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RE: What is boondocking and dry camping?

I always used these terms interchangably, never, ever seeing them defined. We camped for seven winters in Mexico, on the same beach. Year by year, it got more popular with RV'ers, usally through friends or relatives joining the group there. At first we could get a good spot if we arrived mid-January but by the seventh season we arrived November 12th, just in time, as there were only about 15 places and Rv's almost always parked to get the best view of the water, never just one window, back or front. People got along well,we made a lot of enduring friends, but where we camped was exceptional - yes, no electricity, no facilities but we were 40 feet from a coral beach at 18 degrees north latitude and the winter's water temperature ranged from 85 in November to about 78 at the end of February at the time the weather began to get hot and humid, and people began leaving for inland Mexico's higher elevations. Coming from southwestern coastal Canada, our drive was nearly 3500 miles but so worth it! Rv's had to have solar to stay, it was taboo to run a generator - listening to the small, gentle waves making shore, or having the wind rattle something that could mean something stronger might start up, so you would go out to put up the awning (and usually some added sunscreen material). A few hundred yards farther away was the larger beach where most of the touring folks and locals liked the wave action ( and where we would go to boogie board and at times eat at the palapa restaurents) and we could hear the Pacific waves crash down. "Our beach" called Playa Mora, on the much larger Bahia Tenacatita, was sometimes referred to as "the Aquarium,"and such a pleasant place to enjoy some retired years, but only the winters. We snorkled over and around the coral for an hour most every day, always something new to see in that water. the various schools of fish, the Spotted Eagle Rays were an incredible sight, not nearly as big as the Mantas, but very interesting when the chance came to see one or two check out the area. Never saw a shark there. whales were seen far out in the bay every few days, young manta rays also, as they would fly out of the water by the dozens. We shopped 40 kms south on Mexico Hwy 200 usually each Saturday. Small vehicles would come to sell vegetables and fruit right to our small area, as would the beer truck, the propane truck (for the refrigerater for us, its only use) we had a small bottle we kept outside where we cooked and I made coffee each morning as dawn broke over us.The water truck was invaluable for its purified water in 5 gallon jugs, called garafons. Some went into the motor home's large tank, one came inside where a commonly available hand pump could be used, and outside, one garafon for the outside kitchen and another placed beside the shower tent where the sun would heat it and a spare water pump would allow for two nice showers after a swim, from the bottle. The Laundry man would visit on a Monday and return on the Wednesday, the clothes cleaned beautifully and neatly folded - what a treat for the ladies on the beach, to miss out on that, although generally once a week we would drive to the nearby river, put the vehicles in 4 wheel drive and wash them and whatever matts and big items that needed attention, all the while bird watching with binoculars and a spotting scope on a tripod. by the time we returned to the beach the vehicles would be pretty dusty again. That was Mexico! A BlueBoy joined the refrigerator as invaluable, too. a bi - weekly eventfor us was to removed the blackwater and take the blueboy out of the area, and drain it and flush it out with sea water, in an area where coconut palms grew and cattle would graze and nobody lived, houses were komerters away, unseen and the crashing Pacific was a very good stone's throw over a bank. Back on our beach we used to dig at least two pits away from the water, and into the bushes, for anyone visiting the beach who needed one, complete with toilet seats and large containers of lime which kept the odour and flies down and cleaned the area up up for visitors and everyone. We paid an older Mexican gentleman about 5 dollars a day to keep order in the area, and deal with a man who was said to own the land. It was doubtful if that man owned the land near the water, as Mexican law stipulated that the Republic owned the land from the water to several meters up onto land. And our area was an ithmus, water on both sides, calm where we were but rough about a hundred yards away. But the roadway in could have been his, and farther on, on three wooded hills, he may have had jurisdiction and ownership. One year he presented an ultimatum for our man to tell us. He would in one week bulldoze and drop gravel, piled high over the road to our beach, so we would have to leave or be stuck there. It was all recinded later in the week, but not before we had taken him at his word, and reserved and paid for, a week at a campgound a couple of kilometers away. (It had no coral beach!!) We had lots of fun and there was always interaction with groups of Mexican people who also came, especially just after Christmas. Tents would be set up in great numbers. On our first Christmas we measured a turkey, the right size to be placed inside a neighbour's frige until the big day. We had needed to drive all the way to Manzanillo, Colima, for that, about an hour's drive if I remember. A bigger city, more stores to shop. The day after Christmas a throng of about 60 folks mostly from Guadalajara arrived, set up tents near, and their head honcho presented us with a big bottle of fine tequilla! they ever offered for us to join them as they took over our Man Chuey;s tiny palapa for their kitchen. we didn't go but did think the tequilla was good. They were back the next year, we talked to them more, sang songs with them, taking turns singing. One chap had been working in California. Coming with them from the city were some ATV's and the chap from California had a new Canadian made one, the CanAm, made by Bombardier, and was happy to meet Canadians - although we lived 4,000 km from Quebec. I like writing, and in this bit of our personal history, I find it brings back memories of some good times. Later on the beach we so loved was raided by some 60 or so state Police in riot gear with automatic weaponry, and evicted permenantly everyone from the beach, then placed double wire fencing around the road cut-off, and left guard to keep everyone out even extending the guard to patrol the beach and prevent water landings. The went on for over four years and finally they allow folks back, after years of court actions. Somebody had wanted to build a huge hotel, and claimed he owned the main beach, outright. Most of our group gave up Mexico travel, and met up in southern Arizona after that and had a christmas reunion attended bymore than 20 who had been on that beach. Great!
daveB110 05/19/19 12:30am Public Lands, Boondocking and Dry Camping
RE: Roaming and boondocking in Mexico

We did eight winters in Mexico, only the final one without boondocking most of the time. We did hear from close friends who had been near scurmishes, and were quite shaken by them. But never for ourselves, we had been a bit on edge a couple of times driving to and from destinations. That's about it. Loved the warm weather and the warm waters found 900 miles south,and beyond. Loved the people, got to know some around our usual spot, 1200 miles south on the Pacific mainland, would never camp out near a border, always made substantial "tracks" right after the border crossing. We have stayed short durations in All-Inclusives, just to visit with fly-in friends enjoying short trips, themselves. But always could hardly wait to get back to "our" beach! No electricity, nobody running a generator, just enjoying, percolating coffee outside while dawn breaks, Bike rides through a farmer's fields to a tiny, out of the way, restaurent for breaKfast, followed by swims around the coral, showers in our shower tent once the sun had warmed the garapfons, a cold Dos Equis from the fridge, friends congregating along the beach, birthdays, Christmas dinners (measure the turkey to fit in someone's fridge) New Years'Eve festivities, having the Launder Man pick up clothes and have them look like new when returned the next day, once a week shopping in a nearby town, greeting the Beer truck for the two new boxes of beer brought to the doorand exchanged, or the man with the water truck for the exchaange of garafons (5 gallon jugs) of water, washing the 4X down near the river and exploring the countryside's backroads with a couple of other vehicles from the beach. To pay for this was a donation of 5 dollars a day and the must do job of removing the blackwater away, placed judiciously near an area where the cattle roamed and into the coco palms - a small price to enjoy the paradise for the winter. We could stay there forever, but for the heat that beat us out, about the first day in March. Gone to higher ground to again enjoy the cooler interior magic of Mexico, this time in a campground balanerio (hot spring). Almost 2 years of our lives, fully enjoyed!
daveB110 04/20/19 12:53pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: Comanche, British Bride and British SIL on Vancouver Island

Thanks Grey Mountain, I was sad to hear that you were not going to Vancouver Island, last year. But happy that you posted again. But sad that Sister in Law, Marrion, had just passed on. But, again, quite happy for you that you now have a brand new great grand niece! All the best, Lonnie and Hazel! By the way, as a post script, we live on the Mainland of B.C., but when we stand on a chair, then look out a window on a fine day, we can see southern portions of Campbell River! You will come back again- and again and again, at least in good thoughts, just as we do, with memories of Pacific Mainland of Mexico, and more recently, of your own great country! "Hemingway once wrote, "If you have ever lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go, for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast!" I think RVing is just that as well and, the people you meet in the places you go, are your Moveable Feast!!
daveB110 04/08/19 04:32pm RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: Baja Sunrise

Been to Brisas, the camping spot on the beach near San Jose del Cabo, Baja California Sud, not far from what was, in 1999, the Presidente Hotel. We had wandered in off the beach a memorable day as we saw our first, small turtle heading for the water! We had lunch at that camping site. Friends we made some five years later had been at that spot for several years, likely at that time we were there, in fact. We had flown in to San Jose did some all inclusive, and then RV camped with my brother and his wife in their Motor home. Never have been to La Brisas, the one which you say is north of Puerto Vallarta. You are right about the winter's water temperature in the waters around both states off Baja California. Too cold. On the Mainland side, we never stayed long in Mazatlan either, not warm enough there. It was only a short layover on the way to better things.
daveB110 04/02/19 09:20pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: Baja Sunrise

I recall La Brisas, as walk in visitors in 1999, I think just for hamburgers (we flew to Baja in those days) We later met former winter visitors for several years there, at "our beach" south of PV. That year, 2004, was their first trip to the Pacific Mainland coast - by Walter and Hazel. But it sounds like you will have had missed them, though. We met another couple who had winters at Brisas, at Villa Corona, from Idaho, but they had left even later than the Albertans, I think. Sounds like it was a popular place, back in the day.
daveB110 03/28/19 12:29pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: Baja Sunrise

We once paid 50 $ for a night at Lo de Marcos, to visit with some friends who always stayed there in those days. (Once visited these same folks while they were in Bucerius, with the directions given, as we drove our motor home, to "turn right at the fourth light." We did, and found ourselves crossing the river! Lucky it was nearly dry that fall, and didn't pose nearly the problem as the cobble stone roadways farther into town. We finally gave up driving on the boulders, and walked over to see them.
daveB110 03/27/19 07:07pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: Sault Ste. Marie to Montreal

We had a good visit to Ottawa by staying at an RV park south of the city, then driving to a Bus station for the bus ride into Ottawa (Those buses into town have there own two lane road into the city and very close to the Canadian Parliament buildings. You can tour these. A popular attraction is the Canadian War Museum, which has displays that document wars which include the Boer War, WWI, WWII prominently. We took local buses to get there and enjoyed not driving pretty much the entire day.
daveB110 03/07/19 10:23pm RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: Mex 57 traffic

We loved our only visit to Zacatecas. Our only advice would be to not try to drive in the city. Maybe park at the gondola parking (of course with your towed vehicle) and take taxis down town. Then catch the double decker sight seeing bus. We were the only people doing that then and had a good fellow doing the explanations along the route. We had told the driver we would want to take their tour, but only after we had our lunch, and they were there waiting for us (it seemed). We don't usually look at the churches anywhere we go, but one there was extrodinary, with the work done on the outside. We did drive into the city, but the roads are so narrow and unless you knew the city your chances of getting lost are very high- we needed a taxi to show us out of town as we were hopelessly lost!
daveB110 03/03/19 10:32am RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: Puerto Pensaco Report

We enjoyed the Reef for about 3 weeks, but on the cheap, 6 years ago. We saw some preliminary activity towards planning construction of the breakwater to get Cruise ships to come there. How is that, these days? We enjoyed Rocky Point and liked how they treated us then, out on the sand, as we were three rigs, all confirmed boondockers both much farther south, and in Arizona's BLM lands. We had made the trip there from a month in San Felipe, doing the trip through the Altar Desert. Having always rushed to go farther south in Mexico, we were encouraged to find the Mexican people in the north just as friendly and accomadating as they had been another 1,000 miles farther south.
daveB110 02/16/19 12:14pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: Safety concerns and crash data for Class A's?

After driving a 30 foot gasser A around for 15 years (same one) and putting on over 100,000 miles (and about 20,000 in Mexico) I have enjoyed the drive. No accidents, never hit anyone and nobody ever hit me. Lucky. One day I found myself in a sudden snow storm, with, like practically all other Class A's, no grippy tires, there was a slight downhill to the next town, and the semi trucks hadn't slowed a bit coming towards us. I knew we'd be toast if I slid. But I didn't. Quickly found a place to park while it snowed a foot and a half, on April Fools Day. Not safe, but they're enjoyable when you keep accident free.
daveB110 01/27/19 12:36pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: BC snow tire regulation

The better route at this time of the year, is to use the Trans Canada Highway, Hwy 1, as it goes to Hope as well,(and the Lower Mainland) With the Coq elevation at 4,400 feet, and Hope at about 200 feet, you have a lot of hill there, bur half that on that stretch of Hwy 1 (not sure of exact elevation). The Coq has problem in summer with overheated vehicles, and the steep, long runs down hill, sometime tax the braking of some vehicles. If you require stopping to visit some place off the Coq I would drive from Kamloops to Merrit through to Priceton. On the Hope Princeton there are some steep, high areas, and a steep hill going up out of Princeton and a long one not as steep getting close to Hope, make it not a really good option for winter driving, either. The No.1 would be my route to the coast. The road going through to the Pemberton and Whistler areas has a very steep hill constructed with a switch back and at least a 15 % grade. Not good. Even in summer the brakes take a beating going down that hill unless you have an exaust brake in a diesel, with a heavy load.
daveB110 01/23/19 03:16pm RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: BC snow tire regulation

There is no reason for taking the Coq, with its long hills and 4,400 foot elevation, when highway No.1 the TCH is lower and not so hilly. Time and time again we hear of troubles on that hwy, yes a short cut, but at what price? In winter, fall and spring we get ice and snow at times, in places there; in summer the heat gets to vehicles not ready for it, and it will be no fun for them, then! and what goes up must come down - and hope is only about 200 feet above sea level, so you've got 4,000 feet to come down if heading to the coast, and that run is almost all at once! Give your rig a break, don't make it do that unless you have to. and you don't.Take HWy 1, the trans Canada highway. And regarding the Connector that links the Cog into the Okanagan, it is higher yet, than the coq itself.
daveB110 01/21/19 12:59am RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: Mexican Gas Shortage

Things seemed to be on the upswing as outside companies, banned since the 1930's takeover and creation of the Pemex monopoly. Now this, Price hikes and supply shortages - and escalated theft of fuels: a death toll for many attempting to steal from a pipeline. Who is behind this ?
daveB110 01/19/19 12:26pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: Mexican Gas Shortage

This highlights their price of fuel and how residents have been dealing with it. 66 people kmown dead, is a news report this Saturday morning, and many missing. All it takes is a lighted cigarette, or somebody else tapping in for another hole, and a spark. Spillage around, and fumes, are a given. Death just waiting to happen. What a way to die.
daveB110 01/19/19 12:15pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: Forum dead

We missed out on our last chance to enjoy the place we had been used to driving 1200 miles into Mexico for, you might know the area, of Tenacatita, on your way to Manzanill0, if you go all the way on 200, to get to Zihaut (I would surmise that many would avoid the northern stretch to Lazaro Cardenas, one of the most scenic roads to be found anywhere - due to security reasons.) But Tenacatita was evacuated, the beach cleared by force, by Jalisco State poilce with riot gear and automatic rifles on August 4th, 2010.houses and almost all the palapa restaurants were bulldozed and armed guards thereafter held the beach for next 4 years. It ended for us, our visits to park near the coral beach and its warm water that teemed with life, was over. 800 people were said to make a living there but the wire fences kept everyone except the guards, out.
daveB110 01/18/19 06:07pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: Forum dead

Maybe RVing is not quite as popular. The world is changing, I mean our world, which includes many older people. We used to camp up in Senators Wash, just north of Yuma. Talking to the folks in charge one day in 2010, we were told that, at one time years before, the area had 4,000 RVs there. What we saw back then and the next year, our last there, was more like 200 or 300 in the area. We've missed Mexico, haven't been for 5 years now. The memories keep it alive for us, and meeting up with those we know from there, none who now go back, but many still get out of Canada and meet up at various places in southern California and Arizona. Three years ago 20 of us, from as far away as Ontario,had Christmas together, as we used to do on the beach, but with some amenities such as a large meeting room to enjoy. Only a hand full had returned to Mexico in recent years, none lately. We had done 7 years to one spot on a beach, but lots of things to do and see, on the travels there and return. The nicest thing about it all were the people we met including the wonderful Mexican folks. And the perfect weather.
daveB110 01/18/19 05:34pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: route out of nogales?

WE ran for the border when Iraq was declared war on, in 2003. It was never closed. Take it easy, sorry, we used Sonoyta in those days. good luck.
daveB110 01/11/19 11:36am RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: Crossed in Laredo, Oct 19.

We had two new windshields on our motor home replaced, each time removing the sticker carefully, onto a sheet of plastic, and then repalced it ouselves onto the new glass. Not much to it at all. We never have had anyone really look at it as far as we know. A friend who had a windshield on his motor home with the top portion blacked out, placed his behind the blacked-out top, not realizing it. They were never was questioned, although it was unreadable from the outside. Another incidence was that, when a discrepancy was discovered in his motor home's numbering of its identification tag, which required the search to go to the manufacturer, a sticker was never given, once this was cleared up. The driver relied on his paperwork, but was never asked about the absence of the sticker in subsequent several years traveling to Mexico.
daveB110 01/05/19 12:24pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: South of Manzanillo Night Time Temperatures

We did have one very memorable day with weather at Tenacatita. It was near the end of January we were watching the semimfinals of NFL 2004 Football season, and the Steelers were losing this game to the Patriots, a final game for the Steelers before the Superbowl. It was playing out on a TV outside of Walter and Haazel's rig about 30 feet from ours, by his Star Choice satellite feed. While watching, out of the corners of everyone's eye, across the Bahia six or eight miles, we had been seeing lightening flashing. When the game was in its final series of plays, things seems to change for a monment around us, when sounds got hushed, a bit of a breeze hit and a wave of warmth replaced that, and in just a second or two, the wind came up with a blast- a quick call to action, and I ran to get the awning back up. I was only a few steps away but the wind hit with such heavy force, Marguerite had rushed out and was holding the awning but losing her grasp, and with my help we still couldn't get it rolling, finally lost it to a large tear. The rain was still coming at us in buckets, my glasses seemed submerged and I cut my foot on a broken glass candle holder. Al and George, my brother, came to help us, got the awning hardware down off and stowed and the three of us moved on to help others. Eugene, from western Montana, already had help but needed more and even our crew of four could barely hang on to the awning while he went onto the roof to remove a tarp so it would roll up. Farther towards the end of the beach a couple had had trouble with the wind too, their truck and slide-in camper had received a long gouge in it, but their awning was okay. It was two weeks before we had our awning working again, aand we had suffered some by it beingstuck under the motor home! A very nice materieal, better than the original, was found in Manzanillo. But the seller had sewn it wrong, by not using the original rubber back - They had only been used to sewing coverings to use on stands used on the beaches. We undid the stiching and took the rubber string to another man closer, in Melaque. had to get him early, as he reserved the rest of the day to hit the bars. From that day on, when ever somebody saw lightening, they put out a call along the beach so that campers knew to put their vulnerable items under cover, and have their awnings up. But we never had a similar blow during the next five winters there.
daveB110 12/21/18 09:29pm RVing in Mexico and South America
RE: South of Manzanillo Night Time Temperatures

I remember well the feeling during a March afternoon in Melaque where we were parked. No trying to run the AC there. The humidity got stifling and i got to thinking I wanted to get outta here! That afternoon we had a visitor from somewhere up north, a lady, asking if we would help her go north, no can do we said. But I'm sure she felt the same way we did. About that year a man from Guad, hired a bulldozer to clear land around the coral area of Tenacatita. Lots for sale? We wondered who would buy, leaving it for eight months of the year, likely, and coming back to find out, just what was left? We had seen the abandoned luxury hotel a couple of miles away, anything of value missing of course. Just human nature.
daveB110 12/20/18 11:05am RVing in Mexico and South America
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