Day 5 – Desert Rat Rally XV (Quartzsite, AZ)

Our 5th day at the Alpine Coach Association “Desert Rat Rally” was another fun day of 4-wheeling followed up with a great catered Mexican food meal and the arrival of my Mom, Stepdad, brother Steve & Cheryl.

Here’s our rally agenda once again (below) to refresh your memory – today was Saturday the 23rd:


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After morning coffee and donuts, everyone that wanted to go on the scheduled 4 Wheelers Day Trip to the Desert Bar lined up between the Coaches in their 4-wheel drive vehicles.


Since no one else was taking an ATV, I left ours loaded on the back of the Silverado and we (Stilla and I) jumped into Frank Krauland’s Jeep once again.


Fellow Alpiner Bob Schiller also joined us to fill the fourth seat in Frank’s Jeep for the trip.  Six Jeeps altogether convoyed north to Parker, AZ.


We all arrived safely at our start point next to a gas station north of Parker to air down the tires for the rough road ahead.


Frank on the left letting some air out of his tires. Bob Schiller on the right.

All six of the Jeeps aired down their tires and got lined up in a row, ready to go.


We started off the trip by going up a really rough section which set the tone for the rest of the day.


This picture (below) doesn’t do this hill justice.  For some perspective, notice the Jeeps waiting at the bottom of the hill in the background.  Frank made it up the boulder-strewn hill with no problem in his Rubicon Jeep.


Follow along with some more pictures of our 4-wheeling adventure:









At one point, fellow Alpine Coach owner, Mike Hambarian got too close to the edge of the trail…


… and started sliding dangerously down the slope.  He fortunately got stopped but was stuck at a precarious angle.  Naturally, his wife Donna clambered out through the driver’s side door.



We hooked up tow straps on both the front and back of Mike & Donna’s Jeep to keep it from sliding further down the slope.


We hooked one strap to a vehicle in the front; the other to a vehicle in the rear.


Mike jumped back in his Jeep and powered out of the dangerous situation with the help of the tow straps and the other two Jeeps.


Whew!  Safely back on the road 🙂


After getting Mike’s Jeep back on the road again, and with all the excitement over; everyone piled back into their respective vehicles…


… and continued on down the trail for a little more adventure.


Here’s Frank navigating down a steep slope while I expertly guided him with hand signals while taking pictures 🙂  Who says I can’t multi-task ?!?


And finally, we reached our destination… the Desert Bar (←website link).  You may recall that I wrote a post last Sunday about our previous trip to the bar when we took the main route; aka ‘the easy road’.


The parking area was so full that we had to park a little way down the road and hike up to the Desert Bar.


And here we are again at the Desert Bar.  Click (HERE) for more pics from my friend at Google Images®


We got here later in the day than the last time we were here; the lines were long and the seating was scarce.



I must have stood in the food line for over an hour 🙁  By the time I got food for Stilla and myself, most of the other’s had already finished a couple adult beverages and were ready to head back.



After enjoying the ambience of the Desert Bar for a while, we took the main (easy) unpaved road back out and stopped in the town of Parker so Frank could wash his Jeep.  A couple of the other folks in our convoy did the same.


Frank washing down his Rubicon.

Frank had to feed quarters into the air compressor to air his tires back up at the gas station next to the car wash.  Thanks again for the ride Frank!


We got back to the rally site just in time for Happy Hour 🙂  Bill Figge made his famous Margarita’s.  Greg Vaughan and Sandy Johnson assisted with dispensing the popular beverage.


Our illustrious Alpine SoCal Vice President Mary Langord 🙂


Everyone mingled and socialized while we waited for the caterers to finish cooking our authentic Mexican dinner just outside our rally tent on stove tops that they had set up earlier in the evening.



Rally host(s) Frank & Dessa called off table numbers at random for folks to go get their evening meal from the caterer.  They also thanked all the volunteers that have made the rally successful so far, with a special thanks for the co-host(s) Norm & Beth Cannon.


Our caterers for the evening meal were from the Sonora Restaurant (below).  Sorry, but I couldn’t find their website to reference.



The authentic mexican food was very good.  And there was even second helpings for those that didn’t get enough, along with plenty of leftovers for folks to take home.


Lots of folks stayed and socialized for awhile after dinner:



Here’s our table (below), we called it the “cool table” 🙂  Unfortunately, we were in the corner right next to one of the loud speakers that blasted our ear drums every time an announcement was made.

(L to R) John & Lorraine Foster, Anne & Mike Fleming, Marcy & Greg Vaughan, Frank Krauland, and then Stilla.

Some of the ladies even started up a game of ‘hand and foot’ after the meal… we’ll have to learn this card game if we want to be included in their fun 🙂

(L to R) Lorraine Foster, Marlena Schierholtz, Marcy Vaughan, and Ann Fleming.

And then the day just kept getting better!  My Mom, Stepdad Jim, brother Steve & Cheryl arrived just before our evening meal.  They parked their Class-C near our Coach…


… and unhooked the trailer with their ATV’s.


They made the three hour trip from Casa Grande to visit us during the last couple days of the rally.  Hopefully, we can visit the “Big Tent” on Sunday with them before it’s taken down.  We also plan on doing some off-roading together on the ATVs (Yeah, finally!)

They came into the rally tent after our evening meal was finished and met some of our Alpine Coach friends.  Afterwards, we joined another group of Alpiners and enjoyed good conversation and a campfire until we called it a night.

(L to R) Steve, Cheryl, Stilla, Mom (Arlene), stepdad (Jim), John, and Greg in the ACA Rally tent

In closing… Stilla snapped a nice picture (below) of a saguaro cactus near our camp site along with a couple more evening sunset pics for your viewing pleasure:




Stay tuned…