I spent most of my April in Arizona. A few incoming packages took longer than expected, and kept me near Phoenix longer than I wanted. I camped up north of Phoenix along Highway 87, and also near Sedona. Then I headed over into Nevada to meet some friends in Vegas.
Here’s everywhere I went in April (starting in Phoenix)
SPOT WEST OF 87
There’s a nice little group of spots to camp just a couple miles off hwy 87. I’ve camped here three different times. This last time, I went down to a spot that’s a bit off of the road and behind a hill. I’d never seen until midway through my second time camping there when I noticed that a few people went back there. It’s a little hairy getting there (the road is slanted sideways), and it’s really hard trying to find a flat spot down there. But it’s nice though.
I drove back into the city to pick up a package, and stayed for a few days. I watched the last few hours of the Paris-Roubaix bicycle race online. That’s always a fun race to watch.
During two of my three vehicle living test trips, I spent time in Sedona. It was one of the places where I decided I wanted my current lifestyle. I’d been looking forward to going back. I tried to go camp in the exact same place I did the first time there, but it was occupied. I ended up camping in three different spots
1 – Southwest of Sedona: (34.68848, -111.86182).
This is one of the spots that a guy at the visitors center recommended. It was ok, but not very good as far as campsites near Sedona go.
2 – West of Sedona – Forest Service Road 525c. (34.879, -111.94486)
This was close to the where I’d camped on the test trips.
It’s close to the Robber’s Roost – a cave overlooking the way into Sedona. Robbers and bandits, used to hide out here when they had some heat. From the cave, they could see people approaching from far away. Also, while in the cave, you can hear people from below very well.
3 – “Base Camp” – Forest Service Road 525 (34.82324, -111.90566)
I went into town in the afternoon, and didn’t leave until it was starting to get dark. I didn’t want to sleep in Sedona, so I came out to this spot – just about the first place you can camp on 525 when coming off the highway. Many people stop here and then find another more secluded spot somewhere along 525 or 525c and move to it.
I stayed here one night. Some balloons landed nearby.
4 – Forest Service Road 525 (34.8682, -111.90365)
Near the north end of where you can camp on 525 is closer to the hiking and biking action. A lot of the spots on 525 can hold many rigs and end up being communal spots. There were 3-5 other groups present while I was there.
The weather was absolutely perfect in Sedona and I was enjoying being there. After about a week, I was getting itchy to move on though. I had plans to meet some friends in Vegas at the end of April, so I found a place to camp on the way there.
LAKE MOHAVE – Telephone Cove
Telephone Cove has free camping. And others, I believe. It’s a pretty nice stretch of beach. The pictures below don’t show it, but it was a bit crowded here because there was some kind of boys’ camp going on at the other end of the beach.
Then I got itchy feet and drove to Vegas early.
Parking lot behind the LINQ – (36.11835, -115.16655)
Street with parking near the Link/Ferris Wheel/Westin/Cromwell (36.11631,-115.16643)
I went out to Vegas 9 days before my friends would getting there. I’m not entirely sure why I went so early other than that I felt like moving on from where I was previously. I spent the first weekend at the strip and it was fun. I’m very used to going places and doing things by myself, but I’ve only been to the strip when it was with friends. This time, on my own, it wasn’t quite the same.
After 3 or 4 days at the strip, I went and hung out around other parts of the city. Vegas isn’t all that nice. The UNLV Library is really really nice though. I go to a lot of city/county libraries, and sometimes there are too many bums there. Really stinky ones. At this library on UNLV campus, it was only students. Everyone’s clean. Everyone’s nice. The wifi is good. And it’s beautiful – I mean, just look at this place:
I think I’ll start hanging out around campuses more when I’m in cities.
My friends arrived the next weekend. While waiting for them in the airport cellphone lot, I did the following:
- Ate dinner
- Moved water from my big reserve jug to my smaller jugs that I normally use
- Repaired my sandals (Sewed part of the velcro back on one)
Once my friends arrived, I drove them to their hotel on strip, and we hung out at the strip that night. The next day we went to their pool, walked around the strip, went to the pool again, and then went to Fremont Street to gamble a bit and walk around. I think we had more fun at Fremont street than on the strip. It’s smaller and sort of simpler. You don’t have to spend 10-15 minutes walking to go from one place to another like you often do on the strip. We also walked past what’s probably considered the normal end of the Fremont street area (on the east end) and continued. There are some fun weird/hipster type places there.
The last day they were there we went over to a thrift store (a Buffalo Exchange north of the strip – it is a good one), and then back to some casino where we had lunch. Then they headed back home, and I was ready to get out of that city.
Wow. When I put all the places I went in one month into one post, it sure looks like a lot.
PLANS FOR MAY
- Go meet my brother and his girlfriend in Sedona
- Go to Grand Canyon
- Go through Northern Arizona and into Southern Utah