Monday, November 23, 2020

Changes In Altitude!

     It's been a while since my last blog entry - and that's because there hasn't been a whole lot going on. We spent 9 nights in Sparks, Nevada at Sparks Marina RV Park. There is a paved 2 mile walking path around Sparks Marina Park Pond that Travis, Suzanne and I walked daily (sometimes twice). The walking path is about a quarter mile from the RV park so the entire loop actually totaled 2.5 miles. 


     We had some windy conditions a couple days into our stay with gusts in the 30mph range. I had retracted the full slide during the worst of it and deployed it only 6 inches or so after gust warnings ended and the wind had abated. Unfortunately the forecast was a bit off and a couple hours after the wind gust warning was lifted - back came the wind. It wasn't as bad as before so I left the slide in its semi-deployed state...big mistake.  A sudden, very strong gust billowed the 35 foot vinyl slide topper. What followed was the cringe-worthy, unmistakable sound of the roller tube flexing and disengaging from the end caps and the inner spring violently becoming 'unsprung'. I immediately went out to survey the situation where I met our neighbor, who had come outside thinking a window had shattered. 

     The next morning Suzanne helped me remove the vinyl topper from its tracks. We folded it up and placed it in the back of the Traverse then I went back up on the roof and spent the next hour or so getting the roller tube back in its end caps. 

     There are three retainer mechanisms mounted along the length of the topper housing. I bought some 1/2" PVC air hose at Lowe's, cut twelve 2" sections and drove them onto the retainer rollers - thus increasing their diameter. My hope is that the modification with prevent the roller tube from slipping out of position in moderately high winds. I've had this happen three times now - and it shouldn't be happening. Not in winds of this velocity. 

     We left Sparks Sunday (yesterday) morning for Napa, California where we have a spot reserved at Napa Valley Exposition RV Park for six nights and where we will spend Thanksgiving with Suzanne's sister Barb and her family. We were here two years ago in the coach. There are several blog entries from that visit if you're interested. 

   Yesterday's 196 mile trek began with gains in altitude - first, with the gradual climb from Sparks (4,400') to Truckee (5,817') and culminating with the chug up and over Donner Pass (7,056'). 

     We used to live in Napa and spent quite a bit of time skiing at the many world-class resorts in the Lake Tahoe area. Alpine Meadows, Northstar, Squaw Valley... it was a lot of fun! We have many fond memories of time spent with our kids playing in these mountains. 


     Saw this sign guy in Sparks... "Axe Throwing & Smash Rooms" at a local bar. I'm familiar with axe throwing but had never heard of a smash room - so I Googled it. Seems there are rooms (also called Rage Rooms) where you can smash the hell out of TVs and various pieces of furniture with a baseball bat. 
     Sometimes I feel as if I've lived too long.


       It's always nice visiting Napa. Things have changed so much since we left here back in 1996! 
       Barb & Vince invited us to dinner last night and brunch this afternoon. Tomorrow afternoon I'll be grilling steaks for the four of us here at the RV park.
       Life is good.

Thanks for checking out the blog!


Saturday, November 14, 2020


     Tonight's sunset...


     Suzanne, Travis and I began our day with a 2 mile walk around the Sparks Marina Loop located about a quarter of a mile from the RV park. Winnie stayed home.

      The pond has a pretty strange/interesting history. I could summarize but will instead cut and paste a paragraph from The Nevada Department of Wildlife website:


The site on which Sparks Marina Park is located was once a gravel pit owned and operated by Helms Construction Company (1968 to 1995).  In 1987, petroleum products and solvents were discovered seeping into the 100 feet deep pit along the southwest wall.  The contamination was traced to a massive spill at the fuel-tank farm one mile west.  The site was declared a Toxic Superfund Site and a comprehensive cleanup was initiated.  In 1996, the groundwater was reported free of petrochemicals and the property was turned over to the City of Sparks.  Millions of dollars of spill mitigation money were made available to the City, which was used to construct the park and make the pit into a recreational pond.  They also planned to fill the pit to a depth of 30 feet; however, in January 1997, the Truckee River overflowed its banks and filled Helms Pit creating what is now Sparks Marina Pond.  The pond is a natural aquifer and in order to keep the lake at the desirable level, the city has to pump 1 to 2 million gallons of water into the Truckee River daily.


     After returning to the coach and having a bite to eat we hopped in the car and headed for Lowe's. There's a project in the coach that I've been wanting to tackle for a while and today seemed like as good a day as any to have at it. The Outlets at Legends is located in the same area as Lowe's and Suzanne thought she might like to check out some of the stores. As it turned out, a ride through the outlet mall parking lot, following our Lowe's visit, didn't spark much interest - and we returned to the RV park. 


     Several weeks ago, I think it was while we were staying on the property my daughter and son-in-law own, we had a problem with the coach's Maytag residential refrigerator. The issue was actually with the freezer, which is located at the bottom of the refrigerator. I won't go into the details of how I diagnosed and remedied the problem. Suffice to say it's working fine now and I'm confident it will continue doing so. It wasn't the first time I had seen evidence that there was an issue and a year or so ago I gave it a cursory looking into. The problem seemed to go away on it's own and I sort of forgot about it - up until several weeks ago...

   Anyway, there was some collateral water damage at the bottom of one of two partition walls on either side of the fridge.

That's a propane detector. I'll be replacing it with a new one.

     I considered replacing the entire wall. I considered cutting out the damaged area and scavenging a matching piece from inside the bedroom clothes hamper. My ultimate solution was to cut out the damaged area and insert a 2.5" x 15" air vent. There's really nothing down there that needs venting... but who needs to know that. Don't tell anyone.
     There was some aluminum framing behind the 1/8" veneer plywood so I had to modify the vent just a bit...

     But I think the finished product looks pretty good... 

Kinda looks like it belongs there. Right?

     The vent is designed to be held in place by friction but because moisture had caused the wall to deform, I had to drill holes in either end of the face plate and screw it in. I would have preferred to have had a single screw at either end but the irregularity of the wall made it necessary to add an additional screw top center.

     I think I forgot to mention in my last entry that when we arrived yesterday there was a high wind advisory through 6am this morning - the forecast calling for wind gusts in the 60mph range. As a precaution, we only deployed the drivers side slide about 6" as high winds have detached its vinyl topper twice in the past. Thankfully, the predicted gusts never materialized and after a quiet nights sleep, we were able to fully extended the slide this morning.

Thanks for checking out the blog!



Friday, November 13, 2020

Dirty, Dirty, Dirty!

     It was just a short 55 mile drive from Fallon RV Park in Fallon, NV to Sparks Marina RV Park in, you guessed it, Sparks, Nevada. Check in at SMRVP is any time after 1:00pm but when I called to make the reservation last night and told the woman to whom I was speaking that we were only about an hour out and could we check in early, I was told we could call just prior to arrival and they would let us know if our site was vacant. 


     You can probably tell from the pictures I post of our coach that I keep it pretty clean. In fact, I'm a little OCD about it and frequently, after arriving at a park and getting set up, I'll get out my California Duster, microfiber cloths and a spray bottle of Meguiar's Quik Detailer and spend an hour or so cleaning off road dust. I even clean the wheels and tires on a regular basis. 

     Yeah, I know...

     I had even washed her once a couple weeks ago when we were at Rocky Pond Park in Belleville, KS and managed to keep her looking purdy up until... I think it was a day or two before beginning our US50 journey. The area through which we were traveling had gotten some snow recently and, although the roads were dry when we traveled them, there was a lot of residual salt. A few of days and several hundred miles of running on this stuff resulted in a dull, grey, crusty haze of halite covering the entire length of of the coach. The wheels and tires were nasty - and the car didn't look all that great either. 

      I discovered, through an evening Google search, there was a Blue Beacon Truck Wash in Fernly, NV, directly along our route and about 23 miles west of our location - halfway between Fallon and Sparks.  I had the coach washed once before at a Blue Beacon in Odessa, Texas during last year's trip to Southern California. You can read that blog entry HERE if'n you're interested. The price was right and I was pleased with the results. I've spoken to a few fellow RVers who avoid truck washes for fear of having the finish marred by brushes used to clean gravel trucks and the like. I share their concern but have been assured by Blue Beacon personnel that their brushes (which are softer and much nicer than mine) are carefully cleaned after each job. 

     I think we waited in line for over an hour last year in Odessa but today there was no line. We pulled up to the entrance and waited just 10 minutes for them to finish rinsing a semi before opening the bay doors and motioning me forward. An employee came out earlier to advise me that if I wanted, I could back up and pull in to bay #2 where they could begin the job immediately - but I would have had to unhook from the car in order to do that (can't back up with a car in tow). 

     Fifteen minutes and a very reasonable $70 later I had a clean coach AND car! I'm a BB fan.

Looking Good!

     45 minutes of detailing at the RV park with a bottle of Maguier's in one hand and a microfiber cloth in the other and she's looking like new.


Today's 55 mile ride


     This is a beautiful RV park! Advertised as the best and most reasonably priced park in the area - and they ain't lyin'. If you book 7 or more nights you receive a 15% discount. We'll be here for 9 nights. 
     Oh, and as it turned out, our site was vacant and we were able to check in early - around 11:00am.
     And there's an In-N-Out Burger in town! Does it get any better?

Thanks for checking out the blog!

Thursday, November 12, 2020

Elk, Beer & Fighter Jets

     With 320 miles separating us from Reno, NV we thought it wise to get an early start. The first thing I did after getting out of bed was to open the control panel located just outside the bedroom door and flip the engine heater switch to the "on" position. The outside temperature was a frigid 4° and I suspected the Cummins I6 might need a little love. I should have flipped the switch before going to bed last night but forgot. By the time we got everything stowed, walked the dogs and completed all the other various tasks necessary to allow us to roll, about 45 minutes had elapsed. A partial turn of the key, pausing just long enough to allow the glow plugs to work their magic followed by a further turn and hold at the start position and the 450hp behemoth rumbled to life. She wasn't happy about it, and it took a few seconds for her to settle into her usual cadence, but considering the ambient temperature and the relatively short warm up period, I was impressed. And relieved!

     There's an in-dash alarm that sounds until all four of the coach's hydraulic leveling jacks have fully retracted and it was taking longer than usual to go silent. There are also lights on the leveling system control panel showing which jacks have retracted to the travel position and which have not. I could see the driver's side rear jack was the culprit. For a jack to not fully retract is not that unusual, although this particular one has never given me problems. The solution is to extend the offending jack and spray the shaft with silicone - which is what I did. It retracted - and we were good to go.

     Before departing I had a short conversation with the fellow in the next site. He and his wife were in the process of winterizing their 5th wheel before returning home to Carson City following a week of elk hunting. He had a cow elk permit and she, a much more coveted bull permit. The permits are issued by way of a lottery and would-be elk hunters can wait years to win a chance at bagging one of the beasts. He said his dad waited 20 years before being awarded a bull permit... and never even saw one that season. He, himself bagged one 3 years ago - which means he can't participate in the lottery for another 7 years. 

      But America's Loneliest Road was beckoning... so off we went.  


     The Ely KOA is 3 miles east of downtown Ely. A relatively bustling copper mining town, Ely is home to fast food franchises, a couple handsome looking casinos, several cafes and many other seemingly successful businesses that line either side of the main drag. As we climbed out of town we could see the man-made mountains of earth to the left of the highway - evidence of more than a century of copper mining.


     Climbs, summits, descents and basins... one after another. Antelope Summit, Pinto Summit, Mount Airy Summit... and a few other summits whose names I can't recall. The final was Austin Summit - and the twisty, steep descent into the town for which it is named was relatively slow-going. 

     A couple photos from today's journey...

Yeah, it's lonely

Eureka, NV. A very 'western' looking little town

     An hour or so into our trip Suzanne went back to the galley to fix us something for breakfast. When she opened the refrigerator door a bunch of stuff came crashing to the floor, including a bottle of beer. Fortunately there was a turn-out just up the road. I pulled over and we spent the next 30 minutes cleaning up the mess. Hey, it's not all unicorns and rainbows.  


    So tonight we're in Fallon, Nevada having ended our day about 60 miles shy of our planned destination of Reno. We were both a little tuckered out and after a long, lonely day a quick Google search performed by my navigatrix yielded a couple promising possibilities for overnighting. Fallon RV Park gives a small discount to Good Sam members and is conveniently located just off US50. 
     And speaking of Fallon...

Naval Air Station Fallon - Wikipedia

Naval Air Station Fallon or NAS Fallon (IATA: NFL, ICAO: KNFL, FAA LID: NFL) is the United States Navy's premier air-to-air and air-to-ground training facility. It is located southeast of the city of Fallon in western Nevada. Since 1996, it has been home to the Naval Fighter Weapons School (TOPGUN) taking over from the former NAS Miramar, California, and the surrounding area contains 240,000 acres (97,000 ha) of bombing and electronic warfare ranges.

    A group of three fighter jets were performing some very impressive tight formation maneuvers overhead as we approached our destination. Very cool.  

     Thanks for checking out the blog!



Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Only The Lonely

        Our home for the night: Ely (EE-lee), Nevada. Elevation: 6,437', Population: 4,255                                  Total number of Covid cases in Pine County: 184, Deaths: ☝                                                                      Maybe we should stay here for a while.



     First of all, in honor of Veteran's Day I'd like to thank anyone reading this who has served in the US Armed Forces. My dad was a Staff Sergeant in the United States Army during the Korean War and served his country proudly.

     We exited Antelope Valley RV Park at precisely 10:00am making a right hand turn followed by a quick left-hand turn and then a ... well... here's an aerial shot of the area showing exactly what we did.  

    Diesel fuel at the Delta, Utah Sinclair Station was $2.59 per gallon and they don't participate in the EFS fuel program. No discount. Oh well, I can remember, not all that long ago, paying $5.00 a gallon. So it could be worse. Hey, with the Green New Deal looming out there maybe we can get back to the good ol' days at some point in the not-too-distant future.
    That'd be great. Right?
     So as you can see, fueling up this morning was a fairly painless exercise and we were back out on US-50 headed west in very short order. I did take the time to retrieve my long-handled brush and squeegee from the cargo bay in which they are stored and washed the windshield. It wasn't all that dirty, but I like starting a travel day with a clean windshield - especially when the scenery is as beautiful as it is in this part of the country. 


     Well, they don't call US-50 the "Loneliest Road in America" for no reason. Within just a few miles I felt lonely as... well, a search for an appropriate simile at yielded, "Lonely as a cloud". I never really thought of a cloud as being lonely. But, alright. 

    We passed through a desolate portion of the Great Basin Desert before beginning our first climb. Desert basins and mountain passes in the 7,000' + range were today's theme. It may be a lonely road, but some of the views, especially from the mountain passes, were spectacular! Even the more desolate expanses were beautiful in their own way.
     Having said that, there were some very long, very straight stretches of asphalt.

     After crossing the narrow waist of the Schell Creek Range at 7,722-foot Connor's Pass we began the 1,300-foot, 22 mile gentle slide into Ely. 
     We are parked at the Ely KOA where, by 6am tomorrow morning the temperature will dip to 6°. 
     I filled the fresh water tank and emptied the waste water tanks before departing Delta this morning so when we arrived here in Ely I connected only to the 50 amp power pedestal. We haven't done a lot of cold weather camping so purchasing a heated water hose (they're rather pricey) never seemed necessary. We've always taken a more southern route to California at this time of year. Before attempting another autumnal crossing in these latitudes however, I may have to pull the trigger.  

     Tomorrow we'll get an early start and see if we can knock out the 320 miles between here and Reno. If something interesting presents itself along the way we can always tap the brakes and push Reno out another day or two.  We're kind of making it up as we go.

Thanks for checking out the blog!

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Well, That's Just Swell!

    Although I-70 is a major east-west interstate, in this part of the country it's relatively lightly travelled. I've never really thought about it much, perhaps because it's been a while since we've driven this stretch of road, but the majority of cross-country freight movement, I would imagine, occurs along I-80 and I-40. I-70 is sort of a road to nowhere once you leave Denver heading west - terminating at I-15 halfway between Cedar City, to the south and Provo, to the north. I shouldn't say nowhere - it's just that Interstates 80 & 40 terminate in much more densely populated regions of the country.  

   At any rate, it was a very pleasant drive along a smoothly paved, lightly travelled motorway. 

  The sky was bright and clear, the fuel tank was about 3/4 full and the Cummins 450 (on cruise control for most of the day) purred like a kitten. 
    I-70 crosses a massive geologic formation called the San Rafael Swell. Mother Nature created some pretty amazing stuff here. Take a few minutes to read Wikipedia's description of this 75 by 40 mile phenomenon. 
   Here's an interesting snippet about the San Rafael Swell section of I-70...

Prior to the construction of I-70, the swell was inaccessible via paved roads and relatively undiscovered. Once this 108 mi (174 km) section was opened to traffic in 1970, it became the longest stretch of interstate highway with no services and the first highway in the U.S. built over a completely new route since the Alaska Highway.[5] It also became the longest piece of interstate highway to be opened at one time.[6] Although opened in 1970, this section was not formally complete until 1990, when a second steel arch bridge spanning Eagle Canyon was opened to traffic.

    A panorama shot I took from the Ghost Rock Lookout...

Click it. Go ahead... click  it!


   There were several climbs and descents culminating at Salina Summit (7,923 ft). Salina is where we left I-70 taking US50 north west to Scipio where it takes a southwestern turn, merging with I-15 for about 10 miles to Holden... and THAT'S where the lonely part of "America's Loneliest Highway" begins. 

Our 229 mile day from Moab to Delta

    We're at the lovely little Antelope Valley RV Park located on the western edge of Delta, Utah where we will spend the night before fueling up at the Sinclair station across the street tomorrow morning and heading off into one of the most desolate stretches of road in the continental United States. I think we'll overnight Wednesday in Ely, Nevada (153 mi.) followed by a 320 mile push to Reno Thursday. I've read that cell service can be spotty so, family and friends, if you don't hear from us for a couple days, don't worry. Rest assured we will emerge from the dark side of the moon and re-establish communication as soon as possible.  

Monday, November 9, 2020

Wind, Canyons & Potty Training

     The Moab Bike Path runs parallel to SR191 running from downtown north through the valley, crossing the Colorado River, passing by the entrance to Arches National Park and continuing another 6 or so miles. It's a beautiful out & back bike path and a lot of fun to ride. I first rode it a day or two after our arrival and yesterday, despite the cold temps and wind, decided to do it again. We'll be leaving Moab Tuesday morning and, with Monday reserved for a trip to Canyonlands National Park, this would be my only opportunity for another ride.

Bike bridge over the Colorado

    The photo above was taken in calmer weather. When I crossed the bridge there were white caps on the water and the wind was blowing so hard I had to lean to the right to maintain a straight line. I continued north on the path for about 5 miles into what seemed like a slight headwind. I know the wind didn't change direction but when I turned around to head back home I was riding into the stiffest (and coldest) headwind I've ever experienced. I know Sedona has their Spiritual Vortex - maybe the Moab Bike Path is in the middle of some sort of meteorological vortex. I was tired and cold when I got back to the coach. Maybe not a great idea to take the ride in the first place - but I got a good workout.


     This morning, after a light breakfast, I cleaned the outside of the car windows in preparation for a trip to Canyonlands. Having been parked on gravel and pummeled by wind and rain for the past couple days, it was kind of a mess. We loaded the dogs into the car and headed north on SR191 to the Canyonlands turn-off.  A flash of our National Park Senior Pass at the Ranger station got us a jovial "how-dee-do" from the ranger, free admission (age has its perks) and a park map. Our first stop was the visitor's center where we purchased a magnet and made it all official by stamping the appropriate page in Suzanne's National Parks Passport at the stamping station. 

    We've visited Canyonlands before - but it's one of those places worthy of multiple visits...

click to enlarge

    We did some hiking during our last visit here - but today, with the temperature just below the  freezing mark, we were content to drive to the various lookouts, leaving the dogs behind to keep an eye on things for a few minutes while Suzanne and I walked to the canyon's rim to marvel at the awe inspiring vistas and take a few pics & videos.

                                              Winnie anxiously awaiting our return


     In the restroom (pit toilet) at Grand Point Overlook...

    Do people really need to be reminded of this? For that matter, do they need to be reminded of any of these things? It must have happened. I'm sure the park service wouldn't post such admonitions willy-nilly. 


    It was evident that snow was falling far off in the canyons, and a few miles after completing our day at the Upheaval Dome turn-around it began coming down pretty heavy. By the time I got my phone out and ready to take a picture it had let up a bit...


    So this is our last night at The Portal RV Resort. Tomorrow morning we head back north on SR191 then west on I-70 to Salina, UT where after a zig, a zag and another zig at Salina, Scipio & Holden, UT respectively, we will continue an additional 28.8 miles northwest to Delta, UT where we will spend the night and top off the coach's 150 gallon diesel fuel tank in preparation for the 470 mile westward trek to Carson City, NV on "America's Loneliest Highway", US50... The Lincoln Highway. 

    Thanks for checking out the blog.

    My new glasses arrived today.



Saturday, November 7, 2020

One Of Our Favorite Places!



    We pulled out of Glenwood Canyon RV Resort Tuesday morning when, just outside the entrance I glanced at my EEZTire TPMS (tire pressure monitoring system) ...

    ... and noticed my passenger side front tire was reading 89psi. I try to keep all 8 coach tires at 105psi (maximum cold inflation is 120psi). This particular tire has been a little low (in the 95psi range) for a few days and I had been meaning to put some air in it. All other tires were reading in the 95psi range - the lower than normal readings due to the cold temperature (36°) and the high altitude (5,761'). I knew that once we got rolling the tires would heat up causing the pressure to rise - but 89psi was just too low, so before proceeding the couple hundred feet to the I-70 West onramp I pulled over, got out my air hose and pressure gauge, slid the generator out of the front end, allowing access to the air hose port, and proceeded to pump another 11 pounds of O2 into the mushy Michelin. 


    Oh yeah, while at Glenwood Canyon RV Resort I took care of another one of those things-I've-been-meaning-to-try-to-fix (it seems like there is always at least one thing in or on the coach not functioning as designed). We have three TVs on board - one in the living area, one in the bedroom and another outside, behind a door on the passenger side slide. Two years ago I installed a DISH network satellite dish (here's the link to that blog entry, if you're interested). We usually watch satellite TV or OTA (over the air) TV via the motorized roof TV antenna. Often times RV parks offer a cable TV connection at the power pedestal - but I have ALWAYS gotten TERRIBLE reception on the living room TV when connected to cable. The two other TVs look fine, but the one we watch the most, in the living room, is barely viewable. I was pretty sure the problem was a bad connection somewhere in the seemingly miles of coax, but knowing the relative complexity of the coach's A/V system (amplifiers, DVD players, air/cable selectors, signal diverters, splitters etc.) I surmised that finding the source of the problem could prove challenging. 
    I of course eliminated the obvious by first checking the connection at the back of the television (which I have done before) and then removing the faceplate from the cargo bay housed cable park-connection point. Everything looked okay at both locations, and wiggling wires and tightening connections had no positive effect on picture quality. Back inside the coach.
    To the right of the entry door is a cabinet with a bunch of AV stuff.

    I removed front & rear panels checking, as best I could, all connections in the rats nest of coax and wires - but it all seemed okay. Next I dug into another potential problem area over the entry door - removing panels and inspecting connections there...

... all good.

    Finally, I removed the clothes hamper drawer/bin located in the bedroom. The TV in the bedroom is mounted to a motorized lift where, with the push of a button, the television disappears down into the same cabinet in which the hamper is located. With the TV in the up position and the hamper removed, you can see a bunch of AV related wiring.

    And THAT'S where the problem was!!

    While Suzanne sat in the living room with an eye on the TV, I wiggled coax connections. Upon wiggling one such connection I heard, "That's it!". It just so happens that I have coax connectors and spare couplings in "inventory" and after replacing both connectors and their coupling...

   ... the problem was solved!


       I had enough fuel onboard for the 200 mile drive from Glenwood Springs to Moab but a few hours into our journey a roadside sign indicated there was a TA service center just ahead at exit 26 in Grand Junction, Colorado. The gauge showed I had a little under 1/2 tank of diesel fuel remaining and TA service centers are sometimes few and far between, so I made an executive decision to take advantage of the situation and fill 'er up. Upon exiting the interstate there were signs pointing the way to Love's and Pilot. In fact, both of those establishments were in clear view - but nothing indicating which direction I should turn to find the TA. - and neither Suzanne nor I could see the usual towering TA sign anywhere on the horizon. 

    I turned right. 
    No TA. 
    While I made a gigantic U-turn in the Love's truck parking area Suzanne opened the EFS fuel app on her phone and said it most definitely showed a TA on the other side of the interstate. Sure enough, about 1000' after passing back under I-70 there was a Conoco gas station/truck stop on the left with a small "TA Express" sign. I knew TA was affiliated with Petro but was unaware of the TA/Conoco connection. Anyway, we took on 80 gallons of fuel, saving $44.51 in the process with our EFS fuel card. Pilot & Love's offer discounts to card holders as well, but not nearly as much as TA. 


      SR191 intersects I-70 at its northern terminus in Crescent Junction, Utah - and that's where we left the interstate to head south to Moab. We've visited Moab several times in the past - most recently in 2009. At that time we had a 5th wheel trailer that I pulled with our Ford F250 King Ranch (I loved that truck). The 2009 trip down 191 to Moab is memorable because we blew a trailer tire at about the halfway point. I had a spare - and somewhere on my home PC I have a photo of me changing the tire. It was completely shredded. I wish I had the pic to share here. 


    The Portal RV Resort is a lovely little oasis just north of town and where we've been since Tuesday afternoon. We're scheduled to leave Monday morning but due to a waylaid UPS package my daughter shipped here containing my new eyeglasses ($35 guaranteed it would arrive by yesterday!) we may end up staying until Tuesday. I called UPS about an hour ago and complained. I think Allie can get a full refund from the UPS store from which she sent the package.  
   The Portal is divided into two sections; the campground and the resort. The resort has large, concrete slabbed sites with pergolas, decorative plantings etc. The campground sites are on crushed stone, not quite as big, sans the plush landscaping but with an equally breath-taking view of the surrounding red rock hills and mesas. We're in the campground... and saving $30 nightly.

   Some of what we've been up to since our arrival...

Arches National Park

More Hiking

    Projected wind gusts in the 50mph range necessitated retracting the drivers side full-slide before going to bed last night for fear of detaching the 35 foot long slide topper (been there, done that. Twice!). Gusts are forecast to continue through today (Saturday) and into the night.

   Thanks for checking out the blog!