SOOOO Ken has gone to visit a friend this morning and I have the whole motorhome to myself. All 250 square feet of it (well except for Tucker, just me and tucker and the motorhome). Time to make bread, bake Tofu, write blog.
We have been here for almost 2 weeks, which is kind of long for us, but we challenged ourselves to stick around until the official rock show, the POWWOW. Starting January 18-22
Now the most obvious reason to come to Quartzsite is for the rocks, and that is what initially drew us here. Everything that can be done to a rock…..has been done to a rock …..and is here on sale in Quartzsite. There are many less official rock events that actually start building in mid December. Sellers travel from all over the world to sell rocks in one form or another here in Quartzsite. The Desert garden show started officially January 6th, but unofficially mid December.
So to start with the largest…. rocks. They are shipped in these huge… oil Barrels. Large boulders of rock that SOMEONE might find appealing, often that cannot be found elsewhere. We saw stuff from Australia, Morocco, china, Madagascar ….and many parts of US,. We bought the rocks we used in our bedroom floor by this means, last year. Of course you would have to have some sort of saw in order to be able to utilize these huge boulders. They sell by the pound and usually anywhere from 3-10 dollars a pound trending upwards to much higher for much more valuable rocks.
There are rocks with interesting calcite or other forms of designs with in them. These ones are usually bought as display pieces.
These ones are large boulders of a rock called Fordite
This is forte after it has been worked with and made in to pieces that can be used to make jewelry.
Does it look familiar at all??? Well the “boulders” come from using a pick ax on the walls of a car manufacturers paint rooms….just many layers of car paint over many years. 😀
These are some boulders we bought for 30 dollars a lb. You can see that there is a window to give you an idea of what is inside the rocks, and we decided that the colours would match what we have planned for our LR floor. As you can see the less processed you get something the cheaper it is, but the more unknowns come with it.
Many types of stone are carved into shapes, some more useful than others. The people at this booth were quite surprised by how many people asked what THESE were for 🤔 Stocking STUFFERS.
Personally, I was not sure what someone could use heart shaped rocks for?🤔. Or round ones
and then..these things which I believe are a form of Chrystal that forms in metals ???
AND then we buy beautiful things that match our kitchen…
These are slabs, essentially 1/4 inch slices of rocks that are sold to people who do jewelry who might buy a slab or 2 of a certain type of rock and then create a series of earrings, pendants rings etc out of these pieces. And of course there are many of these jewellers who are selling these sets in other areas of quartzsite. So each slab has a price on it…7 dollars or 10….. etc
Every year here, there are OTHER things that people have created that contain rocks. I found these guys kind of gaudy.
These pictures below are large piles of very small tumbled stone, each pile seems to have created a different look. They come from China and the lady at the booth said that this was a whole new way she was experimenting with selling rocks. Our interest in them is our future plans with epoxy.
They are sold much like the stuff in the bulk section of the grocery stores….. each item price/grams..
These are the ones we bought, Turquoise, Peridot, and coral, and a few other mixtures. We are thinking of filling the cracks in our floor with these rocks with epoxy to glue them in.
So this is just the desert garden rock show, and the official Pow Wow does not start until the 18th, and the reason we are waiting for that to open is that we think it might be more likely to find an engagement type of ring there. STORY behind it. 📕📕 Several years ago we were out rock hounding in the middle of nowhere and when I got back to the jeep I realized that the diamond from my engagement ring was GONE and the ring fairly damaged… Dammit Janet, can’t you just look after stuff …… well actually…. no,,,, I tend to be hard on stuff!! Ken is sort of like HO HUM…. he is used to me.🤔 Years ago we used to use the Jeff Foxworthy line “if it ain’t broke it ain’t ours” and while we mused about it being about our kids… it was also about me. 🙄
So Fair enough, I never really liked diamonds anyways, however recently I have seen some beautiful sapphire “engagement” rings and think…well maybe I would like one of them. So we decided that maybe down here might be the very best place to buy a new ring. Even bigger than the Pow WOW in Quartzsite is the international Gem show in Tucson, only a week after this one. So if we do not find one we like here, we will follow along to Tucson for that show. Aren’t sapphires beautiful
So that is all about the rock shows here,…….. the truth of the matter is that most people here are NOT here for the rock shows and could not care less about rocks. 🙀🙀
THIS IS what most people are here for. Because the weather is here…. and not bad for the winter, and there are essentially many square miles of this (natural) desert parking lot, people come from all over to spend the winter here.
I am sure you will find million dollar rigs here as well as people who have converted their cars into a home and are living in them. If you have read Nomadland or seen the movie, (very different stories, but both involving Quartzsite) you will understand the very different dreams and purposes that lure people here. Some years there are as many as a million people here. What you can see in the picture is what is called LTVA. You can camp anywhere here for ~ 180 dollars for the whole winter and 40 dollars for 2 weeks. What you get for that is a place to dump your Sani, fill up with water and expose of your garbage, beyond that you can camp anywhere. People seem to take ownership of their spots and “landscape” with rocks to out line the borders of their spot. Some of the landscaping is quite extensive, after all they have the whole winter. There is one area in the La PosA South LTVA that is called the “magic circle” it is the only “clothing optional” spot that is legal in Arizona. There are people who come to Quartzsite just for this reason. Warm (sort of) weather and clothing optional….
Although the whole thing began with the rock show, because so many people came here, many other things spawned from that. For instance…. there IS a gun show here this weekend (more like a reason to leave for us, but for many ……??).
There is also a massive RV show here starting on the 20th of January. There are likely many people who think that it is all about the RV show. Anything RV, you have ever thought you might need or want will be there, included a few thousand RVs.
The other big interest here is ATV/ 4×4 ing. They are here everywhere, and I guess we would be included with them, but our adventures in the jeep are far more purpose driven.🚗🚙🏎. We are not just driving around, we are driving around looking for rocks 🧐
If you have read nomadland … you can see that there is a whole culture of people who are here for the winter because it is a place that they can afford to live within the financial constraints of whatever “income” they have. They live in vans, cars, tents and RVs. They leave in March and April when it gets too hot to “be” here, but by then it is warm enough to “be” in other places. In fact a guy just showed up at our RV saying that his wife had died a few years ago and he was selling her jewelry to make ends meet.😔
One other thing that I have not heard anyone mention about Quartzsite, but I absolutely love…….. the mountain Range at KOFA just south of here. I can see the mountains in the distance from my Motorhome window.
This picture I took down closer to the mountains. It is very hard to capture the 3 dimensional aspect of these mountains.
They are very striking, perhaps because they stand out alone….. and also, did I mention there are rocks …..
Bye for now, many have asked how the weather is where we are, it has been a bit windy, but we are not getting the scary weather going on on California coast and central California.
much Love Janet, Ken and Tucker who does not really take up much space.🐕🦺