Off To Yuma….Gold….And Mexico!
We’ve made it to our next stop and yet another great boondocking spot. The town of Yuma, AZ sits right on the Mexican border and is a rather “hot” winter RV spot. Thousands of RVers come here, most of them cramming into massive RV parks that line the highway into (and out of) town. It’s the draw of consistently mild winter weather, inexpensive parks and a good-sized town with just about everything you’d need that brings the crowds. Plus, there’s Los Algodones just across the way.We come for ALL those reasons, but we prefer to eschew the sardine-packs and park out in the wilds just west of town on Ogilby Road by the dark & alluring Cargo Muchacho Mountains.
This is where we find our peace. The boondocking site here is not nearly as attractive as our last spot at Borrego Springs. The roads are drearily flat apart from near the mountains, and on that side you’re presented with shockingly dark hills that are covered in unforgiving rocks. It’s like a moonscape gone wild. But there’s a few particular things which make this place rather special. First it’s HUGE and that means it’s super easy to find a spot all to yourselves even if you’re “beast-size”. That’s a boon for those looking to escape…and hide…if only just for a while. We totally enjoyed the rush of community & social activity in Borrego Springs this past month, but right now this is exactly what we need -> a spot where we can hang, play and even dance naked (if we so wish) without the risk of sending our neighbors into a comatose shock. We typically drive pretty far back into this area and tuck into a super-private site by the hills, and when we arrived yesterday our usual spot was empty with not another RV in sight. Perfect!
The other draw is the GOLD. Oh yeah baby….there’s gold in them thar hills. The chocolate-colored hills got their name, so it’s told, from two young Mexican boys who found gold ore in the hills and came back with their shirts loaded = the muchachos cargados (loaded boys) thus giving the name to the range. If you spend enough time knocking around here you’ll meet old-timers who’ve bought-up small parcels of land and spend the winter seeking treasure from their trailers. Plus American Girl Mine, just down the road, is active again after many years dormant. Two years ago I noticed the land was listed for sale for a bargain $3 million. Clearly that was low enough for someone to snap it up and today the spot is a buzz of activity with trucks carting loads of “stuff” out of the pit. And then of course, there’s the fabulous Tumco Ghost Town, a total “must see” for anyone in the area. If you love ghost stories, old mines & the gold & glittery stuff you’ll love this spot!
So, you never know baby….we might get lucky. I have our gold-sniffing cats on the case and expect great things. After all, there’s gotta be a reason I fed them all these years, right??!!
But of course the other reason to come here is Los Algodones. We moved our yearly dental check-ups to Mexico last year, something many RVers do and save (on average) 2/3 on their dental costs. Last year I got a new root canal and crown, finally fixing a botched-up root canal that I’d had many, many years ago. All was fine with the root canal, but my gums had changed around the crown (they’d drawn back over the past year leaving a small gap underneath). I knew this coming in because I’d noticed some food getting stuck under the edge of the crown over the past few months. This is not an unusual thing and is just something you deal with in dental work => not all mouths (and gums) heal the same and changes happen along the way.
My dentist confirmed my diagnosis when I got in yesterday and, even though it wasn’t strictly necessary to fix it, offered to re-do the porcelain crown for the lab costs ($100) for a better fit. So, once again, I have a gap in my mouth and will get a brand new (and even better, I hope) fitting crown next week. I’m not at all worried about this and I’m still perfectly happy with my dentist Dr. Eva Urena. She took her time carefully removing the old crown, took two impressions of my teeth for a more accurate fit and was very detailed in what was going to happen. Her cleaning was once again somewhat faster than I like, but she got the stains off my teeth and they look good. Paul also had a cleaning & will get a small filling for his very first (EVER) cavity when I go back for the new crown next week.
So, after a year I don’t have much to add to my Mexico dental posts. The border parking has increased by $1 to $6, but otherwise my experience & impressions are the same. We’re happy with our Mexico dentist and plan to keep Los Algodones for all our main dental work going forward. My posts from last year are here:
- Getting Dental Work In Mexico Part I – Clarifying Myths & Facts
- Getting Dental Work In Mexico Part II – Our Los Algodones Experience
That’s about it from the boonies of Yuma. We’ll be doing a few select activities over the next week while we wait for my gums to heal, but otherwise we’ll be mostly lounging & gold-digging (just for good measure). Then, once I’m all prettied up again we’ll be headed to Quartzsite and the big show. The rest of winter will be more of the same. We expect to boondock and knock around Arizona right up until the weather changes and then we’ll be heading north. Adios amigos…if you don’t hear from me again it’s because the cats hit the jackpot.
P.S. By the way, a fun little aside. If you google “Ogilby Road” the first two images that pop up are Polly checking out an old mining site and our rig boondocked on the road. And if you try “American Girl Mine” you’ll get a shot of Paul by the mining pit. Try it! I guess we’re popular on Google images, in a very, very small way LOL.
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