Another Day, Another Wind Storm

They say that April showers bring May flowers. I’ve never found this to be true. In New England, April snowstorms bring May mud season. Apparently in Arizona, February is April, and the storms are wind and blowing dust rather than rain. I don’t know what that will bring in March, April, or May, except for the heat.

Fortunately, we had some warnings this time. Last night I put away almost my entire campsite. I rolled up the awning, put away the shower tent, put my camp chairs inside… Basically, all that remains unpacked is my motorcycle and my FastNet antenna, only because I still need them. Though I did drop my flagpole down to about 14 feet from its usual 22. It’s still tall enough to connect to the internet, but almost half its normal height so it won’t bend or break in the wind.

It would be more annoying if I wasn’t about to break camp anyway. On Friday I’m heading south to the Yuma Hamfest, the area’s big amateur radio convention. It’s as good an excuse as any to check out Yuma, which has been on my list of things to do all winter. It’s about as far away as Lake Havasu but in the opposite direction, 80 miles south of here and a straight shot down Highway 95. I plan to pick up a new antenna and mount to replace the one that stopped working along Route 66. I may even look for a replacement HF radio, since my Alinco DX-70 can hear just fine but I haven’t been able to make any contacts since the New England Forest Rally, and I’m not convinced it’s putting out as much power as it’s supposed to be. This is as good a place as any to find one.

After that, I’m off to the Imperial Dam LTVA, just to check it out. My permit for Quartzsite is valid there, too, so it’s basically “free” parking (already paid for, so effectively the same thing).

Then I have no idea what I’m up to. If I like Imperial Dam and I can use at least one of my internet hotspots, I could stick around a while. When I leave Quartzsite, I’m bringing everything with me. That way, nobody has to keep an eye on my stuff, I don’t have to come back for anything, and I’ll have my bike with me to explore the Imperial Dam area, or wherever else I go. There are possibilities. Though it’s still too cold for me most places outside of southern Arizona and California. I could even pop across the border to Mexico at Los Algodones if I feel like it. If I leave the area too soon, I’ll be contending with cooler temperatures all the way north, as they’ll likely follow me. Plus, I can always come back to Quartzsite. I know the area, and I have good internet here. I just have to watch out for the continuing wind storms, which are getting old…

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