It has come to our attention that Maricopa County has proposed a fee increase at its lovely parks surrounding the Phoenix area. We’ve stayed at McDowell Mountain several times, and also at Usery Mountain and Cave Creek. We’ve intended to check out the parks on the west side of town but haven’t managed to get there yet.
Usery Mountain March 2010.
Cave Creek March 2010. (Our least favorite.)
Currently the campground fees are $25/night with water and electric. We feel like $25 is already on the high side, but with the convenience of the location, the huge separation between campsites, the beauty of the surrounding desert, and the excellent trails, we keep returning to McDowell Mountain Park despite the rates.
If the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors approves this rate increase, the campsite fees will increase to $30/night as of April 2014. Spending a month here would mean paying $900 for the privilege, which is $200 more than what it currently costs. Seems a bit excessive to us, considering no sewer hookups and bathrooms that are not heated, which makes it pretty uncomfortable to use the showers in the winter. Will we come back next year at $30/night? Probably so, for our annual doctors appointments, but we won’t likely stay as long. I really wonder if this will hurt their business.
Interestingly our next door neighbors, Canadians, have been wintering here for many winters as they love the mountain biking in the area. They even bought a house in nearby upscale Fountain Hills but stay here at the park in their 5th wheel, moving to a different site every two weeks as per the park rules. They said they aren’t sure what they will do next year and may just stay in their house, but I suspect another couple hundred a month won’t break them.
Unusual looking hummingbird at the feeder this morning.
On the Maricopa County website there is a form for public comments. We have expressed our opinion, and if anyone else is interested you may do so here. Thanks!
Another fiery sunrise this morning. It really did look like this.