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Summer trip of 2013


I have not been keeping up my blog like a good blogger should. We started our annual summer trip last month and I have not said anything about it until now. I’d like to dream up a plausible excuse for being remiss in my blogging, but I just can’t find one. With that confession out of the way, I’ll fill you in on our summer trip.

When we started out on this trip, we did not have a real plan. We thought about going up to the east side of Glacier National Park and then possibly up to Banff and Jasper in Canada. We ruled out Canada because of some logistics with pets and guns and settled on going to the east side of Glacier National Park for a few days and then to West Glacier for a few days and then down to Yellowstone National Park. We made the appropriate reservations and that was the plan, but plans can change.

On the way to our first overnight in Wichita Falls, TX at the Coyote Ranch RV Park, we discussed the fact that we had been to the places we were planning to visit. Why not go somewhere we had never visited before? We had talked about going to the Oregon Coast and up to Seattle but thought that might be too far since we needed to be in Estes Park, CO on a certain date. When I looked at the routing that night, we changed our minds and decided to go to the Oregon Coast and then make further plans. We have never done a trip like that before, but what the heck.

Our revised plan was to take us up to Cheyenne, WY and pick up I-80 west to I-84 to Oregon. What we had not planned on was that we might have a problem getting a reservation at a campground on the Oregon Coast. Well guess what? The first three campgrounds that we selected had no room for us wayward travelers. We finally got a spot at the Waldport/Newport KOA in Waldport, OR. This actually turned out to be a great place as we were up on a hill overlooking a bay and could see the Pacific from the campground.

Since we were winging this trip, we waited until we got to Oregon to make additional plans. We stayed in Waldport for almost a week and then headed for Mt Saint Helens, which was only an hour and a half away. We stayed at a nice campground close to Mt Saint Helens so that we could go take a look at the devastation caused by the eruption on Mt Saint Helens. From there we took another short trip to a campground near Mt Rainier. We spent a few days there so that we could go to Mt Rainier National Park.

From MT Rainer, our plan was to go to Yellowstone National Park so that our grandson could see Old Faithful again. We were on our way to Estes Park, CO so Yellowstone would make a good stop before getting to Estes. My truck was getting to the point of an oil change, so we stopped in Spokane, Washington for a couple of days to accomplish that task and to wash clothes.

From Spokane, we went to Butte, MT for our last stop before Yellowstone. The next morning would alter our plans once again. As I was raising the front of the camper to hitch it to the truck, I realized that one of the front jacks was not moving and the camper was starting to lean into that jack. What happened from there is a long story and will be left for another blog. The short of the story is that we couldn’t go to Yellowstone and ended up in Fort Collins, CO for almost a week trying to get the jack repaired. Once that was accomplished, we came up to Estes Park, CO and are staying at Elk Meadow Lodge & RV Resort.

It seems as though each year that we take a long trip, we have mechanical problems with this camper. Many of our problems have been talked about in previous blogs. On this trip we had the vent hood for our stove fall completely down. While in the Mt Saint Helens area, one of the bolts broke for the kitchen slide causing the slide to come in crooked. Those two problems I was able to repair myself. However, with the jack problem I had to defer to a repair shop but ended up with a mobile repairman. That is a long story that I will talk about in another blog. On a positive note, I learned how to replace the jacks on a 5th wheel camper. I even went to Home Depot and bought a 12 ton bottle jack in case I need to jack the camper up.

So, that’s how our summer trip is going. We are still in cool Estes Park, CO but will be leaving in a few days and heading down to Creede, CO for a short visit. We are meeting some fellow camping friends there.

Oregon Coast

Brad and Jane on Oregon Coast

Oregon Coast

Oregon Coast

 

Light House

Light House on Oregon Coast

Oregon Coast

Another picture of Oregon Coast

 

Harbor Seals

Harbor Seals sunbathing

Mt Saint Helens

Mt Saint Helens 33 years after volcanic eruption

 

Mt Rainier

Mt Rainier in Washington

Mt Rainier

Brad & Bradley in snow field on trail to Mt Rainier

 

Deer Mountain

Brad & Bradley caught in hail storm coming down Deer Mountain in Rocky Mountain National Park

Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park

Brad & Jane on top of Trail Ridge Road with some friends

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