We’ve officially been “work-campers” for three weeks now! Here are some highlights from our first three weeks in California:
Work camping is an agreement between a company and the “campers” where you work in exchange for an RV site, usually with full hookups. Some businesses will also pay you for hours worked. We are work-camping at Canyon Creek Resort, a members only park that is part of Coast to Coast and other RV networks. It has about 70 RV spots, 10 cabins and some tent spaces along with a store and pizza kitchen. We are located on Putah Creek right next to Lake Berryessa. The area here has a lot of deciduous trees like Oaks and a few palms and cactus at the resort – it’s very pretty. We work a combined 40 hours – 24 to pay for our full hook-up site and 16 paid at a whopping $10 per hour. It’s not much money but it helps keep from depleting the savings.We are on the maintenance team so we do a wide range of things: garbage duty, debris cleanup, toilet repair, plumbing/electrical repair, burn brush, put up christmas lights and monitor the water plant that sterilized water from the creek for the park. We will post a review of our experience when we have finished up here.
The main reason we signed up with this park is because Megann’s family is in nearby Vacaville. We’ve spent time with her mom, grandma, aunt and uncle and cousins. We were graciously invited to Thanksgiving at her cousin’s house and had a great time! Our dogs were super excited to see Megann’s mom and her dog Spike since they all used to live together.
We made it to Camping World and found out our skylight is going to cost $189 plus $75 for shipping! Wow. We didn’t order it yet but put some silicone on it in the mean time. We also replaced the missing vent cap and broken cargo door latches. It has rained a LOT here (I think we brought it with us from Portland) and the repairs are holding up. What didn’t hold up though was one of our window seals. I woke up to a soaking wet pillow one morning after a downpour so we have some plastic over that until we get more butyl tape to replace the seal. Megann was able to fix our water heater issue (wouldn’t light in gas mode) by just cleaning the contacts going to the solenoid. It seems like there’s always something to fix on a used RV! Also, as a follow-up to our blog where we discussed the All Pro Water Flow guy coming to clean out our tanks – they are still draining great and we’ve got significantly less odor! We think it was well worth the money.
The Great Outdoors
We’ve spent a little time outdoors away from the RV park (we’re almost always outside when we work). We checked a local park that has a disc golf course, dog park and a bunch of trails called Pena Adobe/Lagoon Valley Park. We took a drive one day around lake Berryessa, which is right near us. We also took a hike in the Cold Canyon preserve up to an old homestead. This was a nice hike – not as steep as the other nearby hikes but still 800 ft of elevation gain over about a mile and a half. Steep enough for our current fitness level! It has rained a TON so we’re not always able to get outside. It’s usually in the 50’s or 60’s during the day which is great for hiking when it’s not raining.
Jelly Belly tour
We went to the Jelly Belly factory in Fairfield with Megann’s mom. It was a long wait but pretty cool to see the process and get some free samples. Unfortunately they don’t let you take any pictures inside. We also bought a bag of Belly Flops – the ones that stick together or are the wrong size. We pretty much made ourselves sick on them and finished them off in like 4 days.
We took a trip to San Francisco with one of the other work-campers. We’ve been there before so we played tour guide and showed her around. We went to Fisherman’s Wharf and pier 39 which is full of shopping but it’s very touristy and overpriced. We did enjoy watching the sea lions at the end of the pier though. We went in to Ghirardelli Square for some chocolate samples. We then rode the cable car to China Town and had dim-sum. On our way back to the car we had to introduce her to the amazing Irish Coffee’s at the Buena Vista. After that we took her to Lands End and drove through Haight Ashbury and the Castro for some sight-seeing. It was a San Fran crash course!