Tuesday, June 12, 2012


It's pronounced ah-wanga, and it's 17 miles east of Temecula, CA. That's where we have been for the past week and a half. The Escapees organization we belong to has an RV park here, and it is likely the nicest in the whole system. At least, it's the nicest we have been in so far.

The trip here was interesting. We knew it was going to be a very hot day, and I don't like towing in hot weather, so we planned to leave early. We left Mesa at 7:20 and the temperature was already over 90 degrees. By the time we reached Quartzsite for a late breakfast/early lunch at 10:30 it was already 108. When we reached Blythe at about 11 it was 112, and the temperature continued to climb as we continued west on I-10 reaching 115 by about 1 PM. We dropped down into the Palm Springs area and left the interstate and made our way up CA 111 toward CA 74. As we drove through the desert communities at the base of the mountains our thermometers both read 118, and the remote sensor mounted under the trailer read 122!

The temperature finally began dropping as we climbed up the mountain, and had fallen to a balmy 92 by the time we reached Aguanga. It actually felt comfortable! While I was nervous about traveling in such heat, we had no problems of any kind. I started the generator at around 9AM and turned on both air conditioners on in trailer, so it was only in the mid 80's inside when we arrived. I checked all my hubs with my infrared heat gun at every stop, and everything stayed in a reasonable range. The air conditioners in both the car and truck were enough to freeze us out, even in the hottest outside temperatures, but every time we got out it was like walking into a blast furnace.

All in all it was a fine trip, but not something I want to do every day. Aren't modern vehicles and RV's amazing? Can you imagine what our forefathers who traveled west in covered wagons would think about such things?

We have been busy since we have been here. Before we even got parked we were invited to join the motorcycle club here for a ride on Saturday. We rode the back roads over the mountain to Hemet where we had lunch at a Mexican restaurant. On the way back we stopped at an overlook above Diamond Lake. The trip with a group was fun. There were 7 bikes, most of them Gold Wings.

For the next couple days we explored locally, then drove over to Rancho Santa Margarita to have lunch with Marie and Adam on Tuesday. It was nice seeing them again. We had been checking Craig's List for a Droid Bionic replacement for Dianna, and found someone in Westminster who had one. We made arrangements to meet them to check it out that afternoon. The price was right and it looked new, but it did not have the SD card in it. There was also something about the way they wanted to meet that left us uncomfortable, so we passed on it.

The next day we visited two of the wineries here in Temecula. They grow some good reds here. That night we found another phone advertised for the same price in Anaheim Hills, so on Thursday we rode up there on the bike. It was in perfect condition and complete, so we bought it. Now we both have Bionics again. Dianna is very happy to have it. On the way back we stopped at the outlet mall in Lake Elsinore to do a little shopping.

On Friday we again rode to Hemet, this time by a different route, and then up the mountain to Idylwild where we had a picnic lunch. We used to backpack on Mt. San Jacinto, and one of the main trail heads we used was in Idylwild. It was fun seeing the place and enjoying the cool weather at over 5,000 feet.

On Saturday we again drove to Marie and Adam's to meet with them and Julie. None of them had ever been geocaching so we took them for their first experience. There was a trail with several caches that we could walk to from their house. Everyone had a good time looking for caches, and we found all but one. Adam barbequed chicken for lunch.

Monday we rode to the little mountain tourist town of Julian, famous for its apple pies, to have lunch. Of course, we had pie for desert. The route we followed took us all the way around Palomar Mountain. We are only a few miles from the observatory there and can see the white dome from many places along the road near here. On the way back we stopped at the Pala Casino for a break. Free soft drinks in the casino were welcome.

Today we rode down to San Diego. First we went to Coronado Island and visited the Hotel del Coronado. We had stayed there many years ago for a conference. It is one of the oldest hotels in California, made all of wood, and is quite a landmark. After having lunch in a nearby restaurant we rode to the Cabrillo National Monument on Point Loma. It is on the point overlooking the entrance to San Diego harbor and is the place where the Spanish first set foot on the coast of California in about 1540. By the time we headed home it was almost rush hour but we had no difficulty. The Burgman runs with freeway traffic at 70 to 75 with no problems.

Both of us are feeling a little saddle sore. We have put over 750 miles on the scooter in the week and a half we have been here, plus about 450 miles on the car. Tomorrow we plan to rest and prepare for moving to Lancaster on Thursday. That puts us closer to family and friends we want to see. We're not sure how long we will stay there before moving farther north; probably a week and a half or so.


  1. We are in Escondido as well! Enjoy your time here.

  2. I know Heather. We thought about you as we rode through there.

  3. My, you have been busy since you rode out of Mesa. Sounds like you are quickly making up for the stall in your retirement activities you had this past couple months.

  4. Sounds like your explorations are similar to ours, but about 50 degrees warmer. And of course you're tortoises.