A new camp puts us on the right side of the law

Most of the campsites at Willard Springs are more than 300 feet from the road.

Overnight I decide we will move our camp.

The crew and I are walking this morning with a purpose.  Our mission?  To find a new campsite that conforms to Coconino National Forest camping rules and, equally important, that is beautiful.

We see a place near Gail’s rig and Ken’s rig.

No, I’ll have to worry about Spike bothering them.  Anyway I want us off by ourselves.

A short walk up the road, we find the perfect spot.

It has the most important features:  a level site, sunshine for the panel, shade for sitting outside, a feeling of seclusion, natural beauty, and it’s within 300 feet of the road.  There’s a small pond, which is really a ditch full of water.  The water isn’t stagnant and birds come and go.  It’s pretty, surrounded by pines.  Hmmm… maybe I’ll see some wildlife stopping by here for a drink.  It occurs to me that there’s a rule against camping near a water source for animals.  I think I’m okay here because it’s a temporary collection of water created by recent rain.

Second campsite at Willard Springs

As soon as our new camp is set up, I pour a glass of iced tea and put the lounger next to “our” pond.

Three robins are dipping their beaks in the water.  At first I suppose they’re getting a drink, but, no, they’re up to something.  Are they looking for worms in the water?  Soon I get my answer as one of the robins flies to a low pine branch, her beak full of dripping wet, muddy grass.  Apparently our pond is a good source for nest-building materials.  Already I like it here!

So does Spike, of course.

Spike: “At last, waterfront property!”

“Don’t bother me. I’m soaking.”

The stress melts away . . .

Bridget likes any place where I am.

Bridget: “Are we going to live here now?”

When Spike is happy, he licks Bridget’s ears.

A few minutes later Gail comes up the road in her Class A motorhome.

She stops and rolls down her window as I’m waving to her.  “I’m not leaving.  I’m going into town to do laundry,” she explains. “What’d you do?  Move here to be within 300 feet?”

“Yeah.  It’s a nice spot.  The lane finally dried out enough so I could pull in here.”

Gail’s motorhome’s engine is running so I cut our conversation short. 

. . . and away she goes!

“Don’t use up your gas talking to me now.  Stop by sometime and we’ll talk.”

Gail agrees, of course, rolls up her window, and heads up the road.  I take a quick photo.

Motorhomes are nice for many reasons, but I wouldn’t want to drive a big home like that to the laundromat.  Oh well, every type rig has its pros and cons. 

This afternoon the crew and I motor on down to Munds Park.

I stop at the post office and pick up the two soft harnesses for the crew.  Oh, I hope I ordered the right size.  As soon as we’re home, I put them on the crew and they fit! . . . well, a little tight on Bridget, but she’s at her fattest right now.  Little Bridget, you’re such a girl with your weight fluctuations.

Ken and Scooter come over around four and they both approve of our new campsite.

Ken says, “Gee, it’s nice here,” and Scooter plays in the water.  We sit under the pines talking while I peel potatoes.  Before we know it the shadows are long.  Ken leaves to finish walking Scooter and I take the crew inside for their supper.  I open the blinds so I can see our new camp.  I think I like this better than our first camp.  

A new camp is fun, even if it’s close to the last one.



About rvsueandcrew

Fulltime nomad
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60 Responses to A new camp puts us on the right side of the law

  1. LilNomad & Sasha says:

    Im sending Bridget a pair of Spanx!

  2. jsathe says:

    I am so glad you are enjoying your time at Willard Springs. Makes me want to go back there someday.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I don’t know what time of year you were here,Jim. I can tell you . . . springtime is beautiful, so fresh and green, sweet flowers, peaceful. I love it. But then, you know that already.

  3. cathieok says:

    I think Spike is taking a mud bath! Who knew you provided him with a spa?

  4. Pat says:

    Nice spot and you’re legal………….YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. 101butterbean says:

    Howdy rvsue & crew,
    You gotta move you’re obstructing wildlife from their water!! Darling, it don’t matter you’re within a quarter of a mile of it; we take farmers fields if water stands more than a day; it’s a wetland!!
    I bet you can’t find a ‘legal’ spot!!! Too close to something, you free-loader full-timing squatter!!
    Tell’em to stick it ……

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’m so glad you’re on my side, Butterbean. Especially since i’m so lawless . . . I think I’ll go hold up a bank or something.

      • Greg and Jean says:

        Make it a Bank of America……we dont like them

        • Chuck says:

          I second the motion for her to hit B of A….the most hated bank in the US of A

          • Elizabeth says:

            You know, they have a long history of not being a good bank…clear back to when I was a kid!! (Many moons ago!!)

  6. Lacy says:

    BEAUTIFUL new spot AND you’re legal. You’ll sleep good tonight! Don’t present Sue with a problem, she’ll solve it PRONTO. Next!

    Finally got on the Bayfield Bunch website and didn’t realize it but I had read an article yesterday that he had written about blogging. (slap hand to forehead)

    The super moon is going to be tomorrow night. And the way things work out for you, I have total confidence that your cloud cover will be GONE. I insist (if that helps at all). haha

    sweet dreams 😀

  7. tinycamper says:

    Sue, I was really concerned after reading yesterday’s entry. So glad you found another camp in the same beautiful area. Hope you can always find one under the new rules (which I’m not thrilled about, either).

    BTW, Sunny licks Sheba’s ears, too. 😀

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      What is with the ear licking? Are they hungry? Is it a control thing? Spike does it whenever we have company or whenever he’s happy about something, like waterfront property. I think he has a touch of OCD.

      • tinycamper says:

        I’m undecided whether it’s a control thing or just a show of affection. Sunny used to do it to our cat, too, when we had one. With the cat, it was affection. It might be to let Sheba know that he is Number One, though!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Spike licks her teeth and cleans her face. Sometimes I have to tell him to cut it out before he licks her ears and face raw. Bridget will snarl, but mostly she puts up with it.

          • tinycamper says:

            Eek! 🙂

            So far Sunny has never licked teeth. But he used to lick the cat’s head until it was a soggy, spiky mess! The cat liked it!

      • Elizabeth says:

        Hi Sue!
        Well, if your dog loves licking, which our last one did, be grateful that you have his girlfriend there…otherwise, I bet he would have to settle for licking on you instead!! Heh!! Ours would lick the ears, face, and teeth of our smaller dog (we thought maybe she was being “motherly”) or she would settle for a foot, leg or arm and spend a long time licking. Our daughter would not let her do that with her…but I let her and then just got up and washed!!

        Your spot is very pretty…will you stay 14 days there then? I think you are right…just go along so much as you can, (might make it so you are not a “target” for someone who is on some power kick. Seems to me we live in a culture just full of folks who love POWER!!)

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          I’m not going to push my luck and stay here too long. I’m still waiting for another package to show up at the P.O. (a monocular and RV stuff). As soon as it arrives, I’ll be on the road heading further north.

      • hobopals says:

        Jack would always lick Lizzie when I had company or he was happy or if there were other dogs around or whatever. it was his way of saying, “She’s mine, all mine.” He has never licked a human being in his life. Lizzie never licked him, but would lick me to death. Jack definitely had OCD when it came to Lizzie. After reading you for quite a while, now, I think Spike and Bridget are smaller versions of them.

        Glad you’re settled in your new beautiful spot.

  8. Ed Smith says:

    You’re a gem. Just go with the flow. Sometimes serentipity is better than what we plan.

  9. kellyceallaigh says:

    I’m so glad you ended up with an even better campsite. God must be approving of you following the rules! And the kids look happy with it, too. Couldn’t be much better than that.

  10. Emjay says:

    Good spot now! It’s definitely nicer.

    We drove through Flag Thursday afternoon and came to the conclusion that folks aren’t seeing elk this year because of the long-standing drought. Even the trees are dying along the highway. Very bad drought. However, now your best chance of seeing them is Mormon Lake (not Lake mary) at dusk.

    By the by, Munds Park has a good laundromat on the West side of the highway. You might even see cowboys from nearby ranches there.


    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I wish I had known about that laundromat yesterday so I could have told Gail. It probably cost her at least $20 to drive 15 miles each way in her big rig and maneuver around Flagstaff, stop-and-go traffic.

      I’m probably going to be out of here before laundry time. It’s good info to have in case I’m back here next year.

  11. earthdancerimages says:

    I’m glad you are now legal and in an even better spot than before! You lead a charmed life miz Sue!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Geri!

      This is the spot I wanted when we first arrived. The little lane coming off the road had a muddy spot, really bad. It’s dried now. If it rains, we won’t be able to get out, so I’ll be illegal again . . .Don’t work too hard.

  12. Lisa says:

    I like this new place too, from the pics. And Spike is so happy with his personal soak spa!! I think you’ll enjoy watching the animals make use of that water before it’s gone!


  13. Hi Sue and the Crew.
    I’ve been out of town for a few days dog sitting for my friends. Back home now. Your new home
    looks wonderful. You should stay for the two weeks, you would enjoy it I am sure. I will be looking for the photo on the full moon tomorrow night. It should be beautiful from where you are.
    Take care, Sharon

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’d like to stay for two more weeks. My 14-day limit runs out on Monday. Maybe that’s a good thing . . . something about “Leave ’em wanting more.” Remember to look for the moon where you are . .

  14. Reine says:

    I’m waiting for tomorrow’s entry to see what visited the “water hole” and your campsite during the night. Beautiful spot.
    Just for a chuckle – we have a new reason to camp! Our next door neighbor wants to know when we’ll have the Casita gone again since she wants to have some work done on her fence that sits about 18″ away from where we park our Casita. I think we’ll manage to figure some way to accomodate her and take the Casita somewhere in the next couple of weeks:).

  15. Chuck says:

    Very nice new spot ya’ll got there, Missie Sue.
    (1)Your unnative canines are assaulting the native birds (possibly on an Endangered Species List)in the midst of the reproductive cycle that is of course an insurmountable problem to the ENTIRE Ecological balance of Coconino Nat’l Forest With your male of the canine species waddling thru and disturbing the natural water flow .
    (2)UNITED NATIONS Directive of sectionf the nesting materials needed by this possibly ENDANGERED SPECIES,
    (3) You, a homeless AMERICAN citizen are in total violation of United Nations Directive B.S. 69 $H!T, paragragh U24mor$H!T..This will all be explained by the arresting(and cute)officers.

  16. Bill & Kathy says:

    We were camped at the park, right about where you were, one winter and the park was doing construction on the next site. They usurped some of our space so we parked our boat at another site (there were 2 campers in the whole place)! While we were out to lunch, the ranger left a note with a pay slip ordering us to pay for the additional site! Since it was prior to 2pm (checkout), Bill hooked-up and moved to the second site which had plenty of room.

    When the ranger made his rounds, he wrote us up for not paying for the second site and a field collection fee! (the fee was later returned because a single camper cannot legally occupy 2 sites-helps to know the senior ranger at the park who knows the rules!)

    Since we’re locals, we chalked it up to a ‘misunderstanding’…

    Contrast that to being snowed-in at Navajo State Park for 40 days (and 40 nights) several winters ago! Our jeep would not move the trailer because the parks do not remove snow! We told the rangers we’ll have to leave the trailer for the winter! The park ordered a 4wd backhoe from another facility and pulled the jeep/trailer combo to the main gate! (and they were polite and happy to help-wanted to get rid of us)!

    Sweet dreams to you and the crew! Good night- Kathy with a K!! (my first comment on a blog)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Kathy! Good morning . . . I signed off early last night.

      You write a great comment! Forty days and forty nights . .. When you have a problem it’s of biblical proportion!

      The boat situation must have happened back in New Mexico, not here! I can’t imagine anyone camping here in the winter.

      I wonder how many people are eating your recipe for minestrone soup! Seems like yesterday . . .

      • Bill & Kathy says:

        Sue, it was haha!! (yester) We’ve officially switched from soup to salad! LOL (see I’m getting it, I think!?) Kathy with a K

  17. geogypsy2u says:

    I like the new camp with water front property, even if the water is only temporary. And I can see the crew likes it too. My “camp” is under the ponderosas with filtered sunlight. Ah….

  18. Susie says:

    Your site looks so peaceful. I hope you see a bunch of neat wildlife. Having good neighbors also makes it feel like home, I bet. Have a great Saturday!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Susie,

      I looked out the windows at Spike’s Pond and could see no wildlife in the moonlight. I think I need to camo-paint the PTV and BLT. Enjoy your weekend . . .

  19. Chinle says:

    Glad you found a nice spot! As for licking, I had a little dachshund that was a real licky-loo. It must be good for your health, cause he lived to be almost 19!

    Except I won’t let my dogs lick my brother, as he caught giardia once in Oregon drinking from a stream and is now probably a carrier, even though he had the antibiotics and treatment. How’s that for a strange world – won’t let the dog lick the human cause it’s not safe – for the dog! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Chinle,

      Spike drinks from every mud puddle, stream, drainage ditch . . doesn’t matter. I’ve got to watch him every minute, and I want him to be able to enjoy the water. It means so much to him! I don’t know how he’s managed not to get sick.

      • Chinle says:

        Not to worry, Sue. Dogs have the same immune systems as most wildlife do, it takes a lot to make them sick. I’ve never had a dog get sick from the water yet, after many dogs and many moons in many outback spots. If a dog gets giardia, usually you don’t even know it, and it’s not as common as some think for them to get it. People, now that’s a different story. I never worry about my dogs drinking the local water, in fact, I encourage it as it saves the good stuff for me. 🙂

  20. Sherry says:

    I love your attitude……had to move…..OK….I’ll move to an even better site. I think you use the Law of Attraction and it is really working for you! I’m understudying. Keep it up!!

  21. ct says:

    What a lovely spot you’ve found! Now all Spike needs are some lavendar bath salts and a little inflatable pillow to lean against & he’ll be all set!

  22. strawberrypolly says:

    This site is better than the other one!!! Love Spike’s Pond. I don;t know why something isn’t posted in these parks as to what is legal or not. I know that ignorance of the law is not a defense but it really is a great excuse. My goodness, how can one keep up with it all. I am just glad you try so hard to be “legal” You always have been a law abiding citizen but do I remember something about…that isn’t the law, it is a suggestion? LOL
    I love you Dear Susan

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Pauline!

      Can you believe the places I’m finding? I’m thinking all these pines are similar to what you see in Mississippi, maybe not as big.

      I wish you could sign in with your own name. I think some of my readers think I’m blocking them or something. It’s because Gravatar and WordPress are linked somehow. If you have a Gravatar log in, WordPress thinks you’re trying to impersonate that person when you try to log in to rvsue and her canine crew. Gee, what’d we do . . .

      Love you, too.

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