Category: Arizona

Sunset over Blythe, CA in a photo I took from my Ehrenberg camp a few years ago.

For the last 4 years I’ve made Ehrenberg, Arizona my winter camp. And for the last three years I’ve done a post about it in the fall when I return–this year will be no different. After a very busy summer travel season I’ve finally gotten back to my beloved desert! As much as I love spending summer in the mountains and forest, I need to get back to the desert in the winter just as much!

This year I was lucky enough to go to a family reunion at Thanksgiving in Oregon, and I loved being there, but it made getting home much later than usual. This year I am especially glad to be here because the weather was terrible in Oregon in the fall! It rained most of the days I was there and was also cold. In fact, we had to carefully plot our drive home trying to avoid the possibility of getting stuck in a blizzard and still ended up driving in snow several times. I loved Oregon in the summer, but I can’t imagine how anyone lives there through the winter–it’s awful! I’m so glad to be back to the Arizona desert for winter!

One of the reasons I’m doing this post now is to invite you to come camp with me. This is the ideal place to spend your winter so I’m encouraging as many of you as can to join me. With the RTR starting up in just a little over a month it’s a great time to be here. The weather has been very, very good with daytime highs in the 70s and lows in the 40s, it’s very pleasant. It’s sunny with some mild clouds nearly every day but the clouds make for spectacular sunsets! Nearly every night I go out and think, “Oh my, another gorgeous sunset–amazing.

One of the reasons I come here is because there is no BLM enforcement. Even though we are on BLM land we never see BLM Rangers. I know people who spend their entire winter here with no problems. It’s also very close to Quartzsite where the RTR will be. It’s 17 miles from here to Quartzsite so it’s just a quick shot and you’re there for all that it has to offer.

Out for a walk at Ehrenberg.

We’re just three miles from a Flying J truck stop which has a lot to offer nomads. And just across the freeway from it is a mini-mart that is superbly suited for us. They offer …

  • a reasonably priced laundromat,
  • showers for as little as $5 a shower,
  • they have free Wi-Fi,
  • you can dump your tanks and fill with water for $10,
  • or, you can just fill all your water bottles for a dollar,
  • you can use their trash can for free.
  • The mini-mart offers ice and a normal selection of convenience store items.
  • One of the things I like best there is they offer boxes, so every year when I get here I get a box through them. So it’s $8 a month for 3 months totaling $24 (and there’s a setup fee and a second person fee) so I paid a total of $50 which I will split with another person. That’s very cheap for three months. I’m able to order from Amazon and get mail–one of my big problems solved.

My camp from the turn in at mile 2.7 of the main road.

This is not one of the prettiest parts of the desert. It’s mostly flat and rocky but there are mountains around it and they’re very pretty. There’s good walking and that’s something I always look for in a campsite. And there are washes that have a fair amount of green trees in them. So the first people to get here are lucky and can camp under big trees. I was very lucky and got the biggest tree in the area. In fact, I can get a Class C completely under it and be in the shade much of the day.

The one thing I like least here is that it is also an OHV/ATV  area so on weekends and especially long holiday weekends we get a lot of ATVs, motorcycles, dune buggy traffic. That’s unpleasant because they’re noisy, rude, dusty and loud–all things I would rather avoid. But this is such a wonderful camp that we put up with it and gladly so. I’m glad to be here

The laundromat offers free wifi, free trash drop-off, cheap water and showers, and a dump station.

We’re only 7 miles from Blythe, California which has good shopping. It has an Albertson’s grocery store and also a Smart & Final grocery store. Chances are you’ve never heard of it because it’s a California chain that is also in Arizona. But it’s a very good store, it’s a full grocery store and has quite good prices. Just a little more than a Walmart but so close it’s not worth driving to Walmart instead. There’s no Walmart here, the nearest Walmart is in Parker Arizona 40 miles away. But overall the shopping is good it doesn’t cost to much to spend the winter here.

The main reason we’re here is for community! At the moment they’re probably 20 people around me but the desert is so big none of them are too close. There’s another small group down on the Colorado River enjoying that. As we get closer to the RTR more and more people will come in. In fact, there isn’t a day goes by that one or two new people don’t come in. So if you’re looking for friends, community, and tribe (but not too close) this is the perfect place to be!

I want us to establish tribal communities and not just be loners gathered around a small area, so every evening at 5 o’clock we go for a walk as a community and most nights of the week we’re all just blown away by the gorgeous sunset. We’re also enjoying community, and making life-long friendships.

Every so often I also put together little parties,  in fact, we’re having a pizza party this Saturday (December 17, 2016) at 2 p.m  and you are welcome to join us. I need you to email me to tell me if you’re coming ([email protected]) and I’ll make sure there is plenty for you. I don’t ask for donations, I think of it as a thank-you gift to the group. If you insist, I’ll let you pay–but I don’t want you to. So come join us for a pizza party!

A party at Ehrenberg in 2013.

In order to make it as easy as possible for you to find us, I’m including a map. I think it is pretty self-explanatory and most people can find it, but if you can’t just email me and say you’re here and you can’t find me and I’ll come down and get you that day or the next.

I want to offer a special invitation for all you newbies. If this is your first venture into the nomadic life (or you are just in the planning stage) please come and join us. I remember all too well how different and frightening everything was in the beginning. I want to make it as easy for you as possible and I think coming and being in a community is the best possible way to do that. At first, it can be very lonely out here and parking alone in the desert seems fearful and dangerous. But coming to join a group will solve that and you can get your questions answered, and your needs met. So come and join us, learn from us and let us learn from you. Let’s share our lives together and become a true tribal unit–one for all and all for one!

See y’all soon

This is a test to see if I can put captions on this photo. It is only a test!

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