CONSTELLATION PARK, WICKENBURG AZ

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I stopped off to checkout Constellation Park in Wickenburg and stayed at campsite No. 11 for the night.  The campsites are located across the road from Constellation Park and Arena.  The day I showed up there was a calf roping competition going on so I hung out for a while and took a couple of shots with my cell phone camera.

The campsites cost $5 per night with a 7-day stay period.  They are numbered, fairly level spots, with fire pits, and there are a total of 35 campsites.  3 of the campsites at the end have pipe corals for horses.

The night I stayed there were 5 other people camping but on a weekend with a Rodeo going on I would imagine it could get quite full.

From Hwy 60 outside Wickenburg turn at the McDonald’s, Jack Burden Rd, and then take the next right at the stop sign at Constellation Rd.  Head up the road through the next stop sign, the arena is on the right and camping on the left.

Camp #11 _ 2216 ft

Entrance _ Latitude / Longitude _ N 33 58.8485′, W 112 42.7630′

VULTURE MINE AND VULTURE PEAK ROADS, WICKENBURG AZ

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This is one of those perfect finds you get every once in a while.  Only a few miles south of Wickenburg, Arizona, down Vulture Mine Road, you’ll find back roads and dispersed camping.

The first night I stayed just off Vulture Mine Road approximately 6 mile south of town.  I pulled off the road into a small campsite with an existing fire ring.  After setting up camp I hiked around and found Vulture Mine Flats, a large dispersed area with scattered fire rings and a small corral towards the back side.  There were 4 rigs staying in this area 2 of which were the big coach types. The next morning I headed back up Vulture Mine Road 2 miles towards town to Vulture Peak Road.

Vulture Peak Road is one of the best spots I’ve found to date.  If you head south down Vulture Mine Road from Hwy 60 where the Safeway Market is for approximately 3.5 miles there’s a street sign on the left hand side for Vulture Peak Road.  Head down the road bearing left at the first “Y” and then on to the cattle guard with 2 large tractor tires on each side (1.2 miles).  Pass through the cattle guard and head up to the 2-mile marker and you’ll find 2 campsites off to your left.  I stayed at the second campsite and a couple of days after being there my friend Dan showed up with his 40 foot Coach and took the first campsite.  The picture of the “cattle guard with tires” is of Dan’s Rubicon Jeep passing through when we headed into town that night to go to Anita’s Cocina Mexican restaurant which is located off N. Valentine Street in Wickenburg.  Excellent Mexican food and the margaritas where awesome.

This is such a great area because of the Sonoran Desert elevation and the town of Wickenburg only being 6 miles away from camp.  Whickenburg is an old southwest town with restaurants and stores so stop off and enjoy a little sightseeing while you’re there.  There’s Safeway at the corner of Hwy 60 and Vulture Mine Road with Starbucks and US Bank inside, across the street at West Plaza is a really clean laundromat, and east down Hwy 60 is a Chase Bank on the left.

This will definitely be one of my major winter campsites.  It has the best weather, lush vegetation, miles of dirt roads to go adventuring on, and a full service town nearby.

I’m staying here the allotted 14 days and then heading back to the Boulders OHV, then on to Agua Fria, and making my way home to Prescott.

Vulture Mine Road Camp _ 2650 ft

Vulture Mine Road Flats _ 2700 ft

Vulture Peak Road Camp _ 2651 ft

Vulture Mine Road Camp _ Latitude / Longitude _ N 33 54.5551′, W 112 48.7152′

Vulture Mine Road Flats _ Latitude / Longitude _ N 33 54.7723′, W 112 48.4250′

Vulture Peak Road Camp _ Latitude / Longitude _ N 33 53.8470′, W 112 46.8880′

BOULDERS OFF HIGHWAY VEHICLE AREA, AZ

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The Boulders Off Highway Vehicle (OHV) Area is located in the Lake Pleasant / Hieroglyphic Mountains Area and offers more than 200 miles of roads and trails from 1700 to 3500 feet in elevation.  The area also provides Sonoran Desert landscapes and non-motorized use in Hell’s Canyon Wilderness.  I spent a week camping in the dispersed camping area that is located one mile off Highway 74.  There is a Camp Host and you need to sign the guest list upon entering which helps keep the facility funded through the BLM.

Although most people come here to ride their motorcycles it’s also a nice place to camp and spend a few days.  Weekends can get pretty busy with riders, but during the week it’s quite with only a few people showing up.

It was unfortunate that I didn’t have a bike with me.  Once I purchase the new bike I’ll have to come back so I can ride around and check out the trials.  At this elevation it’s a very scenic area with lots of vegetation.

If you come here to ride you must have a combination of  “OHV Plate or MC Plate” and an “OHV Decal”.  Also your bike must have a US Forest Service approved Spark Arrester.  If you have any questions contact the BLM Phoenix Field Office at (623) 580-5500.

Boulders OHV Entrance _ 1898 ft

Boulders OHV Camp _ 2027 ft

Entrance _ Latitude / Longitude _ N 33 49.8218′, W 112 26.1959′

Campground _ Latitude / Longitude _ N 33 50.5807′, W 112 26.6023′

67 AVE, ARIZONA STATE LAND, BLM RANGE LAND, AZ

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I stop at Emery Henderson Trailhead off New River Road hoping to camp for a while and found out it was $30 per night for the camping permit.  So I asked the Camp Host about other places that I might Boondock at and he suggested going down the road and finding a spot out on one of the dirt roads.  So I traveled down a couple of miles until I found 67 Ave and turned right up the road to see what kind of campsites were around.  I found a nice spot not to far in that had an existing fire ring so decided to set up there.

I stayed from Wednesday through Saturday and then had a visit by the local law enforcement.  The two guys were local police from Anthem, a small suburb of the northern Phoenix area.  They were both very polite but explained that I could not camp there because it was “State Land” and the town had jurisdiction over the area.  If you were staying out there because you were tending to your cattle then it would be OK, but because I was only privately camping I would have to leave.  They did say I didn’t have to leave right then but that I should relocate soon.

So the bottom line is even when you’ve checked all your maps and Internet sites you may still find yourself staying in an area where you are not allowed.  In most cases private property owners, law enforcement, National Park and BLM personnel are friendly and will simple redirect you to some where that is OK to be.

So unfortunately as nice as the area was this will not be one of my boondocking spots.  I am now headed west on Highway 74 to checkout the “Boulders Off Highway Vehicle Area”.

67 AVE _ 1726 ft

Road Entrance _ Latitude / Longitude _ N 33 51.2404′, W 112 12.2142′

JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK, CA

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Over December I made it to Joshua Tree National Park and spent a few days trying out the new Honda EU1000i generator.  Right outside the park entrance off of Interstate 10, “Exit 168″, are some dispersed campsites. Both times that I was camped, there were a few other boondockers in 5th Wheels and Large RVs.  I picked a small pad just in front of the park boundary large berm that had a fire ring.

T-Moble data was a little sketchy there and was running pretty slow.  But I was able to keep business going and get a few billable hours in.  The new generator worked out great and now I will be able to get back to boondocking again. Between the solar panel and the generator I’m covered for my “Power Source” even with the short winter days and possible cloudy weather.  I can run the generator for an hour while still working and that seems to take up the slack in the solar panel charging.

The next thing I’ll be looking at is the replacement bike for the CRF230L I returned to my goddaughter.  I plan to purchase the new Honda CRF250L by February of this year.  Having borrowed the Honda from Heather to try out using a motorcycle rather than a tow vehicle was a great idea.  The bike is easy to put on and off of the carrier, which sits high in the receiver, and gives me lots of clearance for 4 Wheeling.  I look forward to having the setup again in the near future.

I have since returned to Arizona and will continue scouting out new boondocking spots this year.  I am spending 2 weeks back at Badger Springs in Agua Fria National Park and then plan to head south down Interstate 17 towards Phoenix to find some new winter campsites.

The first 3 pictures are of Joshua Tree and the second 3 pictures are of Agua Fria.

Joshua Tree _ 1779 ft

Campground Latitude / Longitude _ N 33 40.5122′, W 115 48.3357′