Thursday, November 1, 2012

Will National Forest Service rangers really roust boondockers?

Boondocking and rangers

I mentioned yesterday on Facebook that two extremely pleasant rangers stopped at our campsite to show us, in the kindest way possible, that we were not on an open road. Carolyn and Annie, you actually camped IN the Beaver Creek Wilderness Area. I guess that would explain "the sightings."

I'm emphasizing their polite demeanor because some boondockers have encountered rangers having a bad day. I believe their stories, and I want to add to the conversation that that kind of bad behavior doesn't seem to be policy. And, between you and me, we were outlaws at 22 days in one spot anyway. Annie decided not to bring that up and ruin everyone's day.

One of the guys showed Annie his (FREE) nifty phone app; it has a GPS feature and shows him where he is in relation to the NFS MVUM (Motor Vehicle Use Map). In other words, am I in an approved area? Let's see...nope! Once Annie got some good signal (ahhhh!) she was able to install it on her phone and iPad.

It doesn't require cell service to work!

We looked up the Kaibab NF, but they don't yet have a Motor Vehicle Use map of any sort. A ranger there told us to camp wherever we wanted to camp. He predicted a map by this month, but Kaibab camping will be rare until Spring (brrr).

Health monitoring

We heard about a mobile lab visiting the Sedona area, so I fasted in preparation. I chose the full lipid panel and glucose. I researched ALT/AST (liver function) ahead of time, and decided it wouldn't be especially helpful without a battery of other tests to pin down any possible questionable results.

West Coast Health Services is a small, family-run company, and Glenn and Sandy work together. It's a fingerstick instead of a vial, and their instrumentation sits right on the table top. Results in six minutes! I had mine done, then Glenn spent about twenty minutes explaining the nuances of the numbers. I'm obsessed with these things anyway, but he still told me things I didn't know.

After hearing everything that Glenn told me, Annie decided to do it, too. Again, I learned stuff. For instance, why Annie's ultra-low triglycerides may cause her to notice blood sugar fluctuations more than I do with my high-normal readings.

My point is that this is a valuable service at prices far lower than you would pay going to a doctor's office and having your blood sent to a lab. We paid $45/person for the full lipid profile and glucose (AND more information than a doctor has ever given me about my results).

I've added this information to our Healthcare for Poor People page. You rich people are welcome there, too.


I enjoyed Old Town Cottonwood a lot. A big thrift store, and lots of fun, not-too-expensive shopping that can be done, if you're so inclined. Funky (in the good sense) and relaxed. I would go back.

Old Town Cottonwood
Old Town Cottonwood

What are they hiding??

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Gaelyn said...

So I assume you've moved from your illegal parking.

Signed, still looking for a cabover camper so I can go play in the desert before January. ;)

Teresa Evangeline said...

Maybe those conspiracy books are on sale cause they don't seem so conspiracy anymore. Just a thought.:)

Anonymous said...

Note that they don't tell you which 50% is off. Very suspicious.

Sorry you got busted. But you got some pretty cool info.

Jim and Sandie said...

I think your attitude probably has a lot to do with a Ranger's attitude. You guys didn't give any grief and so they were happy to explain things to you. So how many conspiracies did you sign up for?

TexCyn said...

Whew, asked to leave & get a free app. Can't beat that! I swear, ya'll could get sugar out of a sour peach... Then get it tested....

Brenda A. said...

Here's another option for blood testing that is affordable and pretty darn convenient. You order the test online and go to any LabCorp location (all over the place!) to get your blood drawn. They run specials sometimes too.

The Good Luck Duck said...

Thanks for that link, Brenda! Wow! You're right - I noticed a LabCorp the other day, and I know there are lots of them. I'm going to add this resource to our page.

Haha Cyn! I guess it worked out alright in the end.

I think that's very likely, Sandie. Plus, we look like people's moms. I would have picked up a few conspiracies, but the discount made me suspicious...

Exactly, Bleen! I don't trust price cuts. It turned out okay to get busted, and now we're someplace with decadently fast internet connection.

Ah Teresa, you're saying they turned out not to be so "crazy" after all. This is worth pondering.

Gaelyn, we did move. We're back in the "mainstream" of boondocking: the legal campsite. Good luck finding that truck camper! We saw an older rig today in Flag. We saw some newer ones, too, but they weren't for sale.

Cj Cozygirl said...

NICE link on the so handy to keep all "ranger happy"!!!

Rick Doyle said...

So for 50% off, do you just get half-baked conspiracies or the full blown, really good grassy knoll type?

The Good Luck Duck said...

Rick, for 50% you get only one shooter.

Cozy, I think it will be VERY handy! Better than trying to read the huge paper map that doesn't name other roads. We can just say "Here? Yep, here!"

Russ Krecklow said...

So, you're boondocking behind bars, now, is that it? Juice bars, no doubt! There is probably an ap for that, too, you know? We certainly enjoyed Cottonwood when we were there, so happy to hear that you had fun there too. Don't believe for a minute any of those half priced conspiracies that might have you think that the New World Order is being run by underground Templars pretending to be Free Masons working secretly for the Vatican but more likely part of the Russian Mafia.

The Good Luck Duck said...

And I certainly won't listen to anyone saying Walt Disney was an Illuminato!

Gaelyn said...

The newer ones are over priced and the older ones are junk. Hope to find a happy medium.

wheelingit said...


Another coupla health monitoring ideas for you. We bought the cheapest glucose meter at Walmart and use it for home-testing. My mother has diabetes so I've been self-checking glucose (incl. after food) for several years.

Also here's another lab for inexpensive health tests. We used them in Oregon last year:


The Good Luck Duck said...

Conspiracy theories, Gaelyn? Ha! Indeed. Oh,no, you mean truck campers. Yeah, no doubt.

Thanks, Nina!! I never thought of having my own glucose monitor. My dad did die from renal complications of diabetes, so I do think about it, but not hard.