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Overflow parking at Usery

Well preserved old car behind us

Our site #7

View from our door

This Cholla is right out the front door

After sitting in one place for a month, it takes a while to pack up and remember all the do's and don'ts. We finally pulled away from Desert Palms Golf & RV Resort about 11:30. One month full hook up was $350 plus electricity. The park was charging 19.5 cents per kilowatt. Yikes! However, Kathleen found reference to an Arizona state law that states RV parks cannot charge more than the going rate for a residence and the bill must be posted. J.C. got right on the internet and researched the topic. Sure enough, he found articles, a phone number and the number assigned to the law when the governor signed it. All this means is that we only have to pay 8.5 cents per kilowatt plus 4.5% tax. That's less than half. Well the park was not happy about it, argued they were an exception, ya da ya da. We calculated what we owed and gave them the check.

We have been plagued with a mysterious water leak. It is most noticeable after sitting for at least 3 weeks. It is fresh water and accumulates on top of the water tank which we cannot see. When we move the coach, several gallons of water spill out of both sides of the coach onto the ground. So we decided to stop by Beaudry RV in Glendale, AZ. This is a Country Coach authorized repair center. I guess that does not really matter since Country Coach has it's doors closed and Beaudry is in Chapter 11. To make a long story short, they are open for business. The water leak was a fitting between the fresh water tank and the hot water tank and was fixed for a measly $200. Ouch!

Our entertainment surround sound control unit went out. We use the unit as an occasional DVD player and it fed all of our sound to the coach's 6 speakers. (DVD, VHS, TV and Apple TV) So we asked Beaudry if they had a replacement. They said they could order one for $350. Our hunt for a replacement had not gone well. The units available all come with a set of 5 speakers and a woofer with proprietary connectors. We need six connector spots that can take bare wire. J.C. could buy a soldering iron, remove the unwanted connectors and try to solder the wires together. But you need to picture this, the coach wires are in a cabinet 5 1/2 feet up in the air over the passenger seat. Would be kind of tricky. Well we decided to continue to look. We just could not justify $350 for something that should cost no more than $200.

While we waited for the coach to be fixed we decided to run out to Usery Mountain Recreational Park our next destination. This park is first come first serve to get into the campground. We got there about 2 p.m. and oh my goodness the 13th rig had just pulled into the overflow parking area. Even though this was only Wednesday, we forgot about Presidents weekend! This is a beautiful area and very popular. In order to get in line, we had to have our rig there with us. So we headed back to Glendale, about 45 minutes away, and got on the internet to find a place to stay. After 5 or 6 parks we finally found one that was not outrageous and had space for us. It was called the Arizona Cowboy. This park sat right next to another park called Arizona Maverick. Really! They shared the same drive way into the parks. The Cowboy was 3 times bigger than Maverick and was predominately park models or mobil homes. The spaces were on top of each other. It was a parking lot but you couldn't see the parking lot...just the RV's and park models. I still don't know how J.C. got the coach in the spot. it only cost us $15 for full hookups (Passport America).

Thursday we headed for Usery and the overflow parking lot. Our trusty Sprint data card could not pick up a signal. Not even with the new Wilson antenna we just bought in Quartzsite. We have been toying with the idea of getting a Verizon data card for two reasons; 1) we could get one or the other signal or both, and 2) we could download up to 10 gigs a month, 5 for each card. 10 gigs is still not very much for us but it is better than nothing. So with no Sprint signal we headed out in search of a Verizon store and purchased the data card. The card was $30 with a mail-in $50 rebate. The fine print revealed the rebate is not a cash rebate. Hmmm, a little misdirection. The 2 year plan will cost $60 per month. We pay the same for Sprint. If we go over 5 gigs with Sprint, they say that they will close our account. Verizon will charge$.25 a megabyte over the 5 gigs. OUCH! Needless to say we are closely monitoring our usage. Once we got over a few snags, the signal is great and the speed good. Turns out there is a Verizon tower right at the entrance to Usery Park disguised as a Saguaro. The Saguaro is very tall and is coming out of a building but until we were told we didn't realize it was a tower. Very cool.

We only spent one night in overflow. We were #7 and got site #7, the last site available on Friday the 13th. As in many parks, not all sites are created equal. Our site needs to be a little more level or put someone not quite a long as we are. Usery Mountain became a park in 1967 with the development of the campground a few years later. In those days there were no 40 foot plus monsters. To make matters worse, our pump for the air bag leveling system quit working. So we dumped all the air in the back, retained the air in the front of the coach and used our set of 10 blocks in an attempt to raise the front enough. The 10 blocks only gives us 5 on each side, which really only raises the coach about 3 inches. It was not near enough. We needed more blocks. Tomorrow is another day.

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