Off-Road Adventure – Quartzsite, Arizona – January 2018

Wednesday January 24: This morning I am up in time to get dressed, have breakfast, make a lunch, and head to the Welcome Center with Rollie by 9:00 a.m., as we are going on the Quartzfest off-road trip. We are planning on riding with someone else, as Rollie is not sure his S10 is appropriate for the off-road trip and Clifford is not planning on going; Suburban might not be ideal, either.

At the Welcome Center we see the line-up of vehicles; even though most of them are jeep-type vehicles, there are a few nice SUV’s that look a bit out of place, so Rollie asks the trip leader if his S10 is okay, and yes it is. So Rollie heads back to the campsite to get Ninja (who would otherwise have had to stay home all day) and his little pickup and we join the line-up. I count about 35 vehicles and we are somewhere in the middle.

The line-up heads south on 95, then off on a gravel road between the Crystal Hill Road and the Palm Canyon Road.

Heading toward the Kofa Mountains

Today we are heading into the northern end of the Kofa Mountains. After a few miles, we turn off the gravel onto a dirt road that winds around a rugged desert landscape, down and up rocky arroyos; a road of some sort, but quite gnarly in spots. I ask Rollie if he and the S10 are okay. He is having a great time pretending that S10 is a rugged little jeep and that it can go anywhere that the others can!

Off-road adventure – the Kofa Wildlife Refuge
Off-road adventure – the Kofa Wildlife Refuge

I take photos from the open passenger window as best I can, given that there is not a smooth moment anywhere.

Off-road adventure – the Kofa Wildlife Refuge
Off-road adventure – the Kofa Wildlife Refuge
Off-road adventure – the Kofa Wildlife Refuge

We make a couple of stops – scenic spots, including a hidden springs, for people to walk about a bit, and a longer stop for lunch in a beautiful desert canyon. Rollie and I find a couple of right-size rocks to sit on to eat lunch and relax.

Different type of tree grows at a hidden springs in the Kofa Wildlife Refuge
Off-road adventure – the Kofa Wildlife Refuge. View from the picnic lunch stop
Off-road adventure – the Kofa Wildlife Refuge. An arch is sighted
Off-road adventure – the Kofa Wildlife Refuge. Rugged mountains!
Off-road adventure – the Kofa Wildlife Refuge. Closer view of the ruggedness
Off-road adventure – the Kofa Wildlife Refuge

On the way back to camp, since the group is out of time for a stop at Crystal Hill, Rollie and I go there on our own.

Heading toward Crystal Hill

It is a fun place to hike a bit while looking for crystals and beautiful quartz pieces. We would have stayed longer, but Rollie is planning on heading to Quartzsite tonight for a music jam.

Back at camp, we have dinner, then Rollie heads to town while Clifford and I catch up on our day’s activities. I pick and edit photos for the Quartzfest photo contest, including a couple from our trip today. It sure was a fun day, but the outing tired me out and after sending pics to my girls, I to head to bed.

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