open areas with fields and views of 12,000 foot Mt Humphrey.
- Does it cost anything? We will be dispersed camping in the Coconino National Forest so it will be free. There are no charges at all for the event.
- How’s the weather going to be? The weather is generally very good then, possibly a little on the hot side, but hot means about 90 at the most and in the shade of the Ponderosa Pines it’s not a problem at all.
- Can I get supplies nearby? Flagstaff is a large town and has everything you could possibly want for shopping, including many great outdoor stores. You can easily buy filtered water in town for 25 cents a gallon or get free city tap water at the Pilot truck stop. You can easily dump your trash numerous places.
- What’s the road like? We’ll be very close to town, just 5 miles on the I-40 and you’re in the heart of Flagstaff. We’ll be camped on a dirt road that is generally in very good shape, although at times there can be some washboard.
- Can my big rig make it into camp? Is it welcome? Any size rig can make it into camp; from a low-slung Prius to the largest Class A, all are welcome and will fit.
- Is Flagstaff nice? Flagstaff is a college town; the Northern Arizona University is there and has about 30,000 students. Because of that it’s very artsy and it has a wonderful, old downtown area that is a joy to explore. There are an abundance of outdoor stores.
- Is it practical to bring a tent, will the wind be a problem? Yes, tents will do very well! While I generally discourage tents at the winter RTR because of the wind, the Forest does not really have many big winds. A tent will work great!
All-in-all, I think we are going to have a great, relaxing time and you’re almost certain to find something wonderful in your trip here!
But most of all, you will be make many life-long friends and find a community of like-minded people who will become your Tribe and a support system that makes the rest of your nomadic life much easier and a true joy!
See you there!