Barstow KOA (4… maybe)

Perfectly fine KOA with wifi and a wind block

Listen. When you’re on the road for a while and you’ve been out of cell service or wifi for a lot of that time, it can take a toll. Sometimes all you want is a safe place, out of the wind, with cell service, decent wifi, and maybe hookups so you can live it up. So here we are.

Highway 127 to Baker is very pleasant

We have reached the point in our trip when we have to start making tracks back home. It was not a terribly long drive from Death Valley to the Barstow area and we had a plan. We were going to stay again at Calico Ghost Town, but instead of getting a site in the upper part of the campground, behind the cell blocking hills, we were going to ask for one down low that would surely hit the cell towers. We didn’t have reservations, but I mean, come on. We did call just to verify there was plenty of availability, and there was, so no worries. Here’s what we did not know: New Year’s Eve is a huge event for OHV people. The hills around Calico are chock full of off roading trails. Add those two pieces of information together and you’ve got yourself a jam packed campground in the big rig pull through section down low. Everyone down there was whooping it up with their giant flags, blinky light up OHVs, and 2-3 bars of LTE. Damn them.

We stayed long enough at Calico to spot those cute little Chukars.

We tried to make an up-the-hill site work and went as far as doing a complete unhitch and set up to try it out. Here’s the other thing: it was super windy. So part of set up included using the Caravan Mover to spin Dory into the wind. It was a lot. And once we were done, despite the fact we’d gotten 1-2 bars from the car, there was no service in Dory. We sat there for like a minute and I pulled the plug.

Before relocating 3 miles down the road, we did drive down and verify that: a) there was cell service, and b) there was less wind down there. With both requirements met, we went back up hill, unspun and re-hitched Dory, and moved.

Best New Year’s Eve dinner ever

For having dissed the Barstow KOA in the past, I must formally apologize. They have a lovely campground, with strategically planted, wind breaking trees. And enough LTE to upload pictures for the blog. And they are even closer to Penny’s Diner than Calico. We were happy campers who repented our snooty ways. Super thank you to Jessica, who was working at Penny’s all by herself on New Year’s Eve and made us the absolute best breakfast for dinner. Happy New Year!

Total miles: 173.1 from Furnace Creek, 15.0 mpg, 3 hours 56 min. Site 2. We had dumped on arrival at Calico, before realizing that was not going to work out. Dump at KOA not good so did not dump the next morning. Great LTE for both and wifi easy to hit from the sites. Right by the highway, whatever. Close to gas and Penny’s so it’s a win.

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