Strolling Amok

Pops goes on tour.

Ima Inna Yuma

As long as my wheel chocks hold, I'll have a pretty view out the window each day.

As long as my wheel chocks hold, I’ll have a pretty view out the window each day.

I arrived in Yuma, Arizona about a week and a half ago, or more properly, Winterhaven, California. The border between the two is just a few miles down the road. Turns out I arrived just in time, since a cold front moved in that day and has been producing lows in the high 20s and low 30s more recently. How is that good, you ask? It’s even colder in Quartzsite. Normal cabin temps settle about 10 degrees higher than the overnight low, and since 45 is about my limit, I’ve been letting my Colman propane lantern idle overnight to keep temps up. Works a lot better when the North wind isn’t blowing through the door. Daytime highs went from the low 60s to the low 50s, but all will get back into vaguely normal territory after the coming weekend. Besides, all I have to do is remember how the Chicago area is doing, and I feel warmer already.

Entertainment, free with each campsite.

Entertainment, free with each campsite.

My campsite affords a majestic view of the Mittrey Lake/Yuma Proving Grounds area. A fire started somehow, and with the heavy vegetation in the lower areas, it burned for several days. The fast and shifting winds kept the various fire control people busy, and it was quite a sight in the dark of night. Ashes dusted camp at one point, and live embers distributed by the wind started a few other fires miles away. The camping area surrounding Mittrey Lake had to be evacuated, after one wind shift took over and brought the flames close to the road connecting the Imperial Dam LTVA with the Army Proving Grounds and Route 95. Trail access to some parts is so sparse that they had to just let some areas burn. Fortunately, it was finally extinguished just before a truly high wind moved in. Our camp host claimed it was a controlled burn gone bad, while a fire control guy blocking off the threatened road told me that the cause was man-made but unknown beyond that, but that they were very interested in determining a specific cause due to the expense of calling in men and equipment to put it out. Everybody and their uncle was down there, as far as various fire departments go.

Young'un.

Young’un.

And the donkeys are still around, as usual. The mother shown beside the colt here had no hesitation in protecting him from a belligerent male that approached. Two well-placed rear hooves, with the immediate positioning for a repeat performance, prompted a change in outlook for him, and he retreated to a safer spot. Welcome one day, distinctly unwelcome the next.

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6 thoughts on “Ima Inna Yuma

  1. I know what you mean, the cold brought me down here, too, from Quartzsite. I don’t think you’re in my campground – I don’t see any trailers/trucks nearby. There sure are a LOT of people up on the hill where the services are, though. I’m sure looking forward to some warmer weather, and maybe less wind. 🙂

    I heard both that the fire was a controlled burn, and that it was a regular fire. I guess if it was a controlled burn that got out of hand, that would explain the two different explanations.

    • I’m nearly two miles up the hill, Barbara, in Murphy Flats. That’s maybe a half mile short of the main drag & glut of campers. When I got here just before Christmas, I’d say attendance was down at least a third over last year at that time. But now it’s filling out somewhat, and I’d guess the week of cold in Quartzsite prompted some decisions. Warmer, usually. Less wind? Usually not, in my experience. There are places to escape it, if you’re willing to lose your cellular signal.

      On the fire, the official told me that the cause is “under investigation” as there were signs that it was man-made. He was hoping for someone to hang with the bill. Last year here, controlled burns were announced and posted beforehand. Considering the organization and procedure needed to carry out a controlled burn, my take is that it would be no lingering mystery were that the cause.

  2. Does Uma Know?

  3. Glad to see your comfy….

    Will get the truck back in a couple days…..I’ll update you then.

    • Thank you, Papa. I’ve been wondering how things were panning out with your DeathStar motor. Be sure to email me or call. The problems with the 6.0L diesels were largely cleaned up by 2006, and gone in the redesign to become the 6.4L, but the PR taint tends to stick with all of Navistar’s later engines. Ford’s decision to abandon Navistar for their own engines was a good one.

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