Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Leaving Bakersfield

Tomorrow, I'll be leaving Bakersfield. Uncle Doug has been doing extremely well and it's time for me to get back home and get back to work.
Yesterday I had to go by Camping World to use their dump. It's been a couple of weeks since the last time. While there, one must always look around the store, I looked for a cable for my Link 10 monitor but they didn't have one. However, they did have some MaxAir sliding window vents. These attach to the side window and allow them to be left open while still leaving the RV secure. Picture to follow. I installed them when I got back to Uncle Doug's.
Today, I called a carpet repair outfit to fix a couple of bad seams at our rental here. They met me there about an hour after I called. Nice service, Nice job.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Kern River Park, West End

Took a ride West on the bike trail along the Kern River.

I rode this portion of the park West of Mohawk Ave to Enos Lane (I5), basically all the way from right to left and back, about 22-24 miles RT..

The above pictures are of a water tank along the bike trail. It is painted with a scene that matches the looks of the clouds. Note on the left of the lower picture, the painting on the tank is incomplete, the image is painted to look like it is being applied like wall paper.

A pond along the trail.

Flowers by the pond.

One of the many weirs along the river.

a bunch of poppies.

The last 7 miles of the trail are a wild life preserve made up of a group of water banking ponds. Water flows down the river and is discharged into basins where the water soaks into the ground. The birds get the benefit of using the water.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

New Tires

Not much happening recently. I bought new tires for the "Toad" today. They're nice and round.
It's been trying to rain today. Not good solar weather yet.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Family Get-Together

Cousins Delynn, Judy, and Judy's husband Don dropped by for a visit here at Doug and Helen's house. While they were here, Don's brother Ernie phoned. He was nearby passing through on the way through Bakersfield to Tulare in his truck. Ernie had a delivery in the morning so he was able to drop by for a visit. We had a nice dinner and visit.

Don, Ernie, Doug, Helen, Delynn, Judy and Don.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Solar Panels Are On The Job

I finally completed the solar panel installation.

I installed two 120 watt and two 80 watt Kyocera solar panels which provides a total of 400 watts of power. I used Unirac 990002 Tilt mounts that allow tilting the panel either to the left or right of the vehicle for maximum power output.

The SolarBoost 2000E MPPT charge controller provides up to 25 amps of charge current.
The cable from the roof to the electrical compartment came down beside the bathroom vent to minimize the wire length. I used #8 wire throughout except for #10 jumpers at the controller end to fit the terminal block on the charge controller.
Everything was obtained from Azsolar in Cambria, Ca. I went to Quartzsite, Az looking for the best price on a system but I found the best prices I could find there to be 25% higher than that offered at Azsolar.
The system should allow normal electrical use while dry camping (boondocking). The Motosat satellite system used for the Internet connection is a bit of an energy hog using about 13 amps for everything.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Bakersfield Walk

Sunday, I got a lift from Aunt Helen up to the Bakersfield Community College. I attended the college many years ago. I looked around and it looks much the same. They have added buildings but they, wisely, are all of the same simple concrete design. They don't look 40 years old and will probably look just as good in 40 years.

You don't see these on all "bike" trails. I didn't see any horses but there was evidence they had been there.

It was quite misty on this visit. This picture looks down from the Panorama Bluffs over the Kern River and the trail.
The walk back was a little longer than I planned about 10-12 miles.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Bakersfield, Kern River Park

Kern River Park is a 6000 acre strip park that runs from the mouth of Kern Canyon to Interstate 5 west of Bakersfield, a total of 30 miles. Wednesday, I got out my bike and rode to the bluffs east of town from near Uncle Doug's house off Truxton Avenue. It was possibly 5 miles out. I hope to ride west next time. The park is still being developed but the central part is pretty complete. It's a park chain of wildlife areas, play fields, lakes and a nice bike path.

There is lots of wildlife, birds, rabbits, squirrels, flowers, etc. The above picture doesn't do the trail justice. It is a very nice park.

Above are some geese by one of the lakes. There were lots of nice picturesque locations along the path. Unfortunately, I forgot my camera, so these pictures were taken Thursday near the house.
In the top banner picture of this post, there is the old Shell oil refinery across the river. Uncle Doug’s house is behind the camera along with most of the city of Bakersfield. Most of the new housing is being built beyond the refinery and to the left downriver. Bakersfield is really growing. They can't build housing fast enough. Bakersfield housing prices are rising faster than anywhere else in the country except Las Vegas.

Monday, March 7, 2005

Uncle Doug’s Back Home

Uncle Doug came home from the hospital. Here he is with Don's other uncle Emery and Aster the wonder dog.

Lou, Dawn and Mr Milo returned home and Don stayed here to visit a while. Don can do odds and ends around the house and work on the solar installation. Being a perfectionist, at least at heart, it takes a long time to do simple jobs like this.

Sunday, March 6, 2005

The Clan

Here are some pictures of the family when Doug came home.

Cousin Aunt Helen, Uncle Uncle Doug.

Aunt Helen, Don, Dawn, Lou, and Uncle Doug.

Friday, March 4, 2005

When It Rains…

Lou and Dawn Joined Don in Bakersfield. They drove down Thursday Night. It sprinkled on them all the way down and when they arrived, it sprinkled here in Bakersfield. Yes, they brought it with them. It had been nice all day.
Friday, we were returning to the RV and it started to rain, and rain, then hail a little. We pulled up to the RV and it was raining so hard we waited in the car. Water was an inch deep in the lot. We gave up waiting and ran for it. Got inside and it rained even harder and then hailed. Some places in the parking lot the hail was a foot deep. Wow. Fortunately, it was California hail, little 1/8-1/4 inch pieces like rock salt. It was good we came back because the water was coming in all the air vents in the RV, even though we have rain covers. It was bouncing up off the roof through the louvers of the vent covers. Many cars in the lot weren't very fortunate when they ended up in a couple of feet of water. Where we were parked it was OK.

A nice "snowy" looking lawn at Uncle Dougs.