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Old 10-02-2008, 10:59 AM   #71
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I'm sorta bummed out you are back home now. During those long stretched where I am dry docked here in Oklahoma, reading about the adventures others are having makes things more enjoyable. Sounds like you had a good trip though with no major problems.

I know you didn't boondock at all on this trip, I suggest you think about doing some on future trips. Its relaxing and none of the 'campground Nazis" you mentioned in the earlier post.

Looking at the count down clock on my screen I am 72 days. 14 hrs, 1 min, & 12 seconds from starting my winter break trip to Padre Island (but who is counting? ).
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Old 10-02-2008, 11:47 AM   #72
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I'm sorta bummed out you are back home now. During those long stretched where I am dry docked here in Oklahoma, reading about the adventures others are having makes things more enjoyable.

I know you didn't boondock at all on this trip, I suggest you think about doing some on future trips.

Looking at the count down clock on my screen I am 72 days. 14 hrs, 1 min, & 12 seconds from starting my winter break trip to Padre Island (but who is counting? ).
Rodney,

Burn that clock. It makes you crazy. We do think about boondocking, but slide into lethargy and pay money for all the frills. We can take more trips if you'd like to send loads of money—think of it as therapy for you and maybe cheaper. We're here to help! Thanks for your good thoughts.

Gene
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Old 11-07-2008, 05:30 PM   #73
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I spent some time today getting ready for our last trip of the year, but first…

I'm going to try this photo thing again. If this works—

This is a picture of the Safari last winter.http://www.airforums.com/forums/atta...1&d=1226100501
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Old 11-07-2008, 05:42 PM   #74
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Thanks to Rollertoaster for explaining how to do it. That was last December so I've been a little slow. Now I'll try to two pictures.

The first is a cool older trailer in front of the factory in Ohio last June. The second is General Disarray's Tradewind and truck. The scary looking old guy standing there is me.
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Old 11-07-2008, 05:46 PM   #75
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The last picture was at a Four Corners Unit rally last June near Leadville, Colo.

I haven't loaded any pictures into the computer for a while and there's a bunch from our trip to the NW in September. This does take a while. You have to really want to have to upload the photos and take the time to do it.

We are going to Capital Reef National Park tomorrow. There's a storm coming, but we can beat it to Utah. Most of the rain and snow will be north of us, so we'll do ok. We need to get away for several days and relax.

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Old 11-07-2008, 06:22 PM   #76
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I haven't loaded any pictures into the computer for a while and there's a bunch from our trip to the NW in September. This does take a while. You have to really want to have to upload the photos and take the time to do
Get a Mac with I Photo! Have a great trip, we've put off our trip across I-90
for a few days because of the weather.
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Old 11-07-2008, 06:29 PM   #77
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Get a Mac with I Photo! Have a great trip, we've put off our trip across I-90
for a few days because of the weather.
Mike, I do have a Mac. I'm just dumb. The storm up in the NW isd the storm coming to Colorado and Utah on Saturday night and Sunday. You probably will be following it. I hope your trip goes well.

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Old 11-09-2008, 09:39 AM   #78
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What I wouldn't give to be in CP. When we were there in the spring the campground Host was an Airstreamer. How's the temperature Gene?
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Old 11-09-2008, 10:55 AM   #79
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Charlie, we are in Green River having gone 175 miles after our usual slow start. It's 44˚ and cloudy outside and supposed to be 50˚ at Capital Reef today. Forecast is for rain showers for the next few days. We may be relaxing in the Safari looking out the windows.

I think there are 4 other RV's at this KOA. This morning's adventure was watching the fountain about 25' away. I guess it got down to freezing at dawn because one of the faucets blew off the pipe. Some of the faucets have insulation, but no heat tape. This one had no insulation but obviously had plenty of water. I'm guessing the pipe was weakened by previous freezes because it was 34˚ at 7:30 and couldn't have been all that cold an hour or two before when it broke. I guess it was spouting for at least an hour because there a nice little pond out there. We weren't close enough to get the truck and trailer washed. It got turned off when someone showed up at 8.

We are about 80 miles from Capital Reef and should be there around noon. It's a beautiful area. We tent camped there more than 15 years ago, both in the big Fruita campground and the wilderness. It's usually a pretty quiet Park because it's overshadowed by Canyonlands, Arches, Bryce and Zion. Quiet seems nice.

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Old 11-09-2008, 11:36 AM   #80
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Hey Gene, I have been distracted the last couple weeks and didn't notice you were out in Utah. Sounds like you are having a good time, make sure you check out the arch at Capitol Reef. We had a great time there this summer.
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Old 11-09-2008, 12:11 PM   #81
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Crawford Gene
I have one question
Why is the Safari covered wiff snow When there is a beautiful building behind it. Just curious.
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Old 11-13-2008, 11:08 AM   #82
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Why is the Safari covered wiff snow When there is a beautiful building behind it.
Roger
Short answer: It doesn't fit.

Long answer: The previous owner had an RV that was shorter than ours and had the RV door put on the side because there was enough room. Ours would barely fit if we never wanted to go to the back of the building, or I removed some of the shop benches I built along the wall or I wanted to go all the way around and use the back door. The RV door is pretty tight fit too. I'm not sure it would fit if I tried it. All too inconvenient. It's made to be outside and the survey on another thread indicates something like 85% of Airstreams are parked outside. It's nice to be in the majority on something.

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Old 11-13-2008, 10:00 PM   #83
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As the sun sets in the west…

Our days in Utah were quite restful. I caught up on some reading since I had no access to TV or the internet. I forget how amazing southern Utah is with the colorful rocks—red, white, grey, even some black. Many spires, peaks, balanced rocks. I can't explain it and won't be showing photos of it because we forgot the camera. We did remember ice cream, so our priorities are still ok.

The campground at Capital Reef NP is at a place called Fruita. It was a Mormon settlement a century plus ago. The fruit trees are still there as well as some new ones planted by the park service. In the midst of the high desert with only sagebrush, rabbitbrush, and other desert bushes, stunted piñon trees and lots of many colored mesas and all sorts of rock formations, is this valley along the Fremont River. The river flows all year and the valley appears to have a pretty good water table as several broadleaf species of trees flourish. There are three loops to the campground, but the best one for RV's was closed (Loop C). All the loops have lots of trees, bathrooms, a dump station and potable water in several places. There are, if all loops are open, space for about 70 RV's. All for $5/day with a Golden Age card. Every time we camp under trees we forget that limits the sun to the solar panel, but the trees are worth it. The wide spaces can accommodate about a 30' trailer with the TV parked alongside. The narrow ones, a Bambi plus a truck would be about it. There were about 3 or 4 other RV's and a few tents while we were there. If all the campsites were filled, backing into some spaces would be a challenge because the road is narrow. There are scores of pretty tame mule deer grazing through the area.

There's a 10 mile paved "scenic drive", a few 2WD short roads, and a lot of 4WD roads in and around Capital Reef. There's a partly paved road along the eastern edge which eventually ends up at Lake Powell. We camped with a tent at the Fruita campground and a few remote places about 20 years ago, so we've been through the entire Park. This time we just lazily drove around a bit, read, slept and ate.

We went to Torrey, a town of about 160 about 10 miles west of CRNP, for breakfast and dinner one day. Food in southern Utah 20 years ago was not very good and some locals acted like they didn't like outsiders in their part of the world. In the intervening years, they have learned to accept us, now act quite friendly, but the food is mediocre most of the time. Although the weather was supposed to have a chance of rain with snow in the nearby mountains, it was sunny most of the time without any rain. The mountains did have snow on the tops. Southern Utah is spectacular, but there are threats of substantial uranium mining without sufficient safeguards. There's also some oil—we've seen seeps in Canyonlands NP. The efforts to lease vast tracts of land for mining and drilling in Utah will probably end up in court. A lot of motels and restaurants have opened just west of the Park in recent years, most closed at this time of year, including ones AAA says are open. We think it's overbuilt and it's possible high gas prices killed the tourist business at this often forgotten national park.

Tuesday, after 2 nights at CRNP, we went to Goblin Valley SP. It's located off of Utah 24, about halfway between I-70 and Hanksville. The "Goblins" are formations of rock and mud looking like the hoodoos at Bryce Canyon, in a succession of valleys. They are often around 15-20 feet high with a big rock on top (goblin's head) and have many unusual shapes. It's pretty strange and worth seeing. $16 to camp (don't pay the $7 admission too!) at a campground with around 20 sites, about half ok for RV's; several are pull throughs—#9 worked well for us. Plenty of water and a good dump station. There are also 4 well kept showers. It's set amongst the rocks.

There are many 4WD and some 2WD gravel or dirt roads thorough out this area to explore. The roads to the Park are all paved. The ranger will give you a regional map to guide you if you ask. You can buy topos beforehand. Bring plenty of gas since there's not a lot of places to get it. After you leave Green River, there's nothing until Hanksville (about 60 miles south). Come from the west, there are no services on I-70 for 100 miles west of Green River. Goblin Valley is a good place to leave the Airstream and check out the area. If it rains, the roads get really bad. A lot of roads in southern Utah are clay. It'll stick to your tires a couple of inches thick and you will have trouble controlling your vehicle. Scrape it off, drive 100 feet and you've got 2 inches of mud stuck to your tires again. You need either those big knobby mud tires or chains or both. It's worse than wet snow and I've tried to drive through it and didn't try it a second time. Wait for the sun to dry it out. Where it's deep sand, it's like driving through snow—keep going pretty fast, don't stop, skid around the curves, and hope for the best. If it's too deep and you'd high center, turn around. When driving over slick rock, don't lose the trail—sometimes you can't tell where it is on rock and we have had at times had to have one of us walking ahead to find the "road" while the other creeps along. It's so bumpy, you don't want to drive fast. We've never gotten stuck, but had some close calls. When we did the Canyonlands area 20 years ago, there weren't a gazillion 4WD's out there, so it was pretty quiet and remote feeling. I don't know what it's like now. Other areas have not been discovered (as much). Fall and Spring are the best times to explore because the summer can be well over 100˚ (AC eats precious gas) and sudden thunderstorms can trap you on a muddy road or at seasonal river crossing (the land of quicksand). Winter can mean snow and that can make it really hard to find the road. If you're careful it's not dangerous, just be prepared. The sights are well worth going into the backcountry to see. After a day bouncing along remote roads, that Airstream will be very appreciated and that's why ice cream is essential in the desert.

We came home without incident. Emptied most of the stuff out of the Safari yesterday and got the rest today. I started the winterizing and it was a lot less daunting than last year. All I have to do tomorrow is use the water pump bypass kit to pump antifreeze into the water lines, put some in the traps, toilet and the the black and grey water tanks (to lubricate the seals).

So, the 2nd Airstream year is over. Since we bought it 1 year and 2 weeks ago, we've covered around 9,000 miles. What I miss from traveling with motels and some hotels, is that we don't get to experience some cool historic lodging and an occasional luxury place. Most motels are mass produced boxes and boring, but some stand out. While the typical motel rectangle room gets boring, we are spending every night in the same tube. It's a really nice tube, the bed is comfy, the refrigerator is wonderful, the shower is always hot (can't say that about every motel) though small. The toilet could have more space around it, especially since my wife has stored things all around. I haven't stayed in any motels where I had to connect the sewer, electric, water, TV cable myself though there was a memorable major back up of the sewer at Death Valley one Thanksgiving. I don't have to carry luggage, a big cooler, food and such up and down stairs anymore and that's wonderful. It is more of a money pit than I anticipated, but in 50 years, it'll have paid for itself!

Where are we going next year? Probably a first trip in March to NM to see Barb's 99 year old grandmother. Then what? Well, will we have any assets left and will the stocks still pay dividends? It's a pretty scary time and this is the first time since we retired we have to be very careful about next year's plans. Maybe we'll stay close to home, maybe we'll go to Jackson Center, maybe we'll go to see Michigan and Wisconsin (we've never been there) and Minnesota (I've never been there), maybe we'll finally get passports to go to dangerous Canada, or if the stock market zooms upwards (gas will too) or we sell that lot next to us, maybe Newfoundland or Alaska again.

In the more near future, we've got to download the photos from the trip to the NW and then I have to figure out (again) how to post them.

Gene
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Old 11-16-2008, 04:41 PM   #84
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Gene,

Sounds like it may be time to start writing that Airstream travel book.

"Gene and Barb's Excellent Adventure."

Thanks for the verbage, 'ya do it well.

Bob
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