Last we wrote, we had driven blindly out of Joshua Tree National Park, alternator failing to charge the batteries, power steering module leaking, and transmission missing one of the critical components that other transmission seem to have, i.e., a reverse gear. We stumbled into the town of Indio, next door to Coachella and just down the road from Palm Springs, and as one might expect in such an area, we paid through the nose for a one night spot in a lovely little RV resort. A night there allowed us to get our bearings and stop the headlong rush north without the appropriate research.
Thus we pulled onto I-10 west, but only for a bit as our research helped us plan a route that avoided the L.A. traffic area as much as possible. We also had a stopover point defined and an RV campground arranged, one we selected not merely for its location four to five hours down the road and very near the highway, but also for its large number of pull through sites and wide turns within the grounds. Because of the reverse gear thing. Because, we can’t back up.
Late afternoon we pulled into Orange Grove RV Park, which, it will shock you to learn, is in an orange grove. A portion of said grove has been converted to over a hundred RV spots, with orange trees left in between each spot, but cut topiary style into Dr Seussian discs. It is a very clean, reasonably affordable, full service (power, water, sewage, cable, internet, pool, clubhouse, etc) RV park with very large sites (ours was 90′ long).
Aside from that, three things set it apart from other comparably priced parks: 1) the internet actually worked pretty well, though the sign in process was unnecessarily complex and required a trip to the front office to get the trick of it. 2) You can pick the oranges from the trees, though short people like us had to use tongs to get a bag full of the very sweet citrus. 3) It was the single most organized RV park we have ever stayed in. It’s hard to explain this, exactly, but one example: Easter Sunday morning we decided to stay one more day, but the office as closed. But they had so clearly thought through the after hours check in process: For reservations arriving that day they had a large board with separate envelopes taped to it, and another board for those showing up without reservations with an envelope for each available spot they could select. But they took it one step further, anticipating that anyone scheduled to leave that day might, like us, chose to extend their stay, so they had specifically omitted those spots from the availability board envelopes. to extend, all we needed do was stay in place and pay the next morning.
Stay we did, three days here, working on the bus, cleaning, reorganizing, and researching. We also met a group of Canadian RVers heading back north fr m Arizona that allowed us to join their Easter dinner. This went a long way towards assuaging our family loneliness on the holiday. Look, Bakersfield was not exactly on our list of places we must visit, and it may not be on yours either. But if you find yourself heading through California, either direction, this RV park makes a great stopover and recovery point; we can’t recommend it enough.