Roses are red, violets are blue, clicking the pics, gives me something to do.
A pretty sunset welcomed to me to the Dome Rock boondocking area last night.
Not much is going on today; I mostly just hung around the bronco doing a few odd jobs, like finding places to store things to get them out of my way. It would appear I might have too many things to store, but I've only been on the road for about three weeks, so I'm still not sure what I will need; after all, it hasn't even gotten cold yet.
One of these days, I need to get up on the roof of the bronco and clean off the solar panels. Unfortunately, I didn't bring my solar panel cleaning squeegee to make quick work of the job, and I didn't bring my collapsible ladder since there was no room to store it in the bronco. However, I think the steps I use to get in and out of the bronco most of the time will get me up high enough to clean the panels if I put the top of the bronco down in its traveling position, so maybe I won't need a ladder.
I ended up bringing all four of my lithium-iron batteries with me, and they're stored under my sofa at the moment. I haven't bothered to hook any of them up yet; I've wanted to see how my two regular lead-acid batteries work over the long haul. The only thing I figured out so far is I can't leave my 17-inch laptop running all the time. Using it in the Arctic Fox I've learned It uses six or eight amps an hour just idling, ten or eleven amps an hour doing much of anything, and fourteen or fifteen amps an hour if it's working hard. So I only turn it on when I need to use it.
I sure miss my Bogart amp hour meter that's on the Arctic Fox, it would be very useful on the bronco with me trying to figure out what my battery situation is. It tells me exactly how many amps are coming in to the batteries, from the solar panels, and how many amps I'm using, no guess work involved. Without it I'm having to use a voltmeter and just guess what's going on with the batteries
One of these days, when I work up enough ambition, I will hook one or two lithium-iron batteries up and see what happens. I think I will find that one lithium-iron battery will do what two of my lead-acid batteries do.
I can only use about half the available amps of a lead-acid battery without damaging it in the long run, but I can use 95% of the lithium-iron battery. Lithium-iron batteries also charge much quicker than lead-acid batteries. This is because lithium iron batteries don't have a charge cycle; the batteries will take all the amperage that the solar panels can produce until they're fully charged. This normally means lithium-iron batteries can be fully charged in half the time it takes to recharge lead-acid batteries And since I've been using these lithium-iron batteries for several years, those are the kind of benefits I've been seeing compared to the lead-acid batteries I used previously in the Arctic Fox.
Unfortunately, lithium-iron batteries are still rather expensive, even though the prices are coming down, to me it still doesn't make economic sense to purchase them in less boondocking is an important part of your RVing life.
A lot of folks consider the desert an uninhabitable barren wasteland full of plants covered with needles, insects that sting, poisonous rattlesnakes and home to a creature called the Gila MONSTER ! ...... and yes that's all true..... But I think it's beautiful nonetheless. I like the solitude and the peace and quiet of the desert. But I'm prepared to enjoy it, and proper preparation is the key to enjoying the desert for longer than a day or two.
If I get out of bed before the sun comes up, which is fairly rare, the temperatures are usually in the fifties or sixties and a long sleeve shirt is called for. But as soon as the sun gets above the horizon the heat builds quickly and in earnest, leaving no doubt as to the harshness of this desert environment, and the toll it can take on those that are unprepared.