The dreaded Siskiyous Pass ... no Snow Hurrah!!!!!
And we slide into California ... good weather ahead !!!
Mt Shasta ... our last view of huge mountains ... Come on on desert, cactus and sun!!!
Sunday Morning LA Traffic. Just a little stressful managing Harvey through all this. No quarter given driving!!!
Robbie Katz from Whiterock -- and fellow PacNat -- solving all the problems of the world sitting in the National RV parking lot
Networking in the National Customer Lounge waiting for the return of our rigs. Get lots of useful tips here!!!
Stanley and Thurston acclimating to the wait in Perris
These guy sure enjoy this lifestyle
As we wait for Harvey to come out of the repair bays, the Air Force plains from March Air Base come for landing. Many of the planes here are involved with training new pilots or refueling passing planes.
As you head east towards Palm Springs, the hills "are alive" with hundreds of wind generators. We tried to get a tour but for some reason the office was closed both days we checked.
Look like a huge advertisement for Mercedes Benz??
Old and new bases .. I wonder what the differences are?
We liked Desert Hot Pools. A nice park with fantastic hot tubs. It is located just on the outskirts of Palm Springs
Harvey in Casa Grande. Note the clouds ... cold and windy
Lots of opportunity to stay inside ... Stanley does love to cuddle
The weather remained un-seasonal. Last year it was in the 80's at this time ...sigh
There are peacocks on the other side of the fence and they love to fly in for dinner.
If you ever hear the call of a peacock you will never think of them again as a beautiful bird
Steve and Maryjo's new 5th wheel. They flew the Canadian Flag in our honour...
Nice sunset over the kids play ground
Andy and Karen's airpark home.
Andy and Karen inside the hanger which is part of their home
Andy does his own mechanics on his plane. he actually took a 4 year course to be able to do it. Now that is true dedication!
I stole this picture from Andy's web page (hope he doesn't mind). As he flies over Southern Arizona, he is constantly taking pictures. Let me tell you, they are impressive shots. This is his hobby that he is trying to turn into a small business so if you want to see more of his work go to ... More shots are there and they can be purchased.
The entrance to the Pima Air and Space Museum in Tucson. Note the flag at half mast in honour of the passing of President Ford
This is the front of the entrance. Impressive bit of art work eh?
The bone yard ... 4,500 mothballed aircraft.
The guide says that these planes can go from moth balls to supersonic in under 10 days ... less if it is a crisis!
This was taken from the bus we were riding in on the tour. It is hard to see just how far back the rows of planes stretches. This one is a A10 Warthog. The Air Force is upgrading them so they will be in use for another 15 years.
One of the B52's not broken up as a result of the SALT talks with the Russians. Still can be brought back into service if necessary
These B52's are HUGE. The picture doesn't show the size ...
Rows and rows of planes
More B52's
Two of the first Airforce One Presidential planes
This one was Kennedy's
An old TWA passenger plane
Refueling mid air is a big thing, and the was one of the first tankers.
If you look very carefully at the front of the plane on the right, you can see two people standing there. This give quite the perspective on the actual size of these tankers
Again note the two people standing at the front. These prop jobs have been replaced now by jets of a similar or even larger size
You can just make out the nozzle at the tail of the plane that drops down and the refueling jet slips up to make connection. Not an easy flying trick.
More jets than I can remember. The guide just rattled on with the name, size and use of each plane. No way I could ever remember all that detail
This is one of the work horse choppers of Vietnam ... Baby Huey
Now this was truly impressive. In a hanger sits a fully restored WWII B17 bomber. You can stick you head inside and see how the crews bombing Europe lived.
Hard to tell the size, but my head came up to the top of the yellow ladder.
The bombardier's home ... right in the nose ... just a little vulnerable...????
This is looking inside to the bombardier's seat. Behind me and up was the pilot chair and beside that were the two waist gunners
Can you pick out where 8 of the 50 cal machine guns are placed?
Don't forget the tail gunner...
This is hard to make out, but i'm looking mid ship back to the tail gunner. A long way to crawl on your hands and knees
The B52 in the back of the shot sort of hovers over the smaller attack jets in the foreground
I forgot why I took this shot but the sharke's mouth on the nose of this jet reminded me of the famous General Chenault's Flying Tigers of the AVG in the 1930's in China. I wonder if there was a tie in here?
The entrance to the Titan Missile Base south of Tucson
On the surface this is all that you can see ... but underground ....
This is the guide who was going to take us through this site. Thankfully, they gave us hard hats ... many of the passages had pipes etc in the most inopportune spots. Saved my head several times
This is where part of the necessary rocket fuel was brought in. The other part of the fuel was trucked in on the other side of the site for obvious reasons
This was the radar warning gizmos on the surface. If they picked up anything, a buzzer went off down below and with one call the security police arrive with guns drawn. Most of the times they were called was because of wildlife jumping over or going under the fence.
These are the rockets that propelled the missile
I always thought that they would be larger somehow?
The blue sign indicates a rather important valve. If the rocket is to be launched with its 400 mega ton atomic bomb, a switch from down below is triggered and the valve opens to mix the rocket fuels. At this point there is no turning back. The assigned target is wiped out ... no recall possible
The re entry capsule to keep the warhead from burning up
The other location for the delivery of the second half of the rocket fuel
Elsie Having a look at the missile from the surface
The rocket is 100 feet tall. This is what it looks like from the top.
In accordance with the Salt talks, this missile was taken out or its silo, brought to the surface, had a large hole put in its side and left for a week so the Russians could photograph it from their satellite. Then it was returned to its silo and restored as a museum.
It does look menacing ....
Also in accordance with the Salt talks, the sliding cover which was usually closed was open half way and then cemented in that location.
You can see the hydraulic arm that used to move the many ton cover has been stopped by that very large piece of concrete
This was the only way down ... The security to get down there was really strict. Three different places you had to stop and supply passwords, have the correct codes and be on the TV setup in the command bunker below.
Some interesting reading if you can make it out.
This is the first check point. You can see the size of the door portal and the passage beyond
Here one of the tour people is asked to move it. As you can see even with the thickness of the door, this lady still could move it quite easily. It weighed over 10 tones
This is the Command Bunker
The clock on the top behind the guide is the launch clock
Here he is explaining just what would occur when the call came to launch from the President
Note the sign. This is a two man zone. There had to be two people to provide a check and balance at all times in the most strategic places
Here Elsie is reacting to the launch enactment. The call has come in from the President and the codes had to be retrieved
This is the red box that contained the launch codes. Two locks, two people ...
The codes are retrieved
The procedure begins
Waiting for the two keys to be inserted ... one on the panel in front and one to the far left. Over 8 feet between the two keys so one man could not activate by himself
A last minute check of the codes ... And it is all over baby ... only thing left is watch the lights to make sure missile launches
You just watch the lights come on, and know that life as you know it, is over.
At this point the missile is gone, and all you can do is try to prepare for the Russian incoming missile. This was a prime target for the Russians, and everyone knew that within minutes it would hit.
We were kind of glad when the count down was over. It sure raised goose bumps on me I can tell you. This is the 100 foot connecting passage that linked the bunker with the actual silo
Here we are about 50 feet underground in the silo. Dummies are in place to show how ongoing rocket maintenance was accomplished
Looks rather lifelike?
Here we are looking upwards to the surface from about 50 feet down. There is still 50 more feet of rocket below
The other three sites in this area have been filled in as a result of the Salt Talks. Because of the amount of concrete used to build it, one of the sites is now used as a helicopter landing pad. Another one was bought by a guy as a site for his house. The command bunker was not filled in so he uses it as a wine cellar. There is an elevator to it ....
The linking passage going back to the stairs to the surface
When we got to the surface, everyone was strangely silent. You read about these things, but when you see just how easy total extinction could have been accomplished .... I still have shivers
Quartzsite ("Q") from the air. During the summer about 500 people live here. Over the winter, they claim that over 1 million visit. With this site, I can believe it
As you can see, the main tent is not raised here, and look at the number of RV's parked and waiting
The RV's parked along side the tent are around 40 feet long. This gives an idea of the length of the vender display area
Elsie took this from Harvey the day we were leaving. Weather had certainly improved ...
We were stopped on the overpass on the I 10 at the only light on the highway to Yuma. We had to wait about 10 minutes to go 50 yards
You can see the vehicles and trailers of the vendors. Looks a lot like a huge PNE
Lots of people and "stuff" to buy
All these tents are vendors selling something to someone, they hope
The main tent behind this RV
The road to Yuma. It was bumper to bumper for over 10 miles out of town,
The lineup stretched to the Crack of Doom. Just where they thought that they would get parked ... who knows.
It sure was good to get to Pilot Knob and regain some peace and quite
Stanley and Thurston still provide entertainment.


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