Tucson, AZ.  Feb 2017. Part 1

We left Deming in a strong wind from the SW.  The road to Tucson heads west and then north and downhill towards Tucson.  The wind direction changed to more southerly direction.  That gave us downhill and a tailwind and 16 mpg for a couple of hours.  We were heading for an area SW of Tucson and an RV park we have been to before, Justin’s Diamond J.  It really is a pretty nice park. It is adjacent to the Tucson Mountain Desert Park, a huge desert park with trails all over.  It is not far from Saguaro National Park, the Arizona Sonoran Desert Museum (sort of an arboretum/zoo) and several other tourist attractions … none of which we went to.

Justin’s Diamond J is a popular destination for many Foretravelers.  There were six of them there while we were there. The sites are very spacious and reasonably priced.  The neighbor on one side had his Airstream Trailer there but in the two weeks we were there we never saw him.  It is a 55+ park so there really weren’t any kids except for the “big kids”.  It has a nice laundry and an active evening social life for those who want to take part in that.  Cards Tuesday and Thursday.  There was a pizza night, all you wanted for $5.  And a wiener roast in the park one night.  Lots of folks here for the winter.

There are mountains between this area and the busy southern part of Tucson.  It feels remote and it sort of is but it is only 20 minutes to the grocery stores, Walmart, Lowes and more and only 10 minutes to a first class hardware store.  Almost every morning there were low clouds in the nearby mountains.

Most parks cram as many spaces in as possible.  Here there was a garden area in the middle of the loop.

And most evening a pretty nice sunset.

Susan and I ordered electric bike wheels for our bikes.  They are easy to put on, just take off the existing front wheel and replace it with the electric wheel.  It takes about a minute. They have an electric motor, a substantial Lithium Ion battery and a throttle.  You can ride the bike with no electric assist or coast to a stop or down a hill and the battery recharges.  If you want the electic wheel to help or do all of the work you just press on the throttle.

The tire is a foam filled puncture proof tire, more like a road bike tire than our normal fatter tires. The motor is at the bottom. The battery is above and behind it.  The battery comes out and can be plugged in to recharge.  They weigh more than the original tire so with no power assist it takes a bit more effort to ride but not much.  With the motor on the bike will go almost 20 mph.  With normal use you can go about 15 – 20 miles.  I was excited to try it out.  No helmet!

The electric wheel looks smaller than the rear wheel but it is the same size rim just a smaller tire.  

These are great fun.  Our goal was to just ride more and more often.  If these help do that then great.  Our friends Kent and Peggy Speers were also at Diamond J’s.  They have electric bikes too so one day we loaded them on the bike racks and went to a bike trail head in Tucson.  Tucson has hundreds of miles of bike trails through the city.  The one we were on followed a river (dry). We rode a little over 10 miles out and back.  Susan used her battery quite a bit but it still had charge left.  I used mine less so I had more.  Kent and I had a drag race.  We hit 19.6 mph.  

Kent said we needed to try Tiny’s for lunch.   So we followed them to this dumpy looking biker bar.


And went inside, found a table in the back.


And had a spectacular patty melt for me and a double cheeseburger for Susan.  The other half of my patty melt was my dinner.  You can’t always tell what you are going to get.

Lots more from Tucson coming up, later.

Roger and Susan

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