Home Again

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Sunrise in Missouri
Sunrise in our Missouri campground
Signs of spring
Signs of spring

This morning, we slept in a little waiting for it to warm up so I could go out and empty the fresh water tanks in preparation to going into freezing weather.  Around 9 am, I emptied the fresh water tank and then used the air compressor to blow out all the water lines.   I have RV antifreeze at home, so I will add that when I get home tonight.  I finish up by emptying both the grey tank and black tank, so they are done for this trip. 

The weather today is perfect.  Clear skies and it will be near 70 today in Missouri and also in Illinois.  However, today is the last day.  Tonight, a storm is coming from the southwest and will meet a cold front coming from the north.  It will be raining and sleeting around here by tomorrow morning, so we need to go.  It will be down to 19 tonight at home, so will need to finish the RV winterization as soon as I get home. 

Today will be a long day and we didn’t get started on the road till near 11 am.  I figure it will be after 5 pm before we get home.  The road trip today has been uneventful compared to yesterday and we made good time.  Within three hours, we were going through St. Louis and into Illinois.St Louis

We are now in familiar country.  Flat land, corn bins and farmland.Illinois farmland   Turned onto our road and we could see what was left of our long cold and snowy winter. Our road home Got home just after 5 pm and Fergie was so happy to be home and was glad to see his kitty friends, Snowy, Shadow, Calisto and Chloe.  We had left our four cats and two parakeets at home.  Our kids took turns the last three months, stopping by the home to tend on them.

Our driveway
Our driveway
Home at last
Home at last!

Must hurry and get things into the house before the freezing weather hits.  It is already windy and very cool.  I hate cold weather.  Wish I was somewhere warm right now.

See you later.

On to Missouri with New Tires

Friday, March 14, 2014

Slept fairly well last night and didn’t worry about tires too much.  At 7:30 am, and while Dolly and Fergie slept, I unhooked the jeep and went into Claremore, OK looking for a Tire store.  Claremore, OK Found one right down town, about 7 miles from our RV park.  Went in and told them my situation and they said they could fix me up this morning.  They were a friendly group of guys.  I told them I would be back with the motorhome in about an hour and headed back to wake up the bunch and get on the road.

Drove the motorhome slowly south on hwy 88 back into Claremore without any troubles.  Motorhome at the tire place I was afraid the other tire would blow, leaving me stranded, but luck was still with me.  Pulled up, and they told me it would be about a half hour before they could take a look at it, so I made coffee and wrote my blog from yesterday and got it published so I wouldn’t get too far behind.

Out came Terry, a red-headed young man, and with two jacks he got the tire off the ground and removed it.Terry removing tire

When Terry got it off and we looked at the backside of the tire, there was a big hole in the side of it.Blown outer passenger tire No wonder it would not hold air when I tried to inflate it last night.  We then looked at the inside tire and it had an indention in it that the other tire had caused while rubbing against it, so decided to replace both of them.  So off came the inside tire and were we in for a surprise.Inside tire on passenger side The whole inside tire was separated at the rim.  I don’t know how that tire did not blow with the entire weight of the passenger side of the motorhome on it.   I thank my lucky stars we did not have a blow-out during our 400 mile trip yesterday.  And part of the time, Dolly was sleeping on the sofa with no seat belts.

With that surprise, I asked that they check the other side as well.  Don’t know what we will find.  OMG!!! It looks like someone sliced the inside of the tire with a switchblade.Tire coming apart on inside The rubber is peeling away.  We looked at the made date of the tires and they are three years old.  Not that old!.  I am guessing that while the motorhome sat in the Houston heat, the tires had dried out.  I bought the motorhome in Houston, TX.

We looked at the inner tire on the driver side and it looked fine.  Early on, Terry had taken the spare tire out of the bay compartment and found it was flat and had a small hole in the side of it too.  So, this tire will now be my spare and I am putting four new tires on the motorhome.  Thank goodness, the front tires are still new and don’t need to be replaced.

After over 2000 miles of no maintenance on the motorhome, I now have four new tires at a cost of $612.  I feel this is a very reasonable price and they did a great job at Robertson Tire. 

I now know why we were staying at the Christ Out Post RV Park. Our RV Park in Claremore, OK We had “Him” watching out for us and sent us to this RV park to let us know.  Who are we to question!

Around noon, we thanked the tire crew with a credit card and headed for Missouri.  Luckily, the drive was again uneventful.  We only had 200 miles today, since I had gone so far yesterday.  I was determined this time to stop at the RV park I had planned to stay at several days ago.  We drove the remainder of I-44 toll road to Joplin, Mo.Missouri lineWe had driven the entire length of Oklahoma and it was a long one.  Glad to be in Missouri.  It is a gorgeous afternoon and after about two more hours, we arrived at our new home around 5 pm and checked in.Happy Trails RV Park in Phillipsburg, MOHappy Trails RV Park in Phillipsburg, MO is a very nice treed park in the hilly southern Missouri area.  Glad to have a flat site with full hook-ups.  We even have a southern view through the trees, so I hooked up the TV Dish.  Will be able to watch “Gold Rush”.  Tomorrow will be our dash for home before the weather turns cold.

See you later.

Oklahoma Here We Come

Thursday, March 13, 2014

We have been the only ones in the RV Park these last two days, so it has been quiet. Big Texas RV Resort We left the RV park around 10 am heading up toward Amarillo and I-40.  Eastern panhandle of Texas is mainly prairie.Texas Prairie Oklahohoma prairie is about the same.Oklahoma Prairie

Watch out truck!
Watch out truck!

We followed I-40 on an uneventful day and arrived in Oklahoma City, OK at around 2:30 which is where we had decided to stop for the day.Oklahoma City   However, Dolly was sleeping on the couch and so Fergie and I thought we would go on a little further.  But there was a flaw in that thinking. 

I no longer got out of Oklahoma City, when I hit the I-44 toll road with limited exits all the way to Tulsa.  So, I kept going all the way to Tulsa, stopping once for gas on the toll road. 

Got to Tulsa, and of course, it was the 5 o’clock traffic, so couldn’t pull off the road there.  Kept going, but decided not to take the toll road from Tulsa to Joplin.  Jumped on old route 66 heading to Claremore to find an RV park.  Stopped in Claremore and checked the internet for a place and did find one. 

Seven miles north of Claremore on hwy 88 is the Outpost Christian Post and RV Park.  Not sure what Christian Post is but they did have full hook-ups for $18 so we’re in for the night.

The ground was very uneven, so went to get the boards out and place them under the passenger side and as I was looking at the tires, I was surprised to see the passenger outside dual tire was flat as a flounder.  Flat as a flounder I wonder how long I have been driving on a flat tire?  Guess I will never know.

Tried to inflate the tire, but it would not hold any air at all.  Getting dark, so this will be a problem for tomorrow.

See you later.

Visit to Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

It was very windy till early in the morning.  News said we had up to 50 mph wind gusts and the noise in the motorhome kept us awake most of the night.  We did wake up to a cool but beautiful morning and the winds were gone.

Had breakfast and headed to the park around 12:30 pm.  The drive down to the canyon floor was a 10% grade, so we got down in a hurry.  We did stop a number of times on the way down to get photographs of the canyons.

Palo Duro Canyon Palo Duro Canyon
Palo Duro Canyon Palo Duro Canyon
Palo Duro Canyon Palo Duro Canyon
Palo Duro Canyon Palo Duro Canyon
Palo Duro Canyon Dolly and Fergie at Palo Duro Canyon SP

Dolly and Fergie leading the way as we hiked the Sunflower Trail.Dolly and Fergie on a hike We found a neat tree bent into an arch that made a great photo opportunity.Dolly and Fergie

The signature photo in the park is the Watchtower.The LighthouseLighthouse

We had a nice afternoon driving and hiking through the park.  There are numerous hiking trails, some were easy like the one we did, but there are a number of long hiking trails for those who want to hike all day or stay overnight on the trail.

Time for Survivor, so see you later.

Palo Duro Canyon State Park Visit Canceled

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Had a good night’s sleep and late this morning, we got ready for a visit to the Palo Duro Canyon SP on a beautiful warm day.  We drove around to the front of the RV Park, Canyon, TX which is only a quarter mile from the entrance to the park and there were vehicles with red lights flashing on the road right in front of the entrance.1-DSC05722 Pulled up and the fire marshal said the park was closed for the day.  Should be open tomorrow.  What a bummer!

Let’s back up a little.  Last evening when we arrived, there were several campers at the registration desk talking about being told to leave the State Park campground because there was a small fire in the park valley that was spreading.  They seemed to think it would soon be out and they would go back in the morning.  I didn’t think much of it, so I did not mention it in my previous post because I thought it would not affect us.

Evidently, the fire was harder to get to than the camper’s thought and this morning the fire fighters were still working on putting it out before the winds picked up.  There is a high wind warning for this afternoon, with winds gusting over 50 mph.

So, we came back to the motorhome and Fergie and I rested in the warm sunshine.Fergie and I resting After all the resting I could handle, I went for a walk and took some pictures around the area while Dolly gave Fergie a bath.  

Almost everyone has already left.   Overnight, the water main broke here at the park, plus this place is rundown and I would not consider it a resort by any means.  Luckily, before the main broke, I filled our water tank by mistake last night, so we have plenty of water for the remainder of our vacation.  With it being pretty much empty, we have lots of privacy.The Big Texas RV Resort 

The resort also has a zip line.Resort has a Zip Line Walked down to the canyon behind the resort and watched the zip liners.Zip linerZip liners

Launch pad
Launch pad
Landing zone
Landing zone
Old wagon
Old wagon

As I write this blog, the wind is blowing dust everywhere and the motorhome is rocking.  I have everything battened down and just hope we don’t turn over in this gale.  Supposed to get down to freezing tonight and with this gale it will feel very cold.  Went down to the zip line and took a picture of the canyon with all the dust and compared it to photo I took this morning.

No dust in the canyon
No dust
Dust in the canyon

I know you guys in Michigan, Indiana and Illinois are bracing for a big snow storm, so I guess I feel lucky to only have to worry about dust in my teeth and a little sea sickness.

See you later.

Palo Duro Canyon State Park, Texas

Monday, March 10, 2014

We are now in Palo Duro Canyon SP, Texas.

We left Brantley Lake State Park at 9 am which is fairly early for us.  Took about a half hour to dump the tanks and get on our way up hwy 285 toward Roswell.   As we neared Roswell, off to the west we could see the snow-capped Capitan Mountains.Capitan Mountains 

In about two hours we were driving through Roswell.   I went ahead and filled both the motorhome and the jeep on the outskirts and Dolly wanted to do a little souvenir shopping so we stopped in town.  Didn’t see any UFOs but we were looking for them.Roswell, NM

Dolly did some shopping and we had a lunch at McDs and by noon we were on our way to Texas. 

Hwy 70 from Roswell to Clovis was in plains country.  Lots of space and a number of empty buildings along the way.Hwy 70 throughEastern NM

Somehow, we missed the cut-off to hwy 60 in Clovis, NM that goes to Canyon, Texas and went straight north through town.  Once we figured that out, we looked for an alternate route to get us back to hwy 60, because I wasn’t going back through Clovis.

We went straight north to the town of Broadview and turned east on hwy 241.  This is a two-lane country type road that went straight east and became hwy 1058 as we crossed into Texas about ten miles down the road.  We lost an hour, as we moved into Central Standard Time.Highway 1058 in West TexasWindmill in West Texas Passed a lot of tumbleweeds blowing around and tons of them were against the fence to the north.Mountain of tumbleweeds

Finally reached our destination around 5:30 pm and grabbed a couple of photos of the view from our campground near the entrance to the Palo Duro Canyon State Park.

Palo Duro SP, Texas Palo Duro Canyon

Tomorrow, we will explore this area more closely.


See you later.