Monday, June 14, 2021

6/14/2021. Montana Summary

 What a beautiful state.  The mountains are gorgeous.  We traveled East to West, first on Rt94, then on Rt 90.  We stayed in the parking lot at Cabella’s in Billings.  Then camped in Bozeman and Butte at there respective Hot Springs.  Bozeman is a College Town with a bunch of shops downtown to browse.  Billings and Butte are working towns and in my opinion are not worth exploring.  

In all of our travels, the campground at the Hot Springs west of Butte is one of our all time favorites.  

We experienced all types of weather in Montana.  Heat close to 100, Cold in the mid 30’s.  Rain.  Snow on the Mountain Tops.  High wind gusts.  Dust storms with Tumble Weeds.

I learned that driving the COW in 22 degree winds is no fun.  Like ride a bucking bronco that you continually have to adjust your steering into the wind to stay on the road.

 Attached below are some pictures of our travel.  

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

6/7/2021. Theodore Roosevelt National Park

 Today we explored the South and North Entrances to the National Park.  The entrances are roughly 50 miles apart.  Both have roads the expand into the park from their respective entrance 14 miles.  We went in the South Entrance at 6:00 AM to catch the animals before the crowds arrived.  Sunrise here in N. Dakota is 5:00 AM.  Upon arrival at the entrance the gate was wide open with nobody manning the entrance building so we drove right through.  During our drive we came across 100 Bison, infinite number of Prairie Dogs, and 2 Antelope.  Arriving early in the morning allowed us to not only see the animals but travel through the park uninterrupted by other tourist.  Also by going early in the morning the temperature was very comfortable as the temperatures soared to the high 80s in the afternoon.

6/5/2021 Temperature Inversion

 6/5/2021 Temperature Inversion

Tonight Sandy and I stopped outside of the coldest spot in the United States Fargo, N Dakota. Instead of being cold it is 99 degrees. Thank goodness for a generator and Air Conditioning

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

6/2/2021 Threading the needle through Chicago

 Today we were puckering a little while driving through the narrowing work zones on Rt80 in Chicago.  To allow the road workers safe areas to work, the transportation department narrowed up the driving lanes.  Now you have multiple lanes that zig-zag around work areas.  So picture running side by side with multiple lanes of semi-trucks, mirrors  close to interlocking while moving left and right around barriers.  I should have greased up the sides of my coach so we could slide through a little easier.  Sandy took the attached picture so she has something to reference during her nightmares tonight.  PS.  We made it through without a scratch.

Tonight we are in Forest City, Iowa at the Winnebago Plant.  The new roof the Winnebago Service Dept installed last June has stress cracks.  They are going to look at it and advise what their plan is to correct the problem.  My guess, is that they will be installing a 3rd new roof on my coach in the future.  At this rate we have more new roofs on our coach than our house of 25 years.

6/1/2021 On the road again

 6/1/2021 On the road again

It has been 13 months since we arrived home to wait out the Covid virus. Both Sandy and I received the Pfizer vaccine and our happy to start traveling again. Although we still plan on being cautious for the time being as no reason inviting any sickness. 

This trip will be the longest yet. The plan is to spend  18 months on the road. Travel West this summer with two stops in Portland Oregon to see our Daughter (Stacey), Son-in-Law (Jacob), and Grandson (Aidan).  We can’t wait to play with Aidan. Stops along the way in Illinois, Iowa, Dakota’s, Washington, and Idaho. At the end of summer we will start working our way South to explore Utah and to visit with our other daughter (Andrea), then spend time in Nevada, before wintering in Phoenix. After the winter we will do a similar trip to Portland, Oregon eventually heading back to Ohio in somewhat of a reverse order to this years travels while picking up additional adventures. Stay tuned as we will be updating our blog during our trip. Tonight we are parking lot camping at the RV/MH museum in Elkhart Indiana

Sunday, March 22, 2020

3/21/2020 Trip/Plans Cancelled

Due to the Corona Virus Sandy and I decided to cancel our trip/plans for the next 6 months and headed back home.  It took a 4 day drive from Tucson Arizona, but we are home.

We will quarantine ourselves for the next 2 weeks to make sure we didn’t pick-up the virus on our way home.  We would not want to pass along the virus to our neighbors.

I suspect that after the 2 week quarantine we will remain isolated as suggested by our governor.


We hope to be back on the road in November.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

3/12/2020 Mirrors for the Giant Magellan Telescope

Who would have thought that the University of Arizona here in Tucson  manufactures some of the largest telescope mirrors in the world?

The Manufacturing Lab is actually located underneath the bleachers of their football stadium and for $20 you can tour the lab and see the Giant Mirrors in production.

Currently they are manufacturing seven giant mirrors 27.5’ (8.4 meters) in diameter for the 82’ (25 meters) long Giant Magellan Telescope that will be located on a mountain top in Chile.

8.4 meters is the largest mirror they can produce.  The limitation to going larger is the fact that  8.4 meters is the largest size they can ship over the U.S. road system.  The mirrors ship via truck or barge only.  They do not ship via air due to the size and weight of the mirrors.

Interesting that they are completely open about their design, testing, production cycle, delivery methods and more.  Nothing is proprietary since they are a publicly funded University.

If you get to Tucson we recommend you take this tour.  Well worth the price.

Here are some of our pictures.