Sunday, March 17, 2019

Amazon

I have ordered items from Amazon in the past from a number of locations across the country and they were usually delivered within a week or so by USPS, UPS or FedEx. This past Friday, I placed an order that was shipped the next day, Saturday, and was delivered today, Sunday! Apparently, they have a Fulfillment Center in Las Vegas with their own delivery drivers that was able to handle the entire order in less than three days. Is it any wonder that Amazon is growing so rapidly.

Just in case you are thinking I wasted my hard earned money on something frivolous like food or shelter, you would be wrong - it was for the Jeep...

ARB Digital Tire Inflator 

Friday, March 08, 2019

ARB Twin Air Compressor

Most Jeep owners will "air down" their tires whenever they drive off-road for a more comfortable ride and better traction. The hard core crowd will generally have large compressors with quick connect/disconnect couplings that "air up" the tires in just a few minutes.

My Viair Portable Compressor did the job but was really slow. It could take up to 30 minutes to fill all four tires to ~37 psi. In an attempt not to embarrass myself any more than usual in front of semi-professional rock crawlers, I had an ARB Twin Air Compressor mounted under the hood which is supposed to air up a 35 inch tire in around a minute.

Twin Air Compressor mounted under the hood

On/Off switch mounted on the driver's side pillar

Quick connect/disconnect mounted on front bumper

I have not had the opportunity to try it out yet but if it works as advertised, it should save me a lot of time as well as being much more convenient.

Wednesday, March 06, 2019

Box Canyon Rattlesnake Roundup

Stormy, Sunny and I rented a four seat RZR and joined friends on a ride to Box Canyon...

The Unusual Suspects

On the way to the canyon, we saw a hawk drop a rattlesnake while in flight. Greg wanted a snake skin and rattlers for a hat band so he had the ladies retrieve it...

Snake Charmers
(who says there are no "real women" left)

Update (3/7/2019): Sunny has an excellent video of our trip at https://dawsongang.com/trail-riding-with-arizona-rattlesnake-hunters/

Photo courtesy of Terry

Monday, March 04, 2019

Apache Trail

A nice day trip from the Arizonian is the Apache Trail up to Route 188, over to Route 60 and then back to the park. It is a lovely drive with lots of things to see and do.

While fueling the Jeep, this highly detailed vehicle pulled in beside us...

Someone call Earl Schieb Paint & Body

Our first stop was the Goldfield Ghost Town, an old mining town that has been reborn as a tourist attraction. Here's Stormy renewing his steam driven tractor's license...

While Sunny tries not to get run over

Continuing up the mountain, we arrived at Tortilla Flat just in time for lunch. The restaurant is known for the paper currency attached to its walls...


And the bar stools which are saddles...

I am pleased to report Sunny stayed on the saddle the full 8 seconds without falling off

However, if you fail to pay your bill, there is a rather extreme penalty...


Next was the Roosevelt Dam...




PS - the best part of the day was Sunny's homemade chicken noodle soup which had been cooking in a crock pot all day!

Sunday, March 03, 2019

Boyce Thompson Arboretum

Yesterday, Stormy, Sunny and I rendezvoused at the Arizonian RV Resort where I got to spend time with old friends, some of which I had not seen in three years. It was like a family reunion.

Today, we visited the Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park, an oasis in the desert where there are thousands of different species of cacti on display...




And in case you are wondering why I like coming back to the Arizonian RV Park...

It's to see the latest in haute couture fashion

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Weird Winter Weather

It has been unseasonably cool, wet and windy here in the southwest the past couple of months making it the worst winter I have experienced in the last eight years. Reasons for the inclement weather have ranged from a polar vortex to climate change due to cow flatulence to President Trump's tweeting. Fortunately, I believe I have discovered the real cause of the problem.

Using the latest technology in artificial intelligence, advanced differential calculus and a quantum super computer, I have found a direct correlation between where Sunny & Stormy Weathers are located and the weather. It appears that cold air, rain, snow, hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding, pestilence, etc. follow them everywhere they go. And yes, they are currently in southern Arizona which explains a lot.

As part of my preparation for our trip next month, I will be purchasing an emergency survival kit along with foul weather gear. The good news is that I should not have worry about heat exhaustion, sunburn or dusty trails.

Is this any way to treat a new Jeep

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Road Trip Preparation

In a couple of weeks, I hope to meet my friends, Stormy & Sunny Weathers, at the Arizonian RV Resort east of Gold Canyon where we will begin a month long journey up through northwestern Arizona, southeastern Nevada and southern Utah. As I discovered this past year, southern Utah has some very fine sand off-road that can be difficult to navigate. In an effort to be as prepared as possible, I recently went all out and spent $16.99 for a collapsible shovel just in case I get stuck and Sunny has to dig me out...


When collapsed, it can easily be stored under the front seat

On the other hand, Stormy & Sunny took a different approach to trip preparation by simply buying a new Jeep...


I thought it was so we would have a winch to get us out of trouble but Stormy said "no", it was so they would have a Jeep that would be color coordinated with their motor coach. It's good to have friends in high places!

Friday, February 01, 2019

Mojave Megaphone

Located on a rocky outcropping in a remote area of the Mojave Desert miles from civilization is a large, metal object that no one seems to know what its original purpose was...

Getting to it involves a challenging climb

Imagine the work needed to place it on those rocks

Someone recently used turnbuckles to attach an animal skin, perhaps, hoping to turn it into a drum

In researching this mystery object, I found a number of suggestions as to what it is and what it did. My favorite explanation is that it was used to amplify the sound of a hand cranked siren to warn people in the valley that the military was testing poisonous gas/chemicals. Knowing this blog is frequented by some of the smartest people on the planet, tell me what you think it is in the comment section below.

Lastly, if you have ever wondered where the "middle of nowhere" is located...

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Christmas Tree Pass

Christmas Tree Pass is a dirt road from Route 95 south of Searchlight, NV to Route 163 heading into Laughlin, NV where I not only found a Christmas tree...

Click on images to enlarge

I found a Christmas cactus...


The surprise of the day was Grapevine Canyon where after a quarter mile hike, you are treated to the largest collection of petroglyphs I have ever seen...


Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Winter 4x4 Jamboree

This past weekend was the Winter 4x4 Jamboree at Sand Hollow State Park in Utah. A young couple that I have been following online created a video of some of the obstacles in "The Maze" that I thought you would enjoy...


Tuesday, January 08, 2019

Gunship Helicopters

Have you ever wanted to fire a M249 machine gun from a helicopter at steel targets, airplanes and zombies but did not want to go to Iraq or Afghanistan to do it? Well, you are in luck. Gunship Helicopters, here in Las Vegas, offers such an adventure starting at $550/person...



They will even video the experience so you can show your wimpy friends back home what real men/women do when they come to Las Vegas.

Sunday, January 06, 2019

Alcohol Dragster

My neighbor, Glen, was kind enough to show me his alcohol fueled dragster with a 2,000 horsepower engine that generates a top end of 202 mph...



Glen and his buddies from Alberta bring their machines down every winter to race here in Las Vegas and Arizona. 

Thursday, January 03, 2019

Gaia GPS

Most hardcore OHV owners I have met have one or more navigation apps that they run on their gps enabled smartphones &/or tablets. Here is an excellent video on the benefits and features of the Gaia GPS software...


Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Merry Christmas

One of the nice things about Las Vegas is the number of restaurants that are open 24/7 365 days a year. I joined my neighbors, Steve, Doug and Nancy, for a half price Christmas buffet at Arizona Charlie's. I decided to splurge and spent $5.00 for all the fixings and dessert.


Doug had been on a plant based diet for a number of months but decided he was going to eat meat for Christmas. Fortunately, he warned me not to get between him and his plate so I still have all my fingers.

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Glittering Lights & Giant Fire Spewing Praying Mantis

I tend to go to bed with the chickens but tonight my wild, party animal neighbors invited me to see Glittering Lights at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway where over 3 million Christmas lights were on display. I have seen some impressive light shows over the years but this was by far the largest. Unfortunately, the following photos do not do the experience justice...





On the way back home, we stopped at Container Park to see the giant, fire spewing praying mantis...


Thursday, December 13, 2018

Bigger Tires

Jack Dell, a fellow Jeep owner, emailed me this photo...

Monday, November 26, 2018

Amazon CamperForce

The Amazon CamperForce program provides RVers with seasonal full-time work that pays $15.00-$16.00 per hour. There is also a "Completion Bonus" that pays $1.00 for each regular hour worked and $1.50 for each overtime hour worked after your assignment ends. Plus, the following benefits:
  • Paid campsites 
  • Paid referral bonuses 
  • Life and AD&D insurance
  • Medical and Prescription Drug Coverage enrollment available after 90 days
Click here to view a YouTube interview with a CampForce employee, who discusses the pros and cons of the program.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Allergic Reaction

It appears I have had an allergic reaction to my most recent macular degeneration injection...



Hopefully, I can get it cleared up with a little Benadryl and be back to normal in no time.

Update (12/8/2018): I received an email from Google indicating that this post contained "Shocking Content" and as a result Google AdSense would be restricted. I solved the problem by simply deleting AdSense. It appears we have become a Nation of Snowflakes.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Youth

As we get older, we tend to reminisce about times gone by. I was going through some old photos taken long before digital cameras and thought I would post some of my favorites...

The name is Brown, James Brown

Who is that skinny guy

Back before I became invisible to young women

The future was so bright I had to wear shades

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Wemo Mini Smart Plug

As part of my "energy conservation" program, I purchased a couple of Wemo Mini Smart Plugs which allow me to control electronic devices from either my phone or Google Home Mini smart speaker. Now, instead of having to get up and walk 3-4 feet to the appropriate device, I just say "Hey Google, turn on/off the fan or heater". And given the fact that the smart plug works over your home's WIFI network, you can do it from anywhere in the world. You can even schedule when you want lights to be turned on/off so that your home looks occupied.

I realize you married men can simply have the wife do these things but for those times when she is busy making a sandwich or fetching a cold beverage for you, I found a site on eBay that sells refurbished plugs for almost half what Best Buy charges.


Update (1/4/2019): When the Wemo plug works, it is great but I have found their service occasionally breaks down and is not as reliable as it should be.

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Cheated Death Once Again

If you would like to know what it is like to ride off-road at Sand Hollow State Park, I believe this photo of the vehicle I was riding in as a passenger will help...

Photo courtesy of Mack

This is the section that got us

Fortunately, neither John nor I were seriously hurt which speaks well for the safety of the side by sides. He bruised his left shoulder and my thighs are a little sore from hitting the grab bar. We were both wearing four point harnesses which I highly recommend.



Earlier while driving through the "high rent" Westside campground, I spotted friends that I first met in Moab some years ago. They are here for the big CST SxS Adventure Rally. Knowing that I wanted to see as much of the trail system as possible, I rode "shotgun" with Doug and John.

Here's what I learned:
  • First and foremost, you should travel with a group, preferably, one that has been here before. There are not a lot of signs out there and the potential for trouble is high.
  • Although you can ride here with a small machine (less than 1000cc), you will do much better with one of the big machines with lots of ground clearance and large tires, particularly, for the rock crawling sections which are numerous.
  • As you have probably gathered by now, there is not much "easy stuff" here. In my opinion, the bulk of the OHV trails are for experienced riders. However, for those adrenaline junkies, who crave some of the toughest/gnarliest obstacles I have ever seen, this is the place.
The battery in my camera died before we got to the really difficult areas so I did not get as many photos/videos as I would have liked...



Here's what the "big dogs" drive

Update (11/8/2018): A cold front moved into the area last night. The forecast for Kanab is low 50s during the day and low 20s at night so I have returned to Las Vegas.

Sunday, November 04, 2018

Sand Hollow State Park

I can see why people like Sand Hollow State Park. It has a beautiful blue lake, golden sand and 16,000 acres of OHV riding...

Click on photo to enlarge

I took a short RZR ride on the beginning of Nasty Half which is rated a 9 out of 10 and discovered two things very quickly:
  • The sand here is extremely fine and soft which makes steering tricky and getting stuck easy. You definitely want to lower the tire pressure on your vehicle.
  • There are obstacles here not for the faint-of-heart. You can get in trouble in a New York minute.
Unless I can find someone to ride with, I may not see as much of the OHV area as I would like. I do not want to break down or wreck in the middle of 16,000 acres by myself. 

Tonight's sunset...

Friday, November 02, 2018

Hump-N-Bump

The rock crawling rally this weekend is the annual Hump-N-Bump sponsored by the Vegas Valley 4 Wheelers. They have guided rides ranging from easy to "hold my beer while I try this"...



Surprise of the day...

Big Horn Sheep

Update (11/3/2018): Last night, it was an unrelenting stream of vehicles heading to the trail system. Fortunately, I was so tired I fell asleep anyway.

Thursday, November 01, 2018

Road Trip

My RZR was feeling unappreciated so I am taking it on a road trip. The first stop is the Logandale Trail System. As fate would have it, there is a rock crawling rally this weekend so I am hoping to get some good photos for the blog.

If all goes well here, I am thinking of heading up to Sand Hollow State Park to explore an area I first heard about from a trail guide in Moab. Am looking forward to seeing what it is all about.

Assuming my machine and my body are still intact after the above, I may go back to Kanab, Utah now that it is cooler. I understand there are some amazing rock formations in the area. Hopefully, the RZR will allow me to get to them.



Update (11/2/2018): Last night I boondocked on a ridge overlooking the town of Logandale. After the sirens, jets and occasional gunfire in Las Vegas, the silence was deafening. And the night sky was filled with millions of stars. It's a dirty job...