A desert boondock with beauty all around

The previous post about the weed-wacked wildflowers generated several intense responses, ranging from sad to angry.  The post also contained incorrect information.  For those reasons I deleted it.

The photos in this post show flowers around our present camp.  Enjoy!

P1100451Boondock near Roosevelt Lake, Tonto National Forest, Arizona

Our new camp is in a natural cactus garden!

P1100587Hundreds of cacti, loaded with buds and blooms!

P1100588-001Bridget says, “It’s like living in an arboretum!”

P1100585-001Reggie says, “Yeah!  What Miss B said!”

P1100593RVSue says, “It’s gorgeous here! And most of the buds haven’t opened yet!”

P1100543-001Beauty isn’t always eye-popping-ly obvious.

It’s all around us in subtle forms.

P1100540Sometimes beauty appears where unexpected.

While Bridget, Reggie, and I walk near our camp, we come upon a turkey vulture.

P1100526When thinking about beautiful birds, the words “turkey vulture” don’t usually come to mind!

THE PEOPLE SAY . . . 

“Ugh!  Turkey vultures!  Ugly and, besides that, they eat road kill!”

P1100525THE TURKEY VULTURE SAYS: 

“You kill it and I clean up after you!”

P1100528-001“And you call ME ugly?”

P1100530-001Have a beautiful day, everyone!

rvsue

NOTE:  I’m not showing photos that reveal our location until the time nears for us to move elsewhere.  If you are familiar with the area and recognize our location anyway, please don’t reveal it and please don’t come out here to look at us.  Thank you. — Sue

AND AS ALWAYS, THANK YOU FOR SHOPPING AMAZON FROM MY BLOG!

P1100567Sleeping beauties

CLICK LINK TO SHOP AMAZON NOW!

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202 Responses to A desert boondock with beauty all around

  1. Cat Lady still stuck in Central, La. says:

    Good morning, Sue

  2. Chey (WA coast) says:

    Great flowers!

  3. Millie says:

    First?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Millie… 3rd place… The first three only a minute apart. Gosh, this is tough competition!

  4. Pam and Maya, Still in NY says:

    Wow! I love these vulture photos! I hope you don’t mind if I draw from them. I use a lot of birds in my art work and this vulture is just so happy to model! Please reveal your location after you leave, would love to boondock there someday! Thanks Sue, hugs to the crew!

  5. Dawn in NC says:

    4th! and happy to be so.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Dawn . . . Well, 5th, but the important thing is “happy to be so.” 🙂

      OOPS! You really are in 4th place… It’s a tie!

  6. Kathy (NC) says:

    Love the cactus flowers – what a beautiful ‘home’ you have found. Big smiles!! The sleeping beauties are so cute. Have a great weekend.

  7. Debra (CO) says:

    I love seeing cacti in bloom – the photos are gorgeous! I haven’t spent much time in desert environments. That is one thing I am looking forward to when I begin my wandering. ?

    Regarding the turkey vultures eating road kill, did you know that bald eagles also do this? I did not know this until I was driving in Idaho and came upon one in the road. I asked a ranger about it and he said yes that is a main source of food for them. I just thought it was beneath the dignity of an eagle – LOL!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Debra,

      Eagles eating road kill… Well, that makes sense. Even though it doesn’t fit our typical perception of eagles! 🙂

      • That is how most of the eagles get killed, eating road kill…or eating road kill that was shot with lead bullets and then they get lead poisioning. It’s a tough life for an Eagle, which makes us love and cherish them even more…but love the Turkey Vulture, they are really beautiful close up…and if they are clean…lol. By the way, since we are discussing eagles, you are not allowed to pick them up if in the road or even keep a feather if they have been left there and are dead…ILLEGAL! They are special.

        • Debra (CO) says:

          Didn’t know about lead poisoning affecting Eagles. I believe that is also a major threat to California Condor. So sad.

          • Chuck Hajek says:

            California Condors are one of the dumbest birds still flying. They will eat ANYTHING shiny and almost all are NOT good for them. Can tabs, glass bits and pieces, etc. But they are gorgeous to see in flight! Hope I upset no one.

        • BadgerRickInWis says:

          Perhaps laws are different in CA but I thought lead shot for bird hunting was outlawed years ago. Still you are 100% correct that eagles are special birds. I have many times watched them hunting on the Wisconsin river by Sauk City.

          • Hi Rick, believe it or not, lead is still an issue, especially with the birds back East…I guess some of them folks in the South keep their ammunition a long time….it is outlawed on some states, but there are always a few… I know that I have changed my fish hooks, because the hooks that stay in the fish poision the Eagles when they eat the fish…it is all so convoluted.

          • rvsueandcrew says:

            If I may butt in here (oh boy, teachers! Always have to BUTT IN!)…

            Maybe the lead shot is used on animals like rabbits and then the eagles eat the shot when they eat the rabbits?

            I can’t stand to watch bird hunting. It sickens me.

            • rvsueandcrew says:

              Or is lead shot illegal for ALL hunting?

            • Larry in AR says:

              In 1991, the US Fish and Wildlife Service banned lead ammunition for all migratory waterfowl. CA recently passed a phase-in ban for lead in all hunting ammunition. 33 states have partial regulations that go beyond the Federal ban on waterfowl, and 16 states have no requirements that go beyond the Federal ban. Source: HSUS

            • rvsueandcrew says:

              Thanks, Larry.

    • Don in Okla. says:

      I’ve also read that the huge windmills generating electricity are killing many raptors and migratory birds. Wonder where the feds are on this matter??

    • Linda in Southern MN says:

      I was disgusted hearing on the news this morning that here in MN someone has killed a Bald Eagle, took its breast a foot and talons. How sick are people to destroy one of these beautiful creatures.

  8. Dawn from Camano Island says:

    What gorgeous blooms–I wonder if there are more flowers this year? The pups are adorable–dogs seem to be such good sleepers.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I was wondering the same thing, Dawn. The number of buds on the cacti is incredible! And there are oodles of cacti here in several varieties. Of course, the cacti didn’t spring up like wildflowers, but I wonder if the production of buds is increased.

  9. DesertGinger says:

    Darn! I missed by 3 minutes!

  10. Nice…we just finished up a couple of days at Joshua Tree National Park and were impressed by the wildflowers!

  11. DesertGinger says:

    Ooohhh, whoops. I took a second look. I thought I read first post was 8:28. But that was a response. First post was 8:11. Rats!

  12. Renee Galligher - Idaho says:

    Beautiful photos Sue! What a way to close it but with a photo of the cuties taking a siesta! When I was a kid, growing up in Southern California, my parents used to go out to the desert and harvest paddle cactus. My dad and mom would wear leather gloves and with a sharp knife, cut of the paddles and scrape the thorns out. My mom would then dice the paddles and cook it with onions and garlic, several times, refreshing the water in between till it was not gelatinous. This is what we call “nopalitos”. Today I buy them in a jar and enjoy them straight cold that way or scrambled with eggs. The nopal cactus also produces delicious, succulent, fruit called “tunas”. Mmmm, they come in orange, yellow, red, and burgundy, and I’ve made jelly from them. The second photo looks like a nopal cactus, but I don’t see any fruit, unless the fruit appears after the blooms drop. Great memories for me. Today one can only find the fruit “tunas” in Mexican markets.

    • Renee Galligher - Idaho says:

      Oh . . . and the nopal paddles can be purchased in Mexican markets too. I think I’ve seen them in Winco in areas with a heavy Mexican population. Nopal is tart sort of like green beans that you’ve added either vinegar or lemon juice to. In fact, my mom would do just that with green beans when nopalitos weren’t available.

      • Jean in Southaven, MS says:

        Your mother sounds like a good cook. You made me hungry. I have never had any of the nopalitos or tunas, but it sounds good.

        • Renee Galligher - Idaho says:

          Thank you, Jean! Yes, she was. We ate like kings, but little did we know that we were poor, but she sure knew how to make the best food – Frijoles de oya – Beans from the pot, arroz con pollo – Chicken with Rice, Sopa de Fideo – Fideo Soup, and we had the famous “Soup of Bones” – she would take a huge beef knuckle bone and with onion and garlic, cook till the meat fell off, then add potatoes, carrots, and wedges of cabbage. We would eat that with lemon juice drizzled in and my sister would eat the marrow on a tortilla. Now we know that some of the finest restaurants serve roasted beef bone with marrow!
          Sue – you should keep your eyes on that cactus fruit and if you see some, with a good thick glove, touch and check if they are soft. If so, they’re ready. Pick one and cut it open and scoop out the pulp with a spoon. It’s almost the texture of a super ripe peach – a little fibrous but soft.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Renee! I love learning this kind of stuff, and I’m sure many readers do, too. I’m guessing the fruit comes later, like you say. It’s interesting how people utilize what grows in an area. . .

      I’ve been trying to identify the many varieties of cacti around here by using online guides. There are so many kinds and many are similar!

      • Renee Galligher - Idaho says:

        You’re welcome.

        • Don in Okla. says:

          Texas A&M University developed a nopal(?) cactus without thorns that could be eaten but mostly for cattle feed when the droughts depleted the natural forage. The ranchers used to use butane burners to burn the thorns off and called them pear burners if I remember right.

          • rvsueandcrew says:

            Interesting, Don! I never heard of that.

            One time when we were camped on BLM land near Congress, near our site were the remains of a prickly pear. I watched a cow eat it. I suppose the cactus had been dead long enough that the thorns didn’t bother as much.

            Always good to hear from you…

            (OOps! You were replying to Renee. I apologize. I don’t see the order of comments on my admin page.)

    • Chuck Hajek says:

      FYI, the “tunas” make a great wine and a liquid mixer that adds a great taste to margaritas if you can find a place that has it. In southwest, it should be available at a high line pub.

  13. Pat (Freespirit)-in Texas says:

    The flowers are beautiful! What a happy place to be!! The pics of the turkey vulture are totally awesome. And the fur babies are sooo content. Thank you again for sharing.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Pat. Try as I might the past few days since we moved here, I haven’t been able to capture with my camera the lushness of this environment nor the astounding variety of plants.

  14. Calvin R (still in Ohio) says:

    It’s good to know you have found such a nice place still close to Roosevelt Lake. I appreciate the shots of cacti. Every creature is beautiful in its natural place carrying out its life. You showed us that with your pictures of the turkey vulture. I have seen other pictures of vultures, but these are the best. You just let him be who his is.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Calvin. I’m thrilled with your compliment of my vulture photos. He was a very willing model!

      Yes, let him be. . .

  15. Cheryl O. ~ Puget Sound, WA says:

    Love your pics…the cacti flowers blooming. Definitely want to see that someday. Your turkey vulture pics are awesome with it spreading it’s wings. I love taking photos with birds wings spread out. Cute narratives, too. Have an awesome day in your arboretum…all three of you. I just found a tshirt I’m going to buy. It says ‘Yes, I do have a retirement plan…I plan on camping’ .

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Ha! Great slogan for a t-shirt!

      Funny thing about the turkey vulture. When he first came into view, he was sitting on the post like, well, a big bird just sitting on a post. Then he goes through several postures, as if showing off (of course, he wasn’t). I clicked away with my shutter… what fun! Well, you know… 🙂

    • Renee Galligher - Idaho says:

      I love that slogan! We have a personalized license plate holder on our fifth wheel that says, “Can’t do this in a tent.” We had that made because my husband and I used to tent camp, then our first trailer had a skylight over the shower. The first time he took a shower in it, he said, “Can’t do this in a tent”, and it stuck!

  16. Susan in Dallas says:

    ar bor ee tum – says Bridget!

  17. edlfrey says:

    A couple points of interest – or perhaps not.

    In the first cactus flower picture (they are all very good by the way) the green bush directly behind the cactus is a jojoba. I am going to say that it is a female because at this time of the year the jojoba should be flowering and it is the male that has a distinct blossom. The female has a flower also but it is not what we usually would describe as a flower and it is not colorful.

    “My dad and mom would wear leather gloves and with a sharp knife, cut of the paddles and scrape the thorns out.”
    All I can say about this is that mom and dad were late to the harvest although some people like their nopals to be more mature. I prefer to harvest them before the spines become thorny and require scraping. The young nopals can be cut up and eaten, soft undeveloped spines along with the pad.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Yes! Jojoba bushes are plentiful here and some of them are very big. I didn’t know about the male-female differences. I’ll look more closely to find jojoba flowers. Thanks.

      You would have a field day, Ed, correcting my mistakes if I posted photos of all the different plants here with my attempts to identify. The chollas alone are confusing! I’ll post more plant photos and maybe you and other readers can help me with that.

    • Renee Galligher - Idaho says:

      Thanks Ed. they did that too, but if they were late, that didn’t stop them. I remember my mother saying that these wouldn’t be as tender as young ones. They still wore gloves because there were some very fine thorns too.

  18. Pepe & Gigi, Tibbie & Ella (Bend, OR) says:

    Great photo of the crew. If we could get the princess Ella to snuggle with her sister Tibbie they might take up a bit less room in our trailer. Any suggestions? Pepe ? Gigi ?? Ella the miniature poodle ? Tibbie the Lhasa Apso ?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I wish I knew the secret! The crew is forced to accept each other in close confines. There’s no room here for anyone to hog space. The three of us nudge and shove each other around until everyone is comfortable. Good luck with your crew!

  19. Jean in Southaven, MS says:

    Love this post. The cacti are beautiful. The vulture is beautiful too. All the contrasts in his feathers is just lovely. Their faces are a bit ugly, but the feathers are beautiful. Looks like you have found another great place. Just shows how beautiful the land is if people leave it alone. Happy Friday

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’m glad you love this post, Jean. Ah, yes — “how beautiful the land is if people leave it alone.”

      Thanks and Happy Friday to you, too!

  20. Chris B in not so sunny Southern California :-( says:

    Hi Sue – Great photos! The deserts finally got some water! Diego and I are taking off in a couple of days and hope to see some nice blooms. We have that drizzly Seattle-type weather going on for day two at home and I’m getting tired of it! Early Sunday mornings seem to be the best time for escaping the city, so that is our launch date.

    I can’t get over the flower murderers in the campground! When you think that you have seen everything, another fine example of stupidity pops up!

    Chris B and Diego

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Ooooh… Our Pacific Northwest folks are raising their eyebrows at “drizzly Seattle-type weather going on for day two at home and I’m getting tired of it!” hee-hee.

      You and Diego have a great time finding blooms and sunshine!

    • Chuck Hajek says:

      We told Clete about the “tunas” mixture for Magaritas that we had found in Utah and Arizona. Did ya’ll ever find any?

  21. Barbara (Nashville) says:

    Haven’t read the post yet, but the photos are certainly beautiful. Will check back shortly.

  22. Suzette (TN) says:

    Oh, wow! Georgous place! Thanks for sharing that. I was one who was really bummed by the raping and pillaging of the former site. This did make me feel better. I’d have to hang around until most of the cacti were fully bloomed. Can you imagine what that’s going to look like?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Suzette,

      When the crew and I moved here a few days ago there were only a few blooms and a gazillion buds. That’s when I decided to stay as long as the rules allow. We could have moved to higher ground to avoid the 3-day heat wave. Instead we held our ground in order to see as many blossoms as possible. It rained last night and it’s much cooler today.

      I’m glad this post has you feeling better. 🙂

  23. Good Morning Sue, I love the pictures this morning…I have been too busy to make it out to the desert to see the bloom, so at least I get a glimpse here… I miss being out there for the desert bloom, but next year I will see it all….yippee Have a good day..

    Shout out to my friend Weather 🙂

    • weather says:

      Hi, Shirlene 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good afternoon, Shirlene,

      I missed your comment this morning. We took off to fill water jugs. Yes, next year will be much different for you than this one! I want you to “see it all!”

  24. Kitt, NW Wa says:

    Sue,

    Here is some interesting information from the webpage of the Turkey Vulture Society:
    “A group of vultures is called a “Venue”. Vultures circling on thermals of hot air are also referred to as a “Kettle”, because they resemble the rising bubbles in a boiling pot of water.” I have also heard of a roosting flock called a Committee.

    A couple of years ago we had a venue of vultures all over a dead tree near our neighbor’s creek. They just hung out for most of the day then they were gone. Very curious to see so many in one place.

    Beautiful cactus blossoms and another wonderful boondock. We saw some early wildflowers on a hike to Mt.Erie, near Anacortes, yesterday. The fawn lilies were out in abundance. It was a beautiful blue sky day with views to forever from the top.

    Kitt

    • Hi Kitt, vultures migrate like other birds and they sometimes migrate together in large venues. There is even a Vulture Festival in Southern California near the Kern River…they celebrate their return…keeping things cleaned up around there. ha!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Kitt, for the fun information! Venue of vultures, kettle of vultures, a committee of vultures… 🙂

      Coming back to camp from fetching water there were several, big, black birds in a swirling column up very high and far from us. I couldn’t tell if they were the crow-type birds that we have here or if they were vultures. They did “resemble the rising bubbles in a boiling pot o water.”

      Your hike sounds wonderful…

      • Sue CleanerGreenerVegas says:

        Yes, Turkey vultures are majestic to see in flight, riding the air currents

  25. Barbara (Nashville) says:

    Wow, no comments in between? The cacti blooms are beautiful. Their flowers just seem so unique to me and what a variety. Love the modeling provided by the turkey vulture. It was so kind of him to give us such a show. It’s like saying “I really am pretty” too. Bridget & Reggie sleeping so peacefully. Love that.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Barbara and Angel,

      That vulture didn’t realize it, but he was a very easy subject for the camera. No shyness (from a distance), no modesty, no inhibition, and as Calvin mentioned, the vulture was being himself.

      You know how tender and sweet and adorable our pups are when they’re sleeping. *sigh*

  26. Barbara (Nashville) says:

    oops! yes there were comments.

  27. rhodium, RI says:

    Your flower pictures are so beautiful. It reminded me to google image Georgia O’Keeffe, another desert woman who knew how to capture a flower’s beauty. Since I can’t go five minutes without coming up with a question or idea, let me say it seems like you would have no trouble getting a gallery to have a show of some of your photographs.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Wow, rhodium . . . my photos in a gallery? That’s a huge compliment. Thank you! I don’t think I have the technical expertise for that, but the thought is nice. This gallery right here — my blog — is all I want for my photos, as long as people like you continue to enjoy them.

  28. Betsy/ PA says:

    Wow, from wildflower wacking to gorgeous cactus, amazing vulture photos, and what can top that? . . .the crew all snuggled up together . . so happy you all found a new wonderful boondock! We woke up to yet another blanket of snow this morning and more predicted for the weekend . . .”sprinter” continues as does our countdown until we start heading south!
    Enjoy the Beauty!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Betsy,

      “A blanket of snow” seems very far away as I sit here in the desert. Thanks for the enthusiastic response to this post. Happy countdown … Enjoy the anticipation!

  29. weather says:

    Such beautiful photos, thanks, I did enjoy them 🙂 What good timing to come upon a turkey vulture as you walked. Ordinarily one can’t see the gorgeous details you showed because they’re overhead with the sun in the lens of our eyes or camera or on the ground for a meal with their wings closed. Amazing timing to be there ,too, when the flowers appear in all stages from their beginning as buds to full bloom. You’re getting to experience the wonders of the full springtime experience during your stay.
    What a touchingly sweet picture of your lovable little ones sound asleep together. Few things on earth can melt a heart as much as such a portrait of innocence. Wow, Sue, great post!! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, weather. “A portrait of innocence” reminds me of the kittens you had on your front porch. I see them sleeping, curled up in a sunbeam. I imagine they’re quite big now.

      Ever since I saw my first cactus flower in the desert I’ve wanted to stay while the desert warms up enough to bring forth her grand performance. Have you seen it when the cacti are in full bloom? I can stand in one spot and see a thousand buds ready to open up any day now.

      • weather says:

        When I’ve seen the desert in bloom it had maybe half the amount of flowers, in buds or open, that you’ve shown and describe. Perhaps the unusual patterns in temperatures and precipitation of recent seasons contributed in part to the abundance you have around you now. I’ve only been in one hailstorm, and far too few thunderstorms for my tastes, in the desert though I lived and traveled in desert areas for many years. You really are having a remarkable journey, Sue.

        The kittens are quite big in comparison to their newborn size when I first saw them almost eight months ago. Humans, large animals and trees take so many years to reach maturity that we don’t notice many discernable changes on a daily, weekly or sometimes even monthly basis. That’s so different with a flower, garden, field of corn, fruit tree or orchard, bird, cat or dog- the speed makes us see the miracle of it all. What a gift that is…I hope all’s well in your home and part of the world. It’s a sunny, bright good day to be grateful one’s furnace works here in central NY.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Hi, weather,

          I’ve long wondered if you have firsthand experience with desert environments. You humbly focus on me and the crew in your comments, except to describe the wonders of nature around you and to give an occasional glimpse of yourself. I suspect you’ve traveled far, physically, intellectually, spiritually.

          Our stay here will end soon. The rain is gone and the desert is refreshed. The blossoms are late in their opening this morning, as if they are drunk from the rain. I continue in my efforts to capture the scope of lush, flowering vegetation. It’s much easier to show a few, individual blooms! The crew and I will go on another photo shoot later in the day.

          “A sunny, bright, good day” for you — cold outside, warm inside. It sounds like all is well, my wish for you and your companions.

          • weather says:

            How nice that you care enough to have spent the time in thought about me and my comments the kind and generous ideas within your first paragraph indicate, Sue, thank you. Blossoms being drunk from the rain-what an imaginative and funny concept, Ha! I hope you’ve had some success in capturing the types of photos you’ve been trying to there, though just living it has likely been wonderfully satisfying, I know how much you enjoy sharing it with the rest of us. Oh, that reminds me that I have some news to share-my son, daughter-in-law and grandson and granddaughter will be renting a place centrally located to check out three colleges in NY state and one in Rhode Island this week. I’m thrilled that they decided to do this, I’ll spend three days with them and the parents will get to take part in it all, it will be good for each in the family in so many ways.

            • rvsueandcrew says:

              How wonderful for all of you! I thought of your grandson and granddaughter just the other day. I remember you said your granddaughter might choose a college in New York state. Of course you are thrilled to have the family come your way and to be included in this pivotal time in your granddaughter’s life. I wish all of you a grand time together!

    • Pat (Freespirit)-in Texas says:

      It seems the flowers and the amazing pics of the vulture were a gift to all of us from their creator! As is Sue a gift to all blogorinos! Just saying…

  30. Pauline in Mississippi says:

    Dead wood and berries….my absolute favorite picture!!!!! You have such a great eye!! After the weedwackers, this post was so uplifting! Cactus blooms are so pretty and who would have thought that. They are plants most people don’t want anything to do with yet they burst forth with such beauty and color. Very pretty! The vultures, well not so much. 🙂 Impressive feather display but boy, are they ugly!!!
    Love the Sleeping Beauties.
    Love you too Sister
    Pauline

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Ha! You noticed the “dead wood and berries” photo. I wondered if it would be forgotten among the others. You probably like it because it looks like a vignette that could be in the woods of Mississippi or New York state.

      Love to you, too!

  31. Virginia Henkaline says:

    Sue, your pictures today are absolutely stunning!!!

  32. Marcia GB in MA says:

    Great post! The cacti pics are really special. All those buds getting ready to burst open in all their glory. And the vulture pics are pretty nice, too. I just love your closing shot of Bridget and Reggie. What a lovely place to stay!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Marcia,

      People asked me, “When are you going north?” and I see other blogs of RVers moving northward. I haven’t been in a hurry this year because I wanted to enjoy the grasslands (check!) and to see a desert spring (check!). Yes, it is lovely here. Thank you.

  33. AZ Jim says:

    Something doesn’t make sense. If that camp area is being dismantled why would they find it necessary to destroy all the flowers? And you make a good point with the fresh paint too. Doesn’t make sense. Pretty pictures from the new site. Hi Little boondockers, Bridget and Reggie.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Jim,

      You’re right. It doesn’t make sense — the rumor that Mesquite Campground was part of the deal with a concessionaire that would have it dismantled. Reader Mari heard from the camp host that the other campgrounds on Schoolhouse Point are being dismantled but Mesquite will open up next year. I’m not totally convinced, but I’m hopeful.

      Baby boondockers are worn out from a walk this morning. We are full of energy in the morning. By noon we’re a trio of sloths. Hi to Detta!

  34. BadgerRickInWis says:

    Ahhhhhh, this is better. So glad you found a spot more attuned to your sensibilities.

    Great shots of the cacti and love the Turkey Vulture shots as they were sunning themselves. I remember years ago coming up the road into Los Alamos and in the middle of the highway was a huge dead tree with probably 20 turkey vultures all with their wings spread like that. My Ex said that they were praying. I just tried hard not to take it as an omen.

    Like I said great shots. but as much as I love the flora and fauna it’s the last shot of the sleepy heads that makes me go Awwwwwwww. I hope HRH is feeling better, give em both a squeeze for me.

    On a different note are you still sleeping on the open cell foam mattress on top of the Casita cushions and if so I’m wondering if that is still working for you? Also how did you end up fastening down the new drawers? Sorry if you discussed this in other comments, if so I must have missed it.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Omen or prayer? 🙂 I would’ve loved taking a photo of those 20 vultures on a log!

      Yes, the crew and I are still sleeping on the Casita cushions with a strip of foam on top. It’s working okay.

      No, I haven’t fastened the cabinets. We went to Globe yesterday which was my first opportunity since purchasing the cabinets to get the supplies necessary for that project. I was so excited about our reason for going to Globe (stay tuned for an upcoming post on that) that I forgot about the project. It’s about 25 miles to Globe from our camp. We might make another trip into town for laundry.

      I drove around 5 mph up this road to our present camp in order to keep the cabinets from falling over. We made it!

  35. Awe!!! Beautiful!!!! Love those sleeping beauties too!!!! TY RVSue 🙂 !!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Betty-Shea! Wasn’t it nice to get some rain? We got some during the night and now it looks like we might have some more. I hear thunder. 🙂

  36. Rich says:

    Long time reader…. Never comment. Today I am moved to as I saw you made mention of people coming out to look at you if they knew where you are. My question…. Have people really done that? If so…. How do you handle it when they mosey on up to your BLT?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Rich!

      Welcome to comments! Thank you for being a long time reader. I suspect you don’t read comments much because the gawkers and drop-in visitor situation has been discussed. I don’t mind writing about it again, in order to answer your question. It seems to be something I need to do frequently in order to preserve our solitude and my sanity which is questionable to begin with. So thanks for bringing it up.

      Yes, people drive by our camps gawking. They stop and peer around, they cruise back and forth in front of our camp, they park in an adjacent campsite to sit at a picnic table and snoop, they look through the bushes, they pretend to be out for exercise and walk by our camp with that “look” of trying to see what they can see, a few have dropped in like our home is a tourist attraction. I’m recognized while shopping, driving, out and about. It’s hard to believe! I’ve had to leave several camps because of it and there are camps I’ll never see again in order to avoid it.

      I love my readers. Don’t get me wrong. I just can’t take the feeling of being watched. I suspect we’ve already had one drive-by at this camp. No, I’m not paranoid.

      How do I handle drop-ins? I’m becoming increasingly rude about it. I used to be gracious, until one woman whipped out a camera and took my photo before I could protest. I don’t sit and entertain them like I used to. My days are precious to me.

  37. Rich says:

    Wow….. People can be so rude! And you’re correct… I don’t read comments much. Soooooo many comments! Thank you for your reply! Greetings from Coeur d’ Alene Idaho!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Oh, Coeur d’Alene! Such a beautiful place! We went through there, but didn’t stop to camp.

      I hope you will comment again . . . . when you feel like it. 🙂

  38. Retiredcajunlady LA says:

    Thank you for sharing the gorgeous pictures!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      My pleasure, Retiredcajunlady! Good to see you here! Welcome! You are now a blogorino!

      • Retiredcajunlady LA says:

        Thank you so much! I have been spending the last two weeks catching up on your blog. It is beautifully written and illustrated with your photos. Thank you for sharing your travels with us!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          I’m always thrilled when someone tells me they’re reading the archives of my blog.

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Welcome, cajunlady! 🙂

  39. Jolene/Iowa says:

    Hi Sue and everyone!

    I was so sad with what they did in your last post with the flowers and I sure hope they just relocated the bees.

    I LOVE these pictures in this post and to know that no one will disturb them. Those turkey vulture pictures were amazing!!

    Enjoy your time at this wonderful boondock!! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Jolene. You can’t imagine what it is like right now, sitting inside the BLT. We are in the middle of a tremendous thunderstorm. Rain and hail pelting the windows, wind rocking us, lightning flashing! We’re up on a bluff and I could see the storm heading our way from far off.

      I’m running the laptop and Verizon jetpack on their own battery power. The inverter is unplugged. Gosh, what a racket with this hail! Ha!

      • Linda in Southern MN says:

        Luckily, hail does not damage the little fiberglass trailers like it does the aluminum ones! Hope you had a beautiful sunrise today to make up for the bad weather!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Gee, I never thought about hail damaging aluminum trailers. The first time we had hail I worried about the fiberglass and even more about the solar panel. Neither has suffered the slightest damage after any of the hail we’ve been through.

          Thanks for the wish for our sunrise, Linda… I hope yours was beautiful, too!

  40. susan from Pasadena says:

    About Texas Blue Bonnets: Sue, you said you have never seen them….you have seen them…….I think everywhere else Texas Blue Bonnets are called Lupins…. I know you have seen Lupins…I mentioned this in the comments yesterday but I was too late I guess and maybe you didnt see it… . When I was at the LBJ Ranch in Texas I was told they called Lupins “Texas Blue Bonnets” I asked “Well then,what do you call California Poppies?” Answer ” California Poppies” Go figure…

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Okay, now I get it! Yes, I’ve seen lupines/bluebonnets. I haven’t seen them the way they grow in Texas though. 🙂

      Thank you, Susan!

  41. Laurie in NC says:

    Such beautiful pictures of blooming cacti! Your current home has a beautiful garden! The perks of moving your home….you can have such a variety of flora in your yard! Also, a variety of creatures! I have not thought much about vultures, but loved the pictures and the lessons in the comments! I will think of these birds differently in the future!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Laurie,

      Your last line makes me happy. Why, I don’t know for sure, but there it is. Thank you for complimenting the pictures.

      “the perks of moving your home”… The flowers around us are cut down. We move and there are more flowers!

      The blogorinos are great! I, too, love all the information shared here.

  42. Nivrapa in AZ says:

    A great post, Sue! I’m fascinated by the photos of the turkey vulture and learning about their traits and habits. What a great opportunity for anyone with a camera fetish. I think the dessert flora has just out done itself this spring. It’s been quite a few years since we’ve had a bloom like this year’s. How sad that when some folks think of the dessert, they think of brown, dead, and barren. If they only knew!!

    For some unknown reason I’ve never bothered with looking for boondocks near Lake Roosevelt. I’ve always just taken advantage of the campground at Windy Hill or made my way back to Burnt Corral at Apache Lake, six miles east of Roosevelt. Did you come across any other sites for boondocking or did you just take the first one you discovered?

    Plans for this year’s RV exploring are coming along great. If I’m not careful, I’ll never get out of Colorado. So much I want to see and do in that state even though I have experienced it multiple times already. Each visit presents more discoveries to be explored in the future. My CO Benchmark is filled with sticky notes and the spine is already showing signs of wear. I haven’t even left home yet!

    I’m not certain if this will be the year for some adventures in Idaho. That is one state I’ve always longed to explore. I’m not finding a whole lot on line about boondocking opportunities in Idaho. I’ve looked at all the popular websites for free camping and there are listings but very few reviews. National Forest campgrounds are plentiful where I would like to visit—Sawtooth NRA up to the Bitterroots. Nothing wrong with using some of those campgrounds but I like finding a spot that I don’t have to share with anyone. I can be selfish that way. Do any of the blogerinos have any experiences boondocking in Idaho? Sites would have to be accessible for my 13′ Scamp, so keep that in mind. I can always stop by the ranger station once I’m in the area and get some ideas from those who know the forest and dispersed camping opportunities.

    Glad to read you’re enjoying some more of “my backyard” in southern AZ. I consider myself very blessed to call this region home. This month marks my twenty fifth anniversary of leaving PA and arriving in the surrounding Tucson area without a place to live, a job, or knowing a single soul. It’s all worked out and is the one of the best decisions I’ve ever made! I’ve been living my life in a mecca that many wait to experience until their senior years. How great is that??!!

    Be safe, travel on, and love hugs to each of the crew from me.—Audrey

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Audrey,

      Great comment! To answer your question about boondocks near Roosevelt Lake… Yes, I did choose to boondock along the first forest road I ventured on, only because I doubted I’d find another one as nice. Since then I’ve found a few others. I hope to squeeze in photos of the boondock sites I’ve found. There’s so much here I want to photograph!

      Last year I found a few sites near the dam and Salt River. I think those are listed on freecampsites.com. They didn’t appeal to me. People go there to launch their boats, floats, kayaks, whatever, and I didn’t want to be near that action. Plus the road was bad and the vegetation more on the thicket variety… I tend to prefer camps that are elevated to the surroundings, rather than low, down by the riverside. Of course, it’s possible I missed some good spots over there.

      You did make a smart decision coming to Arizona, Audrey. The proof is in your love of the state. Happy 25th anniversary as a Zonie!

      I wish I could help you with boondocks in Idaho. You may have read how we fled the Sawtooth Mtns. to get out of the smoke. I smiled at your description of your Colorado Benchmark. Most of my atlases have lost their covers, are tattered and worn.

      Blogorinos: Any suggestions for boondocking Idaho?
      (other than those listed at freecampsites, Wheeling It, and other popular blogs/websites. Audrey knows about those.)

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Julie, Mollie & Gizmo of Idaho suggest “owyhee uplands off mud creek road.”

        • Nivrapa in AZ says:

          Thanks, I saw that. I had ask Google about it. It’s just across the border from Jordan Valley, Oregon (I remember you went through there) and is part of a scenic byway. Remote, high desert country. Looks gorgeous. Would have never known about it without asking for some help with locating boondocks. Word of mouth is a huge help and influence. Thanks for the Public Service Announcement, Sue.—Audrey

    • Renee says:

      Hey Audrey – my husband and I boondock around the Sawtooth’s. I wish there was a private way to share my email address with you and I’d give you all the information you need. I hate to advertise it all up here though.

      • Nivrapa in AZ says:

        Renee, I hear you about not wanting to advertise your private email address on a public board. I also don’t think that is a good idea and I would never do it and sure don’t expect anyone else to if they’re uncomfortable with it. I will continue to look using my maps, Google earth as well as searching online. I stumbled upon RV Idaho (via the ID Campgrounds Assn) and that has given me a some leads. Like I mentioned, I can always stop by a ranger station once I’m in the general area I want to boondock in. Planning is such great fun! I appreciate the offer very much and may you and your hubby continue to enjoy great boondocks in Idaho.—Audrey

  43. kgdan from Wapato, WA says:

    Beautiful, beautiful! We have to visit that area for sure. Already looking forward to more trips out soon. First will catch up at home. Then we will try for Taidnapam park on Cowlitz River near Morton, WA. Also want to visit Oregon beaches this summer. Another possible will be North Cascades in search for lake fishing.

    This afternoon we are camped at Riverhaven RV park in Marsing, Idaho. New for us. Very quiet with nice view of Snake River. Nice people here, many retirees.

    Loved, loved the photos!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You didn’t stop at the $3 a day campground near Rogerson then. I hope you will someday. That’s the place where I photographed the lake being stocked. Some year when Gil has an Idaho fishing license, right?

      I’m going to look up “Taidnapam park on Cowlitz River.”

      Your present camp sounds great!

  44. Alice (So. Fla) says:

    The flowers are beautiful, thank you. Just read where you can eat cactus, looks like the variety in the 2nd and 3rd pictures down. Not sure how you get past the stickers. Supposedly very healthy.

    Flowers are beautiful but my heart goes to the “sleeping beauties”

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Alice. I’m happy to bring the Southwest to southern Florida, along with the two sleepyheads.

      Somewhere in all these comments, Renee and Ed discussed cooking and eating cactus. I guess we can honestly say, “Looks pretty enough to eat!”

  45. wildflower in prescott says:

    I love your photos of wildflowers and cacti. We had a bit of rain here today so maybe we will have an extended wildflower season.

    I remember how Bridget rode in her stroller at the Arbor EEE tum. Makes me laugh when I think about it ? ? ? ? ? ?

    One year I let a few mallow bloom in my yard too long and I got a letter from the city code department telling me to get rid of them. Now I have “wildflowers” growing like they are intended to be part of the “landscaping”, no more letters.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Gee, Prescott is that concerned about some globe mallow on private property?

      You had rain, too. I’m contemplating whether to take the crew on the usual walk before bedtime. I really don’t want to deal with muddy paws!

      Yeah, Bridget giving a tour from her car at the Arbor EEE tum. Classic! I laugh to think there’s a bunch of people who will always think of Bridget when they see or hear that word. 🙂

      “Photo Essay: Boyce Thompson Arboretum Tour with Guest Blogger”

      • wildflower in prescott says:

        I think the city is hyper vigilant about wild fires. Yeah they are pretty particular about defensible space around homes. The letter said weeds could not be taller than 12 inches so I wacked the mallow down to the dirt and kept the mallow in the rose bed. But the hypocrisy of it all is now the city does not have the budget to fully staff our fire stations. We have not had a full staff fire department since 2013 when the 19 hot shots were killed. Some have been replaced by regular firefighters but not all. Our local paper publishes each day which stations are closed or not fully staffed.

        http://dcourier.com/news/2016/apr/08/prescott-fire-station-brownout-april-8-2016/

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          That was incredibly sad and tragic. Losing one is terrible enough, but nineteen. Nineteen! My throat closes up every time that tragedy comes to mind.

          Well, that explains being particular about plant growth around homes. Thanks for the link, wildflower. Those brownouts are a reminder…

  46. Jane in Bremerton, WA says:

    Love the pictures! I haven’t spent much time in AZ yet, and when I was there, it was either burning hot summer or dry winter, so I’m looking forward to seeing this time of year. All of the variety of shapes, sizes and colors are fascinating.

    I found my PTV last week! I traded my car in and bought a van so no more payments! Now I’ll have some time to fix it up and continue to look for a trailer. Not that I’m counting, but only 546 more days!

    You’ve been a great inspiration to me! I’m hoping I have learned enough from your travels to find boondocks and wonderful views. Thanks so much for leading the way!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Jane, and CONGRATULATIONS on finding your Perfect Tow Vehicle! How exciting… and with no payments. Sweet.

      I wrote a post about lying in the back of the PTV (before she was named) dreaming of the places she would take us.

      You will find the boondocks and the views. I know you will. Be sure to announce when you find the trailer to go with your PTV!

  47. Diann in MT says:

    Yay! You’re among wildflowers again!

    Sleeping beauties are so cute!

  48. Julie, Molly & gizmo (Idaho) says:

    This is amongst the best. Love all your pics but am a huge fan of turkey vultures. There was article today about reintroduction of Cali condors in hells canyon. I have lots of info on boondocking in Idaho. Fav is owyhee uplands off mud creek road. But lots in sawtooths as well. Lots of public land here.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’ll alert Audrey that you have made a suggestion in response to her request for Idaho boondocking.

      Thanks re the photos.

      • Nivrapa in AZ says:

        I appreciate the tip, Julie. I had to check in with Google to learn about it. It looks like some gorgeous country. Nice of you to reveal one of your favorite camping spots. It’s now on my list of places to explore in Idaho.—Audrey

    • bess in oregon says:

      Hi, i would love to hear more details about boondocking in Idaho too. we are going to Yellowstone in July and want to explore Idaho on the way coming and going. thanks!

      hi Sue, i have been away for a while, dealing with a long bout of sickness of myself and our family. most of us are better now.

      we just returned from 2 nights camping at the Oregon Coast where the temperature was 75! little wind and very fun. Near Waldport, where you have been.

      thanks for the pretty photos and the ever changing world of the desert which i love too.

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Hi, bess…. I’m sorry to hear you and your family have been sick. I hope everyone is better now.

        Ah, Waldport… I like that area. How nice that the weather cooperated and you had fun.

  49. Laura - Illinois says:

    Personally, I love Turkey Vultures! I love how they fly and can hover on warm currents in the air for what seems like eternity!

  50. CheryLyn(Oregon) says:

    Love seeing the desert in bloom. I hope to see it myself someday.
    My home sold last week. I will miss my home and view but not the work maintaining an acreage. The buyers have been wonderful, aware of my health problems have given me two months to move and could rent here after that. (Not going to). Not going to put anything into storage either. My little trailer needs some work as do I but planning to both be ready to travel soon.
    Keep being that encouragement.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Congratulations on selling your house, CheryLyn! One way to keep from missing the view from your house is to replace it with a series of gorgeous views… I encourage you to keep making progress toward that goal.

      And get yourself as healthy as you can!

  51. Jan NH says:

    As always wonderful pictures. So many beautiful flowers on all the cacti. The turkey vulture is quite regal. I just love all the poses that you captured.
    I especially love the two pups sleeping together in the last photo. So peaceful and adorable.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Jan,

      Thanks for the response to my photos and also to my two cutie pies. 🙂

  52. theboondork says:

    I’m glad to see you’re doing well Sue, I had gotten a couple weeks behind with your blog but I got caught up today.
    You always seem to be able to find some great Boondocking spots, I kind of struggle with that myself but I assume I will get better with more experience. And speaking of experience the 23rd of this month will be my six month anniversary of going full-time. Now I know that doesn’t sound like very long to those of you who have been on the road for years, but for me it lets me know that this full-time thing may actually work.
    I’m Going to be leaving my current location Sunday morning and heading down to the tombstone area. I’ll probably stay at the escapees RV Park in Benson while I scout for some Boondocking places near tombstone.

    It looks like you have become so famous that you have to hide out to avoid the adoring fans, maybe you should find a way to take advantage of that. If I ever get that famous I’m going to charge people a dollar to look at me and $10 to have lunch with me…. And they have to buy the lunch. See there’s all kinds of things you can do to make your fame work in your favor.

    You and the puppy’s stay safe; theboondork

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, theboondork,

      Congratulations on reaching the 6-month milestone of full-timing later this month! Thank you for taking the time to read the posts you missed.

      I wish I could help you find boondocks near Tombstone. Looks like a lot of state and private land in the immediate area. Freecampsites.com has a few suggestions of which I’m sure you’re aware.

      Take care, enjoy Benson and Tombstone, and remember always to “Boondock like you mean it!”

      • Bill & Ann - Bend, OR says:

        Drive out Middlemarch Rd for seven miles, turn left as soon as you enter the Coronado NF. Bumpy road, but quite a few nice boondocks.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          You can see it on a google map when you go to freecampsites.com. Zoom in!

          Hi, Bill and Ann!

  53. Cinandjules (NY) says:

    Beautiful beautiful gorgeous flowers!

    ArboREEtum like indeed! Oh my god just saying the word drawn out makes me laugh!

    Oh dear, that turkey vulture’s head, especially his eye.. is really quite creepy looking! Lots of birds like munching on road kill. There are crows bigger than 747’s up here.

    Had dinner with our neighbors (with the blind Jack Russell I often pet sit)…he has offered to drive our belongings to AZ. Wow! We had booked our flight for the first week of May for 10 days. He says…is it too crazy for you to load up a uhaul before you leave and I’ll meet you there? We are beyond greatful.

    Long story short, PODS refuses to come up to the boonies…says we are not in their service area..even though we used them from CA to NY. We had planned to drive down to Syracuse to see if the PODS facility actually exists. If it does, we would load up the neighbors trailer and transfer our stuff into a POD and have it shipped sometime in the summer. Certainly it was going to be a PITA..but there was no other option. Surprise!

    When we leave sometime in Sept we are taking the high route 80 to NE and cutting through CO. He’s thinking of taking a lower more direct route I-70 or 40?

    Blogorinos: Anyone have any ideas? DeGin…what route did you take? Thanks in advance.

    • Nivrapa in AZ says:

      Hi CinandJules! Having driven cross country numerous times I can tell you that my preferred route is I-80. Second would be I-40 to I-81 north in Tenn and picking up I-80 in PA. I’ve done I-70 too, but will never travel that route again—large portions of the road not well maintained or being improved and you might as well travel a secondary road to make good travel mileage in a day. As it gets closer to your departure date you may want to check out the construction on your selected route to help determine your final plan. I’ve used I-80 more than any other interstate to travel cross-country. My guess is that both I-80 and I-40 are preferred by the truckers, too, but that is only a guess. I hate flying so I’ve driven the miles more often than flew them. Best time is 28 hours from Phila, PA to Colorado Springs, CO Using I-80, I-76 and I-25. Intense and grueling and I don’t recommend doing it in one long stretch! For what it’s worth, my drive time from Philly to Tucson is 40-41 hours (without a tow) using I-80 to Denver and then down I-25 to hook up with I-40 or I-10 in NM and most often I do it (alone) in four days. Of course if you are not interested in making good time you can zig-zag all over the place and see some interesting sites along the way. This is just what I do and someone else may have a different recommendation. YMMV—Audrey

      • Cinandjules (NY) says:

        Thanks so much for taking the time to explain.

        I just looked up 70 and it does show all kinds of construction. I will let him know.

        Your route from PA to Colorado Springs is probably going to be the route we take. Scoped out the LaQuintas on the way. No sightseeing as we will have 1 dog and 5 cats.

    • DesertGinger says:

      Yeah, I don’t take 80….too far out of the way…of course gas is cheaper now. I generally go east on 90 to the lake eerie area then start angling southward into Ohio. Don’t remember exactly where I connect to 70, near Columbus/Akron, takes me to the connection to head towards Joplin, Tulsa on I 44, then I connect to RT 66, also known as 40 in Oklahoma City. I don’t know where you are going inAZ. If Phoenix just take 40, then connect to I-17 south into town. If Tucson, veer off on Hwy 25 in New Mexico and go south to Hwy 10 west into Tucson.

      • DesertGinger says:

        About I-70 roads…they have done a lot of improvement. Last year I did have one good delay for construction on 70 but that work must be finished by now! Going to CO on 80 is an option. 80 is a good freeway, although very boring unless you like mile after mile of grassland. You can stop at the Corn Palace and Wall Drugs, but I think the Ohio countryside is much prettier. Wall Drugs is the first commercial establishment to have an ad on the moon. It’s a sign that says some number like 230,112 miles to Wall Drug.

        • DesertGinger says:

          I’m sorry I posted the above by mistake. I’m saying I80 but talking bout I 90. Sue, can you delete the previous post?

  54. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    Hi, Sue,

    The cacti must have benefited from the recent rains – they are positively bursting with buds and blooms! Thank you for sharing the beautiful pictures! My favorite is the berries against the wood. That turkey vulture is quite handsome. Such a happy site, especially after seeing the upsetting destruction of the wildflowers on the previous post. Some people don’t “get” that we need the bees. If the bees die out, so will we, as our food chain will be broken. Soylent Green, anyone?! 🙁

    Hope you all fare well through that storm. Hail in the desert….wow! Please give the arborEEtum queen a kiss on the head for me. I hope she is feeling better and got some relief from the Rx….poor baby. The picture of Reggie and Bridget snuggled together is precious! Love those pups!

    Have an enjoyable weekend, Sue! Sending you and the Crew hugs from me and Gracie pup! I am looking forward to the next installment of your adventures! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Denise and Gracie pup,

      Thank you for another friendly note and for asking about Bridget. She had a very good day yesterday, exploring with Reggie, trotting along, tail wagging. This morning looks like the start of another good day for her and for all of us. I hope the same for you!

  55. MB from VA says:

    Absolutely beautiful! Even the turkey vulture! We have them here too. Some mornings we have four or five sitting on the power lines with their wings out to the sun. And I saw one the other day just soaring and changing directions with the wind….never having to flap his wings. I was envious. What a free feeling that must be. When I taught K, I told my kids that they played an important part because they were one of nature’s vacuum cleaners. If not for them and those like them….what a mess we’d have on our hands! My great uncle’s favorite song was Everything Is Beautiful In It’s Own Way. Yea……. 🙂 Have a great day out there in your “secret garden”. Love from VA!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, MB from VA,

      You have vulture-envy, too? From our camp on the bluff I can watch them float on air currents from below and sometimes from above them. I find it an enjoyable alternative to the many projects I haven’t started . . . .

      I hope you are having a great weekend. Thank you for the interesting comment!

  56. Pamela K. says:

    Sue,
    What a difference a day makes! Those flowers are stunningly beautiful! No doubt you delighted in seeing them. And those turkey vultures — they look so odd compared to many of the birds in the bird kingdom. I wonder if they think we look that odd to them On my bad-hair days I’m sure they would think so, LOL. Well, at any rate, always good to see a better and more pleasant camp was found. The crew sure seems to love those pretty new, comfy, beddings — so cute how they snuggle up together — sweet dreams to all.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Yes, what a difference a day makes! The campgrounds are nice in their way. Where we are now is like being in a different world from our last camp. Thanks for the sweet dreams wish for the crew. I hope all is well in your world!

  57. theboondork says:

    Thank you Bill & Ann,and Sue. I had heard of a Boondocking spot out on Charleston Road but I had never heard of the Middlemarch Road boondock before. I will check it out in my truck first to see how bumpy it is.

    Sue I think I remember that a long time ago in your blog you met the “Old Fat Man” and I was just wondering if you might know what happened to his blog? For the last several days his blog no longer exists, it’s gone, disappeared. I’ve been a follower of his for a couple of years and is hard for me to believe that he would delete the whole thing without telling his readers goodbye, but maybe he did and I didn’t read the last post before it all disappeared.
    Oh well, such is life. Thanks again for the information about Middlemarch Road I’ll be going out there early next week and checking it out.
    theboondork

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I searched the comments on a few blogs of Old Fat Man’s friends and found where someone asked where he was and OFM replied that he has quit blogging. No reason given.

      • theboondork says:

        Thank you for that information Sue, I knew your connections in the blogosphere would be far greater than mine.

        I can understand perfectly why someone would quit blogging after all Barney had been blogging for a long long time, I just don’t understand why he would shut it all down without giving his readers a little warning.
        I’ve seen blogs close down before and the owner will explain to everyone what’s going on and why, then readers will write in and say how much they’re going to be missed and then everyone moves on.
        but doing it the way Barney did it doesn’t leave us with an end to the story that we’ve been reading for all this time, it’s like a book with the last page missing. But here’s hoping all the important stuff is going okay in Barney’s life and he just got tired of thinking of something to write about every day.

        Maybe that’s something for us bloggers to think about, we invite people into our lives and in doing so we become a small part of their life, so do we not owe them the final chapter ?
        theboondork

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          I understand how you are feeling, theboondork. It’s a similar feeling for bloggers. One opens up one’s life and develops a relationship with a long-time reader and then the reader vanishes without so much as a goodbye. I remember several who have done that, for whatever reason. I miss them as you are missing OFM.

          I think OFM was having technical problems prior to quitting. Don’t know for sure.

  58. Elaine in Colorado says:

    What a surprise! I didn’t know that cactus bloomed. Love the pictures!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Oh, yes, they bloom and they bloom BIG! I think they rival roses in beauty… I’m glad I have the chance to show you, Elaine, with my photos.

  59. Sue CleanerGreenerVegas says:

    They are saying that it was an especially rainy winter (El Nino) out here in the Western States and many places are getting a superbloom from wildflowers thisyear. I imagine it also affects cacti.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Maybe so, Sue. Our recent rain, hail, and wind, tattered some of the cactus flowers. Others are coming into bloom. I’ll be checking on them today to see the progress from buds to blooms.

  60. Chuck Hajek says:

    Sue, these are some of your best without horses in them! We really miss the cacti blooms….got a lot of lemongrass, marigolds. lavender and citronella planted….not for beauty but MOSQUITO defense!!!! That last pic of the crew was beautiful. Happy Journeys, Radar and Doogie

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Darn mosquitoes… I wish you luck in that battle. Great compliment on my photos — Thanks, Chuck!

  61. Lisa, Tommie and Buddy in SoFlo (for now) says:

    Hi Sue, such beautiful photos. You even make a turkey vulture look good.! I can’t find a favorite photo in this post, I love them all. The cuddled pups at the end sure look cozy. Tommie is crashed beside me right now. We have been working today. I am building the new insides of my little home to be, Tommie had the hard work of keeping track of me…and sunbathing. I’ll have to pack the sunblock tomorrow for both of us! We have had beautiful weather with a return of breezy, cool spring weather. It’s perfect for what I need to get done. I never renovated anything like this before, now I see how people can get hooked on it. Picking out those details that are unique and special to you, making a home to suit your needs, it’s amazing. I haven’t even gotten to the pretty decorating part yet and I am having a blast figuring it all out. I am less than a month to take off, whoever knew that downsizing could be such fun!! Thanks for inspiring me with your example. See you on the road.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re having a great time “building” your future, Lisa, and it’s a pleasure to read about it! I love that you’re having “a blast.” I bet you are discovering skills and talent you didn’t know you had. Continue having fun and let us know how it goes… Thanks for the compliment on the photos. 🙂

  62. Fulltimer Judy says:

    I used to dislike vultures, but last winter in Florida I visited a bird rescue sanctuary near Sarasota. Stopped in front of a cage where there were two black vultures. (Smaller than turkey vultures but coexist with them in some parts of the country.) One kept looking at me and cocking his head. Finally, he flew down to the opposite corner of his cage, picked up an orange rubber squeaky toy and dropped it in front of me. I think I must have looked like one of his keepers, but his/her actions really showed intelligence, so I was very impressed.

    I saw some prickly pear cactus in bloom driving south from Cottonwood today. You have pictures of a really nice variety.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Judy… I know that sanctuary! At least I think it’s the same one, located not far from the beach. When I visited there were several pelicans having their pouches repaired along with other injuries. The volunteers told me about injured pelicans walking up to the sanctuary seeking help. How did the pelicans know? 🙂

      Interesting about the vulture making social contact with you via the toy. We think animals and birds are dumb. In some ways they are more intelligent than we are. Thanks for the interesting comment!

  63. Spectacular blooms. We’re still hoping to catch some as we move southwest. I have watched turkey vultures soaring overhead in the desert for decades, and always found them to be majestic. Their ugly heads are efficient for the job they do – yay!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good to hear you’re moving in sync with the warmth. Williams is down into the 20s this week! I hope you find lots of wildflowers in bloom….

  64. DesertGinger says:

    So, I’m entering countdown mode. Monday I see the cardiologist and he will decide whether or not he wants to do cardio version. That is where they use electric current to shock your heart into sinus rhythm. If he wants to do that, then I’m not sure what will happen. I don’t know how long it takes him to set that up. This place plans to discharge me TuesdY,and I don’t really have money to hang out in a hotel, maybe a couple days, but that’s it. So we’ll see but I will probably be out of the hospital on Tuesday! ?????????☀️⚡️. I may stay here a day or two regardless just to collect all my stuff and bid farewell to all, but I should be headed home next week!! Depending on how tired I get I may stop overnight in Yuma. It’s a 7 hour drive, which may be a lot for me in one whack. Then I’ll be home! My air conditioner is broken,so that’s my first task. But I’m home where I can choose what I eat, where I can go to my little gym to work out and to aqua aerobics with my neighbors. I can see my coffee club friends. I can resume my life! I think they are planning for me to have therapists come to me at home again, and that’s okay. Just to be in my own place after so long.
    I will miss my friend Barbara that lives here. I hadn’t spent much time with her in years and she has been such a good friend. And I will miss Helena. But I will be so happy to be home.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You are good to give us updates, Ginger, not only because many of us here have come to know and care for you, but also because your experiences teach us. I didn’t know a lot of the medical stuff you’ve gone through. Never heard of “cardio version.”

      Your blogorino family continues to wish you well. I’m sure they’re happy to learn you will be discharged from the hospital in a few day. Home is best! Soon you will be there…and won’t Chloe be thrilled to see you!!

  65. Rattlesnake Joe says:

    Didn’t get a chance to read all of the Blogerinos words. Hope I don’t run on about what someone already said. It looks to me like the Turkey Vulture just took a bath and was drying out so he could fly again. I think they do what the sharks do. They keep things in balance. Mother nature thinks of everything but somehow man thinks he knows more than she does. Mother nature tries to correct what man does to the Earth. I think she out did herself here lately…maybe because of all the fires we had last year. You know I think we ought to have a federal holiday called Mother Earth Day so everyone can thank her profusely for all her hard work. Someone mentioned the bees dying out about 5 or 6 years ago. Well I talked to a Native American medicine man about 2004 that told me they were being blinded by new rays from the sun. He was buying up all the honey he could in big cans. But Mother Nature helped the bees overcome this situation and I saw a come back. I hope those nasty Killer Bees don’t breed with all our bees. Last year I had to run into a friends travel trailer being chased by them. We sure live in strange times.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning Joe!

      You always have something interesting to tell us. According to information from a reputable source by another reader, one can assume that bees in Arizona have been “africanized.” I hear them in great numbers late in the afternoon as they love buzzing all these flowers especially the creosote and palo verde which are in full bloom. When the sound becomes really strong, I take the crew and we go inside. They’re like bears… You don’t mess with them! About 20 minutes after it starts, the sound fades away. I never heard bees like that before. Heard it when camped off Sorefinger Road in central Arizona a year or two ago. They were loud! They sounded like an approaching army.

      Yes, Mother Nature does her best to restore what we mess up. You and Mrs. Rattlesnake have a great day!

  66. Glenda in OZ! says:

    Loving the flower photos………..wonderful to see

  67. Corkerinna620 (Mobile AL) says:

    Sue, sorry to be a bother, but I’ve done something to my subscription on Word Press & I’m not receiving your new post notifications and I’m SAD!! :~(
    Can you help me get resubscribed? 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’m sorry that happened. I’m not receiving a wave of comments from folks with the same problem which means it’s probably something at your end.

      If you have the last notification email, open it again and unsubscribe. Then try subscribing again using the box in the sidebar. If that doesn’t work, try it again later. Delete your cache. Did you reset anything prior to the problem? Did you switch to Windows 10? Try doing a system restore. Check your computer settings.

      I’m not tech savvy which is why I’m throwing out everything but the kitchen sink. Another reader had the same problem. She never reported whether it resolved or what caused it in the first place. In other words, I don’t have any idea what causes notifications to stop or what it takes to fix the problem. If you do figure it out, please let us know. Thanks and good luck!

  68. Moe says:

    I’m joining the chorus late – what spectacular pictures! I’ve never seen cactus blooms like that and I love the way that you captured some as they are about to burst open. Mutts are too cute.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Moe! It’s great to hear from you again! I remember the message you sent me a while back about how my blog inspires you and how much you enjoy the posts and photos. It meant a lot to me.

  69. I’m headed that way. I’l try to not run into you. 🙂

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