Thursday, June 28, 2012


South Range, WI

64 deg. partly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy in the morning, then clear. High of 84F. Winds from the NW at 5 to 15 mph.

In yesterday's "Did You Know", I said that I had been with Jim and Linda for a whole year already. Well, I got thinking about that and decided that I would reminisce a little about our first year together.

Our time together didn't start out too well. Right off of the bat, I had starter problems that turned out to be wire problems. After that, it was awning problems, generator problems, leveler problems, slide-out problems and furnace problems, just to name the worst of them.  : ( 

The starter/wiring problem was found and repaired while we were still in Rantoul but the Generator problem had to wait until we got to Sioux Falls where Jim found an Onan place to repair it. Also while in Souix Falls, I got my license plates and Jim and Linda got their drivers license renewed. Once back in Rantoul, more problems started showing up, so the decision was made to head down to FL to Myrddin's mechanic to get as much repaired as possible by someone both Jim and Linda could trust.

Going back to the Dealer in Illinois where Jim and Linda bought me was not an option because by this time they had found out that they had lied to them, patched me together just to get me out of the door, and not done some of the work they had promised to do. : (

Once we made it down to Florida and spend big $$$$ on me, my problems were solved and I even got a new set of tires!!! 

Then we were off to North Carolina where I met Mike and his family, to Virginia Beach where I met Joe and his family, back down to Florida, (where I met Laura and her family), and where we spent most of the winter and I had some more repair work done at the mechanic. Then, after meeting some of Jim and Linda's friends we left for the West Coast in February!!!

By this time, Jim had gained some confidence in me and wasn't too worried that I'd have serious problems out on the road.

Basically our trip went pretty well. I had a fuel leak in Texas that was repaired, entrance steps repaired in Oregon and except for rear jack that is slightly leaking and an awning that doesn't always want to work, have not had any other serious problems!!  : )

Knock on wood!!!!!

In Oregon, I met Jeff and his friend Heather before starting our return trip back East.

I didn't realize it then, but we were in Jamestown ND and it was Father's Day when our one year anniversary came around. Evidently, Jim and Linda didn't think if it either or I'm sure they would have said something.

Just for the record, as of the 17th of June, I had traveled 9,715 miles with Jim and Linda and I had been to 25 different states.

Along the way, I've seen the plains of the Midwest, the smoky mountains, the shores of the Atlantic Ocean, the tropics of Florida, the swamps of the deep south, the high plains and deserts of the Southwest and West, Death Valley, the Sequoias and Redwoods in California, the shores of the Pacific Ocean along California and Oregon coasts, the Rocky Mountains in Idaho, the Big Skies of Montana and the forests and lakes of the North Central U.S.

All of it beautiful in it's own way!

I've met some of Jim and Linda's friends along the way, stayed in some very interesting and some not so interesting Campgrounds and traveled on everything from gravel roads to multi-lane highways.

It's been quite a ride!!! : )

Now, I'd like to take a moment to thank all of you that have followed this Blog for the last year. It's been a learning experience for me and I know that some of the posts haven't been too interesting, but you've stuck with me anyway.

Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!!

A Point to Ponder : It takes both sunshine and rain to make a rainbow.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Another Change Of Plans and Results Of Flood

South Range, WI.

56 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 82F. Winds less than 5 mph. Chance of rain 20%.

I just knew something was up when I heard Jim and Linda talking about campgrounds. Jim was talking about how friendly the folks here at this park seem to be and how nice it is to have full hook-ups, 50 amp electric, decent TV on my antenna, Wi-Fi and a nice level site, and Linda was asking what kind of hook-ups and features Jim thought I would have at our next scheduled stop, (where we would be staying for a week and over the 4th of July Holiday).

Well, at the CG that we would be going to my site would only have 30 amp electric and water hook-ups. There is no Wi-Fi and it's unknown if the air card would work to get on the Internet becasue the CG is well off the beaten path. Also, being that we would be quite far from any major city, it would be a good chance that there would not be any TV either. : (

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  ,  , Jim headed over to the office to ask Cindy if she would have a site for me for a total of 10 days, (including the 3 nights he already paid for).

Well, Cindy looked at her books, shuffled a few RVs to different sites and told Jim that I could stay for the entire 10 days, and in the same site I'm in right now!!!! : ) 

Jim paid her for the additional week, (at a weekly rate that we wouldn't have gotten at the other CG), so now we'll be staying right here until the 5th of July.

Since this post is turning out to be mostly about this park, I thought I'd post a few photos of the park.

The Office / swimming pool

Looking down the row of sites.


Do you remember me telling you about the floods in this area? Well, I thought I'd show you some of the results of the flooding. These photos are from WI route 13 just 2 miles past this campground.

The road is closed and this is why.

There used to be a culvert running under the road right here, but there was too much water for it to handle, so the water washed out the road and deposited the culvert in the woods.

This kind of thing is common throughout this area. there are many roads closed and many detours to get you around the closed roads.

There's also many people in this area who have lost everything because their houses were, or still are flooded with water, (sometimes sewage water that came up through the toilets and drains in the houses).

It's going to take quite awhile for this area to recover, but the hope is that they can get some assistance to help.

Did you know that as of June 17th I have been with Jim and Linda for 1 year?

Wow!!!! I didn't realize that a whole year had passed already!!!!! Time flies when you're having fun!!! ; )


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Through The Flood Area And Into Wisconsin

South Range, WI.

49 deg clear, no wind

Forecast = Clear in the morning, then partly cloudy. High of 77F. Winds from the South at 5 to 15 mph shifting to the ENE in the afternoon.

We did get out of the RV Park in Bemidji about 9:00. (9:05 to be exact), and continued heading East on US 2. 2 was 4 lane for awhile, then it went down to 2 lane and then back and forth for awhile. The road was in fairly good condition  but the last 25 miles or so before Duluth was the smoothest.

That is, until we came within about 3 miles of I-35.

There, we were detoured off on a smaller road that was in fairly good shape until we came to I-35. 35 then took us NE and up to I-535 where we turned SE and took us across a big high bridge and into Wisconsin.

Once into WI., we followed US 53 until it joined up with US 2 and then took 2 to WI 13 where we turned off and headed E. for about 1/2 mile and to the Northland Camping and RV Park

It was just 12:10 when we pulled up in front of the office, so it took us 3 hours and 5 minutes to travel the 157 miles over here.

Not bad at all considering most of the route was 2 lane, we had a detour and we had to go through parts of both Duluth and Superior!!! : )

Jim and Linda have been to this park before, but many years ago. Not much has changed except the trees have gotten a little bigger. ; )  It's a nice park with quite a few pull-through sites, (some with 50 amp), and Cindy, the owner is very friendly and tries to accommodate you as much as possible.

Oh, speaking of accommodating. She did find a 50 amp site for me. It's site #5, it's about 90' long and has full hook-ups!!!! : )  And, they don't use site #6, which is on my right side, so I have lots of room!!

Did you know that on this date in 1819 - The bicycle was patented by W.K. Clarkson, Jr.?

Monday, June 25, 2012

Just A Quick Post

Bemidji, MN.

48 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Clear. High of 77F. Winds from the SSE at 5 to 10 mph

Just a quick post to let you know that Jim made some phone calls and has found out that going through the Duluth/Superior area should not be a big problem. It sounds like most of the major roads are open with just a few short detours.

One of the places he called to find travel info was a CG just past Superior, WI., where we'll head for today. The lady he talked to, said that they were open and had sites to accomodate me, but I may have to operate off of 30 amp electric because most of the 50 amp sites are in a lower area of the park and she's afraid that the ground may be too soft (from all the rain), in that area.

Being that we're going through the flood area and don't really know what to expect, I think Jim is planning on leaving here a little earlier than normal. I heard him and Linda talking last night and it sounds like they're be shooting for 9:00 am.

So, if everything goes according to plan, my next post will be from Wisconsin.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Saying Good-Bye and Finding The Best Route

Bemidji, MN.

55 deg. clear, N. wind @ 6 mph.

Forecast = Clear in the morning, then mostly cloudy. High of 72F. Winds from the NNE at 5 to 10 mph.

We had a some rain here in the morning yesterday, but the rest of the day was pretty nice. Not a whole lot happened around here during the day, but in the evening, Jim and Linda took CLT (Cute Little Truck), and headed to Bruce and Jody's up on Blackduck lake.

Bruce and Jody had picked up a pizza for dinner, so shortly after they got there they ate and then spent the rest of the evening visiting. This was the last time we'll be able to get together with them on this trip. They will be busy during the day today, and Jody's brother will be driving up from Chicago and will be at their house over night.

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  ,  , before they left last night, Jim and Linda said their good-bye's with h and h, (hugs and handshakes), and then headed back here.

It was around 10:00 by the time they returned, so they just watched a little TV before going to bed.

This has been a great visit with Bruce and Jody. I sure wish we could have spent more time with them, but it's time to continue our wanderings. I'm hopeful that it won't be a long time before we see them again.

Today Jim is going to see if he can find out the best route for us to take from here. I don't know if you heard about it or not, but last week one day, they had around 9" of rain in one day, in the Duluth, MN./Superior, WI. area, which caused a lot of flooding and even washed out some of the roads and bridges in the area.

Well, that's the way we need to go as we have a reservation at a park in Northern Wisconsin for the week before and over the 4th of July Holiday. Jim says that he's pretty sure that US 2 has been washed out in Duluth, (which is the way we would normally go), but thinks some of the alternative routes are still open.

The trick will be finding out which routes will be the best for a large vehicle like me.

Did you know that 93% of Americans eat at least one pizza per month?

Thanks for everything, Bruce and Jody, we had a great time visiting with you. : )


Saturday, June 23, 2012

Good Smells, Visitors and A Few CG Photos

Bemidji, MN.

54 deg. rain, no wind.

Forecast = Overcast with a chance of a thunderstorm and a chance of rain. High of 73F. Winds from the SSE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 50%.

Early yesterday morning, Linda got up and put together a crock pot meal to have for dinner. It consisted of a roast, potatoes, onions, carrots and some salt and pepper.

Then, after getting that done, she went back to bed for awhile. ; )

Then, after awhile, great smells from the crock pot started filling the inside of me and just kept getting better as the day went on.  Then, after she got back up, she made a black cherry cream pie to have for desert.

Of course all of this was done in anticipation of Bruce and Jody coming for dinner. : )

Meanwhile, Jim was working on the computer, watching TV and doing some cleaning inside of me.

It was a little after 5:00 when Bruce and Jody arrived. The first thing that Jim did was to give them the "tour" of the outside of me, showing them my storage bays, engine and other outside features. Then they all came inside where Jim and Linda continued the "tour".

Overall, I think that they really liked me and had some very nice comments about me. : ) 

After the tour, everyone sat down and visited for awhile. Then, Linda got the food out of the crock pot and everyone sat down and had a very nice meal, which I think everyone enjoyed. After eating they talked and played a new type scrabble game for while until it was time for them to head home.

I really enjoyed meeting Bruce and Jody and am looking forward to seeing them again sometime in the future.

Today, they're having a thing called the "Lady Slipper Celebration" in Blackduck where local crafts people set up booths and display and sell their items. Bruce and Jody have a booth where they will sell some wood burning craft items,  so they'll be there this afternoon.

It's still undecided of Jim and Linda will be going to that, but they are going to go to their house for dinner later.

Oh, here's some more photos of the park here in Bemidji that Jim took the other day. I thought I'd better get them posted before I forgot.

This first one is of the loop that I'm in. As you can see, there's quite a few trees, but there are open sites for the folks that have satellite TV.

The sites are fairly wide, there's nice grass and in some cases, a few trees in between sites.

I think just about every site has a picnic table which is nice.

Well, I guess that's about it for today. I had a great time meeting Bruce and Jody, and I'm sure glad they like me. I hope I'll get to see them again before we leave here on Monday.

A Point to Ponder :  Why is it that when a person tells you that there are over a million stars in the universe you believe them, but if someone tells you there's wet paint somewhere, you have to touch it to make sure?

Friday, June 22, 2012

The Decision Is Made, Photos and Visiting With Bruce And Jody

Bemidji, MN

45 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Clear in the morning, then partly cloudy. High of 72F. Winds from the WNW at 5 to 10 mph.

Yep, It's official, I'm staying here in Bemidji while Jim and Linda visit Bruce, (Linda's cousin), and his wife Jody, in Blackduck. Jim and Linda decided that it was just too risky to try to get me into that City Park, so the decision was made early yesterday morning.

So, first of all today, I thought I'd show you some photos of the RV Park here in Bemidji where I'm staying at.  This, of course is the sign that you see as you enter the park.

The view of the park, just past the sign.

The office where you register.

Just past the office there is a small playground for the kiddies and then this bath house/laundry.

A little past the bathhouse/laundry go go down this road which takes you to the loop of the Park that I'm in.

Jim took a few more photos of  that loop and my site, but I'll post them in a future post. : )

Soon after Linda got up yesterday, she and Jim took CLT and headed to a Walgreen's Drug Store. It was time to get Linda's prescriptions refilled and they also needed to pick up a few other items.

The prescription refills went off without a hitch and by about 12:30 they were back here putting stuff away and eating lunch. : )

Much of the afternoon was spent cleaning the inside of me up in anticipation of Bruce and Jody coming today. Jim also paid for the additional days that I'll be staying here at this park and Linda baked a rhubarb upside down cake to take to Bruce and Jody's.

Then, about 5:30, they headed to Blackduck to see Bruce and Jody.

I didn't realize it, but they have built a log home on Blackduck Lake. The photo below is actually of the back of the house as the front of the house faces the lake.

This is a photo of the front of the house. (Pretty impressive!!)  Oh, and don't forget, you can click on any of these photos to enlarge them so you can see the details better.

When you go inside off of the deck shown in the above photo, this is the "real" fireplace that is the centerpiece of the living area.

The inside is all made of logs. Here you can see the stairs going up to the bedrooms and also below them the stairs going down into the full basement.

The kitchen/dining area

Back outside on the deck, this is the view, looking down at the lake.

How do you get down to the lake? Well, you go down these 80 steps!! ; )
Oh, and I almost forgot! If you scroll back up and look at the photo of the fireplace, you'll see a huge fish mounted above it. Well, Bruce caught that fish in a lake near Blackduck. It's huge!!!!

After visiting for awhile, Bruce cooked some burgers on the grill for dinner and put together some salads. Then it was more visiting until about 9:30 when everyone started getting tired.

It was a little after 10:00 by the time CLT brought Jim and Linda back here. Then it was TV for a little while before they headed to bed.

A very nice day topped off by spending a great evening with family.

This evening, Bruce and Jody are coming here for dinner and to meet me. They should be getting here sometime after 5:00.

I can hardly wait!!!! : )

Did you know that the town of Blackduck was established in December 1900? The first settlers of this community came from Crookston, MN. The town was founded because of the great logging potential of the area.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

What to do?

Bemidji, MN.

56 deg. overcast, NW wind @ 8 mph.

Forecast = Partly cloudy with a chance of a thunderstorm and a chance of rain. High of 77F. Breezy. Winds from the West at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 30%

Because it was raining hard, we didn't leave the Casino CG in Mahnomen until 10:35 yesterday morning. That was OK though because it was only 82 miles to our destination here at the Royal Oaks RV Park here in Bemidji. In fact it was only 12:10 when we pulled up to the office.

This is a  pretty nice park with lots of trees, grass and fairly large sites. It seems to be will maintained, with good gravel roads and the sites are all very level. They have a few pull-through sites, but most are back-in.

After Jim and Linda got me into my site and set up, they took CLT and headed to Blackduck, MN, (where Linda's cousin lives), to check out the city park there to see if I could get into it.

Well, when they came back, they had serious reservations about getting me into the park. The road going into the park is very narrow with trees on both sides.

CLT says that the trees have not been trimmed and he thinks there would be small branches rubbing on my roof most of the way in. As for the roads once in the park, he said that he thinks I could manage them OK, but the sites that I would fit into, are not very level and there is a large slope going up into the sites from the narrow road, which would make them very difficult to get into, plus, he and Jim are both afraid that it would put a lot of stress on me as it would put a lot of twist on my chassis while backing in or pulling out.

So, what to do? 

I guess the only thing to do is for me to stay here in Bemidji and have CLT take Jim and Linda back and forth to Blackduck each day. It's about 25 miles each way, so it's not too far, but it would be much nicer if I was only a few miles from there house.

There is also the cost factor. This CG is about $10 more per night than the City Park, and Jim and Linda will have to buy the gas for CLT to take them back and forth. But, Jim says that if I should get damaged trying to get into the park or one of the sites, it would be much more expensive than leaving me here and driving CLT back and forth.

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  ,  I guess the only logical thing for me to do is to stay here. : (

Bruce and Jody called yesterday evening to see where we were and if we still on schedule. Jim told them about the problems of getting me into the City Park and arrangements were made for Jim and Linda to go to their house this evening from where ever I stay.

Bruce is working today, so the plan is to go get there about 6:00 and have dinner with them.

Did you know that in January, Bemidji has an average daily high temp of only16 degrees and an average daily low temp of -4 degrees?      



Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Jamestown, ND To Mahnomen, MN

Mahnomen, MN.

54 deg. cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Overcast with thunderstorms and rain showers. High of 63F. Winds from the ENE at 5 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 80% with rainfall amounts near 0.4 in. possible.

First of all, I want to say that I hope all you fathers out there had a great Father's Day Sunday. I know Jim did. The kids called and wished him a happy Father's Day, and most of them took the time to talk for awhile.

It made Jim's day.  : )

For dinner, Linda made a chicken casserole for Jim, (that he likes very well), and pampered him a little throughout the day. ; )

Yesterday morning, we left the CG in Jamestown about 9:50 and continued East on I-94. About 40 or so miles down the road, Jim pulled me into a truck stop and filled me up with some of that good old #2 diesel fuel.

Then it was back on I-94 until 6 miles after we crossed into Minnesota. There we took a 2 mile jog to the north and picked up US 10 and followed it East to Detroit Lakes where we turned North on US 59 and follow it up here to Mahnomen, and the Shooting Star Casino RV Park.

It was 1:15 when we got here so it took us about 3 hours and 15 minutes to travel the 165 miles over here and stop for my drink.

This is a pretty nice park. It's behind the casino so you see the back side of the buildings from the CG, but if you look the other way, there's lots of trees. They have mostly pull-though sites, some with 50 amp electric, and I believe all are full hook-up. The sites are fairly level and some of them are long enough for the largest RVs.

And, the camping rate is only $20 per night, (plus tax)!!!!

Jim took some photos yesterday, but again, I'm having trouble with blogger, so I'll see what I can do.

Looking at the back of the Casino complex from the CG

My site (#40). Do you see that MH parked next to me? Well, that's my Mountain Aire cousin!! He lives up in Manitoba Canada and is down here for the summer!!!! : )

We'll be staying here for 2 nights before heading up to Bemidji, where we'll stay for 1 night before heading up to Black Duck.

Did you know that Mahnomen is the Chippewa word for Wild Rice?

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Dickinson to Jamestown and Happy Father's Day!!

Jamestown, ND

55 deg. overcast, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy in the morning, then overcast with a chance of a thunderstorm and a chance of rain. High of 81F. Breezy. Winds from the South at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 50%

I didn't realize it, but we were about to go into the Central Time Zone yesterday, and that would mean that we'd loose an hour. So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  Jim and Linda decided to leave a little earlier than our normal departure time of 10:00, so we left the North Park RV Pk about 9:30 instead.

Now, Jim usually doesn't like to travel when it's real windy, but the wind was coming out of the WNW and was fore-casted to keep coming from that direction for most of the day. Being that we would be traveling almost straight East all the way to our next destination, It was hoped that the wind would be at my back.

Well, sometimes things work out!!! : ) The road didn't have any more big "dips", the wind did stay out of the West and except for a few very short sections, we were going East. And, do you know what that means?

Very good mileage!!!!

In fact things went so well that we didn't stop at all, all the way here to Jamestown, and I still have plenty of fuel to go even farther down the road!!! ; )

It was 12:50 when we pulled into the Frontier Fort  RV Park, so it took us just 3 hours and 20 minutes to travel 193 miles.

Not too shabby!!!!!  

This is an OK park. It's not laid out very well for larger RVs, and in some places there's low hanging branches you have to watch out for, but I do have full hook-ups with 50 amp electric, it's a Passport America park and the rates are sure nice at less than $20.00 per night. ; )

We'll be staying here for one more night before continuing East and then North towards Bemidji, MN.

Oh, and I almost forgot!!! Happy Father's Day to all you fathers out there in Blog Land!!!!

Did you know that the first presidential proclamation honoring fathers was issued in 1966 when President Lyndon Johnson designated the third Sunday in June as Father’s Day? Father’s Day has been celebrated annually since 1972 when President Richard Nixon signed the public law that made it permanent.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

ARRRRGGGG!!! Catching Up!!!

Dickinson, ND.

I don't know what's going on with Blogger but I haven't been able to post the last couple days!!! : (  Yeah, I've had a weak signal but I've had weak signals before and have been able to post!!!

Well, anyway, I'm finally able to get this page to come up so I can post, so here goes.

Friday 6/15/12

Miles City, MT.

54 deg. partly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy with a chance of a thunderstorm and a chance of rain in the morning, then mostly cloudy with a chance of a thunderstorm and a chance of rain. High of 81F. Winds from the SE at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the ENE in the afternoon. Chance of rain 40%.

I'm having a real problem with Blogger so I'm posting here on this word processor for now.
We're still in Miles City because of the wind yesterday. It was in the 30 to 40 mph range and the forecasts were saying that it was even stronger in ND where our next stop will be.

Not a whole lot happening here. Too windy to be out and about much. Jim is going to call the CG in Dickinson, ND to make sure they have a site available for tonight. I sure hope they do, cause I don't know where else we would be able to go, except up to US 2 in Williston, ND.

The problem with the Campgrounds in this area is that with the "Oil Boom" in ND most of the parks are filled with oil workers. I understand some parks are holding back a few sites for travelers though.

Well, I'd better get going. Need to get ready to wander some more. : )

Did you know that on this date in 1752 - Benjamin Franklin experimented by flying a kite during a thunderstorm? The result was a little spark that showed the relationship between lightning and electricity.

Saturday, 6/16/12

Dickinson, ND.

48 deg. clear, W. wind @ 12 mph.

Forecast = Partly cloudy in the morning, then clear. High of 75F. Breezy. Winds from the WNW at 15 to 20 mph.

The winds did die down and we left CG in Miles City about 9:15 because by the weather reports, there was a good chance of rain and t-storms coming into the area by noon.

Once back on I-94, we followed it NE up to Glendive where the road turned East and took us into North Dakota. After crossing into ND, it was 61 more miles here to Dickinson and the North Park Campground

It was 12:00 noon when we pulled up to the office, so it took us 2 hours and 45 minutes to travel the 167 miles over here.

Now, let me tell you a little about I-94 between Miles City and Dickinson. It's full of "dips"!!!! They're bad enough that the state has put out warning signs telling you when the worst of them are coming and believe me, you had better slow down or when you come up out of the dip, you'll almost be air-borne!!!!!

There's many of these dips in Eastern MT. and in Western ND!!!

Now, I have to admit that the last 20 or so miles West of Dickinson seemed to be better, so I'm hoping that as we head East from here, the road will improve.

Oh, and remember the rain that I talked about earlier? Well, we probably should have left a little later cause we ran into the tail end of it just before we got here.

This is an OK park. Nothing special but the sites are fairly level and the pull-through are some of the longest you'll find anywhere. The folks in the office a re very friendly and helpful and after you're registered, they lead you to and into your site.

The above photo is of the main road coming into the park. The office is where the person is walking down the street.

As you get farther into the park, this is the view you have, and yes, that's an operating oil well straight ahead at the end of the street.

The above is of the pull-through short term sites. There is no grass between the sites in this area, but all the rest of the sites in the park seem to have at least a small patch of grass and a few small trees between the sites.

The plan for today is to head farther East. It looks like the next RV Park that Jim has selected, is about 200 miles from here so I expect it to take us about 4 hours or so.

Oh, and I'm going to need another drink pretty soon, so we'll probably stop someplace along the way.

Did you know that as the idea of Father’s Day was conceived by Sonora Dodd of Spokane, Washington, to honor her father, she chose his birthday which was proclaimed on June 19, 1910, by Spokane’s mayor as the first Father’s Day?

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

A Long Travel Day (For Us)

Miles City, MT.

54 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy with a chance of a thunderstorm and a chance of rain in the morning, then overcast with a chance of a thunderstorm and a chance of rain. High of 81F. Winds from the SSW at 5 to 15 mph shifting to the WNW in the afternoon. Chance of rain 30%.

Because we only went a short way to get to Bozeman the other day, Things got kind of messed up as to where our next stop would be. We could either travel only about 100 miles and stay in Columbus, or travel 277 miles to Miles City. (which is farther than we usually travel in one day).

Oh there are a few places that we could have stayed in between those two places, but they were either quite expensive or didn't have good ratings.

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  Jim made the decision to head for Miles City. 

Because it was going to be a longer travel day, we left the Bear Canyon Campground near Bozeman at 8:55 and continued East on I-90.  About 25 miles from Bozeman, Jim pulled me into a truck stop in Livingston, MT. and filled me up with some good tasting #2 diesel. From there we got back on 90 and followed it to just past Billings, where we left 90 and turned off on I-94.

We made one "pit stop" at a rest area on 94 about 1/2 way here to the Big Sky Camp and RV Park in Miles City.

It was 1:55 when we pulled into the park, so it took us almost exactly 5 hours to travel 277 miles, get fuel and make the "pit stop".

This campground is OK. It's not someplace where I'd like to stay for an extended period of time, but for a few nights, it'll do. The owners are great and go out of their way to help in any way they can. The pull-through sites are plenty long for even the longest RVs, the sites are fairly level, but they are quite narrow and you share the hook-ups with your neighbor.

But, at only $20 per night for a water and electric (30 amp) site I guess you can't complain too much.

Because of the low price and the fact that we've got plenty of time before we want to get to Black Duck to see Linda's cousin and his wife, Jim paid for 2 nights.

I have no idea what's happening today, probably not much. I'm hoping Jim will get out the camera and take a few photos of this park so I can post them here, and CLT says that he's needing a drink of 87 octane so maybe Jim and Linda will take him into town and buy him some.

A Point to Ponder : Are zebras black with white stripes, or white with black stripes?

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Much Nicer Day, Groceries, and Getting Ready To Leave

Bozeman, MT

39 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy with a chance of a thunderstorm and a chance of rain in the afternoon. High of 70F. Winds from the South at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the West in the afternoon. Chance of rain 30%.

Yesterday was a much better day than Sunday was. It was nice and sunny all day and the temperature got into the upper 60's. : )

Jim took a few photos of the park and the surrounding area so I thought I'd post a few today.

The photo below is of the office/store/bathhouse. Its kind of unique in its design.

This of course, is a photo of me in my site, (#8), and as you can see, there's trees and bushes on both sides of me, but there's still plenty of room for my slides.

If I look off to my right, this is the view I have.

This is the view of the mountains which are behind me. There was some snow on this mountain when we got here, but now there's more since Saturday and Sunday's storms.

About 11:00 CLT took Jim and Linda to a Safeway Grocery store in town where they bought bunches of groceries. Again, I had my doubts that they'd get them all in my cabinets and refrigerator, but they did. : )

After they got back, Jim went out and put some water in my fresh water tank and dumped my black and grey water tanks. Then, he put all the hoses away because he knew that they would be stiff as a board from the cold temperatures this morning.

After he finished that, he came in and took a little nap while Linda worked on her genealogy stuff.

On the back of the grocery receipt, there were some coupons for a Perkins Restaurant in town, so for dinner, they headed over there and had breakfast for dinner. When they got back, Jim hooked CLT up behind me and they they read, played with the computers and watched TV until bedtime.

Today, we'll continue wandering towards the East. Don't know just how far we'll get, but Jim has some RV Parks located along our planned route. : )

Did you know that today is "National Peanut Butter Cookie Day"?

Monday, June 11, 2012

Staying Another Day and New Plans

Bozeman, MT.

39 deg. partly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy with a chance of rain in the afternoon. High of 68F. Winds from the West at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 20%.

Yesterday was a very nasty weather day here in Bozeman. We didn't have any snow like we had the day before, but it rained all day and was very windy with 20 to 30 MPH gusts!!! : (

Jim took the above photo on Saturday, if you click on it to enlarge it, you can see that there's a pick-up truck off to the right that's almost completely covered with snow.

Being that the weather was so nasty, neither Jim or Linda stepped outside until later in the evening when the rain stopped. Then, it was just Jim, who walked over to the office and payed for another day here at the Bear Canyon Campground.

You see, he and Linda decided that they would like to stay another day to do some shopping and enjoy this nice CG. So, being that the weather is supposed to be much better, we're not in a big hurry and we don't have any place we need to be in the next week or so, it was decided to stay here one more day. ; )

Oh, Linda called Bruce, (her cousin who lives NE of Bemidji Minnesota), yesterday to see if there was a time when we could stop by to see them. He and Jodi were very excited that we were coming and it was decided that we would get there on June 21st, (a Thursday), and stay through the weekend.

They live near the little town of Black Duck, MN and Jim and Linda say that there is a small city CG a little way out of town. Jim and Linda stayed there when they had Myrddin, but Jim is concerned if he can get me into the campground, so Bruce and Jodi are going to try to find out if it's possible to get a 45' MH in there.

Jim says that they may have to park me in town and take CLT out there to check it out themselves to make sure I'll be able to get in.

Did you know that on this date in 1919 - Sir Barton became the first horse to capture the Triple Crown when he won the Belmont Stakes in New York City?

Sunday, June 10, 2012

It's All Down Hill From Here and Snow!!

Bozeman, MT.

40 Deg. overcast, light rain

Forecast = Mostly cloudy with a chance of rain. High of 55F. Breezy. Winds from the WSW at 20 to 25 mph with gusts to 30 mph. Chance of rain 50%.

It's all down hill from here!!!!

Well, maybe not all the way, but I did go over the Continental Divide at 6375' yesterday and logic says that being that the central states are pretty much less than 1000', it should be all down hill. : )

But,  ,  ,  ,  ,   lets back up and I'll fill you in on what's been going on the last few days.

We left St. Regis about 9:45 Friday morning and continued East on I-90, arriving at the 2 Bar Lazy H Campground near Butte, MT. about 12:50. The road was fairly good with some fairly steep grades in places, but nothing that slowed me down too much.

It took us 3 hours and 5 minutes to travel the 183 miles.

As soon as we pulled into the CG I didn't much like what I saw. To me, it didn't look like any of the sites were level and the CG didn't look very well maintained. Then, when Jim went to the office and found the door locked with a sign saying that he should pay before finding a site, I definately had my doubts about this park.

Well, Jim didn't pay but instead walked out into the park to see if he could find a site suitable for me. He finally talked to a man way back on the back row that told him that the back row was the only row with 50 amp sites and full hook-ups. He also told Jim that there's hardly ever anyone in the office, and sometimes it was days before anyone came around to collect the checks or cash that people had paid.

Jim found a site on the back row that was suitable, so he came and got me and CLT and took us to the site.

He had to unhook CLT to get me into the site, and after I was on the site, I wasn't sure I'd be able to get leveled. I did get pretty close to level and Jim and Linda decided that it would be OK for just one night.

Jim went back to the office and paid the $30 for the site, but I think that if there would have been another CG in the area, we would have left. This park is definately not worth $30. The sites are not level, it's not well maintained, and the only way to find out if there's a site that's suitable, is to go look at the sites.

The forecast for yesterday was again for nasty weather with high winds and rain. If the 2 Bar Lazy H CG would have been decent, we probably would have just stayed there for an additional day or two, but since it wasn't, Jim called the the Beay Canyon Campground here in Bozeman to make sure they had a site for me. They did, and when Jim asked if it was OK of we’d get there between 10:30 and 11:00, Siara, (the very nice young lady in the office), told him that the normal check-in time was 1:00 pm but it would be OK of we came early since there was no one in the site that she was saving for me. : )

Now, I probably should explain why Jim wanted to get going early.

As I said, the forecast was for strong winds and rain, but that system had not moved into the area yet, so if we left early, we just might make it over Homestake Pass, (The Continental Divide at 6375’), before the weather changed. He also wanted to get to the Bear Canyon CG and get me into my site before the weather moved in if possible.

So,  ,  ,  ,  , by , we were pulling out of the CG near Butte and heading East on I-90 again. Just a little way past Butte, the road started to climb and soon we were up to the top of the pass.

Of course when you go up, you must go down, and that’s when it got interesting. There’s signs at the top of the pass warning about 5 miles of 6% grade with curves and to check your brakes, and others telling you that the speed limit for any vehicle over 12,000 lbs is 25 MPH!!!!  

Well, we made it slowly down the mountain without any problems and by we were pulling up in front of the office here at the Bear Canyon CG in Bozeman.

It was only 91 miles over here and it took us only 1 hour and 50 minutes, but I was sure glad that we got here when we did because just after Jim had me positioned in my site and the utilities hooked up, the wind picked up, it started to rain, and by mid afternoon, the rain turned to snow!!!!  

I sure would have hated to be coming over that pass in that weather!! : O

This is a very nice CG. Jim didn’t get a chance to take any photos, but if he does I’ll be sure to post some. There’s vegetation between the sites, many are pull-through and the CG appears to be well maintained. About the only problem is that the turns are pretty tight for a 45’ MH pulling a toad, but I’ve been able to manage so far.

We’ll be staying here for 2 nights. The forecasters are saying that the weather should improve by tomorrow, but we’ll see. If it’s still nasty, we’ll stay for another night. ; )

Oh, and the snow?   Well it snowed enough that the all the vehicles in the park were white, and the grass was almost covered. Of course after it quit snowing, it all melted right away.

Did you know that the lowest recorded temperature in Bozeman, −43 °F (−42 °C), occurred on February 8, 1936?

Friday, June 8, 2012

Sprague WA to St. Regis MT

Saint Regis, MT

48 deg. cloudy, no wind.

Forecast today = Mostly cloudy with rain showers. High of 59F. Winds from the West at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 70%.

Believe it or not, but we left Sprague and 8:05 yesterday morning!!!! I really didn't think we get out of there until 9 or so. : ) 

Once back on I-90, we simply followed it all the way here to Saint Regis, MT. and to Campground St. Regis. It was 11:45 when we pulled up to the office, so we made fairly good time, traveling 168 miles in 3 hours and 40 minutes, much of that in the mountains.

Oh, and we did stop just after we crossed into Idaho to get me a drink of good old #2 diesel fuel. ; ) 

Speaking of diesel fuel, it sure was good to get some good tasting fuel for a change. That Bio-diesel stuff that they put in me out in Portland, was funny tasting. It may have been my imagination, but I thought at times I detected a slight taste of french fries. : O

Anyway, back to yesterday's trip.

It all really went pretty smooth. We zipped right through Spokane and into Idaho, got my drink, crossed over the "4th of July Summit at 3081' without any problems and before long, we were crossing Lookout Pass, at 4725', on the Idaho/Montana state line.

This pass isn't too bad. I had to climb up a 5 mile 5% to 6% grade to get up to the top, and then come down a 2 mile 6% grade which then eased into a 5% grade for another mile. There was some construction in the area, but we just took it slow and with the help of my Jake Brake during the descent, made it safe and sound to the bottom.

Parts of I-90 in Montana have been kind of rough but for the most part, the rest of the road that we traveled on yesterday was in very good condition.

Jim and Linda have been to Campground St. Regis twice before and were not disappointed this time. If anything, the park is in better shape now than it was in the past. The owners are supper friendly, welcomed us to the park, picked out a nice pull-through site where CLT could stay hooked up behind me, and was easy to get into and out of.

I wouldn't mind coming back here some day and staying for awhile. : )

For dinner last night, Jim unhooked CLT from the back of me and then he and Linda went into town to Jasper's Restaurant. Both of them said that the food was good, but was a little on the "pricey" side.

Oh, one draw-back to this park is that there's no cable TV and no stations available on an antenna either. Of course if you have satellite, that's not a problem.

So, being that Jim and Linda couldn't watch TV, they worked / played around with the computers and read until bedtime.

Did you know that Seven Devils' Peaks, one of the highest mountain ranges in Idaho, Includes Heaven's Gate Lookout, where sightseers can look into four states?

Sorry Jenny, no photos. : (

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Back On The Road Today

Sprague, WA

41 deg. clear, N. wind @ 4 mph.

Forecast = Overcast with a chance of rain, then rain showers in the afternoon. High of 72F. Winds from the SSE at 5 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 70%.

The weather here in Sprague had been really nasty with temperatures in the lower 50's, strong winds and rain. In fact, Tuesday, I think everyone in the CG stayed inside all day. : (

Yesterday, Jim went over to the office and paid for our 7 nights here, (Actually paid for 6 and got the 7th free), and talked to Scott for awhile. Then he and Linda went into town and mailed a couple of Birthday cards. Jim also dumped my tanks and put all the hoses away so we'd be ready to leave this morning.

This morning I think we're going to try to leave earlier than we normally do because they're forecasting more rain and wind to be coming into this area, late morning or early afternoon. From what I overheard, it sounds like we're going to try to get out of here by about 8:00.

We'll see how that goes. ; )

If everything goes according to plan, we'll stop for a drink for me when we get into Idaho, ( Diesel is about 22 cents a gallon cheaper than in Washington), and then stop for the night at a CG that Jim and Linda have been to before in St. Regis, MT.

Did you know that Starbucks, the biggest coffee chain in the world was founded in Seattle?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

A Change In The Weather

Sprague, WA.

50 deg. overcast, SW wind @ 17 mph and gusty

Forecast  = Overcast with rain showers. High of 54F. Breezy. Winds from the SW at 15 to 25 mph with gusts to 30 mph. Chance of rain 90%.

Jim went into town to pick up the mail yesterday morning and then went to the little grocery store and picked up a loaf of bread and a couple TV dinners. When he got back, he changed the charcoal water filter that filters all the water coming into me, added some water to my fresh water tank and closed the gray water tank to collect some gray water in preparation for dumping my tanks just before we leave here. 
Much of yesterday was pretty nice, but then in the afternoon, things changed. Soon after Jim finished with me, the clouds rolled in, the wind picked up and it started to rain. Then, as far as the weather goes, it was all down-hill from there.

Although we didn't have any severe weather right here, there were T-storm and even tornado watches for the counties right around us. However, we did get some fairly strong winds and heavy rain.

Once the weather changed, it was TV, computers, naps and TV dinners for the rest of the day. ; )

Today doesn't promise to be very nice outside. It's very windy with off and on sprinkles, there's fog hanging over the lake, and the forecast is for the temperature to only get up to the mid 50's. (That's about 20 degrees colder than yesterday.  : ( 

Did you know that in Seattle, it's Illegal to carry a concealed weapon that is over 6 feet in length?

Monday, June 4, 2012

More Family Research

Sprague, WA

55 deg. overcast, light rain, no wind.

Forecast = Overcast with a chance of a thunderstorm and rain showers. High of 70F. Winds from the SSE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 90%.

It was a nice day again yesterday, so fairly early Jim was out and about, wandering around the park. When he got down by the boat dock, Scott, one of the owners was down there cleaning some nice rainbow trout that he had caught, at the fish cleaning station.

After talking to Scott for awhile, Jim came back here and watched the NASCAR race on TV.

As you know, Linda has been doing a lot of research on her family since we've been here. Well, the other day, she found out that her grandmother's sister, Who came out here to Sprague way back in the 1800's was supposed to be buried in the Macabee Cemetery which is only about 10 miles from here.

Jim found the cemetery on his "Street and Trips" program, and so after the race was over, he and Linda took CLT and headed out to try to find the cemetery and the grave. CLT said that they didn't have much trouble finding the cemetery and in fact, the grave was easy to find too.

It's located right across the road from that big tree in the photo above and is right next to the road.

After coming back here, Linda went back to her research and Jim took a little nap. ; )

I still don't know how long we'll be staying here at the Four Seasons Campground.  We may stay here until Thursday so that we can take advantage of the weekly rate.

Did you know that June is "National Accordion Awareness Month"?

Sunday, June 3, 2012

A Few More Photos

Sprague, WA

50 deg, mostly cloudy, N. wind # 7 mph.

Forecast = Overcast in the morning, then mostly cloudy with a chance of rain. High of 68F. Winds from the SSW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 30%.

Not much happening here at the Four Seasons RV Park, so I thought I'd post a few more photos. Jim took quite a few pictures, but being that I have a very strong but very slow Internet connection, it takes forever to load them, even after they've been re-sized.

But, here are a few.

This first one is taken from behind me. As you can see, there's a 5th wheel trailer to my right, but there hasn't been anyone in it since we've arrived. My guess would be that it's here for the season and the owners come out here when they can.

This is the grassy area in front of the RV sites. There are some fire rings and grills spaced along the area and if you want to sit outside there's lots of shade.

If you wander down to the boat launch area, you can sit out on this pier to fish or to just look out over the lake. There's also a boat dock area off to the left of the ramp.

And, at day's end, you can sit in your RV enjoy the moon shining down on the lake, while listening to the crickets, frogs and the "hoot ,,,,,,,,,,hoot,,hoot" of the owl that sits in the trees every night .

I hope you've had a great day like I've had.

Did you know that Washington became the 42nd state in the United States on November 11, 1889?

Saturday, June 2, 2012

A Little Twist, Some Excitement and Dinner At The Viking

Sprague, WA.

57 deg. overcast, light rain. SW wind @ 7 mph.

Forecast = Overcast with rain showers in the morning, then partly cloudy. High of 72F. Breezy. Winds from the SW at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 60%.

There's been a little twist in the research of Linda's ancestors in this area.

Before Linda woke up yesterday morning, Jim was doing a little research for Linda to try to find out where there were Historical Societies, Libraries, and County Seats in the area around Sprague. On one web site, he found a link that looked interesting so he clicked on it and found that there was all kinds of info that Linda was looking for on the site.

The site is called the Washington State Digital Archives and in just a few hours of research yesterday afternoon, Linda has already found tons of information pertaining to her ancestors!!

So, what affect will this have on our travels?  Well, it looks like most of the research that Linda wanted to do in this area can be done from the computer instead of going to libraries, court houses and historical societies and digging though books, micro-fitch and other sources. It also means that we don't have to stay in this area to do the research and we can move on.

But ,  ,  ,  ,  ,  Jim, Linda and I are really enjoying this park and since Jim has figured about a week here into the trip plan, we'll probably stay here for awhile. ; )

Speaking of the park, we had some excitement here yesterday. About the middle of the afternoon, an ambulance came into the park with lights and siren going and headed for the boat dock. It seems that someone got sick out on a boat and his friend had called the Paramedics and made arrangements to meet them here at the Four Seasons Park.

Later, when Jim talked to Jane, (one of the owners of this park), she told him that the man was awake, but he didn't know where he was and didn't even seem to know his name.

I hope the man is going to be OK.

While they were talking, Jim asked Jane if there was a grocery store and a restaurant in Sprague. She said that there was, but they were nothing special, and gave him instructions on how to find them.

So, yesterday evening, Jim and Linda took CLT (Cute Little Truck), and headed into town. CLT said that their first stop was at a very small grocery store, (Kathy's Market), in "Beautiful Downtown Sprague", where Jim went in a picked up a couple items that they had forgotten to buy during their last shopping trip.

Then, they headed out to the main road coming into town, off of the expressway, and found "The Viking Drive-in".  The drive-in is not a drive-in anymore, but they have tables and chairs inside instead. Jim had the fish and chips, and Linda had a bacon burger.

Both said that the food was good, the service was good and they would go back again. : )

I don't know what Jim and Linda are planning for today, but you know what? I really don't care!!! I'm just going to sit here in my site, enjoy the peace and quiet and the great view of the lake. ; )

Did you know that Sprague was officially incorporated on November 28, 1883? Originally called Hoodooville after William Burrows, a local character called Hoodoo Billy, the name was changed to honor General John W. Sprague, a railroad executive.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Plymouth To Sprague and 11 Years On The Road

Sprague, WA.

57 deg. overcast, no wind.

Forecast = Mostly cloudy with a chance of rain. High of 77F. Winds from the SSW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

We left the Plymouth Park COE park about 10:00 yesterday morning and headed back to US 395. Northbound 395 took us up through Kennewick and Pasco and continued NE right up here to Sprague where we turned of at exit #245. Once into the little town of Sprague, we took back roads for about 6 miles to the Four Seasons Campground Resort

The roads up here were in very good condition, but we had light rain almost all the way. Once we were on the back roads leading to the CG the condition of the roads deteriorated and in fact the last 3 miles were gravel!! It wasn't really too bad though. Because of the light rain, there really wasn't too much dust from the gravel.

It was 12:40 when we pulled up in front of the office so we traveled 133 miles in 2 hours and 40 minutes including a "Pit Stop" for Jim and Linda at a rest area.
I'm in site #8 (that Jim picked out of 4 choices he had), and it's a really nice site. I'm pulled in forward, looking out over the lake. The photo below is the view out of my windshield.

Jim took more photos of the park and my site, and I'll be posting more of them in the next few days.

As I mentioned yesterday, as of today, Jim and Linda have been full-timing for 11 years. Both Jim and Linda say that it's been a good 11 years and they have no regrets. When they started out, they decided that they would try the lifestyle for a couple years and then decide what they would do.

I don't think either one of them thought that they would be doing this for 11 years, but once they had done this for awhile, they realized how much they liked it and in fact, couldn't picture themselves living in a stix and brix house.

Those of you that have followed their travels for awhile, know that they have children scattered from coast to coast, and that is one of the main reasons that they have kept doing this for so long. They actually see their children and grand children more now than they did before.

Another reason they're still full-timing is that they've still not found the place where they want to settle down. Oh, they've looked through the years but there's always some drawback to the place they're looking at. They have found places where they would like to spend the summer, and other places to spend the winter, but as of yet, no place where they would like to stay at year round.

And still another reason is the great people that they meet in campgrounds and RV parks as they travel. Through the years, they have met some folks who will surely remain friends for the rest of their lives.

So, how much longer will they full-time? Well, the simple answer is, they don't know. Every so often, they sit down and discuss what they want to do. The last time was just before they bought me, and they decided that they didn't want to quit. (Which I'm very grateful for). Their health is still fairly good, and there's still places that they want to go, so I imagine that until that changes, they'll just keep going. ; )

Oh, one more thing.  Jim and Linda would like to thank everyone for all the well wishes and great comments yesterday. It really means a lot to them.

A Point to Ponder : There's only one way to fail, and that is to quit.