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"Our Travels"


       This is the story of us back in New Hampshire where we had lived for the past 20+ years.

We spent over a year and a half selling everything, paid things off, and quit our jobs and hit the road.


Note:  To Have a More Enjoyable Reading of Our Journal.

 Read Each Update One at a Time.   Then Go Back and Visit the Websites in That Update Before Reading the Next Update.

Note:  Most of the websites listed here, I have never visited, so if there are problems please let us know!

Note:  Please Check Back   -  We add  new  Updates about every 3 to 6 months.

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Update #1 --- Nov. 2001 ---

Well as you know I had a big shift in life. Sold everything, Quit Work, and on Nov 22 2001 @ 11:30 AM started a rest of life tour of the US, Canada, etc. With our MotorHome and trailer (visit www.discount-rv-marine.com/images/trektrl.jpg  and see) So we went through southern NH,Mass,RI,Conn,NY,Penn,MD,WV,V,Tenn, Ga,AL,Miss, and Lousiana. In Penn. we visited a motorhome factory. (our next one, if ever) visit http://www.kingsleycoach.com/  and see. In Vir. we saw my 2 nieces and my sister was visiting from Minnesota too.  We did Vending @ 2 Flea Markets in Alabama + 2 in Miss. one in Hattiesburg, Miss. one in Gulfport, Miss. to try an make some income - seeing we don't have any. We spent Christmas in New Orleans,Louisana walking thru the French Quarter up Bourban St. etc. The following weekend we did a flea mkt. in Baton Rouge, La. Don't worry we're not basking in the sun, every few days we get a FROST! and it spit snow outside of New Orleans, then we headed for northern Texas. Well we went to Texas and did a couple more flea markets and bombed and froze to death. So decided to + made a 2 day trip to Florida {Orlando area} did some flea markets and RV rallys and car shows there for a month or so, had to have the fuel injector pump replaced {bad internal sensor} {$1785 + $350 labor} good the warrantee still had one more month. But then needed new front tires, new front springs and front end alignment. Then up to Jacksonville, Fla. to see my aunt + uncle and do another flea mkt. then up to Georgia for the past month to do 4 RV rallys and then back in Alabama doing a flea mkt and a Gold Wing Motorcycle Rally. In Georgia we met the owners of a company that makes brake systems for towed vehicles {behind motorhomes} + joined up with another couple that sell them + we will be doing vending @ the rallys and doing all the installs for them throughout northern Texas, the west, all the way to Calif. + back until at least November, to make some $$ so that we might eat. Also the owners set us up with a couple units to sell at NO COST {pay as we sell} Awesome now maybe we can buy fuel too! Next we went to an RV rally in southern Louisiana, then one in Oklahoma {blew a trailer tire on the way} , then to a rally in San Antonio, Tx. where we started working with the brake system people. The next show we do with them was in 2 months,so. we traveled to Tucumcari, New Mexico to do an RV rally then took out the motorcycle and rode 54 miles around town and up some gravel roads and one climbed a big Bluff overlooking the town. We where there at about 100 miles north of the big wild fire in New Mexico, for a week on the famous "Route 66" we've tooled around on the motorcycle about 200 miles the next few days. Lots of drought here the lakes will all be empty by end of summer, visited one the other day - a 60 to 70 ft deep lake was @ 21 ft. 3 brush fires in the town of Tucumcari in one day. Then off to Albuquerque, NM we stayed for a week and attended a weekend flea market + done over 500 miles touring on the bike in the area. {Hey! if you look on a map of New Mex. and straight above Albuquerque is a big light colored spot-that is a field} Then we worked our way through parts of Arizona seeing the Painted desert + Petrified Forest till we got here to stay for awhile because we are getting a new engine. What Happened? Well! We had the only trek diesel that used cardboard in front of the radiator @ temps below 75deg. most everyone else ran hot in the mountains. Well a design flaw has just taken care of that. At about 26000 miles it started running a little warmer and the engine fan running on most hills instead of just 2 or 3 times a day. Then @ 28000 miles a multi mile hill caused us to overheat and loose antifreeze so we refilled it with about 1 1/2 gal. and 2 hills later the temp. shot right up and we are now getting a 7 to $ 10,000 new engine. (Globe, AZ) The radiator overflow tank{gravity feed} which also has the low anti-freeze indicator which never comes on BECAUSE the tank never gets lower then 1/2" down while your engine is starving more + more for water {there is no cap on the radiator to check it there} BECAUSE the hose at the bottom of the tank goes UP and OVER the radiator and hoses and wires so the tank CAN NOT be low on fluid. When we put in the new engine we are rerouting that hose down and around the radiator. A few days after we got towed to Miami, AZ. {June 14 2002} a forest fire started back in Show Low, AZ. area {the Rodeo/Chediski fire} it was started by an Indian on the reservation who needed money so he started the fire to make money fire fighting. In 1 hr it grew to 100+acres within 3 1/2 hrs 1,200 acres. Then 2 days later a woman + her husband where out ATVing {but all forests where closed} they ran out of gas then she decided to walk out because she had to go to work tomorrow, so she got lost and seeing the planes and helicopters flying around because of the big fire she decided to signal them by starting a signal fire. Well within 7 hrs that fire had grown to 2,000+ acres. On June 23 2002 the 2 fires joined together. At times the fire line was over 50 miles wide.  Check out www.wmat.us/rodeochediski.html  During the height of the fire we rode the motorcycle to part of the Indian Reservation @ the head of one of the fires and watched the flames whipping 100s of feet in the air on the mountain ahead of us then looked to the right and back and could see smoke + flame on the ridges as far is we could see. {20+ miles?} and by the time the fires where out it was a total of 21 days + 468,638 acres. 


Update #2 - - - June 2002 - - - 

When we finally got the new engine in we went thru Phoenix and stayed in Quartzsite where it was 102 deg. yah but that was at 11pm though - 114 during the day traveling and 119deg setting still in the sun. Standing outside in the wind was like standing in front of a giant hot air blast furnace. It was actually uncomfortable taking a cold shower because the water was to hot. We then went to Pomona, Ca. for a rally, on the 3rd day there we said "Oh hey look, there's mountains around us" the smog would settle on the roof of the motorhome + trailer then the morning dew would run off the roof and down the side and look like someone had spilled coffee on the roof.  After the Rally we headed to Oxnard, CA. to do a brake install.  While there we met someone.  Do you remember back in the 60s + 70s there was a guy that was the, like best surfer in the country,had his own brand of surf boards and he was in several movies "Endless Summer" for one. he was the surfer that rode that 35 ft wave. Well the next time your in Calif. I will introduce you to Mickey Doyle We met him when we where doing a brake system install on the coast and he asked "Do you do installs?" So we ended up working for him for 17 days installing stuff on one of his boats. But while there we did Boating and Fishing, ate Lobster and tried Sushi.  Then we headed north and took Rt 1 + 101 One problem though not much Diesel along the way, we stopped at one station to fuel up and they ran out when we where just over 1/2 full then we actually ran out of fuel before we ever found another station with diesel. I hitchhiked 26 miles to get some that I was told was available 4-5 miles down the road. We took a Rogue River Jet Boat tour, see http://www.roguejets.com/  the boats had three 455 cu.in. engines with jet drives they used about 150-175 gals of gas and pumped about 1 million gallons of water on the 104 mile river trip, it was awesome. We saw Seals, Black Bear, Brown Bear, Bald Eagles, Ospreys, Ducks, Geese, Mink, River Otter, Steelheads, Salmon, also got soaked and saw smoke from a fire that had started 2 days before. We laid out on the beach at lunch time, and dry out. It was great. It was the 104 mile boat ride. Back at the coast we walked around the marina, & saw Harbor Seals, Sea Lions, Sea otters. Traveling up the Calif. and Oregon Coast was mostly beautiful steep rocky coastline and we where on the coast most all the way. I have been to the ocean many times in my life, but have never sensed the awesome size of the ocean till I just drove for almost a week and having it in view most all that time. Now a couple weeks later still here in Oregon and that fire has grown to 330,000 acres and there is another one north of us too 70,000+ acres. We did 2 RV rallys in Salem, Or. then hung around and did 5 cruise nights {classis cars} within the next 12 days then up to Brooks, Or. for an antique truck + farm equip. show. we volunteered for a couple days and helped out with the old trucks + tractors + equip. + electric trains + trolleys. We both got to be motormen and operate a old {1912} trolley.  http://www.pacificnwtruckmuseum.org/    While we where in Oregon we found Blackberries everywhere, it was great! but even better we discovered Boysenberries they look like blackberries, taste even better - a little less seedy and grow on vines instead of bushes and where growing up some of the trees 20 to 30 feet high, it was like being in berry heaven. OOP! now we left Oregon, we are in Washington, we spent the past 5 days driving up to and around Mt. Saint Helen the destruction was unbelievable 234 sq. miles damaged. http://www.mountsthelens.com/  and around Mt Rainier where we were on the motorcycle and it was 84 deg. {Aug 27} and we where like looking almost straight across @ the Mt covered with snow at times just 5 to 8 miles away. A couple days later we drove the rig south past Mt St. Helens on the east side {Rt 25} it was 23 miles of climbing mostly in 1st gear @ 20 to 30 mph then descending 30+ miles probably 60% of it in 1st gear with the exhaust brake on. {can't imagine being w/o one}


 Update #3 --- Sept. 2002 ---

Well in the beginning of Sept 2002 we learned we where needed in Indiana to do brake installs, so we left on a 4 day trip through the Painted Hills of eastern Oregon www.nps.gov/joda/planyourvisit/painted_hills_unit.htm , the rolling brown hills of Idaho + a bit of Utah, then into Wyoming with its rolling meadows where the deer and the antelope played and some elk which excited us until we noticed they where in an elk farm. In Granger, Wy. we saw something we had not seen in over 6 months and 7,065 miles "Rain" {since Perry, GA.} In Rawlins, WY. after covering the motorhome and trailer with anti-freeze we stopped at the next truck stop and self-installed a new water pump. We then headed into Nebraska to spend the night at the most expensive campground in the country "Cabela's" {the largest sporting goods store in the country Try  http://www.cabelas.com/   you stay they're free but you usually shop big. As we crossed Nebraska we started seeing lots of "green" Fields, hills and our first trees since Oregon, and we believe this must be the Museum State - there must have been one every 10 to 25 miles. On to Iowa with lots of farm land, {yes Iowa corn fields everywhere} ribbon candy highways + white stone back roads. Then Illinois with its miles and miles of road construction, plus Soybean and Milo fields {cattle feed} everywhere. On to Missouri traveling its rolling highways where you where either going up hill or downhill all the time with each being about 1/2 mile to 1 1/2 miles in length. There where apple orchards abound and I thing we closed our eyes over every bridge {got to be the worst condition bridges there are} We finally arrived in Goshen, IND. for the RV Rally. {4 days and 2,117 miles later} 


Update #4 --- Sept 2002 ---

Mid Sept. 2002 we left Goshen, IND. after 2,117 miles to the rally we did no brakes and under $100 business. Then we headed south about 20 miles then west and back to the west side of Chicago and stopped in at J.C. Whitney Co. {automotive parts + Acc.  http://www.jcwhitney.com/ } then west and down to Henry, Ill. to an RV rally, then another in Hutchensen, KS. another in Claremore, OK. also there we visited J.M. Davis arms & Historical Museum {the largest personal collection of guns in the world} 20,000+ we couldn't believe the numerous gun types we never knew existed. http://www.thegunmuseum.com/  We went to Will Rogers Museum too. http://www.willrogers.com/  Then on to Choctaw, OK. to some people's house to install a brake system and stayed the night in their yard and in the morning they had us in for breakfast then we went to church with them. Then just down the road to Shawnee, OK. for another rally. On to Waco, TX. to the next rally. After that one we headed down to visit MOM in Harlingen, TX. where we spent 2 weeks helping her out with a lot of household + vehicle repairs etc. and did a weekend Flea Market in Brownsville, TX. The weather has been different lately - we have seen about 3 days in the past 3 weeks w/o rain. After 2 weeks in Harlingen, TX. we ventured west along the Mexico border to El-Paso, TX. Along the route the trees kept getting smaller and smaller till there was just bushes + cactus then they kept getting smaller and smaller too. We stayed over in Sanderson,TX. {the cactus capitol of Texas} After Texas we drove thru a bit of New Mexico and into Arizona. the second day we arrived in Benson, AZ. to stop to look at a custom 2 floor trailer someone had built 48ft long x 13 1/2 ft high {for tractor-trailer} The next day we headed out on the motorcycle to Tucson, AZ. to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum - A real "Don'T Miss" if your in the area.  http://www.desertmuseum.org/  In that valley you can find more types of minerals then anywhere in the world. The next day to Naco, Mexico then up to Tombstone, AZ.  http://www.tombstone.org/  where we walked thru the streets, salons, stables and graveyard, where the west was born + died ! The next several days we made our way up to Phoenix and spent a couple days there checking out truck dealers. The next day we stopped in Apache Junction because we found an excellent Fruit + Veggie place there last time we went through that we couldn't miss. 


Update #5 --- Nov. 2002 ---

We have now stopped in Quartzsite, AZ. where we will spend the next few months. Quartzsite Was a stagecoach stop in 1866 and was rich in prospecting + mining, now known world wide for it's Rock + Gem Shows there is like 750 population in summer, 55,000 average in winter except mid Jan. - mid Feb. with the rock shows and car show, then especially the 10 day RV show last year when there was a recorded 1.3 Million people staying here.  http://www.quartzsitechamber.com/   and  http://www.tysonwells.com/   might show you some of what's happening here. We are setup here on a lot on the interstate access road with our 10 X 20 Canopy. Through Nov. + Dec. the temps have been 40s @ night with some 30s and days 60s to 70 with a few 50s and about 3-4 days a month with sprinkles. About 11:30 every night you hear the Coyotes yipping + howling. Just after X-Mas we rode with another vendor down through Yuma, AZ. to Los Algodones, Mexico {below Calif.} to pickup medications {cost $20 in New Hampshire, but in Mexico $2.77 and I got a Dental checkup + tooth filled there, just $40. - January now with night temps. 40s + daytime 65 to 75 deg. {2 to 10 deg. above normal} and the desert is filling with RVs - February The desert is full and the traffic almost stands still.  Florida is having freezing and New England having a deep freeze, but here we are getting 5 to 20 deg. above normal, some days hitting the 80s {warmest winter in 16 yrs.} Today we rode with another vendor to Phoenix, AZ. he wanted to look at a couple Flea Markets. {240mi round trip} Hey! this morning I was outside and a little piglet came out of the brush, {24"? + 65lb?} it took me 10-15 minutes to coax him over then he kept trying to jump up on me hoping I was Mommy because he was hungry!! Well it,s Feb. 17th 2003 now, we are hitting the road again !!! 


Update #6 --- Feb. 2003 ---

OK its Feb 17th 2003 and in the rearview mirror is Quartzsite, AZ. Two days later we are in Tucson, AZ. at an RV rally and stayed around there for about 2 weeks and done a Flea Mkt. {Fri 3PM-11PM Sat 7AM-11PM Sun 7AM-3PM} March - On to an RV rally in Casa Grande, AZ. we left and ventured north thru Phoenix climbing from 1,200 ft + 82deg, to 7,645 ft up thru the snow {8 to 12"} and a bunch of the area where the big forest fires where last June {almost 500,000 acres burned} went through and spent the night in Show-Low, AZ the temp is 30deg.this morning {frost + ice on the farm ponds} We headed East over the upper grassy planes {9120ft} of the Apache Reservation with lots of snow and drifts. Becky saw a big Elk drinking from a stream. We continued thru Eager, AZ. and into New Mexico. Where we traveled through Lincoln, we walked through the whole town that has been mostly abounded since the 1950s and is now being restored. You can find some info + pictures at  http://www.ghosttowns.com/   It was the last place Billy The Kid shot someone {a judge}. That afternoon and night we spent in Roswell, NM. We didn't see or speak with any real Aliens but visited the Museum  http://www.iufomrc.org/   Then on to Carlsbad, N.M. and visited Carlsbad Caverns  www.nps.gov/cave   we walked down into the cavern for over 2 1/2 hrs the deepest being 1,037 feet and the biggest room being over 14 acres, Awesome! The next day it was on to Burnet, Texas to visit our friends that we do brake systems with and stayed 7 days. Then into Venton, Louisiana where they had the lowest Diesel prices we had seen in months {$1.34} we have paid up to $1.89 also there was a Casino there where we stayed for 2 days and left $203.65 richer, and they carded me and then didn't believe the date of birth on my drivers license.  So Hey!  I am feeling good today!  Then we where off to Rv rallys in Rayne,La - Greenville, Miss. - Lake Charles, La - Texarkana, Ark. 


  Update #7 --- May 2003 ---

Well it's May 2003 we are now in Little Rock, Arkansas where we just had a week of the most ever Tornados recorded in one week {300 Tornadoes} they where through Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas + Tennessee, Numerous ones passed to the north or south of us with the closest ones being 20 to 30 miles away. A couple towns got hit several times. We then traveled up to Evansville, Indiana to visit one of the companies we do business with. Then up to northern Ind. and stopped at a company that builds custom sleepers for tractor trailers.  http://www.doubleeagleind.com/   then on to RV Rallys in Barrien Springs, Michigan + Charlotte, Mi, - Then took a little 7 day 2,900 mile trip to Hummels Wharf, PA. to do paperwork on our new rig then onto Taunton, MA. to drop off our Motorhome then up to New Hampshire to pickup Becky's Car then back to PA. to pickup the new rig (See it at  www.discount-rv-marine.com/toter1.html  then back to Barrien Springs, Mi. for the next RV Rally {"that is a whole story - let us know if you want to hear it."} then off to rallys in E Aurora, NY on the way we had a mini van passing us at about 70 MPH when they headed off on a 30 deg. angle across the medium grass, swerving and sliding all over the place but stayed upright. We stopped to check on them. the driver, he had blacked out and his wife was steering from the passenger side, I praised her for a great driving job. A couple hours later in Cleveland, OH. a woman rear ended another car in the lane right beside us. We also went through VineCity, N.Y. where the whole town, except for people's front lawns was ALL grape vineyards - onto a Buffalo, NY rally - then back to Barrien Springs, Mi. for another. Then off to New Hampshire + Mass. for a month to visit everyone. It's the end of August and Raccoons Raccoons Raccoons, driving across southern Michigan there where dead raccoons on the side of the road everywhere. We must have seen over 200. Through Ohio we saw a Jeep CJ that had just hit a deer, it smashed the front and folded the windshield back in the middle and about an hour later a pickup hit the guardrail in the medium and flew dirt all over the Interstate. On the way through Lafayette, NY we saw a sign "Blue Grass Festival" they where just setting up. So guess what, the next 4 days we vended there. Then back on the road to Mass. to visit some of Becky's Family and pick up the Trek {motorhome - because they had tried to shaft us on it} then on to visit Family + Friends in N.H. and Maine then 3 weeks later headed back to Indiana. 


Update#8 --- August 2003 ---

It's late August and we are on our way from New England now with "2 Rigs" back to Indiana and 2 RV shows in Richmond + Goshen,Ind. After Goshen we went back up to Michigan to get the Trailer that goes behind the Trek. Then on to Shawnee, OK. and dropped the Toter + Trailer then took just the Trek and Trailer to a Rally in Wichitaw Falls, TX. then a Flea Mkt. then back to Shawnee, OK. to wait for our next Rally, then off with both rigs to the Waco, TX. Rally then on to Houston where we left the big rig at a truck dealer on the interstate to see if they could sell it for us while we went to a rally in Houma, LA. then up to New Orleans where we stayed on the south side of town and the next day took the Motorcycle east to Rt 39 and down to Bohemia then took the Ferry across the Mississippi River then south to Venice, the furthest you can drive into the Gulf Of Mexico. There where all kinds of Refineries, Fishing Boats + lots of Oil Company Helicopter Pads. The next day we headed back west to Baton Rouge and stayed at, and did the Flea Market for a couple days. Then onto a Rally in Rayne, LA. The frog capital of the World http://www.rayne.org/  then back to Houston, TX. to pick up the Big Rig. (The dealer there had done thousands of dollars damage to the rig while we where gone by cutting our lock, trying to move it and dropping the trailer - They said "OH  It's Not our Fault" The next day Nov 18th we stayed put in Houston because a bunch of roads where flooded out, including Interstates and I-45 was closed due to Tornadoes. Yup! Yup! 19 Tornadoes touched down in Houston, but None on US! Just 5 miles west there was a tractor trailer that got blown over and a roof was torn off an apartment and a church leveled. South 10 miles an apartment complex was leveled. East 70 miles in Louisiana an east bound tractor trailer and a west bound tractor rolled over into the medium just hundreds of feet apart - the BAD part they where both carrying Hazardous Materials. So I-10 was shut down for hours. So - Headed west again on Rt 290 got into Austin and traffic wasn't moving because a tractor trailer from Canada hauling Chocolate crashed. We stopped and visited friends in Burnet, TX. and the next day drove past LBJ Ranch and multiple Goat Ranches then back on I-10 that we followed all the way to Yuma, AZ. unloaded the car and went to Mexico for Meds + Doctor visit then north to Quartzsite, AZ.


Update #9 --- November 2003 --- 

It's late November and we just arrived here in Quartzsite, AZ. 2 days later the place we are at had a big Thanksgiving Day Dinner, like a family of 100+ It was a windy day so we went and got our rig and parked it up wind as a 70ft wind break, worked great. This year we bought a 2nd 10x20 canopy and set it up behind our other one in an "L" to have room for consignment items. You can see pictures of our setup at  www.discount-rv-marine.com/vendingaz.html  We had like major wind here 4 times this year. Sort of like a white out, but kind of a brown out, with sand. You can barely see street lights. If your out in a storm {small or large} you can get "Desert Fever" We got some of it a couple times this year. {It is caused by the air being full of bacteria of dead and decaying plants + animals + animal poop, etc. out in the desert} One day a woman left here and got on the interstate west bound and called 911 to say there was someone traveling the wrong way !! Then another and another then 911 lost contact when she headoned a couple more cars. They where NOT the ones going the wrong way - 3 Killed. A couple RVs burnt here this year too. Back on the road again ! * * * End of February 04 


UPDATE #10 --- March 2004 --- 

We left Quartzsite, AZ. then did an RV rally in Casa Grande, AZ. then North up to Flagstaff climbing over 7000 ft. to where they had 14" of snow a few days ago. We arrived in Flagstaff at dusk and there was a Pickup Truck that had just hit an Elk {big cow} The next morning we continued to a Rally in Farmington, New Mexico.  While there we went to some Rock Crawls - It's special built 4 wheel drive vehicles (toys) for climbing rocks.   See Rock Crawling Video at http://www.redbullrockcrawlers.com/action.cfm    then on to a Rally in Albuquerque, NM. Then East and North up 84 to Las Vegas - NO NO New Mexico, took the car out visited Old Mills, Hot Springs, Mountains, the "Castle" {now College} in Montezuma and passed the ??? Cemetery of Unknown Soldiers on a 198 mile loop. The next day headed North towards Colorado, but a couple hours out blew a trailer tire on the big rig. While changing it the lug wrench slipped and hit me in the nose and knocked me on my butt and I bled all over the side of the road. Stayed at a truck stop about 10 miles up the road that afternoon + night to recuperate. The next day North to Colorado. Hey! I only got one Black Eye. We arrived in Pueblo, CO. for the next Rally about a month early so we took a few side trips. {Note: read this update completely then go back and visit the websites} We stepped back in time a bit and visited Bishop Castle a present day one man project, nothing else to do in life I guess. You will find some info. at  http://www.bishopcastle.org/  Another day we visited Canon City  http://www.canoncitycolorado.com/  and while there visited The World's Highest Suspension Bridge 1,200+ Ft.  http://www.royalgorgebridge.com/  had lunch on the "edge" of the 1,200+ ft. canyon {we sat on ledges 3 ft. from the edge, off of a trail} Then North up Rt.9 West to Cripple Creek               http://www.cripple-creek.co.us/   then to Victor "The City of Mines" check out http://www.victorcolorado.com/   should be some info there. There it seemed like we could throw a rock to the top of Pikes Peak. Then went South down Phantom Canyon Rd. {35 miles of gravel road along Mountain sides, canyons, edges etc. traveling from 11,000+ Ft. down to 5,000 Ft.} It is the old narrow gauge RailRoad Bed of the 1890s You might see something at http://www.goldbeltbyway.com/  and/or  http://www.web-xpres.com/stcfgdrtour.htm  After the Pueblo Rally we left the ToterHome at the Fair Grounds and headed South West to a Rally in Farmington, NM. again, then headed north thru Durango, Colorado and East thru Pagosa Springs and stopped and saw, what else - The Pagosa Springs Visit  http://www.pagosahotsprings.com/  Then climbed up through "Wolf Creek Pass" @ 10,850 ft. Just after the pass guess what we saw. Looking to the right side of the road in a large "Snow Covered" clearing about 100 ft below was a Creek and walking beside it a Gray Wolf and then a 2nd one about 100ft behind. We later stopped at "Great Sand Dunes" National Monument near Alamosa, CO. They are 100s of feet high. You know all that sand and dust that keeps blowing across the planes has to stop some where, and I guess this is one of those places. Saw about 8 Mule Deer there too. Then back to Pueblo, CO. to pick up the big rig then North and Visited "Garden of The Gods"  http://www.gardenofgods.com/  In Colorado Springs. We drove through there with both rigs, we where taking up the WHOLE road. {Hey there where no signs saying cars only!} Went through the town of Manitou Springs  http://www.manitousprings.org/  and saw the Indian Cliff Dwellings http://www.cliffdwellingsmuseum.com/  and drove through the town of "Old Colorado" Then headed North to Denver and turned from 470 N onto I-70 West where they where doing bridge construction - just minutes later an 80,000 lb steel bridge beam 100+ ft long collapsed onto I-70 crushing a passing Dodge Durango killing a family of three. The next 3 days we spent at a Race Track they had Dirt Oval, Tar Oval, 2 Moto-Cross and a Go-Cart Track. We left the Big Rig there (for about a month) then headed north to Wyoming. * * * Mid May 2004 * * * 


Update#11 --- May 2004 --- 

It's the end of May, we just got into Wyoming from Colorado traveling with just the MotorHome + Trailer, Stayed the first night in Casper, stopped at "Hell's Half Acre" a Mini Grand Canyon http://www.bowebox.net/hells_half_acre_in_wyoming.htm   We turned north @ Shoshoni, WY. up through Wind River Canyon to Thermopolis - home of one of the largest Hot Mineral Springs in the world bubbling from the ground @ 127deg. @ "Hot Spring State Park" We soaked in it for about a half hour - 107deg there.  http://www.thermopolis.com/top-10.html  We then continued west through the "Grand Tetons" {them is big mountains} and into "Grand Tetons National Park"  Visit www.nps.gov/grte   (Hey! Diesel $2.18) then North for a 160 mile loop spending 2 nights in "Yellowstone National Park" with cold and 2 days of snow squalls - 2-3" one night. I bet you have never seen our Motorhome dirty - you should have seen it then. Our Fuel Distributor Sensor died there and we did 350+ miles @ 10 to 30 MPH because if the Sensor doesn't work the Engine Computer doesn't know what to do. But we saw Herds of Bison + Elk, A Bear, 2 Coyotes and a Pup, bunch of White Pelican + Trumpeter Swans, Lots of Geysers + Hot Springs, Waterfalls and Things and Stuff plus lots of road construction. Visit  www.nps.gov/yell  We went through  Jackson, WY.  (Real Expensive Resort Town - No they just call it "Jackson Hole")  Well now we finally got to Pocatello, ID. {@10 to 30 MPH} and spent 3 days at the Chevy Dealer getting a new Injector Pump put in. Then back up the road 20 miles to our next rally in Blackfoot then south and visited Great Salt Lake, Utah the shore edge was black with Billions of Brine Flies, smelled too! We rode the Motorcycle about 28 miles all around Antelope Island State Park, Visit - http://www.scenicutah.com/antelope/antelope.htm   Then to a Rally in Nephi, UT. The second day there it was 91deg. so we took a 75 mile loop on the Motorcycle into the mountains getting to 9,000+ft ? and 72deg. with snow on the sides of the road up near Mt. Nebo (11,925ft) "Felt Good" After the Rally took Rt40 back over the Rocky Mountains to a Rally in Ft. Collins, CO. in 2 days. On the way Stopped for a bit in Dinosaur, CO. @ Dinosaur National Monument but only had time to watch the movie @ the visitors center  www.nps.gov/dino  just after that there was what looked like oil or Diesel Fuel had spilled in the road and had been tracked by cars - well it was just thousands of squashed Mormon Crickets, Yuk! We stayed the night in Steamboat Springs (very ski resort - think 70 to 80% of all houses are new and $200,+) went to see and hiked to the base of Fish Creek Falls 283 foot drop. The next morning on Rt 14 we hit about 50 miles of seeing Hundreds of I guess Colorado's version of the ChipMunk ?? they where like 4-5" Prairie Dogs. Speaking of hitting, approaching the last big pass before dropping into the Rally in Ft. Collins I made the MotorHome tires do some squealing - we saw our 3rd deer in the past 100 miles, we where doing about 60mph climbing for the pass when another Big Buck in Velvet decided to run across about 20 feet in front of us. After the pass it was Beautiful!! about 60 miles down hill following the Poudre River ravine down into Ft. Collins,CO. After that Rally we headed back to the Race Track where the Big Rig was. While we where gone it got vandalized, someone climbed up on top of the cab and destroyed the Stainless Steel Wing while they where stealing the Chrome Exhaust Stacks. I looks like they used a screwdriver or pry bar to do it, I can't believe they where much good by the time they got them. So we replaced/rebuilt the Exh. + Wing, etc. while spending another week or 2 @ the tracks. For entertainment we drove Karts around the 1/2 mile track @ times hitting 50 to 60 MPH racing each other. Well it's July 2004 we are leaving Colorado for our next Rally in Napa, CA. 


 Update #12  - - - July 2004 - - -  

Well we just left Denver, Colorado area heading west, crossing over some passes @ over 11,990 ft on I-70 traveling through the Colorado River Gorge "Awesome" and back into Utah where we dropped south to explore Arches National Park Visit:  www.nps.gov/arch  The next day we went on to Delta, UT. and that evening attended the 30th Annual Demolition Derby and Figure 8 Races and Fireworks. In the morning we headed across Nevada, their sign said Rt. 50 "The loneliest Highway in America" going over 6-7000 ft passes then crossing plains usually diagonally for 10 to 40 miles to the next pass, then a plain, then a pass, over and over again for over 400 miles. Climbing them at only 15 to 35 MPH and descending at 35 to 45 MPH. It was nothing to come down into a plain and see 2 to 6 Dust Devels swirling dirt and dust 100s of feet in the air. When we dropped into Austin, UT. we really did, we came through a 7,600 ft pass then about 6 miles of 7-8% downgrade and hairpin turns right into the middle of a little old mining town. The plain just after that we started seeing HUGE Crickets in the road (probably 3 to 3 1/2 inches I took a picture with a little 25 cent piece beside one. You could hear the crickets during the day on the road but at night there was TOTAL Silence and TOTAL Darkness. Next day stopped in Reno, NV. Motorcycled around town + took a picture of the sign "RENO The Biggest Little City in the World" other then that Nothing impressed us. Then we climbed through "Donna Pass" * * "UNBELIEVABLE" * * No wonder the whole Donna Party died trying to cross it. I can't believe that anyone got to the West Coast alive if they where this far north. Well we have been dealing with temperatures of 50s to 70s and sometimes 80s and a 90 or two but we just dropped from 8,000+ ft. to 350ft into Sacramento, CA. @ 104 deg. GROSS !! Yup We Made It to Napa, CA. Well Barely !! When we turned onto the last road here the SMOKE was pouring out of the left rear trailer axle on the big rig. We got parked and a couple hours later pulled the wheel and Hey! Lucked Out! the inside bearing was destroyed but NO major damage. So now we will be here for a week so we can fix it and repack the other bearings. The last day here we where greeted by a show, "The World Famous Lipizzaner Stallions" They don't start training them till they are 3-4 yrs. old and train for at least 6 yrs. before being in a show. To see more visit: http://www.lipizzaner.com/  We where so impressed we now own one, well a little stuffed one anyways. Headed North - and stayed at a race track  http://www.thunderhill.com/  a 3 mile test track and we watched a bunch of small Fords "SHO" the next day all Datsuns it was their 1st day of a 4 day event. We headed north with them to Mt. Shasta Ski Area. On the way there on the interstate I ran over something that flipped up and tore the sidewall out on one of the big rig trailer duals. At the Ski Area - (much higher + cooler) for the next 3 days of events. To our North we are right beside snow covered Mt. Shasta and to the South looking out over rows and rows of mountains, some snow covered. The last morning we drove the poker run route they did which took us up the road to Mt. Shasta - a 14 mile climb to 7,800 ft. where there was basically no trees up there but there was snow. Looking "UP" @ the 14,162ft. summit. Visit:  http://www.mtshastaphotos.org/   Today we headed South to Redmond then west with the car with the Kayaks on top and stopped @ Wiskeytown Lake and Kayaked around for hours. There are 2 towns under the lake, but to deep to see, Oh Well ! Visit:  www.nps.gov/whis  then North up Rt. 3 through the "Mountains". In some areas it was so steep and winding that we where in 2nd gear for miles. The next day with the motorcycle we climbed 2 different mountains 8 miles and 13 miles to lakes up near the tops. The next day 180 miles on the Motorcycle to see 5 waterfalls. Back on the road again, North to Oregon. - - - - Late July 2004 


Update #13   - - - - Late July 2004 - - - -


Hey we are in Oregon, so we stopped @ 12,000ft. Mt. Mazama, Well it used to be a mountain till about 7,700 yrs ago when it had a Volcanic Eruption  Just 42 times the magnitude plus ejected 150 times more volcanic rock as Mt. St. Helen did and lost it's top 5,000 ft. then Collapsed and eventually filled with water and is now "Crater Lake" Just 5+ miles across and only 1,943 ft. water Depth with an underwater visibility of 142ft. America's Deepest + Clearest Lake + Blue Too! It also hosts the largest population of Wintering Bald Eagles in the US, but we didn't see any today. Visit: www.nps.gov/crla  Then up to the Bend area and visited Lava Butte - a 500 ft cinder cone that formed over 7,000 yrs ago when it spit out 9 sq. miles of lava. http://vulcan.wr.usgs.gov/Volcanoes/LavaButte/Locale/framework.html  Then to Lava Cast Forest - where lava flowed through the forest incasing the Ponderosa Pines then cooling leaving molds of the trees. http://www.myoregon.net/Newberry/photos.html  Then Lava River Cave - we walked a Lava Tube where molten lave once flowed we took multiple flashlights for over a mile @ 50 to 80ft below the surface dropping over 200 ft towards the Deschutes River. Visit: http://www.goodearthgraphics.com/showcave/or/lavarive.html  The tube was varying from maybe 50 ft in dia. to 5-6 ft in dia. in places, and just 40 degrees.  Then on to the Big Obsidian Flow - where only 1,300 yrs ago an eruption pushed out over 170 million cubic yards of Obsidian + Pumice, so it's basically a  "Mountain of  Glass"  We then drove to the top of  Paulina Peak (7,985ft) and viewed the "Glass" flow from above. You should be able to see all these things at http://www.obsidianlab.com/sourcecatalog/or_bof.html    Another day we took the Kayaks from Wickiup Reservoir Dam to Pringle Falls, Yup! Yup! - just 8.4 miles and all we saw was Numerous King Fishers, 1 Great Blue Heron 1 Broad Winged Hawk, 2 Mink, 2 Red Tailed Hawks, 3 Ducks, 3 Bald Eagles, 4 Otters, 6 Osprey, and a Deer.  25 miles West of Bend, OR. is "Three Sisters" Mountains, since 1997 the West side has been bulging - an area 10 miles in dia. has now bulged nearly a foot - They estimate that the molten Magma is about 4 miles below the surface. Hey! maybe we will get to see this one ??   It's getting a little smokey around here with a Forest Fire about 50 miles away. They grow unbelievably around here. Day 1   400 Acres - day 2 1,500A - day 3 3,000a - day 4 7,500A - day 5 10,500A - day 6 13,500A  now under control.  Sunday morning we headed down the road and about 10 miles out KaBang !! The right outside dual on the Toter blew. We are lighter now! not all that sheet metal and stainless trim back there to weight us down.  (when a big truck tire blows they can do a lot of damage - 100+ PSI)   Hey we made it to our next Rally in Prineville, OR. The next week to One in Redmond, OR.   HEY !!! we sold the big rig !!! A company in Texas is going to use it for promotion of their fuel savings product. So we are back to one rig. (Motorhome + Trailer)  Now we are stopping to vend at a Truck Show in Brooks, OR. @ the "Antique Powerland Museum" Visit: http://www.antiquepowerland.com/    Then to Portland, OR.  we stopped at the Freightliner Truck Factory and got a tour of the new Tractor/Trailer Tractors being built.  Now North to Washington.  While there we might select a Truck and have our New Rig built??  We are here at just the right time of year, well at least I think so. I have been using our Telescopic Ladder and have been climbing trees getting fresh wild Apples, Pears, and Plums, plus Blackberries and Boysenberries.  I have bags + bowls of stuff in the MotorHome all the time - Yum! Yum!  OK we picked out a truck and got things started and now back to Oregon for a couple RV shows.   OH! NO! Not! Again! We just ended up in another Chevrolet Dealer to have another Fuel Injector Pump replaced, but this time they looked better I guess, they found metal fuzz in the fuel filter so we had to pay for dropping fuel tank + cleaning, buying a new fuel pump, + flushing the system then they gave us a new (under warrantee) fuel injector pump.  But I bought and installed a second large fuel filter with magnets too.  We did one of the Rallys then went back up to Portland to visit friends while there we visited the Columbia River, Hood River and stopped at Calamity Jane's in Sandy, OR. It's a "Must Visit" if your ever in the area! (huge hamburgers, to big to eat + like 38 flavors w/enough big fries to feed 2) on the way up to Timberline Lodge - a huge place at the snow line of MT. Hood Visit: http://www.umich.edu/~hartspc/umsdp/TL/index.html        - - - - End of Sept 2004 - - - - - 


Update#14 - - - Still End of Sept. 2004  

Now back to Salem to do the 2nd Rally. Rumble! Rumble! Rumble! - Yup, Mount St. Helen is getting more and more active every day, we may see something soon. The visitors center and the general area of the Mt. is crowded with visitors, everybody wants to SEE what's going to happen. Oct 1st 11:57 AM she started blowing Steam + Ash for 24 min. and tonight 30% more activity (more coming) over 5000 people are expected to visit there tomorrow. Oct. 2nd they evacuated everyone back 6 miles today, to much ground activity, "It's Coming" Oct. 4th Well here we are back in Washington to start working on our New ToterHome. Today twice as much Steam + Ash @ Mt. Saint Helen. Oct 5th today I got ashed on - 3 times as much Steam + Ash. Finally 12 Oct. "LAVA". Fall I guess isn't all that Touristy here in Washington, for the past 3 weeks we have been seeing 2 days of Sun then 3 to 5 days of Rain, then 2 days of Sun then 3 to 5 days of Rain again. Well Rig progress is going SLOW! So we've got to get some income. So we decided that Becky is going to AZ. and setup and I am staying in Washington to get the Rig built ASAP. So we headed for Oregon to get stuff and the car out of storage. We headed southeast around Mt. Rainier through Cayuse Pass and Chinook Pass on packed snow covered roads and through Yakima, WA. with LOTS of apple orchards then down Rt.97 and stayed overnight in Shaniko, OR. (the most written about Ghost Town in the country. Search for it at  www.ghosttowns.com   We did our thing @ storage in Redmond then West and onto Rt 20 - We came down out of the mountains on a narrow winding road with a downhill grade of 6% for 11+ miles with Moss covering the trees, rocks + ground, it was almost creepy! Yet Neat! Back in Washington now, its Nov. 11th and Becky just left for AZ. Mt. St. Helen is putting out Lava now at the rate of a Dump Truck Load every Second ! Average growth 18 ft higher per day. Now mid Dec. and the outside of the rig is done and now we have been working on the inside. Dec 18th I sold the Motorhome today and delivered it to the guy's house about 75 miles North. So now I can pay for the finishing of the ToterHome and pay for the Trailer. I am now staying in a 6ft X 10ft utility trailer sleeping on the floor with boxes and wood piled around me and hardly any floor showing until the rig is done plus another week or so to paint it. The shop owner's wife flys a lot and has a lot of frequent flyer miles so they got me a 6 day round trip ticket to Phoenix so I can go see Becky for Christmas. "Surprise!!" OH Boy! Heat !! I'am getting tired of this 38 to 48 deg. with rain or fog or drizzle 60 -80% of the time. Well at least half of the time in AZ was a little warmer, it was a cold week but they said they had a warm one last week. OH Look ! 2005 Has Arrived !! Well! Well! Well! it's Jan 30th The Rig is done and painted and I'll be on the road tomorrow. But not to Colorado because now the trailer is still not done, so I am headed for AZ. So I drove to Redmond, OR. and spent a day @ Storage then left @ 3PM and drove till Midnight then slept 4 hrs. then drove 4AM till 11:30PM to Arrive with Becky in AZ. When I left WA. I thought I would get away from the rain, but this has been the rainiest season here in like life! They have already gotten almost the total annual rain fall here for the year, The Deserts Are Blooming and California isn't having any earthquakes but they are just slowly slipping into the ocean with lots of mud slides. Well It's Feb. 28th and we are back on the road for the summer ralley season.


Update#15     - - - - -    March  2005 

        East Bound in the new rig now, with the first Rally being in Casa Grande, AZ. (70 to 85deg) Becky is following in her car because the new trailer is STILL not done yet. After Casa Grande Rally we did a Flea Market in Tucson, AZ. (70 to 75deg) and picked up a nail in one trailer tire and a staple in another, so plugged them. Because of the "LOADED" trailer we blew one of those tires the next day in AZ. and the other one in NM. so drove the car to the next town for 2 new tires. Stayed over in Demming, NM (37deg that night) we stayed there an extra day because the interstates where Closed E-W from Albuquerque,NM. to Amarillo, TX. + N-S from south of Albuquerque to Colorado with 8" to 24" of Snow and a lot of Accidents. The next morning I winterized the rig and headed for Pueblo, Colorado, to pickup the trailer, instead we spent 3 1/2 days there rushing around to finish the trailer (30deg @ night - 60 day time). Then when they where jacking it up to put on the tires it fell off the jack and damaged the left rear, so they now had to repair that. Well we finally got on the road now with the full rig. (see a picture at www.discount-rv-marine.com/ourrigs.html ) We drove to southern CO. that evening @ 34deg and feels like 20-30 MPH winds. The next morning to Amarillo, TX. fueled then headed for 2 Rallys in Wichita Falls, TX. (@ 55-75deg.) While there we went to a FreeStyle Motocross Jumping Demonstration where they hang off the bikes at all kinds of angles while in the air. After the Rallys off to the next one in 2 days in Lake Charles, LA. then up to Alexandria, LA. to visit Becky's Aunt. One afternoon we sat around a "Louisiana Campfire" (that would be a propane tank, burner and a big pot of crawfish) we pigged out that night. While there we noticed a screw in one of the trailer tires and had to get that patched. When we left there heading north we hit Heavy Heavy Rain (6") and saw Lightening Hit about 150ft to our left by a farm house in the pasture - the cows there where like all stunned, they all just steered @ where it hit. On to the next Rally in Texarkana, AR. When getting ready to leave there I noticed a 3/8" bolt through the left front tire. (they are 16 ply @ like $538.00 Ea. and one garage wouldn't patch it because it was on the front, so we drove down the road 7 miles to another tire place, now here we sat for over a day and a half till they opened Monday. (Ya know most people can't wait for a weekend to get here, but for us It's OH! Crap! Another Weekend - can't mail, can't ship, can't receive, can't get tourist info, can't get repairs.) We then headed north on Rt. 71 up through the "Ozarks" then west onto a Rally in Claremore, OK. Then East and stopped in Little Rock, AK. to Visit my Cousin. Now on the way to the Tenn. Rally we stopped in Brownsville, TN. to enjoy a couple days of Heavy Heavy Rain and visited their Cotton, Music + History Museums, Wildlife Preserve etc. then onto Jackson and visit their Train Museum, saw a HUGE! building where they used to build Steam Locomotives, and on (Apr. 30th) the 105th Anniversary of the Legendary "Casey Jones" we visited Casey Jones Village/Museum (See: www.caseyjones.com ) In Jackson we went to Loretta Lyn's Ranch. In Waverly a Civil war house on top of a hill that was in the middle of a battle and was used as a field hospital, and the site of the 1978 Train Wreck that killed 16? + ! injured hundreds when 2 days later 1 of 2 20,000gal Propane Tank Cars Exploded. Then finally we arrived for the Rally in Lebanon, TN. days early and found that another rally was about to happen so we ended up doing 2 Rallys there. Then headed for New Hampshire, on the way up we went up through the Great Smokey Mountains of VA. + W. VA. then MD. then up on the mountain ridges of PA. with all the old and active Coal Mines then through NY. + MA. and now at the N.H. Rally. Hey it's nice to see "CLEAR" Rivers + Lakes again! instead of brown or gray or red ones. Well it's July now and we've done Rallys in NH, MA, ME, and on the way to CT. BANG!! there goes a new tire on the right rear of the ToterHome, We must have ran over something on the road with the front tire then it kicked up and took a big chunk out of the rear tire. So besides Rallys we have had time to visit Friends + Family and now we are leaving the coast and starting to head west.


Update#16 - - - July  2005

        The East Coast is now behind us with our first west bound rally in NY. On the way west on Rt 2 through the Mass. Berkshires we pulled over to walk down to the stream to wade a bit, when we got down there looking up and down the stream with the water and all the rocks it reminded us of the Ocean with Seals laying on the rocks. Why, because when looking up and down the river laying on the rocks where 8 Naked People. About 6 of them shouldn't have been doing it in public. Well next we stayed over a couple nights in a mill yard on the river in N. Adams and headed out on the Motorcycle and climbed Mount Greylock the state's highest peak 3,491ft. a 10 mile drive from bottom to top the temp. went from 92 to 72. The next day we Motorcycled north on Rt 8 and stopped at Natural Bridge State Park, you can find them both at  http://www.mass.gov/dcr/listing.htm  Then north to Vermont then over to Bennington, VT. drove around the sites and visited the Bennington Battle Monument, 306 ft high, built in 1887, dedicated to the Battle of 1777. After there we drove back roads and went through 3 Covered Bridges (you should find info on the monument and more at ( http://www.historicvermont.org/bennington/  ) then back down RT 7 back to the rig. WOW !! It's been like Southern HOT! here for a couple weeks. They say that New England is having the hottest summer since 1942. Well we got to Frankfort, NY a week early, so 1 day we headed out on the motorcycle for a 147 mile loop. We didn't get wet wet but we hit 2 miles of light rain, multiply sprinkles with a total of over 100 miles of wet roads as we followed showers all across the country side, but we did see 3 flocks of Turkeys and 2 Deer. OOPS! we decided to go back to a Big RV Rally in Ma. on the way we came over a hill then in front of us was a bridge that said 12ft 8" OH! OH! we are 13ft high. I tried to measure it but it was to windy, so Becky went out the back door and left it open and climbed the ladder on the trailer and I slowly creeped under the bridge, hey we had 6-8" clearance. I guess somebody doesn't know how to measure a bridge. Sunday afternoon we stopped @ a truck dealer to spend the night to talk to them in the morning. We met a Repossessor there that brought in 2 of 5 tractors for non-payment he said "Do ya need anything?" He sold me about a dozen tie down straps for $40 (they sell for $36 @) Gave us a big pile of Rubber Bungies, then we siphoned about 60 Gals of Diesel Fuel into our tanks. Hey! it was kinda worth stopping there. We are through the Mass. Rally now + we are finally headed West for the MN. Rally. On the way we spent time in Rhinebeck, NY area and drove the car in a big loop around the Catskill Mt. area. One thing we saw was a small personal Shop/Museum with lots of unique things made from old car parts. Maybe they show them on their website http://www.fabulousfurnitureon28.com/fabstuff.html  Another day we visited the Home of Frederic Church (Most Renowned Artist 1850 -1870) on top of a hill overlooking the Hudson River. The House is a Masterpiece it's self. Visit - www.olana.org  Also stopped @ the Home of Robert R. Livingston Jr. (The Clermont Estate) - Chancellor of NY the Highest Judicial Post in the country. He helped draft the Declaration of Independence and he gave the Oath of Office to George Washington as First President of the United States. You might find info. at http://www.nysparks.com/sites/info.asp?siteID=3  or www.friendsofclermont.org  We went to the Rhinebeck Aerodrome Museum, home of The Oldest Flying Aircraft,(+aircraft from 1900 -1940) Weekend Air Shows of First Aircrafts and WW1 Dogfights. Sunday we Helped out a little building a "Spirit of St. Louis" Replica (Full Size) Visit: www.oldrhinebeck.org  One evening we where parked behind a restaurant and some Deer - a Doe + 2 Fawns walked out of the wood and walked by us.               Heading West again!! 


Update#17 - - - Aug  2005

Well we didn't get far, only to Accord, NY    BUT Don't say it wrong, people get upset here if you do, (it's ack-ore d) So we stayed @ Accord Speedway and spent 5 days there, one night was to be Kart, Motorcycle + ATV racing (But Rained Out) and 1 night of Stock Car, Mini Sprints + Vintage. Seeing that we where allowed to stay there for nothing we said let us help you out, so while there we cleaned out + rebuilt the Pit Shack and setup a Watering Truck (we did pump setup + plumbing, valves, electrical etc. then the next day we ran it to wet down the Driveway, Pit Roads etc. for the Races. Visit: www.accordspeedway.com 
OH POOP! we just stopped at a Truck Dealer and on the way out we Fried an Alternator - Lots of smoke coming out from under the hood. Ouch! there goes the Pocketbook again!     YAHOO! we are at the Carlisle All Truck Nationals truck show in Carlisle, PA. Vending and entered the Rig too. It's the end of our Free Ride, we have finally used up the Free Fuel we got from the Repossessor.   Hey the good news!! We entered the Rig in the show and took Second Place in the ''Special Interest'' class. See pictures at www.discount-rv-marine.com/truckshow.html  You wouldn't believe some of the things we lost points for - dirt or rocks in tire tread, dirt or grease on undercarriage, dirt or grease under hood, bugs or spots on windshield. Now off thru VA a piece of W VA, OH, IN, IA. and now in MN. Visiting AL's Mom and Sister then an RV Rally in Willmar, back east to the ''Mall of America'' the Largest enclosed Mall in the US, 4 floors, over 520 Stores, a complete 7 acre indoor amusement park - and the World's Largest Underground Aquarium gee we only spent a little over 7 hours there. See all at www.mallofamerica.com  or The Aquarium - www.sharky.tv  The Park - www.campsnoopy.com   The next morning visiting AL's Mom and Sister again for a couple days. Then we headed East into WI. while there we visited two Cheese Factories of course and ate Fresh Curds. You can visit www.carrvalleycheese.com  and probably see what a cheese factory is like. Then South through part of Iowa and onto Henry, Ill. for another RV Rally.
Well Hurricane Katrina just hit Louisiana + Mississippi and has Destroyed a lot of what we got to see there the past couple years. Now Fuel Prices are going to go Sky High !! But it's different this time the Oil Companies actually have a reason, not just greed this time. Our next Rally is Columbia, Missouri in 21 days- we'll find something else along the way and some sightseeing.   OH Wow !! we just heard about a Gold Wing Motorcycle Rally next weekend just 250 miles south, we'll be there.  On the way we stayed in Springfield, IL. and visited Mary & Abraham Lincoln's Home and Neighborhood www.nps.gov/liho of which 8 houses have already been reconstructed back to the mid 1800s  Did you know they had 4 children (Edward died @ 4) (William died @ 12) (Thomas died @ 17) (Robert lived to 82 and had Children) Abe became President in 1860, was Assassinated in 1865. We visited the Lincoln Depot - the Train Depot where he gave his first speech as President. and finally the Lincoln Tomb, his Tomb was built by a Vermont Marble Company, Visit:  http://www.nps.gov/linc/index.htm  The Gold Wing Rally was nice but kind of small, but we where at a Fair Grounds that the State Fair just ended at so we stayed one day and visited with a family from Florida that travel around the country putting on shows with their 8 European Brown Bears. Then we moved to the camping area where there was also a small RV Chapter get together and behind us that weekend was a small Quarter Horse event. So all together we done OK. There where several ponds at the Fair Grounds and people would come in and fish. I was talking to one guy for awhile and when dusk came he came over and gave us 4 big Channel Cats, we filleted them and had Deep Fried Cat Fish, Yum !! Yum !! Then we headed southwest a whole 25 miles to the 54th Annual Murphysboro Apple Festival, there was no room in town for our Big Rig so we found a just mowed field just outside of town (we can hear the music at times) Hey we didn't do much, but we weren't out on the road spending fuel money, and prices are coming down now.   We are now in the state of misery, NO not because of the fuel prices. I mean in the Great State of Missouri. We stayed in Farmington and Motorcycle toured parts of Iron County including towns like Ironton, yup you guessed it ''Full of Iron'' and Graniteville, yup you guessed it again lots of Granite and Belleville, Nope Sorry No Bells. But we visited Elephant Rocks State Park there, Yes you guessed it, sort of, Giant Granite Rocks lined up like Elephants. http://www.mostateparks.com/elephantrock/photos.htm  Also Fort Davidson site of the Battle of Pilot Knob in 1864 http://www.mostateparks.com/ftdavidson/photos.htm  Also visited a Pumped/Storage Hydroelectric facility (The Taum Sauk Plant) consisting of a Dam on the River and then they dug out the top of the Mountain to make a 55 acre 1.5 Billion Gallon reservoir with a 7,000 ft long shaft and tunnel inside the mountain so they can pump water up at night when power demand is low and release it during the day to create up to 450,000 kilowatts during peak usage. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taum_Sauk_pumped_storage_plant  Our second night in Farmington was Lots + Lots + Lots of Loud Thunder and lightening almost keeping the sky lite up, and of course Heavy Rain. Then about 1AM and 3AM the Tornado Sirens where going off, but the next morning we where still alive and well.                                                                                               - - Late Sept. 2005 - -


Update #18 - - - Late Sept. 2005 - - - 

We're now headed for "Lake of The Ozarks" a man made lake that I believe you could never see the whole thing in your lifetime. If you boated from an Eastern cove to the West end I am sure you would travel over 150 miles. It has 1,150 miles of shureline. The West end seens to be about 50% Condos and Covered Docks and Boat Houses and nothing for small boats everything seems to be 26 to 57ft. Visit: www.funlake.com  We also explored "Ha Ha Tonka State Park" with it's 100ft X 500ft Natural Bridge, Sink Holes, Caves, it's little Spring putting out just 48 Million Gallons of water per day, and a Castle, Yup a Castle. In 1905 a Kansas City Businessman built his dream home atop a mountain overlooking all that and the Town below. Find it at http://www.mostateparks.com/hahatonka.htm  Then we went to California, No No not the big one, but California, MO. and toured Burgers' SmokeHouse hickory smoked meats since 1952 - one of their smokehouses can hold up to 25,000 Hams. Visit: www.smokehouse.com (check their History)  Then on to the RV Rally in Columbia, MO. then East past the big Arch of St. Louis, MO. to the Brandenburg, KY. Rally - Fort Smith, AK. Rally - Clairmore, OK Rally - Waco, TX. Rally then west to Odessa, TX. then north past lots of Oil Rigs, well we thought lots until we turned West past Hobbs, NM towards Artesia where there where places where you looked out over the scrub brush and desert grasses to see 50 to 75 or more Oil Pumps, Tanks, etc at a time. Then we stopped in Deming,NM at an RV Park belonging to an RV Club "Loners on Wheels" (Singles) when we pulled in at dusk, they said Hey just shut off your rig and come in we're having a Pot Luck Supper. Great!! We where stuffed. The next day we unloaded the car and headed north to see City of Rocks State Par! k (search at: www.nmparks.com ) then up through lots of winding narrow canyon roads with lots of switchbacks, many times we where climbing in 2nd gear for miles. (one sign said 44 miles to go + time 2hrs) up to Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument The Cliff Dwellings of 7 Natural Caves on a Canyon's south wall with a total of 40 Rooms of which 5 caves have ruins of possible occupation during AD 100-400 AD 1000 then lastly the Mogollon Indian Tribe from the 1270s through early 1300s The Women where approx 5ft. 1in. and the Men 5ft. 5in. Visit: www.nps.gov/gicl  About 10 miles from there we saw an Arrastra - Yah you know, a round pit lined with big rocks with a center turnstile pulled by mules to drag bolders around in a pit to extract Gold from Ore, and visited the town of Pinos Altos a Mining Town started in 1860, by 1890 had over 1000 residents. The Main St. is still like in the 1800s and some of the peoples houses too. The interiors have improved I bet. Visit: ! http://www.pinosaltos.org/histsites.html  When we returned to the RV Park and g! ot ready to go Surprize!! the rig would not start. There's two nice things about having a rig like this. First your engine does not self distruct, it protects it's self, and your not always at the mercy of the tow truck + vehicle dealer, just check the in-dash computer to find out why it's not letting it start, then I hunted around town for a new sensor and changed it. It probably saved us hundreds of dollars. Next stop Globe, AZ. to visit friends and while there did a Craft Fair @ Wal-Mart then West Again. ----- Beginning of Nov. 2005 -----


Update #19 - - - - - - - Nov 2005 - - - - -

Well we arrived in Quartzsite, AZ. setup the tents and 2 days later headed for Mexico. Down there we went to the Dentist. A woman waiting there said she had her teeth cleaned before leaving home (Idaho) last week for $125 today in Mexico Becky paid $20 I remember I got a simple Root Canal on a front tooth about 10 years ago in New Hampshire and paid $971 Well today on a back tooth I got a Root Canal, Post and Crown and a cleaning for $385 Then went to a Bakery and got 2 bags of breads and pastries for about $3 Then to a Pharmacy and got like 800mg Ibuprofen - (in US about $8.00 + prescription Cost) we got it over the counter for $4.80 and Penicillin (in US about $18.00 + prescription Cost) over the counter for $8.00 and picked up 2 bottles of Kualau ($24.00 US) for friends for just $9.99 and it was a bigger bottle. Christmas Day we got together with other Vendors and had a Pot Luck Supper. On the 26th we drove to the California Coast (315 miles) and visited Friends, while there one night we went out for Sushi - Good Stuff like Raw Tuna, Raw Lobster, Raw eel, Raw octopus, plus Raw regular + smoked salmon. We returned the 28th. It rained after we left. Rain, Rain, Rain, OH No! not here, that was last year with rain every week, but this year a couple days before we left, on the 132nd day with No Rain !! we got a bit of rain in the early morning but by 10am everything was dusty again. During the season we had about 4 real windy days but today (Feb 15th) beat them all this year with gusts of 40 to 60 MPH and very limited visibility at times. One gust out on I-10 they could not see at all causing a 10 vehicle pile up, with cars, trucks, a 5th wheel camper and a 45 foot motor home. Well tiz the end of the season and we're now headed for Mexico for Dental + Meds + Chile Shampoo. Then off to the summer rallys. Oh Hey! does your Government Homeland Security make you feel secure with its borders protected from Terrorist ??? Well being near the Mexican Border you hear how secure things are. Since Oct. Border Patrol have captured over 40,000 Illegal Aliens,129 in one hiking group today, over 500,000 last year. And that's just the ones they caught!! "Hey I Feel Good" - Right! ------ First of Mar. 2006 ------ 


Update #20 -------- Mar. 2006 --------

On the road again with our first RV Rally in Casa-Grande, AZ. and it finally got here !! Rain !! after 143 days it's been raining 
over 24hrs now. people are loving it after a 7 year drought. But it was not all rain, in the mountains near Tucson and about 100 
northeast around Show Low some places had as much as 15" to 30" inches of Snow!!! Headed NorthWest now to Laughlin, NV. Hey if 
anyone ever says between Wickenburg and Wikieup there is nothing !! well they are telling the truth, we are spending the night here in 
Nothing, AZ. A Sheetmetal Garage, 1 Gas Pump and a dinky yellow Store - population 4. Along the way there are areas of scrub brush, 
areas of big rocks everywhere, areas with lots of Saguaro cactus and areas with lots of Joshua Trees (cactus family I believe) Ok we got 
to Laughlin, NV./Bullhead City,AZ area (both sides of the Colorado River) after the rally @ Avi Casino, we spent 
several days exploring the area. One day we started th!e big climb west out of the valley then took a gravel road up into 
the mountains and visited Grapevine Canyon to see the Native American Petroglyphs  Visit:    http://www.birdandhike.com/Glyphs/LAME/Grapevine/Grapevine.htm    We then continued over 29 miles through Mountains, 
Christmas Tree Pass, exploring old mines and looking down at the spec of a city and lake below at times, then coming back down and 
exploring Davis Dam on the Colorado and it's Lake Mohave, the Automobile + Slot Machine Museum @ Don Laughlin's Riverfront Casino and the little Colorado River Museum, Another day we Visited Oatman,AZ an Historic Gold Mining town on Old Route 66 that started as a tent camp in 1906 and grew to 10,000 by 1930's The mine closed in 1942 "War" leaving many Buildings and Burros. Visit:     http://djcenterprises.com/oatman1.html   and  http://djcenterprises.com/oatman2.html     We then headed East over the Black Mountains for an Awesome drive to Kingman,AZ. then back to the rig. Two days later we where in Boulder City, NV we visited the Museum and hiked the old railroad bed (2.7mi - one !way) along the cliffs of Lake Mead The lake is over 110 miles long with over 550 miles of shoreline. With seven years of drought this year the lake actually came up a bit this year (still 60ft down) If the 
drought does not continue it will probably take about 15 yrs. to refill, evaporation alone consumes 7% (6,000 gallons per hr)   
  That RailRoad Bed has 5 tunnels, we also saw 4 BigHorn Sheep and I found out why their necks are so big - in the museum there was a set of horns and they where about 3 times the weight I expected (15 - 20lbs??) The R/R was built just for the construction of Hoover Dam. Then at the Dam I couldn't take a single picture of the face of the dam - it takes three to get it all. The Dam is 45ft Thick on top 1,244ft Long, just 660ft thick at the bottom and 726ft high, how high is that - well if you drove over the dam it would be almost one and one half 10ths of a mile down, with only enough Concrete to build a Highway 16ft wide X 8" thick from San Francisco to NY City. (6.6 Million Tons or 3.25 million cu. yd.)     http://www.usbr.gov/lc/hooverdam/      They are now building a 
bypass "just" south of the dam with a HUGE!! bridge - done in 2008 ??   It will be a Great!! view of the Dam. Then into Las Vegas, we 
parked the rig in a beautiful little spot under palm trees with nice landscaping (yup a grocery store parking lot) about 5 min. from the 
Las Vegas Strip. That night we drove up and down the Strip and walked through multiple Casinos. Well to us Country Folk Vegas is just 
another City, but has one street that never closes and has 4 times the lights and 4 times the Drunks of any other City. For those of you 
who still want to come here we learned from a local that if you go to the North end of the Strip your gambling odds are better then in the 
thick of it. Visit:    http://www.lasvegasphotoimages.com/las-vegas-night/index.htm  for Night Photos and   http://www.lasvegasphotoimages.com/las-vegas/index.htm   for day Photos.   Then we headed NorthEast up through the Lake Mead National Recreation Area and near Overton we pulled over out into the Brush and Dust for 6 days on top of a Mesa (numerous other RVs Boondocking !
here) over looking Lake Mead to the East with Snow covered Peaks behind in AZ. to the West the Snow covered Peaks past Vegas and the Sky stays bright there all night (lights of Vegas) then the little town of Overton "Down" to the North. It shure does get windy up here on the Mesa. While here we drove through the "Valley of Fire" to see all the Spectacular Red Sandstone Formations sticking out of the olive green mountains and beautiful desert. Look for info @     www.parks.nv.gov/vf.htm    it's much prettier in person !    We then walked a 2.7 mile loop down onto the lake bed (remember 60ft low) to look over foundations of a town that was under the lake and talked to a guy and 2 kids that had been fishing and that night we had a big fresh Stripped Bass on the BBQ. Hey also Indians lived on the original river banks for thousands of years. We visited the "Lost City" Museum to learn about them.     The next week we setup at the Clark County Fair/Rodeo in Logandale, NV.  the weather was Great during the Fair but REAL REAL Windy for 2 days before and the day after. I would go out @ 1-2-3 in the the morning to check our tent and contents and add stakes. After the Fair we headed NorthWest across the Estratrerrestrial Highway and through Rachel, don't blink, plus we didn't see Area 51!! ,it was over the hill. (you know that top secret government installation dealing with Aliens!! and home of the Stealth Bomber) On the second night, half way to Lake Tahoe after traveling through hundreds of miles of Open Range and over MT. Passes seeing Cattle, Pronghorn and Wild Horses we stayed in Tonopah "Queen of the Silver Camps" a town born in 1900 with the discovery of Gold and Silver. Over $150M before closing in the 1940s (today that would be $1,120,000,000.00) It looks like a small mining town in PA. but without any trees. they say there are over 100 miles of mining tunnels under the town and over 500 miles of tunnels in the area, as deep as 1,200-1,500ft !   We toured some old mines, buildings, equipment + stopes. Visit:  "The Mining Park"  http://www.tonopahnevada.com/TonopahHistoricMiningPark.htm    "The Town Museum"   http://www.tonopahnevada.com/CentralNevadaMuseum.html    and "The Town"    http://www.tonopahnevada.com/history.htm        (They said there is a mine a mile north of here thats 2,400ft deep)


Update #21 -------- May  2006 --------

While staying in Henderson, NV we went to Berlin-Ichthyosaur State Park containing the Old Mining Ghost Town of Berlin 1896-1911 @ 
6,840ft elevation. We went underground into the Diana Mine with a lot of their equipment still inside, it seemed like we were visiting on 
their day off, not 95 years later. We looked through lots of old Berlin mining buildings, etc. Their mine was an incline shaft mine 
with 8 levels and 3 miles of tunnels. Visit:    www.parks.nv.gov/bi.htm    We continued higher up (scattered snow) 
to 7,880ft where in 1928 they had found 8 Ichthyosaurs (pronounced   ICK-thee-o-sor-es) A total of 40 where found throughout the park. Oh 
what are they? An ancient marine reptiles of 225 million yrs ago. The most highly specialized reptile ever to have lived on earth, one 
of them just 55ft long. They have been found on every Continent except Antarctica, yet There is no evidence linking them to any other 
reptile. Visit:    http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/people/motani/ichthyo/index.html     Then we continued up to over 8,000ft and climbed the south hillside (no 
snow) and searched the rocks and found a bunch of fossils of Clams, Snails, Oysters, Coral etc. On to Lake Tahoe area now and visited 
Virginia City No the Cartwrights where not in town, Hey I bet you thought Virginia City was just a western gun fighting town, well 
there are over 650 miles of Gold and Silver mining shafts and tunnels under the city. It was the riches place on earth with over $700M 
mined. (today's value $4-5 Billion) It's the biggest old western town we have ever seen, and a lot of it was new, well not that new. A lot 
was rebuilt after a Big Fire that burnt down over 2,000 buildings in 1875. Today about 800-900 people live here, but in the late 1800s 
22,000 people and WOW was it up in the mountains (6,200ft) I can't believe Horse and Wagons climbed that like 5-7 percent grades for 7 miles and 
some 15 deg the last mile on the south side or the 20 mile climb on the north or that they survived the decent!
There must have been a few rich cowboys at the bottom that would replace brakes and some rich ones half way up that sold horses. Visit: 
  www.virginiacity-nv.org       OH! the town purchased a new Horse Drawn "Amoskeag" Steam Fire Pump in Jan 1873 built in Manchester, NH 
"Yaa" but on its way it got diverted to Boston's Great Fire of 1872. It could pump a stream 241ft out of 1,000ft of hose. Visit the Fire 
Museum at:    www.comstockfiremuseum.com    From there we drove across the valley and up over Mt. Rose Summit 
@ 8900ft, past Mt Rose @ 10,776ft with Snow banks in one place over 3 times the height of the car. They have to use just big snow blowers up 
here. The Ski area there seemed to have no ski slopes, just lifts to the tops then you just ski down through the woods and all over. So 
over the top and down to explore around Lake Tahoe "Beautiful" The water is so clear and Blue + Green that looking down at the shoreline 
you would swear you where looking into a bay in Bermuda or Hawaii, but the Trees and the Snow on the shore kind of give it away. North 
thru Reno (been there, done that) cross into California, over the mountains and stayed in Chester with snow filled woods and snow 
banks. While there tried to make a 100 mile scenic route by car but got detoured because  Lassen Mountain Pass was closed with 33ft of snow, they 
said they didn't expect it to open till July. Then on down to Chico, CA for another RV Rally. After that Rally we toured around Oroville and saw the Huge Earth Dam - Tallest in the US  770ft + 6,920ft long, it took 80 Million yes of material to build, enough to build a 2 lane road around the world, 
with an unbelievable Spillway. It created a lake with 167 miles of shoreline. We went Hiking to the 6th Tallest Waterfall in America 
(Feather Falls) 642ft. "Totally Awesome" It was a 9 Mile Hike on a path through the California Wilderness in places about like a Goat 
Path on the side of the Mountains with lots of ups and downs and streams. In one area we crossed a Stream that runs all year and stays 
55-60 degrees, and if your there from Nov. to Mar. you will find Millions of Lady Bugs on the Canyon Walls that Migrate there every 
year. You might find info. @    www.oroville-city.com   and   www.californiawild.org/wild/FeatherFalls.html   On the way Further West we stayed a couple days at a city park in Redding, CA. "Turtle Bay" @ the Sacramento River w/fishing, 5+ miles of  Hiking/Biking trails, Sundial Bridge, Museum, Aquarium, Arboretum, Gardens, Art Gallery + More. Visit:     www.turtlebay.org    Then off to the West over more mountains with more Narrow and Windy roads. (Rt 299) We stopped in the town of Hawkins Bar (1 store, gas, propane etc) Your in the mountains with white water rapids below and snow capped mountains North + South. We drove the car up into the mountains on miles and miles of Logging Roads. probably not the ones your used to, but ones just cut into the sides of Steep mountains where it looks like only Goats should be and more then half of them are Paved. We drove north to the top then headed West following the 
Mountain Ridges, the road had just been plowed - Yah it's May 14th but they do that year around here to plow off the rocks, branches, 
trees + dirt. So we continued climbing past where the plowing had stopped, dodging rocks and branches and a couple washouts and we 
hooked on to 5 or 6 trees with our tow strap and pulled them out of the road till we finally got to the point where we couldn't go any further because the 
Snow was too deep, so we sat down and had lunch. To give you an idea of the terrain, the trip back to town was 18 miles, of 
that about 1 1/2 to 2 miles was level or climbing the rest was down hill mostly in 2nd gear (steep) with LOTS!! and LOTS!! of Curves. 
(Example - averaging 20 to 35 MPH with hand on Steering Wheel @ 12 O'clock then quickly turn left to 6 O'clock for 5 sec - straight for 10 sec - 
right to 6 O'clock for 5 sec - straight for 10 - left for 5 - WOW!!) We did see a couple Deer, a Gray Fox, a Black Bear and many Squirrels. In 
2 places we came across trees that where Stuck in the road, it took us awhile to figure it out, but what had happened was a tree had 
broken above the road, and being so steep it would slide down the side of the mountain shearing off all it's branches coming through the 
forest and having such speed and momentum that when it got to the road below it just stuck deep in like sticking your finger into a pound of 
soft butter, Unbelievable !!          A little more west then we setup at a small CampGround that was having a weekend Swap Meet, we did good there.             OH  Hey! We have arrived on the West Coast !!    
--------- Mid May 2006 ---------


Update #22 -------- June  2006 --------

Yes the Coast is Clear - I meant the coast is near - No No I mean the coast is here!    We have arrived in Eureka, CA.   The next day we checked out the town and area with it's 1800 architecture, like the 1886 Carson Mansion. http://www.eurekaheritage.org/the_carson_mansion.htm     The following day headed south on Rt 101 and drove the Avenue of the Giants  through the Humboldt Redwood State Park. Visit:   http://www.terragalleria.com/california/california.avenue-giants.html   If you are ever traveling up Rt 101 you MUST take this 21 mile parallel road, don't stay on Rt 101.   Then we turned West on the highway to the Lost Coast for the next 3 miles we went past the Largest Redwoods (this is another 3 mile Must Do!!)   The largest Redwood (was the tallest in the world) is no longer standing, it fell in 1991, it was just a mere  365 feet tall (now long) 17ft Dia - that's 52ft Circumference weighing only about 1,000,000 lbs. and survived for an estimated 1,500 years before toppling in March 1991 after being hit by another falling tree. This is the Dyerville Giant, which now begins the slow process of decomposition - the huge 17 foot thick trunk is likely to remain intact for several hundred years more. After it fell they measured it at 370ft - thats 200ft taller then Niagara Falls.  Visit:  http://www.americansouthwest.net/california/humboldt_redwoods/sites.html  The 2nd largest, still standing is like 16+ft  Diameter and just  363ft high.  Then we continued west on Mattole Rd. (where you don't want to go) with winding roads and steep hills (some over 12%) thru Honeydew just to get to the coast for about 2 miles of all fenced in grass and beaches for cows, then back inland over more winding roads and steep hills and Down into the Nice little old town of  Ferndale.   It was like a 50 mile loop thru No Where.  Then North into Oregon with lots of meadows and streams in one area where we saw Hundreds and Hundreds of Elk on both sides of the road, then on to Brookings, OR.  to do a 3 day Azalea Festival. Visit: www.brookingsor.com/photo_gallery.cfm  No Boondocking here, so we had to stay in a Campground 100 yds from the ocean, but of course with our rig only the ToterHome could barely fit in.  From there south back into Calif.  to take Rt.199 N  this is another MUST SEE!!  the first 3 miles off of RT. 101 is all Huge Redwoods.  Well up the road now to Cave Junction, OR.  a little town, we could tell by a local bulletin board with ads like "wanted - small chair for old man to watch TV" and another ad "small boat for sale - aka dingy"  we stayed there in a parking lot for 3 days.  On the 3rd night @ 10PM  a Tractor Trailer Flatbed turned into the parking lot and cut his corner way way short and sideswiped a Telephone Pole and it crashed down in front of us with Wires + Cables up over us.  I called 911 and said you've got to come see this.  We where up till 1:30am, we ended up with just scratches and a dead CB Radio.   Off again, North to White City where we did a Pow Wow , it was really great fun. The next weekend up to Roseburg to do a Gold Wing Motorcycle Rally, then East thru Bend where we stayed at Wal-Mart for 2 days and on the 2nd day there was a Prevost ($700,+ Bus/RV) parked beside us. They started up to leave when his wife remembered they needed Q-Tips, so while her husband was in Wal-Mart getting them, an Old Pickup and 5th Wheel Camper came in and cut his corner real short and like tried to tear off the front of the Prevost, so that was good entertainment too, but then a couple hours later we had some more, a Marble Sized Hail Storm with High Winds.  OK now off to a Good Sam RV Rally in Madras for the weekend. Then West over the mountains to Salem for an 8 day Airstream Rally. On the way, one morning we checked all tires etc. as usual every time before we roll, but then about 3 miles down the road the right rear tire on the trailer blew and destroyed the whole bottom right corner of the trailer.  If we would have gone some place to get it repaired it probably would have cost $1,000+  but we talked to some Racers who connected us with some other racers who made up a new panel, welded it in and primed it for $60.  This is the 1st week of summer now and it has been the hottest in history. (hit 106deg. here)  There are few lakes here but many rivers so this 1st week of summer there where 15 drownings in this county.  This year for some reason most all RV Rallys where scheduled in June so there's like nothing to vend at right now so we are going to a full time Flea Market in Cascade, ID over 300 miles away till Sept.  On the way we swung up to Ridgefield, WA. for a Tune Up, something that you might get for $150.00 to $500.00 on your vehicle. Well we had several things tested and checked and had the Tune Up and it only cost us like $3,864.00     On to Cascade we traveled north of Boise, ID. on Rt. 55 along the Payette River Gorge - Awesome!!   In Cascade the flea market was on the main road, and was basically Thur -Sun but we could stay open 7 days a week, we did 5 to 7 and where doing OK.  Hot again - breaking records to the south in Boise with 103 to 108deg,  we had 90 to 101 but 60s at night.  There was a Bad Attitude by numerous marketers there so we decided to get away one weekend so 6 of us (3 couples) went camping for 2 1/2 days at a small lake 10 miles away, at higher altitude and 15 deg. cooler, Great Fun!  With Tenting, Swimming, Sitting around the Camp Fire and Jeeping the back Mountain Roads.  Smoky here at times, a Bad Fire Season again this year, they have 17 Major Fires in the state right Now!!  (Major fires are ones involving 1000s of acres each)  While there we became friend with some Nez-perse Indians, they are allowed to fish with nets and gaffs and hunt.  We got lots of  Fresh Salmon, Salmon Smoked with Alder + Apple woods and Apple + Plum woods plus Smoked Elk too!   Well we left Cascade a month early because one of the other 2 couples said they had a 27ft boat, what do you say we leave this heat and head for the coast and do some Boating + Crabbing + Fishing and do Vending at a Flea Market there.  Then the other couple said yah and on the way we can stop at some good places we know and we will show you all how to do Gold Panning. Then in Sept. they are all going to Salem to vend with us at the big RV Rally there.  So we headed for the coast with the boat owners leading, and on the way we stopped over in Cave Junction (the town of that Telephone Pole incident) but all was quiet, well until 2:30am when a pickup truck came through town at like 60 - 70mph then tried to make a 90deg  left turn at the intersection in front of us, would you believe he didn't make it !!  He took out a Big attractions Sign (6ft X 12ft) jumped the Curb, wiped out a Stone Wall, flattened a Pay Phone Booth and spread it across the Gas Station lot, broke off his right front Wheel, missed the Gas Station and a Coffee Shop, jumped the ditch and sidewalk again and kept going down the road he was headed for, but only got about 1/4 mile then left the truck behind a store.  He was the owner of the new Sub-Way that just opened in town.  It took me a couple hours to get back to sleep after that one.  The next day we got to the coast with no stopping for Gold.  We setup at the Flea Mkt. with all the other, One (1) vendor  in Charleston, OR. Where it was foggy most days, with mornings in the 50s days 60s to 70   We are on the coolest 50 miles on the west coast, averaging 15 to 40 deg lower then the rest of the state.   We left there a month later after having gone Crabbing for a couple hours one day and not much good vending.   We are now headed for a big RV Rally in Salem, OR. but alone, because both couples changed their minds, now we've got 3 booths, 3 parking passes and 6 name tags. So it was a costly rally for us, but we still came out ahead.  The last day we packed up, headed West 9 miles and setup for another small Rally.  

--------- Late Sept. 2006 ---------


Update #23 -------- Oct  2006 --------

So we've left the Salem area heading South about 200 miles to a Barter Faire/Pow Wow. On the way, traveling about 30 to 50 miles per  day, we try not to rush you know!! we stayed at a Casino that is really booming, they just built a new Truck Stop, new Huge Campground, Rec. Center, Reservoir and are putting in several Luxury Homes in the Hills for Tribal Members. Where do they get all there money? I wonder? They said since the beginning with the Casino, 4 story Hotel, small Campground and Convention Center they have never borrowed money.  Well we are almost there and we get to stay in Cave Junction again, hopefully no "Crash" for the 3rd time in a row. At the Faire now located in a Sheep Pasture it was out on a narrow country dirt road and the rig can not make the turns or under the low trees, so we talked to all the neighbors and found a parking place in a Horse Pasture. The first morning when I came out there where 3 Deer greeting me. The Faire referred to by some as "The Hippy Faire" (26th Annual Hope Mt. Barter Faire + Pow Wow) had lots of Vendors with things like Soy or Buffalo Burgers, Hibiscus Coolers, Organic Goodies, Tie Dyed Tee Shirts, Baked Goods, Tarot Readers, Handmade Jewelry, Face Painting, Fruits + Vegetables from the Back Yards + Gardens, Drums + Didgeridoos + Kalimbas, Rhythm Bones, Yoga Stuff etc. and a Stage with groups playing  such popular hits as [I wanna be naked, sittin in the sun, puffin n chillin, playin my drum] and the kids from the Dome School singing [Puff the Magic Dragon], plus Bluegrass, Folk, what we called Random Music and More! One couple walked around giving PB+J sandwiches for a donation, NO not like at home, this was Homemade Plum Jam and Homemade Peanutbutter on Homemade Bread. There where Barefoot People, Sandals, Beards, Long Hair, Dreadlocks, Braids and Long Skirts and No Bras - Burnt them years ago I guess. Some where wearing buttons that said [Hemp is a Weed - Bush is a Dope]  And they had a Community Kitchen that you pickup your plate and silverware, get in line and get your food (all organic of course), you could work 4hrs for the meal or throw a donation in the bucket, then you wash your dishes, etc and put them back on the racks for the next person.  We where believing this was the "Second Coming"...  of "WoodStock" that is!    Oh Ya! Right next door is a unique place too. The "Out N About" Treesort of Takilma, Oregon. Instead of staying in Cabins you stay in Tree Houses.  See: www.treehouses.com/treehouse/treesort/home.html    Then South again to Medford to the Diesel Shop because after that tune-up it has been Smoking on Startup. I told them 1 of the Injectors you installed is probably Bad, because it effects only the first 5 sec. of startup, the problem is @ the cylinder. So far we have been 
here for 3 days with them saying  OH NO! Can't Be! Now the 3rd day they just pulled the injectors and sent them to be tested. Day 4 they tested them and they are fine mechanically BUT they said they Can Not test them electronically so they are putting in 6 new ones, and rechecked the Valve Adj. Day 5 - started up 
with a bunch of white smoke, they're still scratching their heads all the way to Detroit. Day 9, they gave up so we left going past Mt Shasta and Mt Lassen 
heading for Rt 395.  Seeing that we are in Volcanic Country we stopped and picked up a bunch of Lava Rocks and put them in the Gas Grill. In the morning we woke up to a Brisk 30.4deg NO NO NO that was Inside, Outside was 15.6deg.  Now on Rt 395 we traveled past Reno, NV  then back into California. On the way cruising down the Sierra Nevada Mountains with numerous down hills @ 6% for 6 and 8 miles long, Oh Yah! a few uphills too.  Driving past numerous lakes, one being Mono Lake with its Tufa Spires and salty waters. Visit http://www.monolake.org/photogallery/_gallery/indexof.htm    In Big Pine we took the car on a 15 mile climb from 3,900ft to 10,000+ft past the "Sierra View Outlook" where you can see 100+ miles of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range and to see the "Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest" a Hauntingly Beautiful and Barren Landscape Dotted with the Oldest and most Picturesque Trees on Earth. Some of the Living Trees, one over 4,600 yrs old!! - the Standing Dead Ones died about 2,000 yrs ago and the ones laying on the ground sprouted 9,000yrs ago and died over 5,000yrs ago. Gee I guess I missed that happening, how about you? Visit:  http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/methuselah/  (watch the video) and more pictures at  http://www.sonic.net/bristlecone/Images.html  The next day we turned East then dropped down a winding 8% 6 mile grade into Death Valley, Whoops! wait a minute Death Valley is actually the next valley so we climbed from 1,300ft, a 10 mile 8% grade out the other side then down a 26mile 7% grade with 5 miles of it @ 8% into the actual Death Valley @ below Sea Level + @98deg, hey don't they know its Oct 20th.  There visited Mosaic Canyon- where water had come down from the Mountains Carving + Polishing a revene through Marble with like marble chip Mosaics on the canyon walls, the 100ft high Sand Dunes, Zabriskie Point- overlooking Awesome! Colors in the canyons below, Badwater- the Lowest Point in the Western Hemisphere @ 282ft Below Sea Level and Dante's View- to see lots of  Death Valley from 5000ft. Visit:  www.nps.gov/deva   Well! out of Death Valley alive then south past Needles, CA. and down into AZ for the winter.                                                                                    - - - End of Oct 2006 - - -


Update #24   -------- Oct  2006 --------

It's still Oct and we are here in Quartzsite earlier then ever before. People are here earlier too, because the last 2 years on there way south from home they got caught in Snow Storms, and they didn't want to again this year.   In November a neighbor's Dog had her Puppies out back in the Wash and Becky was there when they where born and held one!!! OH OH !! (now named "Arizona"  his mother was mostly Yellow Lab + father Black Lab)   Two days later where the puppies where born there was a Big Rattle Snake!!!  But that's OK, we took care of it, Yup, We Ate Him!!  We sold Becky's 2000 Suzuki Vitara and I bought a 1987 Suzuki Samurai (2 generations older, smaller + lighter)       Well we just went through the Coldest January since 1979 with like 9 nights in a row in the 20s.   Also we left here earlier this year then ever before, instead of the 1st week of Mar. and heading East to Casa Grande, AZ.  we headed North to Laughlin, NV. to try out a 3 week event @ a Casino there this year. It was OK, but nothing to write home about Ha Ha! - so I won't be mentioning it any more. While we where there "Arizona" now 5 months old, saw Grass for his 1st time - he bit it and rolled in it, and drove his nose into it. He also saw Water for his 1st time - he ran around, clawed it and bit it, so I took him off his lease and he Ran around the shore line jumping rock to rock and hitting the water half the time till he slipped and went out of site "underwater" then swam back in, still excited but didn't want to go in any deeper then his belly for the first week or so, now it's Swim Swim Swim.   Also during that show several people got sick (cold/flue type thing ??) for a day or 2, but we waited till after the show then we where both Real Real Sick for like 5 or 6 days. Hey it wasn't like any other time we where sick and had to recover to make it to work or go to work sick for days, we just hung around for another week and did nothing till we where feeling better then headed North.  We're now North of Hoover Dam, parked up on a big Bluff in Overton, NV. (free parking) @ the north end of Lake Mead of which the water is down so much more this year that they have closed more Campgrounds and Marinas. If your ever there by car be sure to drive through The Valley of Fire just over the hill. Even better if you are here with a 4WD go to the south end of  Logandale, NV. and turn by the Chinese Restaurant and follow the signs over the RR tracks for "Overton Trails" we probably did over 30 miles of Trails and Hills and Washes out there today and took lots of pictures of Pretty Scenes, Red Rocks and Red Rock Formations, Big Horn Sheep, lots of little desert flowers and more, mostly in  The Valley of Fire.  Visit:   www.parks.nv.gov/vf.htm   + night Pictures @ www.astropics.com/mars/index.htm    www.adventureseekers.info/Media_Files/VOFslideshowforweb_wmv.htm for a Video.      Now up in Northern California on Rt. 99 (divided highway) we just saw a parade, yup it was coming down the Railroad Tracks. You know those little Railroad Maintenance Cars (holds 2 or 4 people) They all looked real nice, many very old - there was about 30 to 35 of them. Further North we decided to take Arizona on another adventure, we parked the Rig in town and took the car up Mt. Shasta, but couldn't get to the upper parking lot - the road wasn't plowed up that far.  So we went as far as we could and introduced Arizona to Snow, and let him romp in it for awhile.  A few weeks later we where heading east from Eugene, OR. going through Willamette Pass.  The day before heading west was a tractor trailer full of cases of Heineken Beer Bottles (20,000 gallons) he missed a shift and couldn't get it back in gear, so he panicked and hit the Emergency Brakes on the trailer - well at least part of the trailer tried to stop, it tore the back 15ft right off the trailer then he rolled and came to a stop hanging in the guardrail with 400ft below him to the river. There where probably a bunch of drunk fish that day!!   Blue Sky (not a cloud) for 3 days now, so this afternoon for a couple hours we watched clouds appear and disappear.  Yup we where in a valley between 2 snow covered mountains and I guess the cool moist winds coming off the mountains would meet the hot air coming up the forested valley  and a white puffy cloud would appear and get whiter and whiter for about 30-45sec then start lightening up and 30-45sec later gone!!  "Ain't never seen that before"      Then after doing a Pow-Wow  in White City instead of heading down and around the mountains we headed up and across then taking Rt 227W it was a beautiful motorcycle road winding narrowly up through the mountains with switchbacks and lots of Green! To bad we had the Rig and weren't leaving any road for others. On the way we unloaded the car and went up to see South Umpqua Falls  (20 miles)  See:  www.pbase.com/sfhyatts/umpie  and saw Deer about every mile or two. Now on to Madras to an RV Rally.  On the way we drove up mountain roads and dirt roads up to Olallie Lake @ the north side of  Snow Covered Mt. Jefferson - Definitely a Post Card Picture   Visit: www.olallielake.com    Then on to Redmond to a Morgan Horse Show.     After that we had 12 days till our next event so we went to Haystack Reservoir and parked @ the waters edge  See:  http://www.fs.fed.us/r6/centraloregon/wildlife/sites/15-haystack.shtml   and watched Blue Herring Cranes, Osprey and Eagles fish for a week or so.   OH! WOW!  today an Osprey dove in and caught a fish then the Bald Eagle wanted it, so he kept swooping at him till he released it right in front of  us, then the Eagle went into a dive and grabbed the fish when it was about 50ft from the ground "AWESOME"!!      While there we went west across Rt97 and followed signs for Cove Palisades State Park where 3 rivers come together and they put a Dam to make a 9 mile lake (3 fingered). See:  www.oregonstateparks.org/park_32.php?md=pic  (on these pictures - hold your mouse to look right and left) First going North we stopped @ every little view point looking down 200+ ft  Gorges into 400+ ft deep waters, then continued West down into, across, then back out of the 2 river gorges.  This was another one of those sites that if you never venture out you'll never know what fantastic sights are "Just Out of Site" !!                                         

------ July 2007 ------


                                                                                            Update #25   -------- July  2007 --------

Well Becky Flew home to surprise her parents for their 50th Anniversary - on the way to pick her back up at the Portland Airport 
(100+ miles away) I took Arizona up Mount Hood and we played in the Snow!!    On the way back we took a shortcut up over the mountains 
w/some gravel roads and Spectacular Sites. Also stopping @ the Indian Museum @ Warm Springs  Visit:   www.warmsprings.com/museum/    Having 
21 days between the shows here we stayed for Free 2 weeks back @ that Reservoir, then stayed a week @ a Couple's House (another Escapees 
camping group members) and they said this winter they will be heading south and will stop and see us too!  Then on to do 2 big RV Rallys in Redmond. At big rallys they usually have good Entertainment, at these where  B.J. Thomas + Susan Summers - The Nelson Brothers (Ricky Nelson's Twins) + Debbie Boone + Tony Orlando.   The following weekend we did the annual Cruz-In in Terrebonne (down town car show)  The next weekend off through the mountains to Sumpter for a Labor Day all town Flea Market. Visit:   www.historicsumpter.com    There in the mountains @ 4,424ft above Sea Level and 100 miles from Navigable waters, they have a 1,240 Ton, 52ft wide Vessel that has operated around the valley for 20+yrs creating it's own pond as it goes, dredging over 1,600 acres of Pastures and Meadows for Gold leaving the mounds of gravel all over the valley. Visit: www.historicsumpter.com/sumpter-oregon-history.html   or  www.bakercounty.net/areas/sumpterdredge.htm   and watch the panorama.  They also have a Narrow Gauge Steam Train. (6 mile Ride)  www.svry.com  Now West again stopping in John Day to see the Kam Wah Chung & Company Museum of an 1887 Chinese Store + Herbal Doctor - Original site of a China Town too!  www.oregonstateparks.org/park_8.php?md=pic 
and watch the panorama.  Then to Canyon City to the Grant County Museum with lots of Gold Rush, Rocks, Pioneer + Chinese stuff  See: www.ortelco.net/~museum/exhibits.htm   and the Oxbow Wagon Restoration Company  See - www.oxbowtradeco.com/index.php    (they restore all horse drawn wagons and equipment)  then to the John Day Fossil Beds where over 2,000 Extinct Fossilized Species have been found, plus there are more types of fossils and of more steps in evolution here then any other place on Earth!!  See - www.nps.gov/joda    So after a few days around 82 to 85deg we figured we would get a little coolness so on the way through the mountains west we stayed at the highest point we could find and woke up to FROST!!   Then down into a Car Show back in Redmond before returning to Richreal a few days later for 2 more small RV Rallys.  On the way over the mountains to the western side of the state we stayed the night @ the highest point - HooDoo Ski Area.  I took the car out and drove to the top of the Ski Lift "Awesome Views"  That night North of us we heard a Low Bellowing Groaning Growl and it came closer and closer then passed to the East. When it was beside us we started hearing another on the ridge to the West. It was like Nothing we had ever heard. (a sound like a cross between the Bellow of a Beagle and the growl of a Bear, but deeper and more powerfull}   Yes BIGFOOT was there !!!!  Arizona didn't like it and Becky locked all the windows and doors.   Then in the morning, (yes we survived) on to the Rallys,  Then we stopped at the Diesel Shop again so we could complain about Reduced Power again. This time they did a Dyno Test. If you don't know what that is they strap the rig down to a giant Treadmill that puts loads on it up to 70 MPH. So they said again, there is nothing wrong, so we can't fix it.  The results of the Dyno Tests showed that there is no power problem as the engine was putting up to 442 HP to the wheels with 27.5 pounds of  Turbo Boost and 1520lb of Torque.  The next weekend we went back to that Barter Faire again. Then we left Takillma and headed straight up!!   13 mile climb East through the Wilderness, then 9 Mile 9% Grade down into Cal.  Then traveled about 75 miles @ 900 to 1,100 RPM (10th gear 45-53MPH) into Yreka, CA. Lots a pretty Mountains and Woods. North on I-5 then East on Rt66 which on the map was a straight red road. Well guess what?? Twisty, Windy, Mountainous and they had a sign recommending nothing longer then 50ft So that was a fun road !! (we are 72ft 5 1/2 inches. Example - there was one left hand turn where the trailer was way across the centerline and the right front wheel was @ the edge of the hottop, and off the right side of the road was about a foot of gravel before about a 400ft drop into a Whitewater River. No No No they don't have guardrails, are you kidding.  We traveled on across South Eastern Oregon over a couple hundred miles of  Hi Desert plains, scrub brush, Mountains and hills before dropping into Nevada. When coming out of one set of mountains and onto more desert plains you could see another row of mountains just ahead, Yah Right!! It took 27 miles to get there. Down into Nevada and East on I-80 (Yes an interstate, we have to do that once and awhile)  Next stop Elko, NV. We took the car up into Lamoille Canyon, up to over 6,600ft - some describe it as driving the bottom of a mini Grand Canyon. www.exploringnevada.com/nevada-pictures-photographs/backcountry-scenic-drive-photos/lamoille-canyon-photographs/   Then we went south and even higher (over 8,800ft) up through Harrison Pass  www.nevadadventures.com/recsites/elkoco/harrisonpass/harrisonpass.html  where Many Many Early Pioneers went over these mountains - including the "Donner Party" this one they made, but later west of Reno into Calif. they didn't make it.  Further East we crossed the Bonneville Salt Flats, Yup 28 miles!! No we controlled our self, we didn't do 200 to 300mph. http://travel.webshots.com/album/66020443XmPgIR  On into Utah now and down I-15 for about 60 miles then back onto the back roads and Saw Red Canyon (near Bryce Canyon)  www.americansouthwest.net/utah/red_canyon/photographs.html   One place we stopped was the Moqui Indian Caves  See: www.moquicave.com  Then down into Arizona and stayed @ Jacob Lake, AZ @ 8825ft.  In the morning we went to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon (Note: they close for season 15 Oct, but you can still drive out @ No Charge till snow) we went out to the Lodge @ 8225ft. (built in 1937 to replace 
the original built in 1928 that Burnt), walked out on Bright Angle Point, then drove to Point Imperial and a couple other lookouts towards Angles Window + Cape Royal where you get to look down a little to the River, Yup! a little RIGHT! - over 6,000ft BELOW!!! and to the other side just 10 miles across. We could see several rain/snow showers happening @ places out over the canyon. If your
going to the Grand Canyon try to go to these North Rim locations - (With Animals, Forests, Meadows, but small walks to the views. The South Rim - is Deserty, Hotter, more Crowed, but parking @ Canyon's Edge.   Overall the Grand Canyon is 277 Miles Long and 8 to 16 Miles Wide.  On the return drive back to the rig we hit 5 to 10 miles of Snow, at times the wipers and defroster couldn't keep up.   Visit: www.nps.gov/archive/grca/photos/   Then South to visit the Factory where they build the Wind Generators we sell, Then we headed farther down into Arizona for the winter.
  ----- Late Oct. 2007 -----


This video is a Beautiful Trip across the Country that you've got to watch   http://mybeautifulamerica.com/mybeautifulamerica.htm  and we have been to over 90% of all these locations.    (Note if you have a slow internet connection and the video starts and stops then when it's complete just click on "Refresh" and run again)

Then Click your   [BACK]   Button to return here


Update #26   -------- March  2008 --------

Well a late departure from AZ this year due to people not getting their stuff picked up early enough, lack of help etc.  Becky said she was going to leave with some other vendors and spend the summer in Wyoming, but we ended up both heading east, so we had to get to our first rally in Casa Grande and didn't get to stop in Mexico to stop @ the dentist etc. when going through Yuma.   Now we have done the Rally and are in Deming N.M. which is one of a couple places on our route east that is close to Mexico. We ended up spending 5 days here, 3 of those days where 35 to 45 mph winds with 50 gusts and one with 45mph sustained winds with 60mph gusts. (high recorded 67) Dusty!! with some roads closing at times and a sign on the interstate falling on a car and an historic sign in one town falling on a car there, plus traffic lights down too. East of here there where 2 fires which in 2 days burning 75,000 acres and north a couple hundred miles White Out snow storms causing lots of accidents and closing the Interstate. All that time we ran on our Wind Power.  Everything!! has a fine fine dust!! we had to blow down the inside of the rig and under the hood including the air cleaner, cab filter etc.   before leaving, I can't imagine what it would have been like if we had been running.  Then we headed east, gee that 50-60mph tailwind probably would have helped, Oh Well!  But we drove to El Paso, TX  then up into Carlsbad, NM. where we stayed @ the Town Riverfront Park for 5 days, then up to Artesia to do a Car Show there. While there I sold my Motorcycle, Why did I do that you say?  Because I bought one back in Nov. when I was in AZ on e-Bay and I have to pick it up in a couple weeks on our way through N.E. Tenn. I don't like any of the new bikes, + they are to long and expensive, some are pushing 9ft (won't fit sideways in trailer) So this one is 24 years old, but brand New? it has just 1,620 miles on it and the last owner has had it just 5 months and had a Honda Shop go ALL through it.  So when we left the car show and headed East we went through miles and miles of hundreds and hundreds of oil pumps and tanks out across the desert plains with of course very few operating - because fuel prices are high and they need to keep them that way, and there where many New Wells. Hey one would think with all them New Wells you would have more "Gallons" Think about it !!   Which brings up a couple things we learned this past winter.  I was talking to one guy that said he worked over 32 years for an Oil Company and his job was to travel all over the US and Canada to meet people with new energy and fuel saving ideas and patens and Buy Them Out! I spoke to another that worked over 20 years and he said one Drill Job he was working on, that when they hit oil they said that Well was enough to supply the US for over 30 years, and to keep it quiet because it would be bad for the company and could mean their jobs too, and the brother of a Captain of a Super Tanker.  His brother said in the center compartment of the ship he could float an Aircraft Carrier and they cost over 100 million to build and how many trips it takes to pay for it "One". He said when they come in to unload there are Multiple tankers waiting out in the ocean with no place to unload. They do not have to come in to port to unload, they connect to pipelines miles out in the ocean. He's had times where he was almost all unloaded and gets a call to suck it back out (and it happens to the gallon) then they head down the coast where they have been offered 20cents more per Barrel. When your hauling millions of gallons that could be a lot!!!    Well we did the Rally in Abilene, TX. then one in Rayne, LA, then Texarkana, AR. and Shawnee, OK. On the way another trailer tire gone - it hit something and cut the cords, so it couldn't be repaired - that's # 25 in 8 years on the road.  Then to use up a couple days we stayed at a Casino for 3 days with Full Hookups and didn't have to loose a bunch of money to get it. The next day we went north 20mi to the Quapaw Creek Living History Rendezvous where everything was done in Pre-1840 Period Dress, Articles, Camping and More,  Awesome!!  It was a small one but fun!     See: www.hprr.org/pics04/pics04.htm   to see pictures of what we're talking about.   While there we saw a Super Cell past by us about 10 miles away, That's a Thunder Storm that usually forms a Tornado.  One of the Storm Chasers out there said in 13 years that is the strongest and most incredible one he has ever seen. With it's high cloud formations and huge amounts of rotating clouds that if it had touched down and stayed down it would have been a Real Real Bad Tornado !!  Luckily it only toughed down twice for about 30 sec. each time destroying barns, trees etc.   To see some Tornado Pictures visit:   www.mthurricane.com/tornado%20clips.htm  (like the 3 bottom pictures)   Then when we left OK we traveled through AR, MS, AL, GA, SC, NC then TN where we picked up the Motorcycle I bought on e-bay then into NC then VA on the way to New England.     On multiple roads throughout the Carolina's TN and VA we hit numerous roads that kept climbing and climbing, getting narrower and narrower with lots of switch backs where we where using 1/4 to all of the other lane on every turn, one after another, after another.  Then back down the other sides. I think in the past 400-500 miles we got into high gear a couple times every 100 miles. Just days of Beautiful Beautiful Mountainous Country. On our way we went through Hot Springs, VA  with a Huge, I mean really Huge resort for the elite!  See: www.thehomestead.com    and one night we stayed in Monterey, VA (high in the Allegheny Mts. called Virginia's Switzerland) with one building dating back to 1790 and many others in the 1850-1890 Visit: www.highlandcounty.org/oldphotos.htm     Not the High 70s to 80 degrees here we have been seeing, but here it's 54deg.  We parked across from the Highland Inn "1904"   See: www.highland-inn.com/history.htm  (wait for picture to keep changing)  the next day we figured out that West Virginia was having their Good Sam Rally in a couple days, so we headed West over the original east/west highway built in the 1790s over the old indian trails. Yup it was narrow and twisty in places plus raining and windy, but pretty. On the way down one of the mountains on a 3 1/2 mile 9% grade we had to stop and wait for the Fire Dept. to clear the road of 6-8 trees over a half mile stretch. When we got to the rally they said pull in here, I said I don't think so, they said it's OK the ground is good and hard.  NOT! they had to pull me out then I pulled onto higher ground till I got stuck again and I said OK I'll vend from here. Well as of Saturday it has been raining 9 days. They spent the afternoon pulling out rigs with two 4x4 pickups hooked together and a tractor. That weekend a local bridge washed out and the power went out half a day. At the Chinese Auction we won a stainless toaster oven and @ the door prize drawing I won a set of stainless gourmet knives (lifetime warranty) Sunday morning I didn't even try to move without being hooked to. On our way through Troy, NY luckily we where doing only 30MPH and a girl in a VW came down to a stop sign on our left then pulled out 50ft in front of us went about 100ft then turned into a drive on the right. I was full on the Brakes and Air Horns and could not see the back half of her car most of the time. "Missed by Inches" she was on a cell phone!!   Then on to the Mass. Rally in Greenfield where the rig got it's 1st taste of Bio-Diesel - no different. After the rally we took the car and visited Becky's Family then headed north towards the next rally in Maine and stayed @ the VT rest area.

------------- May 2008 -------------


Update #27   -------- June  2008 --------

Headed up through VT now, across NH and into Maine for a Rally. We had almost No Brakes by the time we got there and a noisy rear brake.   Well, after about 30 phone calls we found some brake shoes, and had them shipped in - they where x-tra wide, usually only available out west. (Mountain Brakes) But could not find anyone within 75 miles to work on it, and where not very excited about driving it very far. After the rally we stopped at Wal-Mart and a guy with 4 kids stopped and talked to me about the Rig and I mentioned the failed brakes and no one to work on it. He said Follow Me Home we can help you fix it. We backed into his garage and pulled the rear wheels off and found a broken brake drum. After another 25 or more phone calls No Drum east of TX.  Finally I found one "Special Use" I went to get it with the car the next morning and we put things back together. We all enjoyed the visit, more new friends where made. We had a BBQ out on the fire and sat out there till 9pm. The next night we gave grace and had a nice supper together.  We talked Trucks, RVs, Traveling etc. plus showed them all how to play our Native American Flutes and gave them a couple flutes in appreciation for all they did to help us out. Finally we are back on the road to the CT Rally and we have Great Brakes! We have now set a new record on tires too. I don't think we have ever traveled more then 3 states without loosing a tire. Well since OK. we have been through the roughest roads ever with many sharp turns putting the trailer off the edge of the hot top and off into the gravel and sticks but we have been through 16 states now without a tire problem, Amazing!!!   After CT we visited Becky's relatives in MA for a week then off to NY for a Harley Rendezvous on 200 acres up in the hills and out in the country, there must have been 10,000+ people that like only slept between 5am and 11am, with Bands playing till 3am and Bikes racing around all night (Loud Ones)  A little Wild!!    Look @  www.HarleyRendezvous.com    Guys where always asking girls if they could have a picture, then the girls would say OK and lift their shirts, but some didn't even have to because they where Only wearing like open vests on top and we saw a few with Nothing from the waist up just Air Brush Painted on vests, some had Leather Chaps and a Thong, Lace Panties and High Boots etc and where ranging from 90 to 330lbs. There where also numerous guys with No Shirts and a few Streakers. They had over a dozen bands including great groups like the "Bar King Spiders" and the "Innerbred Chicken Herders"  After they all left you would not believe what was left behind, with 6 fields as far as you can see with hundreds of BBQs, Tents, Air Matresses, Lawn Chairs even Stuffed Chairs and Couches and TRASH, TRASH, TRASH!!   I looked around and replaced our pieces of outdoor carpeting with New (from under peoples tents) replaced one lawn chair with a New one, and got 2 New BBQs ($29.95 @ Wal-Mart)   Seeing we had 20 days till our next RV Rally just 80 miles away!   we just stayed right there in the field all that time, very nice owners! While there I caught up on Maintenance Items. Then off to the RV Rally. We got there a day early and got together with other vendors and took a Brewery Tour, the oldest in NY then we all had a BBQ together.  After that Rally we headed East to Rutland, VT for a Gold Wing Motorcycle Rally. There we called about and got into a Blue Grass event in Maine. The 1st day there major storms where going through. although we thought we had left Oklahoma way behind there was a bunch of tree damage etc in the town we where in, but on it's way to us the storm came through NH causing the worst storm damage since 1823 with 135 to 150 mph winds with an all time Record Tornado lasting 1hr 20 min and going for 50 miles thru 11 Towns (most Tornadoes last up to 15 min and 5 miles) in Epsom, Barnsted and Ossipee with the 1st death ever in Deerfield, NH.  Then we found out about a BlueGrass event in NH that we did too, then onto VT  for an RV Rally.  You know, some people ask us when we're going to stop traveling, and we say "Why Would We Want to do That"   Now we can tell them about the woman we just met that has a Ford Ranger 
Puckup with a Cap (not full camper) but a shell that she fixed up. She has seen every state and most of Canada and been on the road over 33yrs and is in her 80s. She said she knows two other women that have her beat. They are both 91 and one has been traveling for 50 years.  So, see that means we're not done traveling yet!!  Did you say "Rain" you can have it. We have had rain @ every event this summer, and here in VT the Sheriff and Fire Dept. came in and they evacuated the lower part of the fairgrounds. the Raging Brown River (normally small and crystal clear) came within about 8" of flooding the grounds.  Now @ the NH Rally we had to get Towed into place again! and now in only the first week of Aug they have had 1 1/2 times the Annual Thunderstorms and already 1"+ over for the Average Annual RainFall with over 4 1/2 months to go.  Now on to the NH Coast area to visit my Brothers. One sunday Bob, and a neighbor and I rode in a Motorcycle Benefit Run, a 66 mile ride which was nice, but more like a Road Race.  While visiting we did some minor and major maintenance on his bike, and went on some of his plumbing and heating jobs to help him out, and one day emptied his whole storage shed and cleaned and rearranged it.  Now off to Maine for the last New England rally, where again we had rain.  Oh Well! we still have a lot of fun!!  South to Mass. now to visit Becky's relatives.  Now we're headed West, winter is around the corner.
---------- Late Sept 2008 ----------


Update #28   ----------  Late Sept.  2008  ----------

While traveling across PA. on RT 6, I believe this must have been Johnny Apple Seeds route west, there are apple trees, after apples trees all along the highway with barely a few miles between each one. I would think he would run out of seeds soon, but there where still more into OH.    While in Western PA we where hit by the remains of Hurricane IKE.  When heading out towards Mich. the next morning the roads in some areas where green with leaves and branches.  After the 
RV Rally in Michigan which was the 1st indoor rally all summer and the 1st without rain, we headed east and followed the eastern coast north and stayed that night on the shore of Lake Erie @ Rockport looking out over Thunder Bay. there they used to load thousands of Tons of Limestone onto ships till the late 1930s. I walked over 3/4 of a mile back in the woods where Limestone was pushed up to 50 to 80ft and higher, everywhere. We where parked near the grass in bottom picture, looking @ the top picture   http://www.michiganrailroads.com/RRHX/Stations/CountyStations/AlpenaStations/RockportMI.htm    That night took a walk with oodles of Stars, the Waves hitting the shores and a couple Light Houses flashing on the shore and islands. The next morning north across the Mackinaw Bridge then west across the MI. Peninsula looking south over Lake Michigan, stopping to have a Pasty (past-tee) which originated in England/Wales and brought to the Iron Mines here so they had something hot to enjoy. They shredded beef and pork, and add potatoes, carrots, cabbage and sometime rutabaga, then set it on a pie crust and close it up and bake. Through MI. and Across Wis. we Enjoyed the Foliage, I've missed it in New England for the past 8 years. The trees here are quite the same but the colors are not as bright.  Fuel up this way is better, since I fueled up @ Flying J near Penn/OH line, through OH, up thru MI, across the peninsula to see my Mother and Sister in Minnesota. Our average was 10.48 MPG.   While there we visited the U of M Arboretum, walked about 2 miles and learned a lot about Trees, Shrubs, Plants and Flowers.   Visit:  www.arboretum.umn.edu/displayandspecialtygardens.aspx     West again across western MN. and across SD. on Rt 212 with lots and lots of farming - Corn, Sugar Beet and Soy Bean and we saw lots of Hawks and Falcons. Then further into SD. there were no more Sugar Beet, but Lots of Sun Flowers until getting to the Cheyenne River then no more flat ground and farming, but now all rolling hills and Prairie, with Cattle, a few Wild Horses and Prairie Dogs popping up everywhere. Well we have done outstanding on tires all summer with like 21 states without a tire problem.  I guess it was holding out for a Grand Finally, because today (1 Oct 2008) B A A A N G !! we blew the right front tire, a 16 ply with over 135psi  Yup, It just tore out the complete Inner Fenders, a big piece of the Outer Fender, the Front Bumper Shrouds are just hanging and blew the Hood apart and up into the Windshield, bent up or broke all the brackets up under there that held the fenders, bumper etc.  Then the pieces of tire went back under and tore off and or crumpled up the 8" Trims on the side and back of the Trailer. If it hadn't been for our "Steer-Safe" we would have been out in the Pucker Brush - the left front tire actually put down an "S" rubber mark on the road where the blowout was trying to pull us off the road and the Steer-Safe kept bringing us back.  Seeing that about 40% of the homes out here have a tractor trailer in their yard, I was able to find someone 3 miles away that came out with an air jack to help us out. If it wasn't for My 20 ton Jack, we never would have got it up, and if it wasn't for My Torque Multiplier we never would have gotten the wheel nuts off or retorqued back on properly. Yes, I carry a spare wheel and tire for that too)  Hey! look at the bright side, there is one?  Sure! when I was walking the side of the road out in the middle of nowhere, picking up rig parts and pieces I picked up a kind of crispy and faded $5 bill.    Now south on Rt 63 then 14 to Wall, SD. home of the famous Wall Drug, worlds largest drugstore www.roadsidephotos.com/sd/sd10.htm   and visited the Wounded Knee Museum where you can see the "True Story" of Wounded Knee www.woundedkneemuseum.org  We drove the car through part of the Badlands www.nps.gov/badl  +  www.highway60.com/sights_usa2.html   and when leaving the park stopped to see the only family of White Prairie Dogs.  The next day saw Mount Rushmore, which was built by just removing 800 million lbs of stone to make the 60ft heads and climbing 506 steps daily to do it.  www.nps.gov/moru   We saw it from numerous angles, even above when driving up over Iron Mountain Rd. www.byways.org/explore/byways/2459/photos.html?display_mode=single&pub_id=10681&order_no=2 with a couple Pigtail Bridges - (you drive thru a tunnel (hole in Mt) and come out on a Wooden Bridge that turns Sharply then under it's self.  Also took the Needles Highway going thru numerous tunnels and thru The Needles of course - a bunch of Tall! Pointy Rocks that you drive between and even through!! www.peternorbeck.americasbyways.net  (click on Needles picture in center)  Then we explored Custer State Park www.CusterStatePark.info    seeing numerous animals that Arizona got to see and sniff, sometimes even close. Like Deer, Prong Horns, Mountain Goats, lots of Prairie Dogs, some Burros, Turkeys and yup Buffalo. But we were 2 days late to see the Herding/Roundup of over 1,500 Buffalo, www.custerstampede.com     but saw them in there winter area, and a half dozen or so still roaming.  I drove the Bike through Sturgis www.sturgis-sd.com  and back thru a little of the Black Hills past Nemo, SD     www.spearfish.com/canyon/gallery/main.php?g2_itemId=1435     seeing beautiful green grasses throughout all the Dark Green Pines (Black Hills) and lush meadows while climbing and winding between steep mountains and seeing Deer 8 times, a bunch of Turkeys plus spotted an Elk in the woods and stopped to take a picture of her, but got pictures of 5 females and one Big Male. "Nice Rack"   Here we go - south on 385 through the small hilled plains of Nebraska, the rolling farm lands, ranches and scrub covered plains of eastern Colorado.  It looks like we are out west again, her goes another tire - on the trailer this time.   On through the Pan Handles of Oklahoma and Texas, then across New Mexico stopping to visit Sky City - The Oldest Continuously Inhabited Community in North America. (almost 2,000 years) Located atop a mesa 370ft above the desert floor.  www.www.desertusa.com/mag01/mar/stories/acoma.html    then continuing across Arizona and south to Quartzsite for the winter.  Lots of times people will ask us, what do you get, 4 miles per gallon?  Well the about 300 miles from Flagstaff, AZ west to Kingman, then down to Quartzsite we got the best mileage of the summer 11.33 MPG.

---------- Early Oct 2008 ----------


Update #29   ----------   Oct.  2008  -  Mar  2009  ----------  

Hey after blowing that tire in SD you would think that you get a couple estimates and the insurance company would send you a check and you get it fixed.    Right ?  Wrong !!   I got an estimate in SD then the Ins. Co. sent out an appraiser and he said the estimate I got was low and it would cost more to get it fixed here.   Then the Ins. Co. contacted me with an Offer, Yes Offer!!   of about HALF that amount.  I have been fighting with them ever since, now over 3 months. I even drove the ToterHome 264 miles (round trip, on the way 13.71MPG and return in the rain 14.17MPG) and got another estimate, and whalaa! it was higher then the one from SD (just like the appraiser said - Imagine That!)  Then they sent the Appraiser to that Body Shop, he pissed them off so much they tore up the estimate and kicked him out and now refuse to work on my rig.    Now the ins. co. is saying, well you can get a local estimate.   Of course there are No Local ! so now that it is March and I have left Quartzsite for the Summer of traveling so I am going to get a couple of estimates in Texas and Louisiana to send in.      Last fall on the way west, when I was doing the Rally in Michigan I had a life Changing Experience.  I saw a girl that captured my total attention all the time I was there.  I would sense whenever she was near and a constant feeling of knowing that I knew her came over me.  I only got to talk to her a few minutes while there and gave her a business flyer and she gave me her business card.    A couple months later after never getting her out of my mind we did make contact and found out we had both been trying to contact the other and have never stopped thinking about one another.   An Energy Healer has read our energy to be from being happily together in a past life. And that together with dreams we have both had of US from the past, we realized Fate had once again brought us together !!!    We have decided that next summer I will schedule my travels and Rallys to bring me through Michigan so that we can meet and get to know one another.    Now being March I am headed east to Rallys in AZ, TX, LA, AR. then up to OH, MI etc.  The 1st in Casa Grande, AZ   I won a Door Prize of 2 Meal Tickets for the evening BBQ beef and chicken catered meals.  Then I won a Free week stay at a campground, but not knowing if I would be going there to use it I let them redraw it for someone else..  While there I went to the evening entertainment and put on a jacket, it happened to be the 1st time I wore my Rescue Jacket in a long long time, well about 20 min later they called for a Doctor or Medical Personal.   I grabbed my Medical Emergency Kit and Oxygen.   A woman had a possible Heart Attack and fallen and badly broke her ankle.  She was breathing very shallow and loosing Color !!  Luckily I had the Oxygen and was able to bring back a little color before the Rescue arrived.    After that Rally I stayed in the parking lot for a couple days and did some Maintenance. I had an Anti-Freeze leak that the dealer wanted $171.00 to fix, well today I fixed it myself for $11.77    The next day I stopped in Tucson, AZ at a Truck Salvage place and picked up a few things, and a cutting from a Truck Hood  and a place right down the road Cutup and Repieced my Hood for me so I won't be going down the road trying to fall apart, that took 10 Days with the temps climbing every day 91,92,94,97, it's definitely time to head north. (Mar 20)     When that was done there, I went to Patagonia, AZ to visit the Flute Factory that we get our Native American Design Flutes from. (see Our website) While there I drove the car to Nogalas, Mexico to go to the Dentist and get a HairCut.    See a Video: http://wanderingi.multiply.com/video/item/21/Micromentary_Nogalas_Mexico   You won't believe this:  a Couple weeks ago that girl in Michigan "Bobbee" had to go to the dentist for a Tooth Ache (cavity @ 2nd Molar, under a cap)  well I had Full X-Rays in Mexico and had the "Exact"  Same Thing !!!  WOW!!    We have had so many like things, it is Unbelievable !!  Anyways I had total about 20 X-Rays, Cleaning, Cut my Cap/Bridge, Extract the Tooth "Surgically", 3 Layers of Stitches, Smooth Caps and Reinstalled - Almost 5 hrs in the chair.  Guess How Much ?  Nope Guess Again!   $150.00 Total !!    On the way back to Patagonia @ Dusk I saw about 12 Wild Pigs off the side of the road.  That night about 9PM they came into town, past me and split up about town to search for Things !      The next few days I headed east thru Tombstone and all the way across New Mexico and into El Paso, TX. there I stayed at a Casino (Hookups $5 night)  while there visited the Museum of Archaeology    www.elpasotexas.gov/arch_museum/    and the National Border Patrol Museum   www.borderpatrolmuseum.com   and stopped and got a repair estimate for the rig.  Then a little south on I-10 then East across Texas on I-20 with the first 300 miles with a tail wind, getting 14.65MPG Wow!  and 86 degrees out, with the next day @ a hi of 60 and a low of 31.1 deg as a Snow Storm came down from Colorado.  Then to the RV Rally in Abilene then onto the next one in Shreveport, LA where of course for supper the 1st night I had to go get 3 lbs of CrawFish with potato and corn and finished it off with Peach Blackberry Pie w/brown sugar cinnamon crumb crust, Yum Yum!!  Thur evening I won $10 Wal-Mart card, and we had a Tornado Warning and they asked everyone to go into the Coliseum for shelter, but of course not everyone did.  A small Tornado did touch down and did some damage on the next street and as that was happening the tree beside the rig started rustling and bending over, but there wasn't any great amount of wind coming from the other direction ??  So today I learned that Tornadoes Suck! (it was pulling that tree) A few miles east after it passed us it tore down some signs and about 6 telephone poles.  The next day we found out 3-4 miles west (before passing us) it laid over 6 Train Cars, now that would have made a mess of all the RVs.   After that Rally then north to the Texarkana, AR.  Rally.  Wow there I won 2 Meals @ IHOP.  


Update  #30   ----------   Mid  April  2009   ---------- 

Now north thru Little Rock, AR and up Hwy67  with lots of farms, and all overflowed rivers, flooded fields and farmlands and rain so hard I had to drive the middle of the road at times, because the right edge had 2-4" of water in the road.   Near the top of the state from Pocahontas, AR to the Missouri line Every Tree Top was Snapped Off !!  Either freshly, or recently or in the past.   It kind of looks like these people live in Storm Alley !!   On into Missouri with its rolling forested hills where I stopped at a guy's place that on Truck Chassis (like mine) builds Custom MotorCoaches (Not production line "spit em out").  He will hopefully get to build some rigs for Our Customers.   While in the Jackson area I motorcycled around and saw  the Trail of Tears State Park a memorial to the 13 groups of Cherokee Indians that crossed the Mississippi River in the winter of 1838-39 and lost their lives in a forced relocation  +  Fort D a Civil War Fort  constructed in 1861 to protect Cape Girardeau, MO.   Then in Burfordville saw the Oldest Covered Bridge in MO 140ft long they started building it in 1858,  also there we toured the Bolliger Mill a water powered mill first built in1800 for grinding flours and meals and was burnt down by Union Forces during the Civil War to keep the Rebels from getting the Flour and Meal and the present mill was built in 1867.   These can all be found @   www.mostateparks.com   Also we crossed the Mississippi River into Illinois for a bit.  Before leaving that area I was talking to a guy in a shop @ a small trucking company, and was telling him about a strange starting issue I was having that a dealer wanted $327 to "possibly" fix.  Well he found and fixed that problem, plus changed a brake adjuster dog and adjusted all brakes, and checked a bunch of other things.  All For Free !!   It's friday now and we're near Pevely to try to do a Flea Mkt this weekend. Right now in a Wal-Mart parking with a lot of Severe Thunder Storms and Tornado Watch just went through and they shutdown the highway out front.  There was one Tractor Trailer went through and you could not see the front bumper, so they are rerouting all traffic through Wal-Mart where the water is only 4-6" deep.   Touring around one evening we came across 2 softballs games going on so we stopped to watch. I thought this is nice, the families get out for the evening.      Well not quite, it was a Ball Club with a Bar and Grill with 2 baseball diamonds and about 5 teams playing.  There was about 100 guys and only about 5 girls and 5 kids, so much for the family thing !  After the Flea Market we headed north and visited the Mastodon Historic Site where the first bones of Mastodons and many other now-extinct animals where found in the early 1800 and signs of Indians hunting them 14,000 to 10,000 years ago.  www.mostateparks.com/mastodon.htm  Also walked the nature tour through the old Lime Quarry there (1905)   and visited the little Historic Town of Kimmswick with its buildings of the 1790s to 1880s    To the south a bit we visited the Lead Belt where most all of the Lead we use has come from for over 280 years, an area about 10 miles long with 8 different Lead Mines comprising of over 1,000 miles of abandoned multilevel mines, 330 Miles of underground Railroad Track. We toured the State Historic site in the area, at one time the largest Lead Mine in the World (closed in 1972) www.mostateparks.com/momines.htm  Then on to do a Sunday Flea Mkt.  Started at 6am, it was cool and I when I went to open up the back of my car and the rear window shattered. No that is not supposed to happen because it's a convertable!  Oh well, the market went well.   Missouri is the "Cave State", with more then 5,500 documented caves, so we went to the Best One today, we did about 225 miles on the Motorcycle, and went to the Onondaga Cave    www.mostateparks.com/onodaga.htm   and on the return visited Daniel Boone's Homestead. Then West again to do a Pow-Wow at a Fair Grounds and there was an RV group there and I fixed someone's refrigerator and used their pickup to go get the parts (225 miles round trip)  The next day watched the Paint Horse Show, then the first day of the Pow-Wow started @ 1pm and ended @ 9:30 then went to watch the last 4 fights of the North West Cage Fighting Championship - Mens and Ladies.    Then two more days of Pow-Wow with Yummy Indian Fry Bread, Indian Meat Pies and Indian Dawgs too, with the Horse Show every morning.    Two days later another RV Rally was starting, so we just moved to another building and setup again.   They did not charge us and kept inviting us to their donuts, ice cream, and catered meals, plus we had some sales too.   While there, a speaker came in from Goodyear to talk on tires and he said they may help us with replacement tires or repair costs for the ones that blew.  That's great seeing they are $583.00 each.  Now in the arena they are starting a Miniature Horse Show, so we are watching that at times too. Their head only comes to my waist, some shorter. See some at  www.dentranch.com   The next day we headed out on the motorcycle and stopped at a Black Powder Shoot where they hiked a Trail pulling along a Mule and have to load and shoot there Muzzle Loaders at many Targets along the way.  (best time wins)   The next weekend just had to go vend at the 30th annual Pigeon Swap Festival out by Jacob's Cave.   Where you can find all kinds of animals and all kinds of Flea Marketers (80 acres, 4 miles of roadways and about 900 vendors)   "Wake Up" was @ 5:45 when hundreds or maybe a thousand roosters would start crowing awakening the ducks, peacocks, guinea hens, dogs, puppies and more that ALL chimed in !!   There where Amish families there too, so of course we got to have fresh breads, vegetables and of course Shoofly Pie !!  YUM!!      We where just a little bit disappointed though, because that same weekend we missed going to the 16th annual Testicle Festival down the road a piece.  Then the next weekend did a little Flea Market up the road, and there was a couple setup beside me that was 86 years old.   When I was helping them pack up we came across a book, and they gave it to me, it was   "New Hampshire" by Patricia Harris & David Lyon.   Two days later sitting @ Wal-Mart came another round of Severe Thunder Storms !   Wicked Windy and raining in Buckets !  It was just like you parked your RV on the beach and the tide came in during a storm and now the waves where slapping against the side, yes that much rain.  The weather report said that the major part of the storm was about 20 - 30 miles north. Well I took a 180 mile motorcycle loop the next day and All the damage was from our location and 8 miles west, branches in roads, trees on cars and houses etc.    On to a little Pow-Wow the next weekend.  Wow I was thinking I was going to die with the Heat and Humidity, after 3 days my eyes where blurry and swollen from all the sweating and the next week wasn't any better with temps in the Hi 90s to low 100s and humidity feeling about the same? (heat index 103-112) You like can't read or write or use the computer because the sweat would keep dripping off your face onto what your doing !    A couple evenings we went over to watch the boy's Baseball Games (5 to10pm), other then that we spent most of the week sitting in the shade on the lawn chair, spraying ourself with water or drinking some.   On to the next RV rally about 75 miles away. When we got into town we came up to a red light and probably caused "Another One".  A car went across the intersection (right to left) with their heads turned sideways looking @ us, but didn't make it all the way across when another car coming towards us (probably also staring @ us) took the the whole front of their car clean off.   Pieces and Parts Everywhere !    At that rally we made some more vendor friends (locals) and invited them to share a booth at the Pow-Wow in a week. Then back east 40 miles to get 6 new Tires on the Rig (16ply on front + 14ply on rear) I got all six for less then 3 would have cost 70 miles north of there. Then I went back to that little Flea Mkt and didn't even setup, I just spent the weekend visiting with the 86 year old couple and the 72 yr old neighbor. The next 3 days the heat index was back up to 101 to 108, so I hibernated in the town park, with electric. Then onto the Pow-Wow sharing a booth with new friends.  A woman, her daughter and son, her sister, aunt & her husband and mother, yah it got a little crowded at times but they all enjoyed the pow-wow, we shared the cost of the booth and I got to have food and bathroom breaks too.  When packing up, I just loaded the car, then unloaded it across the Fair Grounds @ another RV Rally. Some of the entertainment there was a Boy about 15 that sounded like he had over 30 years experience playing piano "Rag Tyme"  and a family from Va. that had 7 kids (12 and up) that all played Fiddle, some Guitar, electronic Piano, Banjo, they all Irish Danced, and some sang, Awesome !!  Here is their website www.huntfamilyfiddlers.com      

----- Late July 2009 -----


Update #31     ----------  Aug  2009  ----------

A week and a half later I headed 50 miles north to do another small Animal Swap.         I have been Searching to get another Rig (medium duty Toter and Trailer)      Well I got a phone call and one trailer that I was looking at (from OH) said he is going to be in eastern MO this weekend so I headed there to the Sand Drags to see it and got there 3 days early.  Well that day I got a call from Chicago from a place I was talking with about a Toter and they said they couldn't wait a couple weeks for me to buy it and they could bring it down near St Louis tomorrow and meet me.   So I started packing a bag to hitchhike when I got a phone call from Indianapolis, IN from a guy I was looking to buy an Observation Platform from @ an excellent price (for viewing from roof of race trailer) and he wanted to know if I still wanted it and could I get it sooner.  So in the morning I hitchhiked 120 miles up into IL. and met the guy bringing me the truck I was buying, then I drove it 240 miles into IN and picked up the Observation Platform and drove back to the Middle of MO and left the new Toter @ a truck stop.  Then the next morning I hitchhiked 130 miles back to my rig in eastern MO in time to meet the people with the trailer and see the races.  The trailer ended up being just what I wanted, but 2 feet longer then what I wanted it to be, oh well keep looking.   The races where pickups, jeeps,atvs and dragsters that where Drag Racing in Sand (200ft strip) some where 750 to 1,100HP and doing that 200ft in 3.8 seconds @ 77.1mph  or 2.36 sec @ 89.92mph.  Visit:   www.bigriversanddrag.com/4.html   to see pictures. (click on film strip/arrow @ top to start slideshow)    The next day I drove the rig back to western MO to get ready to help another vendor do the State Fair, (Bob - Waterless Cookware for 10 days) parked the rig then hitchhiked back about 100 miles to pickup the new Toter I had left @ the Truck Stop, and drive it back to the FairGrounds.        Whoop!     here we go again !   It's 2 weeks later, and  I just bought a trailer @ a dealer in Florida, the same make and model as the one I just looked @ and it's 2 ft shorter, has a larger generator and more options.   The price started $10,000 dollars more, so I offered them $17,000 less, they said they could only come down $4000  So I made them another lower offer and they took it, but later said to help me with the cost of  transferring the money they knocked off another $500.   So that now makes it $500 less then the other one I just looked at.    Then they agreed to meet me part way, and deliver it to Alabama (800+ miles) which saves me an extra 1600+ miles of round trip.  Most dealers would charge $1,300 for that!  So I drove through MO, AR, MS and AL to the FL line. (OH! I drove past the Nissan Factory in Canton, MS.    "Wow- Huge"     So now here I set on Wi-Fi @ a Library in Loxley, AL near the FL line awaiting my trailer.     I had designed a new trailer to be built, but the little company that we where going to have build it just Stopped Building rigs because of the slow economy and loosing so many workers to other jobs.   This trailer is Very Very close to what I had designed !  and I will make some modifications to bring it more in line with my designs.     Well I got it and it's awesome!  I will eventually get a picture of it on our website @   www.discount-rv-marine.com/ourrigs.html      OOPS!  they forgot the electrical power cord, but I guess that was alright, he knocked off another $250 for that. While they where getting it ready to deliver they also replaced the following: a new spare wheel and tire, 6 new trailer tires, 2 new batteries and they could not find the keys so they are sending me 2 new door handle/lock assemblies.    Anyways, I found a business just down the road with a forklift to take the Observation deck off my Toter and raise it up onto the roof of the trailer that already has an observation Deck !! and I tied it down onto that. (you see I did not know if the trailer I would find would have one, so I can sell it and pay all these travel expenses or mount it up there too and make a storage box out of it, and have Both)       Now I am heading north (mostly back roads of course - to see the country) to an RV Rally in Henry, IL via AL, TN, and KY  but with what you say, my trailer is empty ??   Well the new Toter is loaded, Full Cab, Full Tool Box and stuff tied down on that Observation Deck I have strapped on back, plus before leaving MO I loaded one compartment of the other vendors motorhome because he is going to be @ the IL Rally too.    I got to the Ill Rally (70 miles from Chicago) and they said OH! we don't remember your email and you didn't pre-register...    So I spent a week @ the town park on the river, got free fresh fish from fisherman and visited people @ the rally several days.  The Rally is over now, so I headed east to Iowa - there I visited Fort Madison (a reconstructed fort of 1808)   www.oldfortmadison.com  and the Santa Fe Railroad Depot  (the oldest still in existence from that era - 1910) and the Museum. Just south of the depot used to be a little rail yard that had 22 tracks, 35 miles of rail with room for only 2005 rail cars.  Also they used to have a Steam Locomotive Factory there.    I weighed to much to cross the river so I disconnected the trailer and crossed the "Santa Fe Mississippi River Bridge" (the Longest and Largest Double Decker Swing Span Bridge in the World)  3,140ft with a 525ft swing-span.    The original in 1888 had a center train track with high wooden fences so the train wouldn't spook the horses and one way wooden wagon roads on each side.   They said during May Fly season they get so thick on the rails that the trains would loose traction and would have to be pushed across and they would have to clean the rails with blow torches.    While in the area I attended the Tri-State Rodeo and spent 2 days there passing out flyers to cowboys from across the country.   Visit the town website to see all these things   www.visitfortmadison.com    When I got back to central Missouri where the ToterHome and Trailer where, I transferred some things to the New One (Toter and Trailer)  then headed south with the Big Rig to Dallas area, because I am doing a Flea Mkt in Canton in a couple weeks. On the way I was going through the Home Town of a Country Singer I saw on a poster for a small Rodeo a couple months ago in MO.  I had emailed her a couple times and now said I was coming through and asked to take her out to lunch, I was blown away when she accepted.  I am a lot more blown away now that I have learned she's not just the small town country singer that I thought, but an Awesome Gospel Singer and  Real Awesome Person Too ! - Susie McEntire Luchsinger.  Visit her website:   www.susieluchsinger.com  and listen to her music and read her Bio.      Well when I got to TX  I found an awesome place to leave the Rig !   I visited a shop that can do the final !!  estimate on the ToterHome from the Tire Blow Out and talk with the insurance company to Hopefully Finally get this settled.  And guess what, they also build Custom ToterHomes and Trailers (All Aluminum Construction) so maybe I can sell some of their units for them.     I will leave this rig there, return to the New One via my car. (in Trailer)      So I drove the car back through the back roads of TX, OK, KS and MO.  on the way      through farmlands, mountains and country.   I stopped to visit a mushroom farm factory, Oh Boy!  but bummer no tours, no brochures and no samples. In Kansas we stopped @ Fort Scott (of 1842)  which has all been restored or reconstructed  www.nps.gov/fosc and the town is very nice and historic too, of course.  In Joplin, MO I stopped at a huge truck chrome shop. www.chromeshopmafia.com    One night in a rest area I was awoken by a tractor trailer revving and revving it's engine ??   He had turned into the rest area and instead of swinging wide (like you have to) he stayed on the right like a compact car, and of course the trailer when down into the ditch then up onto about a 4 1/2ft banking and tipped so far over that it twisted the frame of the tractor and picked the drive wheels off the ground on one side and he kept revving it up thinking it would go some where, until I walked down there and told him he needed to call a wrecker.   Another night I stayed @ a Wal-Mart and a 5th wheel camper pulled up to the gas pumps and realized he was on the wrong side, but instead of backing up and pulling forward to the other side he drove around the pumps then around the parking lot and just as his truck passed a car he took a hard left.  Oh Yah he did have a trailer behind him !! so it hit the side of the car and pushed it sideways - Bravo !!!       The next day I was back in MO and stopped @ a Truck Salvage Yard to try to find a few things for the new Toter, then got back to the new rig the next morning and drove it  to Northern MO to do an RV Rally there first.  Then drove down through MO to OK and stopped and unloading the car and drove about 1/2 of the "Talimena National Scenic Byway" atop one of the highest Mt Ranges between the Appalachians and the Rockies.  One of only 2 mountain ranges in the US that run East and West with sharp turns and 13% grades, Awesome !   See:  www.talimenascenicdrive.com  Hey if I didn't already have something scheduled for this weekend I would have stayed in that area and attended the Big Foot Festival  www.bigfootmountain.com   Now in Canton, TX  to do the "1st Monday" Flea Market, it is the largest in the country.  I have been wanting to do it for years, but every time we are in that part of the country it is the wrong weekend.  Checkout   http://firstmondaycanton.com/PhotoGallery.aspx  (check out that Aerial View and read History)    then we're headed west (by leap frogging and hitch hiking back numerous times) to get both of the rigs to AZ, well unless some one buys the ToterHome and Trailer or just the ToterHome on the way of course.      Well we ended up driving the new Rig all the way to AZ,  then on the lot there I nailed down all the carpets, setup the tents and all the tables.  Then after calling numerous Gold Wing Motorcycle Club members, I drove my bike 120 mi and left the bike in a members garage and he gave me a ride to the airport.    I flew to Minnesota which was supposed to be a 2hr stop, but got there late and gave Mom and Sis a quick hug, then flew onto Dallas where another member picked me up @ the Airport and dropped me @ another members house who drove me all the way to my Big Rig on his motorcycle (64mi) back in Canton in time for me to setup for an RV Rally 2 days later, and to deal with the insurance company before driving back to AZ all over again.  On the trip back to AZ I was accompanied by another vendor for all but the last 200mi.  On the way he blew a front tire and we spent 7 1/2 hrs with our rigs parked up against a concrete barrier (on the medium side) with 4 lane of traffic buzzing by a foot away just outside of Dallas while waiting for Road Service.  then 2 days later he blew another, a rear tire and we spent another 5 hrs there awaiting Road Service, then parked in the tire shop that night and half the next day getting 6 new tires.   When I got back to Quartzsite I had a trailer tire coming apart, so I changed it  (I like my Non-Road Service better)  it took me 15min.    (A big truck tire takes me about 45min)    So I spent 1 day there then headed north 75mi to do a 3 day Gold Wing Rally, then came back and finished opening up.            OH!  the insurance company - Well after calling them 3 times in TX and they said they where going to send a local appraiser right out to get things finallized.   Yah Right!     I was right ! !      It has now been over 30 days and No One has contacted the body shop or me !!

Wow !  we finally got to Quartzsite, AZ for the winter - what a month it has been !!

----- Nov 2009 -----


Update #32     ----------  Mar  2010  ----------

Well lets see this past winter had some interesting points.  On Dec 7th we had the Storm of the Century, there was a major storm coming down from Alaska and when it hit we got Heavy Rain, Hail - Yes Hail and winds of 25 to 35mph with Gusts of 45 to 55 and about one hundred miles north of here (Flagstaff) they had some gusts of 70mph with 18in of Snow.  So here with about 3/4 of the structures in town being Tents and the wind gusting for 6-7hrs there was a lot Destruction. with probably 3 out of 5 tents getting damaged and I saw 10 or 12 around town that only had tables or piles of products strum around the area where their tents used to be.  Myself, my 3 tents and the neighbor's that I was watching had no damage, I tie them down right, but stuff inside was a mess.  Five miles east of here a Tractor Trailer blew over and on the interstate 90 miles south of here 4 Tractor Trailers blew over within a half hour.        Wow here we go again - It's now Jan 21st 2010  and we are in the midths of 4 storms coming in from the Pacific.  The windiest part of the storm only lasted about 1-2 hrs this time. Highest wind reported in AZ 74mph (probably 50s here)  The washes all overflowed closing many roads and 3 Interstates where closed - one down south because of 5 Tractor Trailers flipping over and 2 closed up north (150miles) because of up to 67" to 92" of Snow.  100miles east of here @ an Auto Show, one big tent blew down another lifted up and ended up on the Interstate, also a Tornado Warning in that area, and one reported on  the ground in Haden, Avalanche Warnings up north, northeast of here 17 communities evacuated because of expected flooding from all the snow and rain.  The Governor, she declared AZ a State of Emergency.  The storms brought more rain and snow then in ALL of 2009.  They called it the Storm of the Century (because it was the Bigest Ever since the last Biggest Ever)                          Well it's March again, we are usually heading out to do the summer shows across the country, but we are stuck here for awhile because we have so many projects to complete on the New Toter and New Trailer to get them ready to roll, so we will stay for  awhile and do that.   (see a picture at www.discount-rv-marine.com/ourrigs.html        Well we did stay awhile and got a lot done - thru March, April and May Too.  This spring/summer was cool - usually it starts hitting 100+deg by 2 Apr, but, all the way thru Apr and May we had like one day of 101deg and two 100deg.   I finally pulled out on June 1st and drove 100 miles north and got some welding done before heading east.  The day after we left it hit 108 and the next day 112 degrees.                   Oh you probably are wondering what happened with the insurance - They are still saying we will send you the original undisputed amount (about 1/3 to 1/4 the cost to fix)  it's now been over a year and a half !!

----- June  2010 -----


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