All posts by terrycbarber

I am a disabled veteran, retired military and retired pastor. MaryAnn’s a retired special education teacher. Our next chapter, traveling the open road in a Leisure Travel Van.

Dead Horse Ranch State Park, Cottonwood, Arizona: Leisure Travel Van Rally, October 2021

We were on the road last week. Leisure Travel Vans, Rocky Mountain LTVERS and the Southwest Roadrunners travel clubs had a joint rally at Dead Horse Ranch State Park near Cottonwood, Arizona.

The rally was sponsored by the Rocky Mountain LTVERS club. Between the two clubs 51 Leisure Travel Vans and over 100 owners were in attendance. The rally was well organized and planned out by the club leaders and we had a great time meeting up with our fellow Leisure Travel Van (LTV) owners.

The rally lasted 6 days, Tuesday through Sunday and included a pizza party, the Verde Valley Train tour, bike riding, hiking, talks on the geology/mining history of the area, tours of the historic mining town of Jerome and the Tuzigoot National Monument, birdwatching, a tech talk about the operation of our Leisure Travel Vans, and much more. Of course gathering every night at our rigs for some good conversations was definitely a highlight, catching up with old friends and meeting new friends as well.

Come along as we travel to north-central Arizona for one of the largest LTV rallies we have ever attended…

Pics from the road to Cottonwood, Arizona

Views from the road.
Saguaro cactus seen from the road.
Views from the road.
Stormy weather on our way north to Cottonwood.
Interstate 17 north.
Interstate 17 north.
Interstate 17.
Interstate 17.
Cottonwood was founded in 1879.

Our campsite at Dead Horse Ranch State Park

We were greeted by a huge thunderstorm when we arrived at Dead Horse Ranch.
Sunset the first night.
The sun peaked out just as we officially started the rally with a pizza party.
Part of the the campground at Dead Horse Ranch.

Tuzigoot National Monument, The ruins of a Native American Village

The ruins are situated on top of a hill near Cottonwood. Originally thought to be a burial mound until excavation began.
Views from the Tuzigoot National Monument.
MaryAnn (on left) with our LTV friends, Maggie and Tony at Tuzigoot.
An LTV from the top of Tuzigoot National Monument.
The entrance to the highest building at Tuzigoot.
Maggie and Tony climbing the stars to the top of Tuzigoot.
The sign says, “mask required”. But then we discovered no one was wearing masks, not even the park ranger. This is MaryAnn.
More views from the top of Tuzigoot.
The Verde River runs along side Tuzigoot.
Verde River.
More views from the Tuzigoot National Monument.
Views from Tuzigoot.
Video from the top of Tuzigoot.
Tuzigoot National Monument.
Me with the Tuzigoot ruins in the background.
We enjoyed the gatherings at many of the campsites every night.

Jerome, Arizona – a copper mining town turned tourist town today

We toured the historic mining town of Jerome, about 10 miles from Dead Horse Ranch.
Some of the LTV owners gathering for a talk about the history of mining at Jerome.
Mike Lane’s talk on the history of mining here in Jerome.
This hotel here in Jerome recently sold to a private owner for 3 million dollars.
These plaques were placed throughout the town of Jerome.
No mining town is complete without a “red light district.”
MaryAnn at the museum/state park in Jerome.
Video of the views around Jerome. The town is built right on top of the copper mine and has been sliding down the mountain.
At the museum in Jerome. From left: Maureen, MaryAnn, me and Kerry. Maureen & Kerry traveled with us to Alaska in 2018. Notice the “J” on the side of the mountain behind Jerome.
Another gathering place at the campground in Dead Horse Ranch. Photo by Chris Tacelli
Our campsite.

We were having such a great time at this LTV rally that we decided to stay an extra day then planned. LTV owners are a great bunch of people, fun to be with and travel with, if you’re going to travel it’s much better with friends.

Next week we will continue our series, “I’ve Got Georgia On My Mind”.

News from the Homefront

We have been busy with the planning and preparation of our new garage project here in Rio Rico. Our Leisure Travel Van will finally have a place to call home.

Apparently there’s a lot of new building permit requests in Santa Cruz county and our permit request is at the bottom of the list. We’ve been waiting on the building permit for over two months.

In the meantime, there’s still a lot of work to be done in preparation for the work on the garage itself. Repairing the erosion problems and improving the drainage system is top priority.

The future home of our tiny house. As you can see there’s a lot of drainage issues that must be fixed first.
Rain water runs off this hillside from the north.
The drainage issues are being fixed first. A drainage ditch is being cut through the existing cement driveway.
Arrival of the tractor.
This work requires a tractor to do the heavy lifting and digging.
Picture taken from the long driveway to the road. That’s my shadow.
Worker’s are tearing out the old concrete for the new drainage ditch.
Video of the concrete removal.
Part of the concrete has been removed in order to install a drainage ditch.
The location of the drainage ditch.
We get most of the average annual rainfall in just 2-3 months here in southern Arizona during the monsoon.
This will be a spillway down the hill.
The dump truck delivering gravel for the next part of the prep work.
We’re having a septic system installed for the new garage. This is a video of the tractor work.
The location of the septic system.
Workers had to trim some of our trees in order to install the septic system.
A picture of the the septic tank location was painted on the ground for the tractor operator.
Video of the ground breaking.
The septic tank is a little more than 1,000 gallons.
The tank will be located directly behind the garage.
It’s more than 6 feet down.
Workers are preparing to install the leach trench.
A pipe will extend from the septic tank into the leach trench.
Making sure the leach trench is lower than the tank.
Adding the gravel to the leach trench.
Our new garage will have its own septic system so we can dump the holding tanks on our tiny house after our road trips.

The garage project is a long process, this week we’re taking a break from the work and going on a road trip to Cottonwood, Arizona for an RV rally at Dead Horse Ranch State Park.

We will return to the, “I’ve got Georgia On My Mind” series in our next post.

I’ve Got Georgia On My Mind: Part One – Jekyll Island

In May of 2019 we left Jacksonville, Florida and drove north up the east coast on Interstate 95 about 75 miles to Jekyll Island, Georgia. Jekyll Island is where the rich and famous, built their winter mansions in the late 19th through early 20th centuries.

Wealthy business men including Rockefeller, Morgan, and Vanderbilt families. came to hunt, go horseback riding, play tennis and frolic on the beautiful beaches on Jekyll Island from 1896-1942, they called themselves the Jekyll Island Club. The Jekyll Island Club was founded in 1886 when club members bought the island from its owner John Eugene du Bignon for $125,000 (today about $3.1 million) and the massive club house was completed in 1888. (Ref. Wikipedia – Jekyll Island Club)

The first trans-continental telephone call was made here on Jekyll Island in 1915. The call was from the president of AT&T to Washington DC speaking to President Woodrow Wilson and then his second phone call was to Alexander Graham Bell in New York and his third call was to Bell’s assistant in San Francisco.

The Jekyll Island Club closed down in 1942 at the start of rationing during World War Two. The Island was bought by the state of Georgia in 1947.

The road to Jekyll Island, Georgia.
The bridge to Jekyll Island.
Jekyll River.
The entrance to Jekyll Island.
The road into Jekyll Island.
The entrance to the historic district.
One of many Mansions on Jekyll Island.
Jekyll Island mansion.
Mansions of the historic district.
Some of the people who built winter homes here on Jekyll Island included the Rockefellers, Morgans, and Vanderbilts.
The members of this exclusive Jekyll Island Club spent their winters on the island participating in activities such as hunting, biking, horseback riding, and tennis.
The telephone used to make the first trans-continental call in 1915.
The club house was built in 1888.
From Jekyll Island we continued north another hour and a half to Fort McAllister State Park, Georgia to camp for the night. MaryAnn standing next to our tiny house.

Today Jekyll Island is home to resorts, beautiful beaches, and the Georgia Sea Turtle Center as well as these beautiful mansions from the past in the historic district.

Next time we will continue this series, “I’ve Got Georgia On My Mind.” Come along as we visit Fort McAllister, a Civil War era fort used by the Confederate army to defend Savanah, Georgia.

Summer Adventure 2021: Conclusion – The Road Home to Southern Arizona

We left Three Island Crossing State Park in Glenns Ferry, Idaho on July 7 with a 2 1/2 day drive ahead of us to get to our home on the border of Mexico.

The road home through Nevada.

Before we left Glenns Ferry, we stopped to pay our respects to those trail blazers, the pioneers of the 1800’s who had gone before us in nothing more than a horse drawn wagon on wooden wheels with no suspension and most of the time just walked along next to the wagon, because they only had room in the wagon for supplies.

Don’t forget, there weren’t any roads either, they were making their own roads. Makes me want to stop complaining about bad road conditions. Come along as we journey home from Idaho to southern Arizona…

The RV of the 1800’s.
Monument to the pioneers that came before us.
MaryAnn’s reading the plaques giving the history of the pioneers crossing the Snake River here in Idaho.
The route of the wagon trains across the United States in the 1800’s.
A little easier to cross the Snake River now.
Snake River
Snake River from the road.
Snake River
Snake River from the road.

Pictures from the road to Ely, Nevada from Twin Falls, Idaho…

Pics from the road through southern Idaho.
Pics from the road.
Pics from the road.
The Nevada border.

Now on to our stop for the night, Ely, Nevada. We try to keep our drive time down to around 300 miles per day.

Can’t resist a beautiful straight road.
Pics from the road in Nevada.
Pics from the road.
These pics were taken at around 70 miles per hour.
The road through the desert of northeast Nevada.
The road south through Nevada.
Pics from the road.
Our stop for the night in Ely, Nevada.
Our campsite for the night.
We stopped here at this RV Park in Ely in May 2018 on our way to Alaska. I think it was the same campsite too! This is the picture we took of ourselves here in Ely on that trip.
Another angle of our campsite.
The road to Las Vegas.
Pics from the road.

I was driving when we went through Vegas, but there’s plenty of pictures of the Vegas area in previous posts on this blog.

Arizona border!
Colorado River in northern Arizona.
Colorado River.
Northern Arizona

We stopped in Kingman, Arizona our second night. Although we prefer not staying at KOA campgrounds, it was the only place with space available.

We drove through the Phoenix and Tucson area on our way home. Pictures of these areas can be seen in previous posts on this blog.

Rio Rico Mountain, we are almost home!
Our driveway.
Closest neighbor to our west. Our house sits on a little more than 5 acres. This pic was looking west from our driveway.
Our front yard.
This is where we park our tiny house when we’re not traveling. This is also the site of our future garage project for the tiny house.
Our backyard.
We’re home! A monsoon thunderstorm is greeting us!

We’re home now until late September/October. We’re preparing for a huge project here at the house. We’re having a garage built for the tiny house and hopefully it will be done by Christmas. More to come on the garage project in future posts. Until next week safe travels everyone!

Summer Adventure 2021: Our Last days in Idaho

We left the Sawtooth Mountains and continued southwest to our last stop on our tour of Idaho, “Three Island Crossing State Park,” just outside Glenns Ferry on the Snake River.

Our plan was to stay two nights at Three Island Crossing and try to make arrangements at a Mercedes Benz dealership either in Las Vegas, Nevada, Salt Lake City, Utah or Boise, Idaho. I started calling these three locations as soon as they opened for business Tuesday morning, the first day after our arrival at Three Island Crossing.

The dealership in Las Vegas had an opening on Friday, three days later and even though we didn’t want to drive that far with our radiator reservoir leaking, I made the appointment as a plan “B” if the other two dealerships couldn’t help us.

The Mercedes Benz dealership in Salt Lake City, Utah didn’t have any openings or concern for our situation. When I called the Mercedes Benz dealership in Boise, the service tech said, “They didn’t have any openings, but took my phone number and said he would check to see if they had the part I needed.”

He called me back about an hour later and said, “He had the part and even though they didn’t have an appointment available they would squeeze us in and get the radiator fixed that day since we were traveling and we were such a long distance from home.” We were so grateful for their willingness to help, Boise, being the closest to us, about a two hour drive, was our first choice of places to take our tiny house for repairs anyway.

So we drove the two hours to Boise for the repairs on the radiator. When we arrived the service tech said, “They just had a cancellation and could take us right away.” About two hours later we were back on the road to Three Island Crossing State Park to spend our last night in Idaho before going back home to southern Arizona. The Lord took care of things for us that day.

Come along with us as we finish up our Summer Adventure of 2021…

The road through southern Idaho.

Pics from the road through southern Idaho…

The mountains slowly gave way to the plains.
Forest gave way to grasslands.
Mountains and grasslands of Idaho.
Pics from the road.
Prong Horn
Pics from the road.
Slowly the topography begins to change.
The mountains give way to flat lands.
As far as we could see open grasslands.
Snake River.
The old wagon train trail of the 1800’s. We’re traveling in a modern day wagon.
Three Island Crossing is on the Snake River.
Three Island Crossing is rich with historical heritage. Thousands of pioneers passed through this area in the 1800’s going west to start a new home for themselves. The Three Island Crossing is where they crossed the Snake River to continue their journey west.
Three Island Crossing State Park
Our campsite for the next couple nights.
Our campsite.
An unexpected visitor greeted us at our campsite.
The welcoming committee to Three Island Crossing.
Another angle of our campsite.
Tai and Jane were parked right next to us.

Some pics from the road to Boise from Three Island Crossing State Park near Glenns Ferry, Idaho…

The town of Glenns Ferry located on the banks of the Snake River.
Pics from the road to Boise.
The road to Boise, Idaho.
The Snake River from the road.
The road was used as a wagon train trail for the early settlers going west.
Wind turbines.
Pics from the road.
Pics from the road.
The wagons took the path of least resistance.
Pics from the road.
The wagon train trails are now a modern highway.
Snake River

The picture your about to see may be hard to look at, viewer discretion is advised…

Before the repairs of the radiator reservoir. This is two years of abuse by the Arizona sun. Do not leave your hood open on your RV. I was trying to discourage pack rats 🐀
After the repairs and $382 later. Could have been worse I know. Notice how white the new radiator reservoir is compared to the old one.
Our last campsite in Idaho.

From Idaho we continued southwest through Nevada and then on into northern Arizona. We still have a two and a half day journey ahead of us in order to get back home on the border of Mexico.

In our next post we will travel home from Idaho to southern Arizona. Until next time, safe travels my friends…

Summer Adventure 2021: Week Seven – Hiking, kayaking and Ebiking in the Sawtooth Mountains, Idaho.

We ended our summer adventure earlier then we had planned because of a leaking radiator reservoir and a malfunctioning generator.

But before we left the Sawtooth Mountains we did a little hiking, kayaking and ebiking. We also celebrated Jane’s birthday with some of our campsite neighbors, now friends from Idaho – Rick & Chalae.

First a few pics from around the Redfish Lake and the Sawtooth Mountains National Forest area…

Sawtooth Mountains
Pics from the road of the Sawtooth Mountains
Sawtooth Mountains
Sawtooth Mountains
Salmon River with the Sawtooth Mountains in the background.
Sawtooth Mountains
Salmon River

Pics from one of the many hiking trails here in the national forest.

From the trails, picture taken by MaryAnn.
From the trail, picture by MaryAnn.
From the trails, picture by MaryAnn.
From the trails, by MaryAnn.
MaryAnn & me kayaking on Redfish Lake.
Tai & Jane on Redfish Lake
Tai & Jane on Redfish Lake.
Tai & Jane
MaryAnn’s getting ready for our next bike ride in the Sawtooth Mountains National Forest.
MaryAnn
From our bike ride through the national forest.
MaryAnn’s getting tired of me taking her picture.
MaryAnn & me stopped to get a selfie while riding our bikes at Redfish Lake.
Jane’s birthday party at the campground.
Our neighbors, Rick, Chalae and their daughter & husband came over from their next door campsite to help celebrate Jane’s birthday.
Our campsite neighbor, Rick singing happy birthday to Jane.
The fluid on the ground is our radiator fluid. Tai had a spray can of sealant we used to nurse our tiny house down the mountain for repairs.
Beautiful views of the Sawtooth Mountains, reminding us that a little radiator leak was a small problem for our big God, creator of the universe!
This yellow bowl/reservoir is supposed to be white and it’s leaking everywhere. This was caused by exposure to the Arizona sun.

I had been leaving the hood up 24 hours a day, 7 days a week while our tiny house was parked at our home in southern Arizona to help discourage the packrat population in the area from eating the wiring in our engine block. This caused sun damage to our radiator reservoir.

All is well, we’ll get our tiny house fixed and our adventures will continue…

We love traveling, seeing new places and the road getting to new places offers great adventures. What we love most about traveling is the people we meet along the way.

In our next post we traveled limping along, nursing our leaking radiator reservoir to Three Islands Crossing State Park and then on to Boise, Idaho to a Mercedes Benz repair shop.

Summer Adventure 2021: Week Seven – Ghost Town in the Salmon-Challis National Forest and Pics from the Road to Redfish Lake in the Sawtooth Mountains, Idaho

Before we explored the nearby ghost town here in the Salmon-Challis National Forest we did some hiking in the area. Included in this post are pics around our campground.

On one of our hikes we discovered what could have been an outhouse used by Bigfoot, if they really do exist. I can neither confirm nor deny the existence of Bigfoot.

From our campsite in the national forest we stopped to tour the mining town of Custer City established in 1877. Then on to Boise National Forest and the Sawtooth Mountains National Forest…

Salmon River in the Sawtooth Mountains
Pics from around our campsite in the Salmon-Challis National Forest.
Our campsite.
Cliffs surrounding our campsite.
Tai and Jane.
Jane and one of our traveling pups, Peeta hiking near our campsite.
Jane checking out Bigfoot’s toilet??
Tai in front, Doreen, MaryAnn and Jane in the foreground.
Jane climbing some of the huge boulders.
MaryAnn and Jane.

Now let’s explore some of the ghost town, Custer City.

Custer City, Idaho was established in 1877 in support of gold mining operations in the area, it is now a ghost town. In 1981 the town was put on the US National Register of Historic Places.
Today there’s a museum in the town containing many of the artifacts left behind by the people who lived, worked and died here.
The museum and store as well as some of the other remaining buildings are managed by local volunteers who live in nearby Challis.
Dentist chair used in Custer City in 1877.
Three sisters died in their sleep when a snow slide tore through their home in the middle of the night. The house was pushed across town and into the Salmon River. The parents survived. Sadly this tragedy could have been prevented since the parents were warned the snow slide was going to happen and they had plenty of time to evacuate but chose to stay. The girls were age 10, 6, and 4.
A bench next to the graves of the three sisters.
The cemetery at Custer City.
Sad epitaph.
Many of the people who lived in Custer City died from snow slides.
At 7 months old, Julian started having difficulty feeding, followed by convulsions. His mother discovered that placing Julian in warm bath water helped to ease the seizure. As a result she would always keep a bucket of hot water on the stove in preparation for the next seizure.
However, on one occasion when a seizure came on the mother rushed to get the bucket of hot water only to find it empty, a visiting friend had used it to wash the dishes. The mother ran down the street to the town saloon in search of a bucket of hot water, when she returned home with the water, the boy was already dead.
Life in Custer City was very difficult due to the hard winters, total isolation and lack of medical care.
Another snow slide victim. People were buried here because it was not possible for them to be taken to the main cemetery in the nearby town of Bonanza.
Sad. I would imagine this place would become quite depressing during the long, difficult and isolated winter months.
Custer City covers an area of 29 acres, but only 7 of the remaining buildings are structurally sound enough to be part of the National Registry of Historic Places.
The Pfeiffer Residence in Custer City.
Charles Pfeiffer built this home for his wife in 1890 . The roof was made from flattened tin cans. Charles worked for his uncle at the town store and later for the General Mill.
Video of the inside of the Pfeiffer home.
Looks like a nice bathtub.
The Pfeiffer house.
This building has a lot of stories to tell.

Pics of the road from Salmon-Challis National Forest to Redfish Lake and the Sawtooth Mountains. I took hundreds of pictures from the road, take a look at just a few of them…

Pics from the road.
From the road.
From the road.
Now that’s a beautiful road!
Pics from the road.
Sawtooth Mountains
Sawtooth Mountains Range.
More pics from the road.
The road seems to go on forever.
Sawtooth Mountains
Sawtooth Mountains
Sawtooth Mountains
Sawtooth Mountains
Sawtooth Mountains
Sawtooth Mountains
Pics from the road in the Sawtooth Mountains
Now here’s a beautiful road to nowhere!
We switched from the Salmon-Challis National Forest to the Boise National Forest and then to the Sawtooth Mountains National Forest.
Still in the Sawtooth Mountains.
Sawtooth Mountains
Salmon River.
Sawtooth Mountains National Forest
Salmon River in the Sawtooth Mountains.
Sawtooth Mountains

We stayed in the national forest campground called, “Mount Heyburn Campground.”

Our campsite at Redfish Lake in the Sawtooth Mountains National Forest.
Our campsite was quite large. One of the reasons we prefer camping in national forests.
Redfish Lake.
There are two Redfish lakes, Little Redfish Lake and Redfish Lake. We camped at the larger of the two lakes – Redfish Lake.

In our next post we will explore this beautiful area of the Sawtooth Mountains. Go kayaking on Redfish Lake and ebiking in the national forest. Before we move south to Three Island Crossing State Park on the Snake River…

Summer Adventure 2021: Week Six, Part Four – The Road from Boise To Stanley, Idaho and The Salmon-Challis National Forest

In Boise we met up with college friends we hadn’t seen in 40 years. Then started north to Stanley on route 21 through the Boise National Forest.

Our travel friends, Tai and Jane were still in Montana buying land and we planned to meet them in Stanley later that day. In the meantime, we were following our college friends Doreen and Danny, to Stanley and camp in the Salmon-Challis National Forest.

Of all the places we have seen in our travels, we especially enjoy Idaho. The beautiful lakes, rivers but the mountains of Idaho are so different and unique. We have seen the Blue Ridge mountains, the Smoky Mountains, the Rockies, etc but we have never seen such unusual mountains as the mountains of Idaho.

Sawtooth Mountains
Pics from the road, route 21.
Snow in late June.
Pics from the road to Stanley.
Boise National Forest
National Forest
Pics from the road.
Salmon River
Pics from the road, Salmon River.
Animal crossing bridge.
Salmon River
Pics from the road, route 21 to Stanley.
Pics from the road.
Salmon River
Pics from the road.
Pics from route 21 to Stanley.
Cliffs on route 21.
Salmon River.
Reservoir near Boise on route 21.
Route 21.
Railroad bridge from route 21.
Salmon River.
Boise National Forest
National Forest
Mule Dear on route 21.
Boise National Forest
Pics from the road.
Pics from the road.
Snow along the side of the road in late June.
Rolling mountains of Idaho.
National Forest.
Sawtooth Mountains
Sawtooth Mountains
Pics from the road.
Sawtooth Mountains
Pics from the road.
Pics from route 21.
Sawtooth Mountains
Stanley, Idaho. Our college friends, Doreen and Danny, me and MaryAnn.
We met up with Tai and Jane in Stanley as well.
Sawtooth Mountains
Pics from the road.
Sawtooth Mountains
Sawtooth Mountains
Salmon River
The road into the Salmon-Challis National Forest.
Salmon-Challis National Forest
Here’s a nice fixer upper!
Salmon-Challis National Forest
Our campsite the first night in the boondocking in the Salmon-Challis National Forest. Cost- free.
Danny at our campsite in the Salmon-Challis National Forest.
Video of Our second campsite in the Salmon-Challis National Forest.
Doreen in the Salmon-Challis National Forest.
Peeta liked the national forest.
MaryAnn, Doreen and the Traveling Pups hiking in the national forest.
Pics from our campsite.
MaryAnn
Pics from our campsite.
Our second campsite in the Salmon-Challis National Forest.
Salmon-Challis National Forest
Our campsite in the Salmon-Challis National Forest, cost $5 per night.

Next time we will visit a ghost town on our way to Redfish Lake in the Sawtooth Mountains, Idaho.

Summer Adventure 2021: Week Six, Part Three – The Road to Lake Cascade, Idaho

MaryAnn and I traveled alone to Lake Cascade on June 24th. Our friends, Tai and Jane left early in the morning from Winchester Lake to go back to Montana. They liked Montana so much, Tai and Jane decided to buy land there and put a tiny house on it for future trips.

We had planned to meet up with some of MaryAnn’s college friends in Boise. So we continued south stopping at Lake Cascade State Park along the way.

It felt a little strange not having Tai and Jane traveling with us for the first time in over a month. But they will meet us at Stanley, Idaho in the Sawtooth Mountains in a couple days.

In the meantime, let’s check out the road from Winchester to Lake Cascade, Idaho…

These bright yellow fields were everywhere along the road, don’t know what is being grown here, but it is very beautiful.
Can’t get enough of a straight road.
Even with temperatures in the 90’s (Fahrenheit) the mountains still have snow on them.
Mountain View’s from the road.
The road appears to go on for ever.
Never get tired of these Idaho mountains.
Views from the road.
If it didn’t get so cold here in the winter, I would consider moving here.
He looks a little out of place…
I think he just realized he is not in Kansas anymore 😀
Feet don’t fail me now!
Gotta get back to the woods where I belong…
That’s where we are heading too!
More views from the road.
When the sign says national forest, it means national forest!
Beautiful forest!
One of many rivers and streams.
All these pics taken from the road at around 70 miles per hour.
MaryAnn’s driving while I operate the camera.
More from the national forest of Idaho.
The national forests covers large areas of Idaho, that’s what we came here to see.
Salmon River
More pics from the road.
Salmon River.
Hydraulic Mining was originally developed by the Roman Empire and then used in the 1800’s to destroy large areas of the mountains here. Hydraulic Mining used water at high pressure to clear out large amounts of the side of the mountains looking for gold. It leaves behind piles of gravel still there today over 150 years later.
The results of Hydraulic Mining.
Wikipedia.org
Hydraulic Mining canon. Wikipedia.org
The road to Lake Cascade.
Salmon River.
Salmon River
We stopped to check out a roadside historic site along the way. MaryAnn and the Traveling Pups.
The battle the started the war between the United States and the Nez Perce in 1877.
MaryAnn and Peeta.
The area where the first battle took place. The Nez Perce won decisively.
The U.S. retaliated with such force the Nez Perce never had a chance. The American military killed men, women, and children.
In 1855 the U.S. reduced the Nez Perce territory to a small reservation. Then when gold was discovered on their land, the U.S. reduced the reservation again in 1877, sparking the war.
More pics of the area of the first battle of the war.
Bird Bird battlefield.
MaryAnn at the White Bird Battlefield.
Amazing views coming down this mountain.
White Bird Grade.
White Bird Grade
White Bird Grade
White Bird Grade
White Bird Grade
Finally down to the valley.
Farm land stretching for miles on the valley floor.
Wheat fields.
Beautiful yellow fields.
Bright yellow fields everywhere.
Don’t know what these yellow fields are, if you know send me a comment and let me know.
Railroad bridge.
From the road.
The first views of Lake Cascade.
Lake Cascade.
Lake Cascade
Getting closer to Lake Cascade!
Our campsite at Lake Cascade. The Traveling Pups are excited to be getting out of the tiny house.
Our view of Lake Cascade from our campsite.
Lake Cascade from our campsite.
The lake from our campsite. We considered going kayaking, but the wind picked up and the water became too choppy for us inexperienced kayakers.
One last pic of our tiny house campsite at Lake Cascade.
The sunset at the lake.
Lake Cascade at sunset.

In our next post we continue traveling south to Boise, Idaho. We’re going to meet up with a couple of MaryAnn’s college friends she hasn’t seen in 40 years.

Summer Adventure 2021: Week Six – Part Two, Winchester Lake State Park, Idaho

MaryAnn and the Traveling Pups.

From Hell’s Gate State Park in Lewiston we continued east on route 95. The Nez Perce National Historical Site just off route 95 is a worthwhile stop, with another sad story of how the Native American people where mistreated by the American Government and the early settlers.

The Lewis and Clark expedition explored this area in 1805 and were helped by the Nez Perce. Then in an 1855 treaty the Nez Perce territory was greatly reduced until 1877 when their territory was cut down even more because gold was discovered on their land. This sparked a war in which the American government quickly overwhelmed, killed and displaced the remaining Nez Perce.

As I said, it’s a sad story and worth a visit, there’s a short film covering the history, a museum, gift shop and if you have your national parks passport you can get it stamped as well.

The road to Winchester.

We continued east on route 95 into what seemed like going back into another time dimension. The town of Winchester (named after the Winchester riffle) and the state park associated with it are nestled in a rugged and heavily forested area and is definitely a hidden gem.

The town is small, population 340, but has a public library, a gas station, a few small businesses and a couple restaurants. Try not to visit on Tuesday or Wednesday, almost everything seems to be closed.

The town has its roots in lumber and the town moved three times during its history because of deforestation to its current location within the Nez Perce Reservation because of a declaration by President Cleveland in 1895 that said anyone could settle on the reservation. Come along as we do a little exploring of Winchester, Idaho…

Views from the road.
Route 95.
Nez Perce Reservation
Views from the road.
Route 95, notice the lumber truck. Lumber harvesting is still very active here.
More views from the road.
Pics from route 95 to Winchester.
Statues depicting the Lewis and Clark expedition of 1805.
Pics from the road.
Views from route 95.
From route 95.
MaryAnn on one of our many bike tours of Winchester.
Canadian geese at Winchester Lake.
Winchester Lake
Winchester Lake
We went on a hike through the surrounding forest at Winchester Lake. From left: Jane, Tai and in the back, MaryAnn.
Jane and MaryAnn
Our campsite at Winchester Lake State Park. From left: MaryAnn, the Traveling Pups, Tai and Jane.
MaryAnn and the Traveling Pups.
In case you didn’t see them before.
One more picture of our campsite.
Okay, I know you like to see our tiny house. Leisure Travel Vans, Unity FX.

Tai and Jane left us for a couple days after Winchester to go back to Montana. They liked Montana so much during our visit there that they decided to buy land and build a tiny home.

In our next post we travel alone to Cascade Lake State Park…

Summer Adventure 2021: Week Six – Lake Coeur d’Alene and Hell’s Gate State Park, Idaho

We re-entered Idaho on June 20 and continued east to the Lake Coeur d’Alene area for some sightseeing before heading to Lewiston and Hell’s Gate State Park.

We were hoping to do some bike riding while we were in the Lake Coeur d’Alene area, but that didn’t work out. Coeur d’Alene definitely lived up to its reputation as a very beautiful area. I took pictures as MaryAnn drove. Check it out…

Views from the road.
Back in Idaho.
Lake Coeur d’Alene area.
Views around Lake Coeur d’Alene area.
Pic taken from the road of Lake Coeur d’Alene area.
Lake Coeur d’Alene.
The road around Lake Coeur d’Alene.
Pic from the road.
Lake Coeur d’Alene.
From the road around Lake Coeur d’Alene.
Scenic by-way around Lake Coeur d’Alene.
Blue water of Lake Coeur d’Alene.
Lake Coeur d’Alene is the largest natural lake in Idaho.
Lake Coeur d’Alene is surrounded by mountains.
Scenic By-way around Lake Coeur d’Alene.
Lake Coeur d’Alene.
Scenic By-way.
Lake Coeur d’Alene
We stopped in Harrison, on the shores of Lake Coeur d’Alene in hopes of a bike ride around the area of the lake. Unfortunately it’s a very popular place and there wasn’t any room for us to park our tiny house.
Railroad bridge crossing Lake Coeur d’Alene.
The road to Lewiston, Idaho.
Views from the road.
From the road.
Views from the road.
Mountains are everywhere throughout central Idaho.
Idaho is a very lush and green place.
Views from the road.
The road to Lewiston.
From the road to Lewiston, Idaho.
National Forest in Idaho.
Farm land along the road.
Yellow fields throughout Idaho.
Yellow farm land.
Rolling hills of Idaho.
The road to Lewiston.
Farm land along the road.
Russia? Nope, Idaho!
Farm land in the rolling hills.
We came over a mountain and saw Lewiston for the first time!
Lewiston, Idaho.
The Clear Water River through Lewiston.
From the mountain above Lewiston.
Clear Water River in Lewiston.
Close up of the previous picture.
Video from the mountain overlooking Lewiston, Idaho.
Clear Water River and the Snake River meet in Lewiston .
Clear Water River. Lewis & Clark came through this area in the early 1800’s. Lewiston was named after Lewis. Across the river is Clark, Washington.
Lewiston was the first capital of Idaho.
From the mountain above Lewiston.
The road coming down off the mountain to Lewiston.
Lewiston and the Clear Water River.
Lewiston
On the Snake River were several draw bridges.
The entire bridge lifts up into the air to allow boats to go under.
Entrance to Hell’s Gate State Park.
Our campsite at Hell’s Gate.
Tai and Jane are parked next to us at Hell’s Gate.
Our campsite, we stayed at Hell’s Gate for two nights.
Snake River.
Crossing the Snake River into Washington on my ebike.

In our next post we travel to another Idaho state park called Winchester Lake State Park.

The temperature continued to rise to over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. We needed to either get back into the higher elevations of the mountains or find places we could be plugged in in order to run our air conditioner.

Summer Adventure 2021: Week Five Part Three

We crossed the border into Idaho on June 17. The heatwave of 2021 was just getting started and we were looking for places with electric hookups for our rigs so we could have air conditioning.

I have two phone apps that I use extensively for finding places to camp: “AllStays” and “Campendium”. I use AllStays to find private parks, state parks and military parks. I use Campendium to find national forest, public land campgrounds and free BLM land for boondocking.

Using Campendium, I found a campground in northern Idaho called “Springy Point”. With water and electric hookups, Springy Point was a Army Corps of Engineers campground and since the weekend was fast approaching we decided to secure our campsites with reservations.

We stayed one night at Springy Point and then moved on to Fairchild AFB in Washington near Spokane. We didn’t plan on going into Washington but with the weekend now upon us and the heatwave in full swing we decided the first come first serve campground at Fairchild would be the best place for us.

We spent Friday night at Clear Lake Military Recreation area where reservations were required and there were two sites available right next to each other. Saturday night we had to move to the on base campground.

While at Clear Lake we decided to go kayaking and relax on the gentle waters of the shallow lake. This would be the second time on this trip we got to use our kayak and we are starting to get the hang of getting in and out of it, before you know we could become experts!

Pics from the road in Montana and Idaho.
Crossing the border into Idaho.
The entrance into Springy Point.
Pics from the road around Springy Point.
Pics from the road.
Pics from the road.
I do enjoy a straight road!
One of the many signs along the road.
Views from the road.
Sometimes it looks as though we were heading straight into the side of a mountain.
Views from the road.
Northern Idaho.
Mountains of Idaho.
The twists and turns of the road.
One of many rivers in Idaho.
Taken while traveling at 60 miles per hour on a winding mountain road.
Pics of the road.
Views from the road.
Did I mention my love for a straight road…
The wild rivers of Idaho.
All these pics from the road where shot while traveling 60-70 miles per hour.
Pics from the road.
Northern Idaho.
Mountain lake in Idaho.
Another pic at 60 miles per hour.
Our campsite at Springy Point.
MaryAnn and the Traveling Pups at Springy Point.
Another angle of our campsite at Springy Point Campground.
Entering Washington state, an unplanned stop. When on the road it’s important to be flexible.
Entrance to Fairchild AFB.
Our campsite at Clear Lake Military Recreation Area at Fairchild AFB.
Last two available sites right next to each other.
Our campsite.
Sunset at Clear Lake, Washington.
Fairchild AFB.
Fairchild AFB
Fairchild AFB is a strategic air command (SAC).
Another sunset pic at Clear Lake.
Clear Lake.
Kayaking at Clear Lake.
MaryAnn and me.
One of the many lakes in the area of Fairchild AFB.
MaryAnn and Jane at the campground inside Fairchild AFB FamCamp.
Tai and Jane at our campsite at Fairchild AFB FamCamp.

In our next post we traveled back into Idaho to a state park called “Hell’s Gate”. This park was situated on the banks of the Snake River and on the border with Washington.

Summer Adventure 2021: Week Five Part Two – Libby, Montana

After leaving Glacier National Park we met up with friends and fellow Leisure Travel Van owners on the road (Route 2 west). We traveled with these great people to Alaska and back in 2018. It was like deja vu, we met for the first time on the Alaska caravan 3 years ago. Now we’re all good friends with great memories of our epic adventures traveling across British Columbia and Yukon Territory to Alaska and back.

After our meet up with our friends, we continued our adventure through Montana with Jane and Tai to Libby and our next stop at Blackwell Flats Campground on the Kootenia River. We camped along the river just below Libby Dam. This is an Army Corps of Engineers campground and it was completely free, first come first serve.

From left: Linda, Joe, Jane and Tai (members of the next Alaska trip) Diana, Gordon, Suzi, me, MaryAnn, and the Traveling Pups.
Our meet up with our friends on the side of the road.
Five Leisure Travel Vans, nine friends.
On the edge of route 2 west about fifty miles outside of Glacier National Park.
Welcome sign to the town of Libby.
The reservoir created by Libby Dam.
We stopped by the dam to get a closer look.
Libby Dam
The entrance to the Blackwell Flats Campground.
Our campsite
Our campsite.
A video of our campsite on the banks of the Kootenia River
Kootenia River
National Forest on the banks of the Kootenia River
Jane and MaryAnn at Libby Dam, taking a break from our bike ride.
We considered kayaking on the river, but the current was too fast for us.
So we went on a 18 mile bike ride instead. When we returned from our bike ride I discovered I had another flat tire. Fortunately this time I had all the tools I needed to fix the flat. I should say so Tai could fix it 😊
Kootenia River
Bridge over the Kootenia River
Our bike ride to the Libby Dam.
From left: me, MaryAnn, and Jane. Tai was behind the camera.
Kootenia River
The road to Libby.
The road to Libby.
The road to Libby,
The reservoir at Libby Dam
Libby Dam
The road.
The mountains around Libby.
More pics from the road.
Pics from the road.
A Big Foot sighting in Libby, Montana!

In our next post we travel from Libby across the border into Idaho. We made reservations at Springy Point, another Army Corps of Engineers campground, but this time we had to actually pay for our campsite.

The summer was beginning to heat up with temperatures in the 90’s and even over 100, we needed to be plugged into electric power. It was also the weekend which made it harder to find a place to camp.

Summer Adventure 2021: week Five Part One – Glacier National Park

We spent two days at Glacier National Park, Montana. This year the park announced new rules for visitors to the park: Only visitors holding a ticket obtained online from the park website can enter. It’s next to impossible to get a ticket because only 150 tickets are available each day.

The only other option is to wait in line at 6 am or at 5 pm and hope you can get into the park that way.

However, we met someone who had just left Glacier the day before in Lolo, Montana who told us about another way into the park on the west side that won’t require a ticket or waiting in line. We decided to give it a try and beat the lines at the west gate.

We drove up the dirt road as we were instructed by this stranger. Got completely lost and almost ended up in Canada! Turned around and came back down the dirt road about 30 miles and happened to look to our left and there it was a gateway into the park that was completely open with no one waiting!

Yep, we got lost on a terrible road to Canada, but in the end we were able to get into Glacier National Park without a ticket or reservations. Come along with us as we explore Glacier National Park…

Me, MaryAnn, and the Traveling Pups at the entrance on the west side of the park.
A deer greeted us on the side of the road.
The road inside Glacier.
The road inside Glacier.
The road inside Glacier.
From the dirt road to Canada.
Glacier National Park.
From the dirt road to Canada, pic of the west side of Glacier.
From the road to Canada pic of the west side of Glacier.
From the road to Canada. We were lost, but got some great pictures of the west side of Glacier National Park.
The dirt road to Canada.
The dirt road to Canada.
From the road to Canada, a picture of the mountains on the west side of Glacier.
More pics from the west side of Glacier.
Glacier National Park
From the road to Canada of the west side of Glacier.
West side of Glacier.
Lake McDonald in Glacier National Park.
Lake McDonald
Tai and Jane at McDonald Falls.
Lake McDonald
Lake McDonald
McDonald Falls
Lake McDonald
Lake McDonald
McDonald Falls
Lake McDonald
Glacier National Park
Glacier National Park
Water Falls in Glacier.
Our campsite in Glacier RV Park, West Glacier
Our campsite
Our campsite.
Our tiny house at Glacier RV Park.

On our next post we continued west on route 12 after leaving Glacier National Park. We were headed towards Libby, Montana and Blackwell Flats Campground on the banks of the Kootenai River.

On the way we met up with five friends and fellow owners of Leisure Travel Vans who had gone with us to Alaska in 2018.

Summer Adventure 2021: Week Four – Flathead National Forest, Hungry Horse Reservoir

On June 12th we left Lolo, Montana and continued traveling north toward Glacier National Park. We had June 14-16 reservations at a private RV park called, “Glacier RV Park” about 5 miles from the west gate of the national park.

We needed somewhere to camp for the weekend while we waited for our reservations at Glacier RV Park. So after studying the map and searching through one of my cellphone apps, “Campendium” we decided on Hungry Horse Reservoir in Flathead National Forest about 40 minutes south of Glacier National Park.

The Hungry Horse Reservoir was created by damming the South Fork Flathead River. Construction began on the Hungry Horse Dam on April 21, 1948 and was completed on July 18, 1953. (Ref Wikipedia.org)

We had several first come first serve campgrounds in mind when we arrived in the Hungry Horse area. Since it was a Saturday we knew it would be difficult to find an available campsite because this was a very popular camping area. We first stopped at the “Lost Johnny Point campground” and even though there were 2 campsites open we didn’t like them and after MaryAnn spoke with the camp host we decided to go to “Lid Creek Campground” about 5-6 miles further down the road.

Lid Creek Campground turned out to be the place for us. The camp host there was very helpful in showing the best sites for us to camp. We were back-to-back to each other and close to the water.

You’re invited to explore Hungry Horse Reservoir with us…

Sunset at Hungry Horse Reservoir.
Hungry Horse Reservoir
Snow caped mountains at Hungry Horse
While driving to Hungry Horse we had to stop at a horse crossing.
Hungry Horse Reservoir
From the road at Hungry Horse Reservoir
From the road to Hungry Horse Reservoir
From the road to Hungry Horse Reservoir
Along the side of the road to Hungry Horse.
The town of Hungry Horse.
Built in 1953.
We stopped at the dam for a few pics.
From the top of the dam.
The top of the dam.
Hungry Horse Dam (Wikipedia)
Water fall at Hungry Horse Dam.
From the road to Lid Creek Campground.
The road to Lid Creek Campground.
The entrance to Lid Creek Campground.
Our campsite at Lid Creek.
Our campsite & Tai & Jane’s campsite.
MaryAnn and the Traveling Pups.
We sat around the campfire the first night.
A deer decided to stop in for a visit to our campsite.
Our evening visitor.
MaryAnn, me and the Traveling Pups at Hungry Horse Reservoir.
Here we are at Hungry Horse.
Pic of Hungry Horse from Lid Creek.
We decided to get pictures of the sunset on Hungry Horse Reservoir but the sun doesn’t set here until almost 10 pm.
We were to early for the sunset and had to wait another hour. The sun in MaryAnn’s & Jane’s eyes.
There’s the sun beginning to set.
Sunset over Hungry Horse.
Me, MaryAnn, Jane. I have a red sweatshirt on to keep the mosquitoes away, they seem to be attracted to me.
Snow caped mountains at Hungry Horse.
Hungry Horse