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Smokey Mountain National Park, Newfound Gap

Number of Visitors

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Fix’n Done (Junction City, KS)


After a week at Camp New Horizons, all of the the work is almost complete.  All of the major work is done.  We are scheduled to leave tomorrow morning, after paying the bill. 

We had the Coach and the truck washed and waxed.  They removed all of the bugs and Alaska mud.  It looks great.  I still want to have it painted though. 

Sunday we took a trip to Abilene Kansas, which is 20 miles away.  Abilene is the site of the Eisenhower Presidential Library. 

Eisenhower Library (3 of 26)Eisenhower Library (5 of 26)Eisenhower Library (7 of 26)Eisenhower Library (9 of 26)Eisenhower Library (12 of 26)Eisenhower Library (17 of 26)Eisenhower Library (19 of 26)

Of course, Ann found a Carousel  to go on near by. So off we went in search of the 1911 carousel. ,

Eisenhower Library (20 of 26)Eisenhower Library (24 of 26)Eisenhower Library (25 of 26)

I even tried my hand at video.  It needs some practice but here it is.

Ann’s favorite

Tomorrow we start heading to Florida to get our driver’s licenses and voter registration.  We will be official Florida residents.  We are taking our time, trying to get there after Isaac leaves.

Life is good on the Roan Road…

Friday, August 24, 2012

Camp New Horizons (Junction City, KS)


We are sitting in the customer lounge in the New Horizons factory waiting.  Because we arrived at our appointment one week late because of the hitch breakdown we will have to be patient. 

We, and two other coaches arrived late, so they are trying to fit all of us into the schedule.

Notice I said coach instead of camper or trailer.  I was informed that, for the price these RV’s go for, they should be called “Coach”.  So for now on I will be referring to our house on wheels as a Coach.

We arrived here on Monday, not until Wednesday was anything done.  They installed the new convection/microwave that we had shipped here from Amazon.  We hope to get some more work done today. We will see.   It looks like we will be here over the weekend. 

Last night it rained and rained.  Thunderstorms, lighting and heavy rain.   It is supposed to rain through the weekend.  This is good for the farmers, a pain for us.

A number of the couples with Coaches here had leaks.  These are new Coaches still under warranty.  They are not happy campers.  We are nice and dry so far. 

We are making some great friends.  We solve all the world and “Coach” problems during the day and continue during dinner.  There are some good restaurants here in Junction City (believe it or not!)



Life is good on the Roan Road…

Saturday, August 18, 2012

We Have Arrived (Junction City, KS)


After a week in Ogallala, Nebraska, the part for the hitch finally came in at 11:07 AM on 8/17/12.  The 112 Lbs package came UPS.  I helped the UPS driver unload the box and off she went.  Now what, how can I  replace the part myself.  Todd, the owner of the campground helped me install the part.  Todd and I got to know each other, since I had nothing else to do waiting for the part to be made and be shipped.

Around 12:30PM Ann had everything cleaned up in the camper and ready to go.  So after the hitch was installed and greased, we pulled out, heading for the factory in Junction City.

We headed east on I-80 then south on US 182 heading toward Kansas.  All the time looking for Toto.  We never found the dog.  I say dog because I am not sure if Toto is a male or female.

All the time we were on back roads, through small towns and farm land.  The roads were all two lane roads but the speed limit was 65 MPH, of coarse I never went above 60 MPH.  Around 5 PM we decided to find some place to eat and just to push on to Junction City.  We stopped at a town, Smith Center, in Kansas.  We had BBQ ribs in a place called Duffy’s Steak House.  Both reasonable and good.

We decided, we would stay in Wal-Mart in Junction City.  Since we had the GPS, even if it got dark, we could find our way.  So with Ann as the navigator, giving an excellent turn by turn instructions we made our way (in the dark) to the Wal-Mart around 10PM.  We just put out the bedroom slide and collapsed into bed.

This morning we did some food shopping in Wal-Mart and took the 20 minute trip New Horizons factory.  There was no one home, of course. So we just hooked up the electric and water  (note, Ann called New Horizons yesterday before leaving Nebraska, and was told we could stay here over the weekend).

Se here we sit waiting until Monday for our appointment.  Now, waiting for the next phase of our Roan adventure.

Life is good on the Roan Road…

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Here We Go Again (Ogallala, NE)


We are stopped in Ogallala, Nebraska for a few days, and not by choice. 

We were planning on staying overnight, but driving to the campground I had to make a hard stop.  After starting again I heard a banging noise every time I decelerated or accelerated.  After pulling into the campground and unhitching, I looked at the part of the hitch on the camper.  It was bent and did not look right.  This part we just had installed a year ago.

Of course, this is Friday at 4PM and the factory that installed it is closed.  So here we sit in the middle of Cowboy country for the weekend and beyond.  Monday (the 13th) we have an appointment at the New Horizons factory which of course, we will miss.  I am sure we can push it back a few days.

I guess it seems like we are having a lot of breakdowns, but look at it this way.  We have covered (so far) over 10,000 miles pulling our house behind us over some of the worst roads in the US.  Things are going to break, I guess.  Our schedule is flexible, so a few days here and there is not critical.

We have our satellite TV, internet, phone, and we can even rent DVDs.  Plus we have each other, so is it really not that bad.

But is still sucks!!

So if you are dealt lemons, let’s make lemonade. 

Update.  This is Tuesday (the 14th), we spoke to the Trail Air factory and the hitch is only covered for 90 days because it was bought as a part, even thought they installed it.  But they are conditionally going to cover it if after we send the part back and they inspect it to see that it has not been abused.

So they are sending the new part out today.  I offered to pay next day shipping.  The only problem is, next day is over $600.  It is one heavy part.  We elected to pay for 2 day, which is $300.  If we did not have an appointment  I would have left it at Ground and paid nothing. 

Now for the Lemonade. 

If you are not a Big City snob and just look at this part of the country for what it is, it is really beautiful.  Everyone we meet is very friendly.  Evan if I am told that Fox News is their favorite cable channel.

Nebraska (5 of 22)Nebraska (8 of 22)Nebraska (14 of 22)Ogallala NE (4 of 18)

Yesterday we went to Lake McConaughy.  It was formed when, in 1940, a hydro electric dam was build to produce power and supply water for irrigation to the Ogallala area.  It is a beautiful lake with great camping, fishing and boating.

I learned  something about farming.  For one thing Tractors.   They come in all sizes and shapes.  They are like Tonka toys, just a lot more expensive.  You can configure them any way you want and they have great attachments.  They come with A/C, GPS and all of the boy toys you can think of.

These are great people here.  There is a lot to see outside of NYC.  Don’t get me wrong, I did not turn conservative.  But there are a lot of great, hard working Americans in the US.  Everyone should tour the country. 

Monday evening we went to the state fair.

Ogallala NE (5 of 18)Ogallala NE (6 of 18)Ogallala NE (7 of 18)Ogallala NE (8 of 18)Ogallala NE (9 of 18)

It is now Tuesday at 2:30PM local time and I still have not gotten an email that the part was shipped.  The factory is in Goshen, Indiana and they are on EDT.  

I am slowly getting more and more ANNOYED !!!!

Life is good down the Roan Road…

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Too Hot–Too Cold, No Pleasing Me (Great Falls, MT)


We have really been pushing to put the Kilometers and Miles behind us.  We left Johnsons Crossing and went up and over the mountain,  I mean UP and DOWN the mountains.  Actually, this is the same road we traveled on the way up.  When you go the other way, you see things from a different perspective and things you never saw before. 

We saw a lot of wild life along the way.

A herd of Bison.  It may be the same herd we saw on the way up.  They all look alike.

A family of Sheep.

That night we stayed at Toad River Camp Ground.  The same campground we stayed in on the way up to Alaska.  The site we stayed in has unbelievable views.  Too bad we could not stay longer.

Toad River (1 of 9)Toad River (5 of 9)

The next stop was Dawson Creek (Mile 0 of the Alcan Highway).  Again, the same campsite as we stopped in on the way up.

After a grueling ride we stopped south of Edmonton, Alberta for the night.  The next day we made a dash for the US boarder.  At around 4:30 PM we crossed into the US without any problems.  There was nothing but more flat land between the boarder and  Great Falls, Montana.  So after a 500 mile day, we found a campsite in Great Falls.  This is a really nice town.  We even stayed an extra day to have the truck serviced, oil and fuel filters changed, and to rest.

There is so much to do in Montana, it is on our To Do list, but for now we have to get to Kansas to have work done on the camper. 

So here we sit in 96 degree heat, with both A/C’s on, trying to keep cool after complaining about the cold in Alaska.

Even so.

Life is good on the Roan Road.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

On the Road Again (Johnsons Crossing, YT)


We are back on the Roan Road headed south to the lower 48 again. After sitting in the parking lot of the repair service for a week waiting for the part to come in, we finally are an the road.

The parts from the factory finally passed through Canadian Customs and arrived this morning. After lunch they installed the new brake line hoses, bled the the brakes. We checked out the brakes and we were on our way.

During our stay in Whitehorse, YT we did get some rest, repaired things in the camper and rested. Oh, I said that. This morning Ann did not want to get up. I finally had to pull her out of bed.

So, this afternoon, after paying the bill we headed south to the USA heading toward Junction City, KA and the factory for an appointment on August 13.

We are now camped in Johnsons' Crossing, YT, the place where we started. Tomorrow we will, again, head south.

Life is good on the Roan Road.