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STOP #262

After another one night stand we got on the road early this morning around 9AM. We don't have far to go today, just a little over 100 miles, but the campground we are headed to does not accept reservations. We time it so we arrive after people leave their campsties, but before most people are pulling in off the road to spend the night.

We arrived around 11:30AM, just as we planned, but found our first choice campsite was occupied. But our second choice, the one right next door, was open so we settled in for our five night visit here. There is no water or electric on any of the sites so we'll be relying on our solar equipment to keep the batteries charged.

The price for camping here overlooking the Amistad Reservoir is just $5 a night, utilizing our National Parks Lifetime Senior Pass which provides us with a 50% discount. By the way, "amistad" translates to "friendship" in English, since this reservoir straddles the United States and Mexico border.

It may look like our Campsite #6 is right on the edge of the road...

...but we have plenty of room. Oh look, our very own outdoor potty right across the street.

Our view of Amistad Reservoir out the rear dinette window.

Another first for us while traveling today, while still 20 miles from our destination, we passed a U.S. Border Patrol Check Station. They were stopping and checking all vehicles headed northbound (not southbound like us) away from the U.S./Mexico border. They had several armed agents in the roadway and had what I assumed were drug sniffy canines patrolling around the vehicles with them.

As you can see on the map below our campsite here at Governors Landing is a short 4 mile drive from an Offical Border Crossing Station into Mexico. It is on the Rio Grande River which is the on the outflow from the Amistad Reservoir.

THURSDAY - There are five National Park Service campgrounds all around the Amistad National Recreation Area. None of them have water or electric hookups and only our campground has water spigots scattered around between the campsites. Also none of them accept reservations.

Something Tricia and I try to do is scout out the other campgrounds in an area when we visit. That is what we plan to do this morning. It will be about a 100-mile drive by the time we return to THE POD, but if we ever revisit this area it would be nice to know what the best camping option is, other than the one we selected this time.

After visiting all five campgrounds we found out once again we luckily picked the best one for our first visit here.

Here is a short critique of each campground we visited today.

1st Place: Governors Landing - 15 sites - $10/SR$5 - Water spigots scattered throughout the campsites - Most have excellent, but distant, elevated water views - Close to nearby dump station/potable water fill at Diablo East Boat Ramp - Credit Card Pay Station

2nd Place: Rough Canyon - 4 sites - $6/SR$3 - Small private gravel loop of sites - Some water views - Close to nearby dump station/potable water fill at Diablo East Boat Ramp

3rd Place: San Pedro - 30 sites - $6/SR$3 - Access is down a 1-1/4 mile gravel road - No water views - No privacy - Best chance to socialize with other campers

4th Place: 277 North - 17 sites - $6/SR$3 - Just off the main highway - No privacy

5th Place: Spur 406 - 6 sites - $6/SR$3 - Not sure we would even camp here in an emergency

FRIDAY - This morning I have a 7:30AM appointment at the local Ford Dealership to get an oil change and tire rotation. We now have 65,000 miles on ROVER and I also decided to have the fuel system serviced for the second time, hopefully to improve our gas mileage just a bit, and to have the transmission serviced for the first time. All of this is in preparation for our planned trip to Alaska this summer.

While I was in town today I also made a stop at Home Depot to pick up something Tricia needed to continue working on a special project she has going on. More on that later!

SATURDAY - We'll both be headed back into town today and we are going to be busy. First though we'll enjoy a brunch at a local restaurant called Skillets. We are going to need the fuel for energy to complete the rest of our tasks for the day.

After bruch we'll be heading out to Home Depot to pick up the final items needed for Tricia's project. Then we're off to a laudromat, it seems like we just did laundry though. For the next three weeks we'll be in some very remote places, so it might be awhile before we get another chance.

Same goes for groceries, so we'll be shopping for enough food to also last us for three weeks.

Last but not least is gasoline, we can't possibly carry enough fuel to last us for that length of time, but fortunately gas is one of the few things they do have where we are going.

If you've been following our blog and know our desired travel destinations, you've probably already guessed where we are headed. Tune in to find out if you guessed correctly!

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