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Old 08-15-2018, 12:40 PM   #1
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Arizona boondocking advise

We are from Indiana to and plan to go west to Quartsite as soon as I 70 is clear after Christmas.
We spent 2 mos between Louisiana and Nm. last winter staying at some Cg's but mostly state parks and such.
Our rig is a 02 Tradewinds 37' cat diesel,100 gal dsl, 100 gal water, 45 grey, 40 black, 65 gal propane, 6500 lp genie. the coach currently has no inverter and I haven't decided if I will install 500w or so of panels this year or not so I haven't purchased an inverter yet.
My question is, what do the folks that have spent considerable time on BLM ground and LTVA's recommend I add or take when we head that way so I can try to be as prepared as possible for an extended stay? I am going to plumb in an LP ceramic heater of some sort so as not to need furnaces wasting the LP gas. The coach is well insulated and we heated down to freezing last winter with just one ceramic heater. We did run the rear furnace 1 night when it got down to 14 degrees to keep wet bay safe.
Any suggestions will be appreciated no matter how small they may seem.
Also, we use TMobile phones with hotspots and also a Verizon hot spot and need web access so wife can work and support my lavish lifestyle (I sold my business and retierd at 50yrs old last Jan)!
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Old 08-15-2018, 12:54 PM   #2
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A lot of what you may want depends on your lifestyle and how much power you use. The first steps I would take is to make sure you have at least 400 amp hours of battery storage. The next step would be to get an inverter that will run at least most of the 120 volt items you would want to run.


Charging the coach batteries with a generator is not all that efficient once you batteries get to about 80% charge. so topping them off with solar is a good idea, even if you dont have enough solar to run all the items you want to run off of the inverter.
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Old 08-15-2018, 12:59 PM   #3
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Congrats on the early retirement!

My only advice is to get an alternate cell phone provider. T-Mobile is good when close to civilization but not further out. We were off-roading around Lake Pleasant in March and had limited service with our T-Mobile phones. Our friend had better service with ATT.
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Old 08-15-2018, 01:57 PM   #4
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Water is key, save as much as you can: while the shower is warming up, catch water in a vessel to be used later, Don't flush w/ fresh water. Turn the pump off and use spent dish water. Our dish rinse water becomes our dish water. I use a 45 gallon bladder available at CW for fresh. I also use gallon jugs and get fresh when I go to town. Or, there is a service in Quartzsite that will dump and fill your holding tanks, at your location. You may need to give them coordinates which requires an app or gps. Or they can just dump you. I agree with solar, really works well on the desert. I do not tilt my panels because that requires me to be on the roof. Your heater is a good idea, but we never sleep with it burning. I also carry a metal 3 gallon bucket to burn my burnable trash in. Been going to Q for years but I'm done. With all the ATVs it has become too dusty. Good Luck !!
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Old 08-15-2018, 01:59 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BOOZE TRAVEL View Post
We are from Indiana to and plan to go west to Quartsite as soon as I 70 is clear after Christmas.
We spent 2 mos between Louisiana and Nm. last winter staying at some Cg's but mostly state parks and such.
Our rig is a 02 Tradewinds 37' cat diesel,100 gal dsl, 100 gal water, 45 grey, 40 black, 65 gal propane, 6500 lp genie. the coach currently has no inverter and I haven't decided if I will install 500w or so of panels this year or not so I haven't purchased an inverter yet.
My question is, what do the folks that have spent considerable time on BLM ground and LTVA's recommend I add or take when we head that way so I can try to be as prepared as possible for an extended stay? I am going to plumb in an LP ceramic heater of some sort so as not to need furnaces wasting the LP gas. The coach is well insulated and we heated down to freezing last winter with just one ceramic heater. We did run the rear furnace 1 night when it got down to 14 degrees to keep wet bay safe.
Any suggestions will be appreciated no matter how small they may seem.
Also, we use TMobile phones with hotspots and also a Verizon hot spot and need web access so wife can work and support my lavish lifestyle (I sold my business and retierd at 50yrs old last Jan)!
We boondock in the rig in my signature.Besides the generator we have 400 watts of solar, 900 amp battery bank. But the things that allow us to stay out longer is a 55 gallon barrel for fresh water and a 12 volt water pump which allows me to pump from the back of my pick up to our RV fresh water tank. Also we use a waste tote to haul out the gray water. We never fill the black tank so that's not an issue. The longest we stayed in a boondocking spot was 32 days without moving our rig. We use a Mr. Buddy heater if needed, and we never boondock in a place that requires the use of the A/C
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Old 08-15-2018, 03:09 PM   #6
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Never thought of the water bladder idea. That is a good one and on the list of things to get.
We don't use much power just morning coffee and my wife has to put in a few hours on the laptop most days, plus maybe a couple of hours of tv some nights.
As for the metal bucket, do you not set up fire pits out there? I will also put the bucket on the list!
We have around 900ah of house batteries also and they hold up well. I will probably bring along a 2000w generator to help charge batteries when needed A regular charger will be better to top off than the converter.
I considered solar a year ago and read of all of the with people 1000's of watts on there roofs and no power so I dropped that idea although I didn't understand why they needed so much to begin with. After more research I figured out that their systems are probably poorly designed and installed. The math said I would want around 600-1000 watts to have enough power, now after more research I think it is more like 500-600 designed and installed correctly. I am very familiar with 12v dc automotive systems and will probably source parts there, or on line, or both and install myself to keep busy while we are out and know it is done correctly. I just need to figure out what inverter I want and how to make it auto run the gen if necessary.
Hopefully the Verizon hot spot will function when the t Mobile doesn't. I do need to look at range extenders for these services.
We just stayed 13 days in Florida and the grey water was full the day before we left so I figure about every 10-14 days we will need to address that issue.
We have been boating with a fairly large boat for 20 yrs and 40 gal of fresh water and 20 of black are good for a week normally before we need to go in and pump out. Ice and trash is the big issue with the boat!
As far as ice, Do you bring portable machines? I have one at the boat that drops around 14 nice cubes every 7 minutes and plan to take it with us.
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Old 08-15-2018, 03:23 PM   #7
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Weredoingit, Where do you haul the waste water to? Do you transport it somewhere in your truck?
We have never been out there, so I don't have a clue how it all works.
This is exactly the information I am looking for! Thanks to all and keep it coming!
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Old 08-15-2018, 03:52 PM   #8
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The LTVAs have fresh water and dump stations available, however, it costs $40.00 for two week stay but can be extended as long as you wish, or you can pay $180.00 for I believe it is seven months.


There are 14 day "Free" areas, but they dont have fresh water or dump stations, and after a 14 day stay, you are required to move a minimum of 25 miles if you want to stay in another 14 day "Free" area, however, there is no distance limitation if you want to move from a 14 day "Free" area to a LTVA.


We stay mostly in the LTVAs and dump and fill every 10 days or so. In addition to our onboard water, we use bottled water for drinking and cooking. We have two 5 gallon jugs, that we fill in Quartzsite for a dollar or $1.25 each, if I remember correctly.
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Old 08-15-2018, 06:05 PM   #9
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600watts of solar is a standard, more is always better for cloudy days and for those like myself who don't tilt. I have never parked in the LTVA, nor have I ever registered, in any area. But I've been in AZ since '75 and I don't see a need to change, to fit the new standard.
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Old 08-15-2018, 07:17 PM   #10
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So, are the LTVA’s just open areas or are they like cg’s? Do you need reservations?
Where do you get the pass? We have a national access pass. Is that the one we need?
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Old 08-15-2018, 07:18 PM   #11
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Is there a name for any of the LTVA areas so I can check it out on google earth?
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Old 08-15-2018, 08:17 PM   #12
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For more reliable cellular connectivity - the areas west of quartzite and just south of the freeway are a good bet.

We use AT&T cellular hotspot and T-Mobile phones. When no T-Mobile connectivity we usually do have AT&T connectivity - and use Wi-Fi calling over the cellular hotspot.
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Old 08-16-2018, 12:13 AM   #13
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So, are the LTVA’s just open areas or are they like cg’s? Do you need reservations?
Where do you get the pass? We have a national access pass. Is that the one we need?
Here is a map of where the LTVA areas are. They are just open desert - no designated spots; no reservations. Pull in and pick your little piece of desert. Don't park in washes (ditches) as they will flood if it rains... and it probably will.

http://quartzsitetourism.com/explore-quartzsite/

https://www.rv-camping.org/quartzsiteaz/

https://wheelingit.us/2016/03/13/boo...quartzsite-az/ some general info about Quartzsite (Plomosa Rd. is not a LTVA area)

Get a stovetop coffee perculator & you won't need electric for it. It will also warm your RV up in the cold mornings. They make awesome coffee.


We full-timed for 16 years with only 300w solar and it was plenty for us.

Have a backup plan in mind just in case Quartzsite is not for you. It's quite different from what you've been used to, I'm sure. Plan to be there in January for the 'RV Show' which is when most folks show up. It thins out after that show which is the last two weeks of January.
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Old 08-16-2018, 01:09 AM   #14
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https://www.blm.gov/visit/la-posa-lo...m-visitor-area

Start by reading the above link.

I prefer La Posa South. Search for the visitor center on google maps. Then search for your perfect parking space to the southwest from there. But, after Christmas the best will be taken. Don’t delay your trip. There's a HUGE RV show that brings an extra half million people to town for the month of January. The sooner you get set up, the better.

The Quartzsite Sports, Vacation & RV Show :: Home

Search for Quartzsite on this forum and read all of them. Much has already been posted.

I'll PM you my phone number. Call if you'd like to chat. I can probably answer most of your questions.
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