Montana – Part I – Big Skies and Ghost Towns

Bannack Saloon and Hotel, Bannack State Park, Montana

On to Dillon, Montana – Big Skies & a Ghost Town

From Arco , Idaho, (See post: Atomic Dreams in Arco, Idaho) we moved on to Dillon, Montana, for a five-night stay at the Countryside RV Park. Our route was now taking us through gorgeous, scenic lands – following winding river valleys, passing through rolling farmland with pastoral hay and wheat fields, and in the distance, vistas of sage and forest-covered foothills and snow speckled mountains, all under a dramatic summertime sky of scattered cumulus. It is easy to see why Montana is known as Big Sky Country.

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Atomic Dreams in Arco, Idaho

Arco, Idaho - First City Lit by Atomic Power

Riding Out the July 4th Holiday in Arco, Idaho

(July 1-6, 2017) From the Salt Lake City area, we moved on to Arco, Idaho, a small town with a rich history, including the proud distinction of being the “First City in the World to be Lit by Atomic Power”. While in Arco we stayed at the Mountain View RV Park, a small, privately owned, well shaded and very nicely maintained campground. We had planned for a week-long stay at Arco but were delayed for two days due to truck repairs in Utah. We contacted the RV park about the delay and the park owner/manager very graciously held our site reservation without charging for the extra days, despite the short notice. We liked having a quiet place to ride out the busy Independence Day holiday weekend and enjoyed watching the town’s and other independent firework displays right from our campground.  

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Utah Ramblings – Part II

Pepper at Dutchman Arch

Blowout on the way to Moab, Utah

From Bluff, we headed on up the road to Moab, Utah, for a one week stay at the Moab KOA. The trip went well and we were enjoying this very scenic route until just past Monticello when we had another blowout on a trailer tire. We were heading down a very long downgrade on US-191 when the blowout happened. There was no warning on the tire pressure monitor before the tire failed. I heard a muffled bang, and saw chunks of tire flying away in my side mirror as the TPMS alarm started sounding. I turned my emergency flashers on and slowed down until I could find a safe turnout – nearly one half mile further down the road. By then, the trailer tire was thoroughly shredded.

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Utah Ramblings – Part I

Valley of the Gods

Bluff, Utah

From Holbrook, Arizona, we moved on to one of our favorite places in Utah, Bluff, for a two-week stay (May 17-31). We looked forward to visiting with long time friends, Joyce & Paul M. (and their dog, Bart), as well as spending time sight-seeing and photographing in the area with Paul. We stayed at our preferred campground in Bluff, the Cottonwood RV Park, a small, nicely maintained campground with lovely views of the namesake sandstone bluffs across the San Juan River.

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Start of a New Travel Season – Arizona

Wigwam Motel at Sunset, Holbrook, AZ

Needles, California

We kicked off our third travel season in late April, heading east for Arizona. We stopped for a short two night stay at the Needles KOA in Needles, California, before crossing into Arizona. Temperatures in Needles were much more bearable this early in the season, upper 80’s and low 90’s, as opposed to the triple-digit heat we endured here two years ago. We felt this was a nice short shake-down trip for the trucks & trailer after a winter with little travel.  Continue reading

Moving On South

Crater Lake National Park

By mid-September, we were making our way south from Maryhill, Washington, to La Pine, Oregon. At La Pine we stayed for one week at the Cascade Meadows RV Resort, the last of the ROD resorts we planned to visit this travel season. Set in the scenic Lava Lands of Oregon, the resort is surrounded by grassy meadows and pine forests, with snow-capped mountains of the Cascade Range visible to the west and low forested volcanic craters to the east. At about 4,250 ft. elevation, nights were becoming quite cold, about 20º F, even this early in autumn.

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Through the Columbia River Gorge

Columbia River Gorge

Our route 2016 - Through the Columbia River Gorge

Our route 2016 – Through the Columbia River Gorge

From Hoodsport, Washington, we made our way south to the Columbia River Gorge. Most of our route was on Interstate 5, so the drive went quickly. We did have rain, heavy at times, for most of the drive until just before we reached the gorge. We just drove a little slower than usual and had no problems along the route.

Once we reached the gorge, we turned east on Highway 14 and stayed on the north shore of the river. Our goal was the Lewis & Clark RV Park at North Bonneville, Washington. We planned to stay for a week at this park and ride out the busy Labor Day Holiday at a quiet place.

Upon arriving at the park, around 1 PM, we found the office closed, with instructions to pick a site that wasn’t marked reserved and return to the office after 4 PM to register. We found a nice pull through site with full hookups and 30 amp electrical and set up our rig. Later, we went to the office to register. To our consternation, the park had lost our reservation and indicated that our chosen site was reserved for the next month by another party.

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