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Monday, March 21, 2011

MAGICAL EVENING IN RANCHO JURUPA

Setting sun lights up Mt. Rubidoux

After an evening and early morning of rain we were treated to a great sunset tonight as we were taking our evening walk around the Cottonwood campground at Rancho Jurupa Regional Park. As the sun dipped just below the heavy cloud cover it suddenly lit up Mt. Rubidoux for just a few minutes.

Some of the darkest clouds I have ever seen, and not a drop of rain!


A beautiful sunset
After moving back and forth between site 215 and 257 for several weeks we have, at last, been granted special dispensation, and given a permanent spot, site 216. It is slightly longer than 215, and gives us enough room for the golf cart for which we are now responsible. We are approaching 2 months as fulltimers and are still loving it! We love watching the campground fill up on Thursday and Friday each week, and empty out Sunday afternoon. Each weekend has a different feel with all the different big rigs coming and going. This weekend we had a club of Fleetwood Bounder owners....I checked in most of them on Thursday during my office shift. Their club was called "La Bounders", of course.
This park is finally becoming popular as word of mouth spreads. The county employees do a wonderful job of keeping the grounds looking neatly trimmed, and virtually immaculate all the time. The grass gets mowed and edged every single week....a lot of work.



We are now permanently ensconsed on site 216....NO MORE MOVING!!!!

Over the past couple of weekends I was able to finish installing the flourescent lighting in the trailer. What a difference! With just the flip of a switch, a switch I installed, it looks like broad daylight inside the trailer now! Much easier to find my "stuff". I'll post pictures tomorrow. The great thing about this installation is that everything worked the first time. Usually electricity and I are strange bedfellows, but I am gradually becoming more comfortable working with both direct current and alternating current wiring.

One thing most of us don't talk much about is "DUMPING THE TANKS". Now that we are living in our coach fulltime that indefinable pleasure presents its ugly head much more often, like at least every 7 days. Elaine said she was going to take a shower this morning and a little voice whispered in my ear...."you ought to check the gray tank...she won't like it if it backs up into the shower". So, I turned on the ignition and pushed the toggle switch down.....uh oh....over 3/4 full...time to dump. I ran out side, opened the hatch and quickly pulled the slide valve to the up position and listened as 100 gallons of gray water gushed into the sewer connection. As I listened to the last of the gray water gurgle into the hose another little voice said "whenwas the last time you checked the black tank, huh?" Well, I think that was 8 days ago....uh oh, better check that one too. Can you believe it was at almost 100% full, too? OK, pull the handle and let it out! I recently bought a new sewer hose made by Rhino Flex System.....what a great improvement over the old leaky hose. I know, you're asking why I am so excited about dumping 160 gallons of effluent? Whenever I can add something that makes it easier and cleaner I'm excited. The great thing about being parked in one place now is that I DON'T have to disconnect the sewer hose anymore...that was the nasty part.

After all that excitement Elaine followed me in her T-Bird to our mechanic where I dropped of the Expedition to check on a coolant leak, then she dropped me at my office and went on her appointed rounds for her job. She returned arround 2:30pm for a conference call, and we hit the road for our home around 4pm. Just another day in paradise!

Thanks for reading.......

Friday, March 11, 2011

Mt. Rubidoux from the top


The Entrance

I've lived in Ontario for 25 years and probably driven by Mt. Rubidoux hundreds of times on HWY 60 as we have been headed eastbound for one adventure, or another over the years. I have intended on more than one occasion to get off the freeway and walk to the top of Mt. Rubidoux, but, to my shame, I never have. I'm sure it is the same for many of my readers. You live in an area for decades and never explore the little treasures close at hand, or even the big treasures, for that matter. There is a local winery, San Antonio Winery, less than a mile from my home that I have never visited. In fact, there are 3 wineries in the area I have never visited, but I have visited wineries in Napa and Temecula numerous times.....why on earth is that? Well, I am determined to change that.

A view of Rancho Jurupa from Mt. Rubidoux



Today was one of those days. My grandson, Christopher, spent the night with us and I asked him if he was interested in hiking to the top of "that mountain over there"......Rancho Jurupa sits in the shadow of Mt. Rubidoux.....the entrance to the park is less than 3 miles from where we now live......it's NOW, OR NEVER!



I grabbed a couple of bottles of water, a hat and we got in the car and drove over to the park entrance arriving around 9:30am. I had no idea how popular this hike is...we had to park 3 blocks from the entrance and walk to the entrance. On our way up the very gradual 2 mile climb to the top we saw probably a hundred, or more people going and coming. The days was very clear, and we arrived at the top in less than an hour. There were numerous groups of young mothers pushing their babies in strollers to the summit, and then back down. There were also numerous cyclists making the roundtrip.



There are two things you can see from a distance when viewing the top of Mt. Rubidoux. One is the enormous cross at the highest point, and an enormous flag pole with the "red, white and blue" flying in the ever present breeze. The cross, up close, appears to be 80-100 feet high. You will see my grandson at the base of the cross in one of the attached pictures. The path to the top is very smooth asphalt. The grade must be 3%, or less. It is an easy hike, even if you are not in shape.





OK, one more local treasure visited, and checked off the list!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Cabin fever!

8:30am....Thursday morning:


OK, now down to business. It's about 8:30am today, Thursday, and at 11am I will report for my first official office duty. We will initially split our time between office duty and working on the cabins. Three of the 6 cabins we are to manage during our stay here are now ready for occupancy. They are fully reserved for the 4th of July weekend. There is some minor cleaning that we will be doing over the next 2 weeks, and we (Elaine and I) must also apply the sealer to the wood paneled walls within those 3 cabins. Initially we will be getting the bathrooms sealed as they will be subject to moisture.

We have been given a golf cart to assist us in our duties, so we are not burning gasoline running around the park. Speaking of the park.......I love how empty the park is mid week....it is like living in parkland. This is our view every single day!

These are 4 of the six cabins we are managing as part of our volunteer work here at Rancho Jurupa Regional Park.

Here is our cute golf cart complete with headlights, turn signals, rear and side view mirrors, and windshield wiper.
I'll post pictures later today of the cabins, and the interior.
7:55pm......Thursday night:
As promised, here are some pictures of the living/dinning area of cabin 6. Just beyond the front portion of the cabin is the kitchen which includes a microwave, stove, oven, sink, and coffee maker.
Below is the hallway between the kitchen and bedroom where a bunk bed is situated.
Below is a view into the bathroom (opposite the bunkbeds) and bedroom with queen size bed. Rental includes sheets for the beds, comforters, and bath towels.

The rate for the cabins is $80 per night with a two night minimum. All cabins have heating and air conditioning, along with a covered porch, and outdoor fireplace/bbq. The cabins are located directly across from the "front" lake. There are actually two fishing lakes here (which I didn't know until a few days ago). The back lake is located way in the back of the park, and is not visible from the main road in.

The County of Riverside stocks the lakes twice a month with trout during trout season, and then with catfish after trout season when it gets too warm for trout.

We are really enjoying our new home, and are beginning to take time to explore. Today was my first day working in the office, and all went well considering I was by myself for most of my 4 hour shift. I've got that cash register down!!!