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My Bermuda Triangle
Written By: OC Fotoguy
*Click images below to view larger versions.
 My Bermuda Triangle
 My Bermuda Triangle
 My Bermuda Triangle
 My Bermuda Triangle
 My Bermuda Triangle
 My Bermuda Triangle
 
What’s going on? I’m amongst all this gorgeous nature, creatures, plants, and scenery, but my brain is complaining! I’m getting irritated by feeling stones through my sandals that are poking the soles of my feet and when I ride my bike the washboard effect of the dirt roads is jarring me more than I want to put up with. Usually I love silence and being where all I can hear is natural sounds, but here I’m complaining about not being able to get any radio stations in the day time. What’s up? Well, it’s happened before; after I’ve been meandering around for three months, I burn out. 
All this spectacular stuff doesn’t impress me anymore. Well, if that’s what is happening, then going to British Columbia, which will entail thousands of miles of additional driving and at least another month of travel, is in trouble. If I’m ready to go home and pull the plug on my Adventure XV in early March, that’s fine, because I like Ocean City, catching and eating crabs, walking the beach and the boardwalk, and enjoying all those places that offer wonderful live music (as opposed to dead!), and ACBs at Happy Hour. Plus, it should be warming up in O.C. soon.
Whichever way I proceed, it’s still at least 2,000 miles from here (Cibola NWR, www.fws.gov/southwest/refuges/CibolaNWR just south of Blythe, Ca.) to O.C., so there’ll at least be stops in the Mojave Desert, Las Vegas, and hopefully browse through lots of thrift shops and little towns on the way home. Plus, I’m not ready to give up completely on here. I saw a little restaurant on the road to here when I arrived that sure looked like it had the potential to have some really good local food; and I moved to a new overnight spot yesterday that’s close to the Hart Mine Marsh and a sanipot. Where I had been parked at night I didn’t have that luxury, but yes, I know how to use a shovel and if I go to British Columbia, I’m sure as remote as it is there I’ll be in that situation again.
Now, I’m at the end of the Marsh near where there is leased land to farmers, who grow many acres of alfalfa for nearby cattle feed lots. The Marsh, that includes a lake that is miles long and in places at least a half mile wide with a figure-eight shaped five-mile long dirt road, draws many kinds of water birds (herons, egrets, avocets, glossy ibis & more) and mammals, including bobcats, coyotes, deer, and wild burros.  The farms are habitat to critters that hawks like to feed on. This morning I saw a lizard where a hawk was flying low over the field. I thought the lizard was dead til I noticed it was gripping the stick I had picked it up with. I moved it off the road, because I figured it was easy prey for a hawk there.
After my morning walk I intended to ride my bike to the restaurant, but the wind was just too strong for ten miles plus of pedaling, so I decided to drive my truck that carries my nest (slide-in camper in the bed) and overnight somewhere close to the restaurant. As I pulled up to the restaurant I couldn’t tell if it was open, but there were  a couple of cars at one end, so I walked around the building to see. I couldn’t see any customers, but there were tables and chairs, and a TV was on. Maybe I could watch some college basketball as I enjoyed some local food. I found a door that was partially open. I looked inside, but there were no people, I was reluctant to go in because there was a shot gun leaning against the wall near the door.  Plus, there was a huge Great Dane-sized dog watching me. I didn’t feel very welcome, so I left. I was hoping good food and a good time would recharge my interest in staying at Cibola. That sure didn’t happen, so I found a spot to park by the Colorado River near the road to Blythe. 
After a short walk the next morning to where I’d seen a big horned owl the year before, I hit the road for the spectacular Kelso Dunes in the Mojave Desert by way of Needles, Ca. I knew there was a great carry-out food spot, there, the Burger Hut, that makes delicious Quesadillas, but I forgot to get gas near Blythe, when I was near Arizona where the gas was a dollar less a gallon than California. I found the Burger Hut closed and bought enough gas so I’d have at least a hundred miles more than I needed to get to Las Vegas.
The year before I almost ran out of gas as I neared Vegas and didn’t want that to happen again.  Last year a wrong turn at Amboy, Ca., made me back track using more gas than I’d planned. Amboy is the major “town” in the area where there is only a gas station and abandoned buildings in the middle of the desert. This time I got on US 40 at Needles and got confused with which turn-off I should take because several exits had signs for the Mojave Desert N.P., but my California map, which I didn’t have last year, kept me on course. I’ve made more driving mistakes in this area over the years than any place else I go.  The extra gas I’d bought was a peace of mind purchase!  On my drive up Ca. 95 (there’s also an Az. 95  just on the other side of the Colorado River, that adds confusion) I was amazed by all the remote retirement communities in the middle of nowhere, where there were no towns or services, just desert, and country music, religious programs or Mexican language on the radio. Someone also bought the London Bridge and moved just north of here! I wonder how many people in the retirement communities got duped into buying a piece of paradise!
Also, knowing what time it was here, is hard for me. Arizona is on Mountain Standard not Day Light Savings Time, California is on Pacific Day Light Savings Time and Nevada is on Mountain Day Light Savings Time, so radio stations from the three states, which are close together, all give a different time, but hardly ever say where they’re broadcasting from! As I was filling my tank with gas, a guy working at the station told me one of the front tires looked low on air and said he could sell me another. It was a ploy to run up a big bill!  This area is my Bermuda Triangle! 
I was glad to pull into the Kelso Dunes, where I’d over nighted several times, so I felt comfortable. There was one other camper and I heard voices nearby, so I went out to say hello. They were from British Columbia and lived about a hundred miles east of where I was planning to get off the ferry. I immediately asked them what kind of weather I could expect there in April. They smiled and shook their heads and said, why do you think we’re here?!!?  They recommended against me going there in April. That was more nails in the lid of the coffin for my Canada plans!        -Bob R  o.c.FotoGuy
more photos @ www.picasaweb.google.com/o.c.fotoguy200 & facebook.com/OCfotoguy; PHOTOSAsYouWantThem.biz; articles @ Coconuttimes.com  
 
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