Lurking on the Slabs

Sometimes you meet the nicest lurkers in the most interesting places. Take Slab City, for example.

Saturday afternoon we packed up from our quiet little spot in Borrego Springs and headed east to our favorite free wacky camping destination, Slab City USA.

Slab City Goes Upscale

OK maybe it’s just me, but it seems that the Slabs have gone upscale. There seems to be a real sense of ownership and pride around here that we’ve never seen before.

Trash piles are getting cleaned up, “No dumping” signs have sprung up, people are putting more artwork around the community, and a new Slab City Calendar of Events sign welcomes visitors. You no longer have to be in the know to find out what’s happening every day.

This Lurker Walks Into a Camp . . .

Yesterday I walked outside our rig and a stranger on an ATV pulls up, turns off his motor and says “You must be Rene.”


“You don’t know me but I’ve been following your blog for a long time, since you first started.”


I asked him his name, but didn’t know it. And there’s no reason I should have: in the five years since Jim and I started writing about our travels, he’s never once commented or contacted us. But he’s been a loyal reader and he could recall nearly everything we’ve been through on the road.

“You’re a lurker!” I said to him. But he didn’t like that term, he said it sounded too creepy. I’m not sure what to call him, other than a really jolly, adventurous, respected Canadian politico who’s now living his own road trip dream.

Although his wife isn’t thrilled about this place, I reassured him that despite the cleaned up appearance, the Slabs is still a great, safe dry camping spot, especially when you’re surrounded by dozens of other Canadian snowbirds here off Canal Road, in what we call “Canada Camp.”

A Lilliputlian Universe

What a thrill to know our blog actually has a reader! We never know if anyone’s paying attention to what we’re writing (even our family members usually don’t know what we’re up to because most of them don’t follow us!).

To meet a total stranger who’s been loyally reading our blog for years, really made our day.

Mr. “I”m-Not-a-Lurker” doesn’t have his own blog, otherwise I’d reveal his identity. I guess we’ll have to convince him to start his own RV Blog.

The Interwebs have shrunk our world so much. Now, only three degrees separates each and every one of us. And in the full-time traveler’s universe, it’s turned our world into that of Lilliputlian proportions.


10 thoughts on “Lurking on the Slabs”

  1. I’m not exactly a lurker, since I’ve commented a couple of times before, but I don’t think I had my blog up and running then. Come take a look at some pretty pictures of places we’ve been, and say hi! 🙂

  2. Past lurker joining the blogging community. Thanks for all the info you guys put out. We’re heading to AZ next week…..providing these winds settle down. Maybe we’ll see you guys in Colorado some time.

  3. Hi Rene,

    Another reader of your blog here… just popping in to tell you how much I enjoy reading it and following your adventures.

    Have a great day!

      • Nope… no blog here.

        My wife and I are planning to do exactly what you guys are doing starting in about 2 years, and we can hardly wait! That’s why I like your blog so much! 🙂

        Last spring while vacationing with our Arctic Fox travel trailer down near Desert Hot Springs, we visited the slabs and drove all the way around the Salton Sea. We visited Joshua Tree NP and the Mt. San Jacinto State Wilderness outside of Palm Springs. We’ll be headed down there on vacation again soon.

        If you have time, you absolutely MUST go visit the “mud pots” on the south end of the Salton Sea at the corner of Davis Road and W Schrimpf Road. You can look this up using Google maps with the address: Davis Rd and W Schrimpf Rd, Calipatria, CA 92233 This is basically an flat area of brown clay soil where the water table is apparently close to the surface. In spots carbon dioxide oozes up through the earth and mixes the clay and water into the constancy of a thick “porridge” in shallow pot-like depressions. The bubbling action throws some of the clay mixture out of the pots up into amazing sculptures and towers which look like miniature volcanoes. Some of the mounds almost close completely over except for a vent hole. The hollow sound of the mud gurgling along with the hissing of the escaping gas are fascinating.

        Wishing you safe travels,

        John L.

        • Hey John, congrats on deciding to make the big move! I’m so excited for you two. Consider starting a RV blog with us just to get into the planing mode, you’ll find that it really helps keep you on track.

          Thanks for the mention about the mud pots, I’ve heard about them before but never made it out. We’ll have to go there this year.

    • Yaaaay! I’m so happy you revealed yourself! Well, you know what I mean. Anyhow, thanks, I’d love to follow your blog. I’ll even add it to our blogroll 🙂


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