Sadly we’ve come to the end of our boondocking escapade out by Yuma. We’ve headed off to San Diego, coming back after two cross-country trips and one full circle to the city where we started RVing over 2 years ago (it’s an odd feeling I tell you). We’re going to do some checking on our storage and complete various appointments before we go back to being desert rats again.
Although we spent an awesome week out in the boonies, I have to admit we’ve barely touched the surface of what there is to see around Yuma and Imperial County. Like all places the more you hang out, the more you discover to do and this spot is no exception. Downtown Yuma in winter is basically in RV overflow. There are RV parks, rigs and RV shops almost as fas as the eye can see. We weren’t terribly attracted to go there (with one exception, #4 below) but it’s a good shopping spot and there are plenty of other gems awaiting you if take time to explore around. Here are 5 good ones:
1/ Old Mines – We had sooo much fun exploring the American Girl Mine right next to our RV boondocking site, but there are actually a ton more in the area. This site provides the best graphical overview I’ve seen anywhere (just zoom out to see more sites and click on “google map” to overlay roads)
2/ Ghost Towns – Tumco used to house most of the miners in the area and is now a fascinating little visit. Read more here.
3/ Hot Springs – The Holtville Hot Springs are not that far from where we were camped and provide a great little spot to soak and relax. You can even set-up for the winter season at the Hot Springs BLM LVTA area.
4/ Yuma Territorial Prison – Just the kinda weird little outing that I like. A prison that opened in 1876, operated for 33 years and then shut-down to house Yuma High School kids. Read more here.
5/ Wilderness – There are tons of interesting wilderness spots around Yuma most of which are on BLM land. My top 3 picks are the Imperial Sand Dunes (over 40 miles long!), Imperial National Wildlife Refuge (a wildlife mecca in winter) and Mittry Lake Wildlife Area. The latter allows boondocking too!
And that’s just a sampling. Plenty of other bloggers have written about the area and can give you inspiration on where to go. Check out Bayfield Bunch (lots of good off-road trips here), Semi-True Tales Of Our Life On the Road (all about the salad), Where’s Weaver and many more I’ve probably forgotten (just search their blogs on Yuma). Oh and Sassy’s on ‘Da Road headed into our boondocking area just after we left so she’s there now!
With that I leave you with my last desert shots. Adieu grand plains…until we meet again.
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