Click the pics before you leave for grandma's house.
This is the Boyce Thompson Arboretum that I had a great time visiting yesterday. So as is often the case, my pictures, and what I'm writing about, are totally different subjects.
That could probably be improved upon with some imagination and talent for this sort of thing. But since that's not going to happen, I guess were all stuck with the pictures telling a different story than the written part of the blog post.
Waking up this morning, I only knew two things for sure; I had to be out of my boondocking site at the Lost Dutchman State Park before noon. And the day before Thanksgiving is a bad day to travel. I didn't know what time I would leave; I didn't know where I was going, I didn't know if I could find a road that wasn't bumper to bumper traffic. All I knew was, I had to go.
There were too many variables for my limited mental capabilities to calculate. Was there a "going to work" rush-hour traffic this morning? Had holiday travelers already left yesterday for grandma's house? Was anybody even going to grandma's house after all of the Bat flu restrictions? Could I find a place to stay with all of those people on the road? After all, my holiday plans since becoming a full-timer have always been the same, find a place to hunker down long before the holiday starts and stay there until it's over.
Now here I am having to deal with all of the holiday problems while millions of other people are also trying to deal with them at the same time. My choice of coming to the lost Dutchman during this particular time is not looking incredibly smart. But in my defense, the lost Dutchman, because of its popularity, didn't leave me with a lot of choices.
Before I could decide how to deal with the possibility of busy roads, I first had to decide where I wanted to go. I knew normal camping places, where normal people go, was out of the question. And I knew I was in no mood to hunt for places to stay, whether it be parks, boondocking areas, or campgrounds. I didn't need the desperation and disappointment of searching for a place to stay on one of the biggest travel days of the year. So I'm thinking to myself, where can I go that I absolutely positively can find a place to boondock with no hassles whatsoever, to hunker down and ride this holiday out?
There's only one place in the country that I could think of where that would work, and it just so happens it was 160 miles away.... Quartzsite Arizona, the boondocking Meca of the entire United States. The big "Q." Winter home to millionaires and homeless bums alike. With plenty of room for anyone that wants to be there to spread out enough that you can barely see your neighbor, or circle the wagons and congregate in tight little groups to have all the close-knit company you want. Quartzsite, Arizona, where the winter residents refer to themselves as "trailer trash." And folks in refurbished school buses share campfires with people in million-dollar motorhomes.
Yes, Quartzsite seemed like the place to go. It never runs out of space, so I knew I would have a place to stay. I would be under no time constraints to stay or go like I've been on since this year's winter travels began... Yes, I know there's a two-week limit on BLM land and then you're supposed to move, but I've never found it affected my travel life in the least. And best of all I would be around my own kind.... Boondocker's.
So off I went, on the busiest travel day of the year. I didn't know if I could make it without spending hours in traffic jams, but I knew I had to go, so go I did.
Boyce Thompson Park is a dichotomy of dry desert mountains and lush semi tropical forests. And shows what a man with more money than he knows what to do with, and a love of plants, can accomplish if he puts his mind to it.
These Golden Barrel Cactus are as big around as trash cans and grow in large herds around the park.
You would think large trees like this wouldn't have enough water to live in this desert, but Queen Creek run's through the park so I guess the roots can reach the water
There's also a small lake on Queen Creek, which along with some wells is used for irrigating parts of the property
The weather was perfect, but folks said it's been so warm that the leaves haven't changed yet. I was told its beautiful here when the leaves change, but that might not be till Christmas the way things are going
There's many strange plants in the park, after all Boyce collected them. To me this is one of the weirder ones. It's a tree, but not a very good one. You can't really climb it, you can't build a tree house in it, and you can't hide in it. But maybe it's good for something, flagpoles comes to mind. It's called a Boojum tree. A silly tree with an equally silly name.