Weather event in the desert

18 Feb, 2017; Kofa Wildlife Refuge, near Quartzite AZ

My Weather Bug app says we’re in for some excitement

Weather Bug has proven to be a very helpful application.  I get alerts for my local area and it stores multiple locations so that I can plan ahead.  The news here is high winds for a day followed by rain for a couple of days.

Hiking gets us out of the wind for the morning - a brief interlude

So, yesterday, we decided to hike up Palm Canyon to see the California fan palms.  This is the only place that they occur naturally in Arizona anymore.  The hike is pleasant and since we’re in the canyon, we get relief from the wind.

Hiking all the way up to the palms requires rock scrambling and some climbing - saw some hikers up there today.

Looking back down the canyon to a cinder cone; campers along the road on the lower left

This group was checking out all the different plants.  They let us tag along and I learned a few new plants.

The canyon was mostly in shadow but I love how the sun splashes color over the rock as the day progresses.

The wind gets stronger, luckily our rigs are positioned well

Winds here often come out of the Southeast and that is convenient.  I like to position my trailer pointing South to Southeast so that my fridge is <mostly> out of the sun and I can watch the sunrise thru my side window as I drink my morning coffee. 

This time, that positioning means that wind is hitting the trailer mostly head-on and I get minimal rocking.  Sometimes, I get it wrong and spend the night wondering if the trailer will be blown over!
I clamp down the front rock guard, lock the outside flap for the stove hood fan, collapse all the chairs and little patio table and wedge them between the trailer and the bike rack,  I weigh down the welcome mat so it doesn’t blow away and cable lock the empty water jerry cans to the bumper too.

Even so, I still get a lot of noise.  I hear a constant rattle.  Hmmm . . . I go outside, but everything seems tight – until I notice the license plate and holder.  It’s shaking and buzzing – I thought about getting some duck tape and trying to tape it quiet, but just then the rain started.

Roz, who has a weather gauge on her rig, reports that the winds last night were sustained at about 25 mph, and gusted to as high as 42 mph.  This tracks with what Weather Bug fore casted.

Hopefully, this fellow made it home before the storm hit

Yesterday afternoon I was sitting in my trailer chatting with Jeannie when suddenly she spotted this coyote trotting along purposefully just behind my trailer.  He crossed our camp site passing very close to Jeannie’s Chinook and then down the desert pavement into the distance.

We met some volunteer refuge hosts on our hike who said that coyote sightings have been pretty rare this year – lots of howling at night – but not much activity around people’s camp sites.  Even so, a reminder for us to keep the dogs (and Fay Wray) close.

How quickly the weather changes

The view of the Kofa mountains is crystal clear

Sand, blown up by the heavy winds, along with the clouds 'gray out' the mountains 

The mountains are going . . . going . . . .


Looks like a good day for indoor chores.

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