Sunday March 22, 2020

Back at Home!

We Arrived home on March 22, and this post is actually being made on Tuesday May 12, Al is a slacker! We decided to make a quicker return home (for us anyways!), we only stayed minimum times in most of the parks on the way back because of COVID-19. In retrospect this was a good decision as some states stopped new arrivals to RV parks later in March, the KOA near Fort Wayne, a standard stop for us was one of these parks.

The federal government required us to self isolate for 2 weeks after we got home, and we got safety documentation and were questioned at the border if we had symptoms. We feel fortunate to be back home, the number of cases and deaths in states that we went through are much higher than in Ontario, Canada has done a good job compared to Trump's America,

The run home was largely uneventful, we had minimum contact with people and we reserved camp sites on-line to eliminate cash transfers to and from people. 

The only hassle that occurred was with the 50 amp plug in surge guard, A Progressive Industries one that I bought last year, it died because rainwater leaked into it. It was supposed to be the best recommended unit, but it isn't, in my opinion. I'll see if their "lifetime warranty" can actually "hold water"!

We did just over 11,000 KM on the winter's trip, we had a great time. Hopefully COVID-19 will be a bit reduced so we can return to Borrego Springs next winter

Tuesday March 10, 2020

A new RV Park for us!


We are in the Mount Pleasant KOA for 2 nights. Yesterday we tried out an RV park suggested by an RV NET reader after we complained about the oilfield workers trashing the Horseshoe RV park in Ranger, it was full and dirty.

A reader suggested the Solid Rock RV park just 5 miles south of the turnoff, the trashed park was about 2 miles north. It turned out to be a great choice as the following pictures show:

Our site backed out onto Lake Leon

It's a small lake but big enough for outboards:

There is a small catch and release pond that was probably part of the lake originally, the RV sites surround it:

We were treated to an excellent sunset, the picture doesn't do it justice:

After our 2 night stay here in Mount Pleasant, we are off to Arkansas!

Saturday March 7, 2020

Second Day in Van Horn Texas

We arrived here yesterday after the night before in Deming NM. WE are staying tonight and we will hit Monahans Texas tomorrow, we reserved the last available site (must be spring break!). We've had 2 time changes in 2 days, the second one is tomorrow to daylight saving time, Murdoch will have to adjust!

We heard from our friend Terry that they are expecting 2.5 inches of rain in Borrego Springs over the next few days. That's more than a half year of rain, the super bloom must be coming!

Terry also let us know that Jeff Besos (from Amazon fame) has a space port here in the county near Van Horn, we must have passed it on our way here, Wikipedia has details. link

A picture of our site (which we have been in before, not a great place but better than other parks in the area:

Tuesday March 3, 2020

Back on the road towards Home (slowly!)

We are on the road, we left Borrego Springs on Sunday and we stayed in the Gila Bend KOA on Sunday night.

The last time we stayed in Gila Bend, the park was called Augie's Quail Trail. At that time we talked to the owner Augie and he said he was thinking about selling it, he said that he could get a million dollars, I guess he decided to sell. The new owner is a third time owner of RV parks and the gentleman who took us to our site said the new owner put almost a million$$ into improvements, the park shows it and is very comfortable, we got a pull through that was close to the dog park. We didn't have any problems but we were warned about rattle snakes, scorpions and also toads that are poison to dogs. The dog park is specially set up with special wire so that these bad guys don't get in! Our camp welcome guide is also the person that answers the emergency phone and catches the rattle snakes and takes them back into the desert!

We got into the Lazy Days KOA in Tucson yesterday, the place is packed and there are lots of kids around, it must be spring break here! We wanted a patio site but got a regular site in a "not great" location but it works for us. Some pictures:

The site isn't as tight as it looks, the road behind us is the side entrance to the park, fortunately the gate is closed after 7 pm, so it's quiet!

The other side of the road is where the pickle ball courts and patios with fireplaces exists,it's behind the main office, pool and restaurant. It's quiet after dark, especially yesterday when it started to rain!

We stay here for 2 more nights and head east to New Mexico after that. We are hoping that any damage after the tornado in Tennessee is cleared before we get there. Natchez Trace state park seems to be close to the track of that tornado.

Monday February 17, 2020 (Family Day!)

Happy Hour for the Dogs and Dog Park Ladies!

We hosted the dog park ladies and Lucy and Jiva last week for a get together at our campsite. Everyone (especially the dogs!) had a great time!

I've got a video of the dogs running around, I'll try to post it!

Wednesday January 29, 2020

We are still here!

It's been a long time since we posted, we have been enjoying the better than normal weather here and our friends. We haven't ventured out of town much except for shopping since New Years. We decided to do some touring and yesterday we did the circle around Joshua Tree National park. It was a great tour, some fantastic scenery and different as you go south to north.

Some pictures of the many we took:

We went through Box Canyon which is north east of Mecca on the way to Joshua Tree, some great rock formations

We entered Joshua Tree NP at the south entrance (cottonwood Visitor's center), and went north. This are of the park is desolate and has mountains in the distance, Murdoch was having a washroom break:

As you go further north the trees start to appear:

Some very interesting rock formations:

More Joshua trees and a view of a snow capped hill around Palm Springs in the distance:

We plan to get out a few more times before our time ends here in Borrego Springs!

Friday December 20, 2019

Almost Christmas!

We are well settled, as you can tell by the lack of posts!

We are prepared for Christmas and are looking forward to a nice roast beef dinner. A couple of pictures of the coyote activity around the RV park, we have a coyote who we call "Wylette" because we think she is a female, she spends some time behind the RVs here. There are quite a few ground squirrels in the area and we think she snacks on them. She was also seen lying under our neighbour's RV in wait for the squirrels to leave their holes.  There are lots of coyotes around, making lots of noise overnight.

Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year everyone!

Monday December 2, 2019

Settled in at Borrego Springs!

We arrived here on November 30 and we are set up (almost!).

They have had a lot of rain here, so much that there were cancellations over the Thanksgiving holiday period, we could have gotten in earlier but we had booked the Tucson KOA for the period so we stayed there.

We got our normal site and our friends Ozzie and Jane arrived yesterday, they are 2 sites down.

A picture of our site:

The place is looking good, the golf course has been seeded and it's very green!

More stuff later!

Saturday November 23, 2019

Change In Plans!

We decided to stay in Tucson until November 29th. The main reason is that Yuma isn't very good in terms of RV parks compared to the KOA here and although Yuma has a great Frys supermarket in the Yuma foothills, it is a bit of a pain to shop there because it's so busy, We have a great site here in Tucson and the shopping nearby is good (and Suzette can replenish her reading book list at Barnes and Noble!). We will stay in Yuma for one night, our site in The Springs at Borrego is available on the 30th.

We have met some folks here that we know from previous years and there are a number of Canadians avoiding the weather back home. Not a bad stop but we are looking forward to Borrego Springs!

Thursday November 21, 2019

I got Cropped!

Hello, Murdoch here!

I got cropped yesterday at Petsmart! I missed getting my trim and shampoo back home before my masters put me in the back of the truck and drove south.  It took almost three and a half hours, I'm a bit cooler and I smell better! A couple of pictures are below:



This is what I looked like before the trim!

And this is me afterwards, picture taken in the RV because it was raining and my masters don't like the wet dog smell that happens when I get wet!

My masters are thinking about the move to Yuma that happens in a couple of days, I am looking forward to seeing my girlfriend Lucy again on November 30 in Borrego Springs!

Sunday November 17, 2019.

Enjoying the warm weather in Tucson!

We arrived here two days ago and are enjoying the stay at the Lazy Days KOA as usual. We got a patio site (see picture below) and we have done some initial shopping. We plan to be here for a total of 8 days as we can't get a site in Borrego Springs until November 30 (they are fully booked over Thanksgiving). We will spend the week of Thanksgiving in Yuma, not great but we can get a site. The change in temperatures between Van Horn and here was dramatic, it was -2C overnight in Van Horn and 25C when we arrived here in Tucson, it's supposed to hit 30C today!

We will book a grooming for Murdoch at the Petsmart, he needs to be cleaned up and have his hair shortened for the warmer temps here.

Al did some RV maintenance and we get Shaw on the dish in the early morning and late afternoon into the evening so we can watch real Canadian TV, no hours and hours of the Trump impeachment hearings for us!

A nice site, you can't see the fireplace for the red bouganvalia plants!

Wednesday November 13, 2019

Second Day in Van Horn Texas

We are here in west Texas, heading for Deming New Mexico tomorrow. We transited Dallas and hit our normal stop at Horseshoe RV park near Ranger, we found it completely full of oilfield workers and it was trashed. We then stopped at Cisco where we got a campsite about 200 ft. from I-20, also full of oilfield workers and also trashed. It's getting tough to find a campground in west Texas because of the tens of thousand oilfield workers all in RV's. A couple of pictures of Cisco:

The slide outs of some RVs are almost touching!

Our site, you can just see the transports on I-20 in the distance

We then hit Monahans Sandhills just as the cold snap arrived, it was below freezing and we ran off internal water.

We are taking a break here in Van Horn, it's starting to warm up, the campground lady said she has never seen these cold temps here before, it's looking to get warmer in New Mexico and we may even need A/C in Tucson! Because of the late Thanksgiving here in the US we can't get into the Springs at Borrego as they are fully booked over the holiday, so we will spend a full week in each of Tucson and Yuma, we get our Borrego site on November 30, one day before our site is normally reserved for 3 months. Bring on the warm weather!

Saturday November 9, 2019

In Mt. Pleasant Texas

We got here yesterday and we leave tomorrow morning for west Texas, going through Dallas/Fort Worth on a Sunday

The campgrounds in Tennessee  and Arkansas don't have good cell coverage so we didn't post . Al should have invested in a cell booster, maybe before we return home we will get one.

It's been cold, -3C this morning when we got up, we've been burning lots of propane, it's supposed to warm up tomorrow.

Saturday November 2, 2019

First Outside Day!

We are in the Bowling Green KY KOA, we arrived here yesterday after leaving Columbus. It was cool yesterday morning, 3 of the 4 truck doors were frozen closed, it took a few minutes of engine running to be able to open them and thaw the ice from the windshield.

It's still cool overnight, -2C or so, the water hoses have been taken in to keep them from freezing.

Today we are able to sit outside with jackets or sweaters, some of us also braved the weather in short sleeves!

Al tracked down our problem with our Canadian TV, turns out that the Shaw "channel shuffle" done in September is preventing our automatic TV dish from finding the satellites as the channel that the software uses to aim the dish no longer exists in the Shaw lineup! The fix is an update from the dish manufacturer, but wandering Willy, a RVing friend of Al & Suzette suggested that we stop the dish from moving when the TV screen shows a picture, we will try this on Monday in Tennessee.

We did a detailed shopping at Kroger today and we are now good for a few days, we also got a propane cylinder filled as we are going through some propane to keep us warm at night.

We look forward to warmer weather as we head south!

Thursday October 31, 2019

In Columbus Indiana

Murdoch reporting again! It rained all last night and again this morning when my masters were packing up, I got walked and I got completely wet, so wet that my head was still wet when we got to Columbus after noon. It's stopped raining but it's cooling down, my masters have exchanged their lighter jackets for parkas and some sleet was also falling. The camper is running on tank water (whatever that is!) as the water hose would freeze overnight.

My masters are feeling TV deprived, this is the third night that the camper has been in the trees so no TV. At least they are streaming a radio station  from Toronto so they feel connected to Canada!

It's Bowling  Green KY tomorrow for the weekend! I finally get a dog park to play in!

Wednesday October 30, 2019

We are on the road!

Hello, this is Murdoch reporting on our progress!

My eyes really don't look like that, it's just the flash!

I'm wet (you probably don't see that) but I just got back from a walk in the rain here in the KOA in Bluffton Indiana. I also got wet this morning in Monroe Michigan where my masters stayed last night. I wanted to stay out more, but because it's rainy so I'm indoors most of the time. My masters don't like my "wet dog" smell!

My masters report that the crossing into the US was trouble free, about 2 minutes or so. We are hoping for better weather but there is some snow flurries in the forecast for Columbus Indiana where we will stay tomorrow night. The weather looks better next week thank goodness!

More updates from the dog park in Bowling Green over the weekend!

Tuesday October 22, 2019

Getting ready to head south!

We are in the final days before we leave for the south, we expect to be on the road around Halloween. A lot of stuff has been doe, all remains is the final packing of stuff and getting the house ready for it's winter "sleep".

It's been the year of "fun" with vehicles. The RV wheel loss has been documented in the previous winter trip blog. The RV went to our dealer for a full check out, the wheel loss scored the axle spindle and we carefully drove the RV north this summer while a new axle was ordered. In addition the bedroom slide wouldn't open when we arrived home from the winter trip, we got a temporary fix and a new slide assembly was ordered. These repairs have been done and Al also replaced the main board on the furnace when it died on our summer trip north.

Suzette's Jeep has also been giving problems, so at 16 years old we retired it for a new one, a 2019 Wrangler. It looks and works great.

The truck also was giving problems, the engine died when the gas pedal was pushed, a long story with the Ford dealer's incompetence but the problem was eventually fixed by switching dealers and a good diesel tech. Ford is getting a long E-mail of complaint.

Stay tuned for our trip progress!