Yuma, AZ & San Diego, CA
7/12/2018 to 7/15/2018
Hot, Hot Yuma, Pio Pico Campground, Border Wall and The San Diego Maritime Museum
Thursday 7/12/2018 We left our campsite in Catalina State Park around 11:00 and headed toward Yuma, AZ. Once I put the coordinates into the GPS I realized we had to travel halfway back to Phoenix to catch Route 8 to go west to Yuma. Last night I researched different places to get a rebuilt cooling unit in our refrigerator. I really couldn't find anyone anywhere near where we were going to be. I kind of brushed off the guy in Phoenix because he promised me multiple times he would show up but he never did. But I was going to be within an hour of Phoenix so I gave him a call. He said he could do it and would meet us in a Walmart parking lot in Phoenix. We had all day to get to our campsite in Yuma and it's hard to live without a refrigerator so we decided to do it. We got to Walmart around 1:00 and he was there a few minutes later. He said he could have this done in no time, but it didn't work out that way. Because the temperature was around 100 degrees I set up a couple of fans inside the trailer. I tried to help him as much as I could but of course, it took him much longer than he predicted. We had to unhook everything from the back of the refrigerator and pull it completely out, remove the cooling unit, clean it up and install the rebuilt unit. Then put it back into its compartment and hook up all the wires and plumbing. Rose spent most of the time reading a book under a tree or under the trailer. It took him over four hours to complete the job. Total cost was $550.00 but it was a lot better than spending over $1,000.00 on a new one. Once he finished we headed to Yuma, AZ which was still over three hours away. We arrived at our campground after dark and someone guided us to our spot with a golf cart. I hate setting up in the dark but luckily our site was a pull through and because it's the middle of the summer in Yuma, hardly anyone was there.
Friday 7/13/2018 Yuma is very hot this time of the year and there is really not much to see so we just stayed inside and tried to keep cool. We did go out for lunch and did a little shopping. The refrigerator seems to be working better but it's still not cold enough. I think it's having a hard time because it's about 113 degrees out today.
Saturday 7/14/2018 We left Yuma, Arizona around 10 am and headed for a campground called Pio Pico which is in a mountain area about 25 miles away from San Diego. It’s another Thousand Trails park which I am a member of so it doesn’t cost me anything. On the drive, we passed beautiful sand dunes and rocky mountains. There was also a huge solar farm and more windmills. We stopped for fuel at an Indian Casino that we saw advertised along the way. It was packed with people, mostly Native Americans. We were going to get a bite to eat but there were even long lines for the food. There wasn’t really an empty slot machine to be found so we just hopped back in the truck and continued on to Pio Pico campground. Pio Pico is a very long way off the highway up a two-lane road through the mountains. The park was packed with trailers which surprised us at first because we thought it was so far out and people wouldn’t know about it. The sites are a lot wider than Vegas and once again we had to drive around and pick out the spot we wanted because they aren’t assigned. Most of the spots were already taken but we managed to find a fairly nice spot under a small tree and the neighbors aren’t super close. We are only here for two nights and are planning to spend the day in San Diego so we weren’t too worried about our spot. The temperature is much cooler here, in the high 80’s. There is no cell phone or internet service here so we walked to the activity center where they were supposed to have free WiFi. They did but it was super spotty. We were able to discover that there is a town only eight miles away in the opposite direction from where we came in. Tomorrow we’ll probably go into the town which is called Chula Vista.
Sunday 7/15/2018 Today was Michael’s 38th birthday and because we have no cell phone coverage or internet connection we drove into the town of Chula Vista which is about eight miles away to give him a call. He didn’t answer so we caught up on some emails and called Danny for a quick chat. Danny recommended we take a drive to a beach called International Friendship Park in San Diego. This park is right on the border of Tijuana and San Diego and is the southwest corner of the United States. There is a tall metal fence separating the two countries and the fence goes down the beach and extends out into the ocean a bit. On Saturdays and Sundays from 10 am to 2 pm people can go up to a part of the wall which is in a covered section and speak to their friends or family members on the other side of the wall. They only allow a small group of people at a time so it doesn’t become too overcrowded. You can see through the wall so when you are on the beach you can see the other people having fun in Mexico. We took a lot of photos and Rose waded into the Pacific Ocean. There are several horseback riding stables outside the entrance of the park which you can ride your horse down to the shore and back. The grounds are not beautifully kept up and the water was cold so no one was in it on the San Diego side but the visit itself was very interesting.
After that, we drove into the city of San Diego to see the waterfront. Parking is very scarce and costs $4.00 for two hours. Luckily we managed to find a spot and started walking along the pier. People walk, ride bikes, rollerblade, scooter and take a bicycle type rickshaw ride up and down the pier. We walked past a booth for the Maritime Museum of San Diego which lets you tour eight ships, anything from a Soviet cold war submarine, an American submarine manufactured in the 1960’s, a merchant sailing ship from 1863 called The Star of India, a steam ferry boat from San Francisco and a replica of an old Navy frigate. Originally I wanted to tour an aircraft carrier named The Midway which was down a ways from the Maritime Museum but when I saw this, I decided to tour it instead. The ships and submarines were very interesting to walk through and we took a lot of pictures. When we were done roaming around the vessels we walked up the boardwalk for a while and decided to head back to the campground at Pio Pico.
We drove past the Midway and wanted to stop to walk around but the parking lot was full and people were driving around looking for spots. It was super crowded so we decided to head home. On the mountain road back to the trailer, we saw a nice lake and a dam looking wall covered with graffiti. We pulled over and walked down and discovered a little treasure of a culvert completely decorated with graffiti. Some of it was very well drawn.
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