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Old 02-13-2020, 01:03 PM   #121
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Returned from walking these two energetic Blue Heelers. It is real tough here in Boulder City with Blue Skies, low humidity, mid 50's, no jacket and traffic is not on the road... but in the Air landing at Las Vegas International.

Those of you bashful members need to get with it. We are NOT discussing tires, wheels, leaks, hitches... and other weird material that we did not buy our Airstreams to spend all of our time discussing. I always think of words as being dark chocolates with blue berries sprinkled on top.

If I have to eat any... give me a sack full.

If I have to 'Eat my own Words'... See... you fell for that. If you took it literally, you need to add something witty to the usual drab and not interesting facts of Airstream ownership. There is hope.

We had, at OSHA, what I though was funny. A car was idling, as a future example of what a car in a dealership's showroom, would be like. Windows closed.

A Some Other Brand trailer owner, of course... was appalled by the smell. "What is that SMELL" this SOB owner cried out.

"Fresh Air". The salesmen responded. Much like a Tesla with two tailpipes for electron exhaust, mentality.

OK. The local newspaper wanted me to write Editorials. I was invited to the Editor's Desk. I spoke with the Editor. I asked what happened to the 'other editorial writer'. "He left." I was asked some questions about things going on in the City. I was truthful. The editor was shocked... that I discussed facts and not opinions. Although, I would have to use a Pen Name, like Samuel Clemens aka Mark Twain did to mask MY true identity. (I would use someone's handle on this forum that I already have ruined.)

I did not want effigies out in our yard, set on fire, kind of decision. Nope... "could not do", says the editor. Although I liked Mark Twain as a pen name, this current fake name is already someone else's pen name. Although I could do like the others writing about Cats in a Tree being saved by a courageous citizen or fire department... material, which if it were true or not, would bring tears to cat lovers, where ever they may reside.

We get to OTG Boondocking, opinions are... good. One is starting a campfire with... gasoline. Don't... is my opinion. But then again... I am not a professional Fireman or Ambulance driver to consider this not an opinion but... a fact. Like those who BBQ with a grill in their apartment... no doubt having a PhD in repeating wise choices.

What is left out there to discuss? Methane in feed lots?

OK. Methane. CH4. What environmentalists smell is not methane... they call it MEEthane. What is blowing across Greeley, Colorado from the north to south is just what is left after the CH4 went straight up... leaving the smell. Like bacon, discussed earlier. No MEEthane in bacon grease, I am aware. It will burn.

For those who have continuing complaints about their Black Tank clogging and cannot understand , since water is magical in its ability to dissolve materials... and you have a magic wand, this is Airstream's problem... not theirs. Someone is thinking with the source end and not the mental judicial part of the human body.

If this were the case... our homes could explode as MEEthane does not flush. It collects on the ceiling and would have already blown your windows out. Unless you do not use the ceiling exhaust fan or have a window to remediate the catastrophe.
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Old 02-13-2020, 01:23 PM   #122
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RATS eating your Tow Vehicles Wiring

Tucson, Arizona and the Southwest is well known for its Rat Population. Rodents, I am talking about.

You do not see them during the day. They come out after Sunset and are rummaging through the RV Park for food.

At the Gilbert Ray County RV Park, south and west of Tucson... my first visit would give you goosebumps. All of these tow vehicles and RV's, or most of, had their hoods up. First instinct would be 'BAD Fuel'.

Nope. It was due to RATS eating their wiring insulation and nesting on top of the engine when it became cold, overnight.

The solution. The long strings of LED lights were wrapped around the engine area from below and up into the top of the engine, attached to the hood. The bright lights kept the Rats away. Once I figure that out in 2006 with the first Airstream... I bought a 25 foot LED light string, strung it around and slept... very well.

Those who thought, as I originally did, were now becoming the hosts for RATS. Those with the hood up at night with LED lights, . Those with the hood up during the day, .

...and if you do not believe this works... find out if it does or does not on your time. If the Rats loved your Toyota Tundra's wire better than a Fords... you now owe me a bag of dark chocolates. I will Eat YOUR words... not mine this time.

At Jackson Center, Ohio. Those trees are full of squirrels. They love getting on top of your warm engine at night and no doubt build a nest or eat wiring as well. Sure... you shrug it off as hearsay. Get that bag of dark chocolates and send them to me. You could be hosting your own family of Squirrels.
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Old 02-13-2020, 02:43 PM   #123
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Newbies... learning curve is experience

OK... just finished listing a wonderful mine study done in 1949 for Eagle County, Colorado. Good for Silver and Gold and south of Eagle. Now back to my last post on this thread... unless there is any interest.

Nancy and I learned how to Off the Grid Boondocking the FIRST 12 months owning our 2006 23 foot Safari towed with a 2006 Tundra 4x4, chain drop Equalizer hitch. Not a bad combination... but just enough.

The mistakes we discovered were during these first 12 months as we traveled a lot. We did all the wrong things compressed into a short period of time. It was a learning experience and also taught us about a trailer is hand made by professionals, but the 14 inch Marathons were designed by something else.

Warranty items were discovered while on the road. What additional tools needed was learned when... we needed them.

A chain saw left at home was useless when in New Mexico with a tree or two blocking access to a camp site.

How things work. On the road.

How to flush the fresh water tank before the first trip. Learned on the road.

How to change flat tires. Learned on the road.

When to dump the Marathon tires. Learned on the road. Bought Hi Run 14 inch tires in Rawlins, Wyoming and by the time we got to Rock Springs, Wyoming the center tread was distorting. Their dealer in Rock Springs said... "you are overweight and YOUR fault. Not the tires." We weighed everything, including tools and paper plates. Liar, liar pants on fire. What a wonderful tire dealer.

Bought good tires Tow Max tires at Les Schwab Salt Lake City. GREAT 14 inch.
Bought Tow Master (Greenball at Costco- or the other way around and one set from Les Schwab ). These 14 inch tires held up and wore out.

What is your OTG Newbie experiences? Now... Michelin 16 inch tires on our later Airstreams was part of the earlier Goodyear experience. Good, bad or sort of ugly. We survived and now.. geniuses. Give or take a few acorns.
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Old 02-13-2020, 04:06 PM   #124
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I got lost once in Yellowstone trying to find the restroom at Old Faithful. Okay, not really. I was in the back country far away from the crowds. I had a book that led me to hiking trails that aren't used often. This was many years before consumer GPS' were available. I found the trailhead, and took off. There was so little use of the trail that the only indication of its existence was colored tags on a few trees. You'd walk to one tag, stop, look around for the next tag and walk to it, repeat, repeat, repeat. After a while, I couldn't find the next tag and I made the mistake of assuming where the trail should be. Eventually I found myself in the middle of a wetland, and I knew I had walked much further than my intended destination. Fortunately, I had a topo map and compass. I was able to triangulate my location off of several mountain tops to figure out where I was, which was several miles from where I was supposed to be. I was then able to get out of the wetland and find my car before it got too dark. I didn't have a flashlight. I was by myself, and nobody knew where I was. I'd like to think I'm smarter than that now, but maybe not. Maybe I'll take Rays advice and put a little flashlight in my day-pack.

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When OTGed (Off the Griding) in National Forests... often remote fenced western areas are leased to Ranchers for Summer grazing. When livestock are moved into an area leased for the Summer, they, the livestock, do not stand around while they graze.

They move. They move quickly. They can be in your campsite sooner than later as cattle do not know an Airstream and tow vehicle from a Rancher dropping off blocks of 'mineral or salt licks'. You... become the Center of Attention. Especially if you are camped along a source of water... the Cattle have been moving to this water and once arrived... again, you are the Center of Attention. Like it or not.

Just chase them off and they will keep moving onto fresh territory. If they return, fry some thick hamburgers outside on a grill. They may get the idea...
This reminds me of another story. Last fall, we went for a hike into the "Hole In The Wall" near Kaycee Wyoming (of Butch Cassidy fame). It's a fair little walk, and we got back to the car in the late afternoon. As we were packing up, a kid with Colorado plates pulls up and starts heading down the trail. The only thing he was carrying was a small rifle. This place is extremely remote, and it was way too late to be heading out. Being concerned for his safety, I went to talk to him and suggest he come back tomorrow. It turns out that he had been sitting at a gate a couple of miles up the road for several hours. There is a stock tank by the gate, so cattle hang out there. When he went to open the gate, the cattle came to say hello. Being from Colorado, he naturally assumed that cows were mean, so he sat and waited for them to leave. The cows figured that he was the most interesting thing they had seen that week, so they were sticking around. When it started getting dark, the cows finally mooooved on, and he made it through the gate. He said he would just go a little ways up the trail and head back. I told him that if the cows were there on his way out to just clap his hands and walk towards them like they weren't there and they would move. I never heard about any missing persons out that way, so I assume he made it out.
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Old 02-13-2020, 04:16 PM   #125
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[QUOTE=Ray Eklund;2332006]Returned from walking these two energetic Blue Heelers. It is real tough here in Boulder City with Blue Skies, low humidity, mid 50's, no jacket and traffic is not on the road... but in the Air landing at Las Vegas International.
/QUOTE]

Ray, I think I coming to visit you. We've gotten more snow in the last two weeks than we've gotten in the last two years. I'm running out of places to pile it. It's been so crappy that the dog won't get off of the porch to "do her bidness".

Now to start digging out the Airstream for the trip to Nevada.
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Old 02-13-2020, 05:51 PM   #126
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Thalweg, my in-laws live up the road from you in Story. I saw pictures yesterday of the snow accumulation. It's a lot!

Ray, I'm thinking you've had too much caffeine for the day. But it's entertaining.

A friend I've camped with is having an on-the-road learning experience. He bought a Keystone Montana 5th wheel about two years ago and is on a trip that started in Montana, got to Maine, went down the east coast and is now in San Antonio. His trailer has been plagued with leaks in the roof and it's in the shop for a new roof at this time. He's replacing the wheels (one cracked and is leaking), the tires, at least two suspension bolts and a couple other things. A few months prior to the trip he discovered that the welds on the aluminum wall studs had failed and the studs were no longer connected to the aluminum footer plates. That was not a small project.
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Old 02-13-2020, 06:02 PM   #127
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... Thalweg brought a smile to all of us, even if the current temperature here is 63 and he has Frosty Pumpkins.

I hope others will follow. Having two acorns to start a forest is not enough.

Hey. If you want to be a walnut or a peanut, that is OK with me. Just tell us your Boondocking story/stories and we can have a good laugh and get through this Winter. Although the peanut is not a nut... it is a legume.

Kids would not eat them if you called them a pea legume. Sounds too healthy to me.

Camped at DuBois, Wyoming in 2016, Thalweg had a Little Buddy in his Airstream. For those who are confused, it is a heater. Connie also liked the Little Buddy. It was warm and cozy inside. Our Portable Buddy arrived a couple days ago and that means we will be leaving early to the High country (7500 to 7800 feet) of New Mexico. It grew up to 4,000 to 8,000 btu's and will heat 225 square feet. Walmart order and they have a system where you input your order number and a door opens up and... there it was behind Door #1.

I can see 'Currently Active Users' names. You are holding out. This is not a Black Tank Bat Guano thread where everyone has a cure... this OTG Thread is more for those who have or had a sense of humor and misdirected... adventures. This is lost between the ages of 13 to 19 and again once your are over 70 and act like you are 13 to 19. Been there and starting back to 13 and it feels... pretty good doing what you want anytime.

You do not know me, or may better off you do not. We do not know you, but if your adventures are good... who knows. Some say I am crusty. Compared to what, I ask? I am just the average Dung Kicker from the Rocky Mountain back country.

If you understand WHY Ranchers wear 'Cowboy Boots'... then you have a Green Light to camp next to me. If you don't... it will be a few hours and you will figure it out on your own.

Thanks Thalweg.
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Old 02-13-2020, 06:37 PM   #128
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And... just to make you aware. In more rural areas of, lets say Wyoming... it is not unsusal to find a hundred or more sheep being moved by a few sheep herders on horses... on the State Highway. What is the first sign? If you are coming up from behind... you will see Sheep patties, that flip up under your fender wells. Drying like concrete in no time.
This was east of Kaycee, Wyoming a couple of years ago... I was late getting off work that day.
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Old 02-13-2020, 10:21 PM   #129
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...

———snip for brevity——————
If you understand WHY Ranchers wear 'Cowboy Boots'... then you have a Green Light to camp next to me. If you don't... it will be a few hours and you will figure it out on your own.

.

The old rule of thumb is, if the person is a real cowboy, the dung is on the outside of the boots.
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Old 02-13-2020, 10:38 PM   #130
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This was east of Kaycee, Wyoming a couple of years ago... I was late getting off work that day.
I worked in Kaycee one summer. I'm pretty sure that I met Chris LeDoux once in town.
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Old 02-14-2020, 09:03 AM   #131
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I worked in Kaycee one summer. I'm pretty sure that I met Chris LeDoux once in town.
Kaycee has built a pretty nice park in the middle of town with a bronze statue of Chris LeDoux. I worked on a gas project out on his land years ago. He was there one day. I had no idea who he was.
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Old 02-14-2020, 09:59 AM   #132
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I see that Batman is getting the courage to a second cup of coffee and make a comment, or two.

Speaking of Bats. Missouri is full of them. Well, the caves are when I was on my first Spelunking Experience in the cold months. Once you are in the deep intestines of the cave... the temperature seems warm, considering it is 25 degrees outside.

A great excuse to Boondock, next to a Cave Entrance. Although today, the 21st Century, caves are now protected to keep YOU OUT, not the Cavern Clubs, etc. who put iron gates in front so the Bats can leave, but you cannot. Everyone should protect holes in the ground... makes sense to me. Not like it will disappear if the cave is not protected.

I was thinking of Post #129 by mkrum. I can use that one when back in Wyoming.

Well, I was inside with my carbide headlamp fired up and I was standing in this 'stalagmite' of some sort. Definition: A mound rising from the floor of a cave. (Short Version)

My friend, experienced in these kinds of things said it was Bat Guano. I asked what kind of cave formation is that? I was 15 or 16 at the time and not on top of things, as I think I am today.

Bat S&*T.

Ohhhhh. K.....ay. That is when I wanted to become a Geologist.

Why go Caving in the Winter Months, you ask? Well... it Snows when it is very cold outside. If it were to RAIN... the lower levels of the Cave are connected to water funneling into the ground. Much like the group of kids that were stranded, not in the Winter, in a cavern a year or three ago.

Sometimes you get smart soon. Sometimes later.

There is a Cavern with stalactites and ...'mites in Millard County, Utah. It is in a dolomite... like limestone most of you reading this. It was underground at one time. Today... it is at 7,000 feet or so and you also have to hike up about 1200 feet from the campsite to visit.

Strange things happened in the past. A Geologist thinks that way.

Thalweg is a Hydrologist. He would make a good Spelunker and like the slipping through the unlimited fine mud and small creeks underground. Almost like those whose Black Tank is clogged and ask someone to climb into the tank and fix it for them. Well, not really. I just say get a bucket, rubber gloves and clean it out yourself.

Bat Guano... for those who are still hanging on. It was 'mined' for the nitrogen and gun powder hundreds of years ago in the Caribbean. Ohhh.... wouldn't I enjoy that job. Selling what I was standing in for profit.
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Old 02-14-2020, 10:14 AM   #133
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Our Boy Scout Troop used to go through a primitive cave system each year. Then they put a gate on it because humans had caused the bats to get white noses, or something like that. The entrance culvert installed at 45° angle down into the cave was more restrictive than the caves themselves.

There are a lot of fun things that our troop used to do 15 years ago that aren't done any more.
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Old 02-14-2020, 10:29 AM   #134
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Lumens

Boondocking is our favorite thing to do.

We enjoy the peaceful solitude. Just me, the wife and the dogs.

For me the night time is the best. I really enjoy the stars at night. I will walk out of site of the camp fire light and find a place to lay down and watch the stars roll by, listening to the night creatures and sometimes falling asleep.

I always have a headlamp and flashlight in my day pack. However all lights are not created equal. I have found over the years that some unscrupulous manufacturers mislead us naive consumers, I know it's hard to believe but true.

Headlamps for example, I needed a headlamp for work and ran down to the box store and found one that said it was 2000 lumens (thats a lot of lumens). It did work, but no where near 2000 lumens, maybe 100 lumens. It was cheap and didi the job. But buyer be ware. I have several good headlamps for camping and backpacking, I like Black Diamond and Petzl They are true in there advertising and customer service they are great quality lamps.

Flashlights are also subject to false claims by there cheap manufacturers. I have always carried MAG lights in the camp gear. Big and can be used as a club if needed. Not something I would carry in my day pack. That being said. I am in love with my newest tactical flashlight from Nitecore the "New P12". Many feature, 2 sizes of batteries, rechargeable, true 1200 lumens, small and powerful. The strobe feature uses randomly changing frequencies for stronger dizzying effects (very debilitating). Much brighter than any I have ever used. Perfect for the day pack or top drawer in the trailer. They do make a higher lumen light but it doesn't have the options of this one.

-Dennis
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Old 02-14-2020, 10:49 AM   #135
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Agreed on the Black Diamond headlamps. Expensive but very good quality. I keep a cheap headlamp in each vehicle in case I need to change a tire at night. The Black Diamond headlamp stays in my backpack.

My flashlight of choice is the StreamLight Strion. Tough, compact, very bright flashlight.

It's possible to have too many lumens. At some point the light is so bright you can't see what you're looking at if it is too close.
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Old 02-14-2020, 10:56 AM   #136
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Since batman is here...

Did you see the new actor for the next Batman movie? He doesn't look like much of a Batman to me.
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Old 02-14-2020, 10:57 AM   #137
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Bats, you gotta love those little guys!

On an other note. It's nice when you can be prepared for most things.

Some places we go wood can be scarce at the camp site. I have mounted a receiver on the front of my Yukon (best thing ever). I have a cargo carrier that I put on to carry Generator, extra Fuel and Water, etc. After I get camp set up, I can head out to collect wood with my trusty "chainsaw" in hand and my cargo carrier. to bring it all back to camp. Chainsaws can be great for getting out of a bad situation also.

-Dennis
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Old 02-14-2020, 11:07 AM   #138
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Since batman is here...

Did you see the new actor for the next Batman movie? He doesn't look like much of a Batman to me.
NO, I have not seen the trailers yet. I was given my nick name back in the seventies when it was Adam West as Batman (long story).


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Old 02-14-2020, 11:22 AM   #139
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Our Boy Scout Troop used to go through a primitive cave system each year. Then they put a gate on it because humans had caused the bats to get white noses, or something like that. The entrance culvert installed at 45° angle down into the cave was more restrictive than the caves themselves.

There are a lot of fun things that our troop used to do 15 years ago that aren't done any more.


White nose is a fungal disease that kills bats and spreads quickly among their population in a cave. Since bats eat a lot of bugs, it’s a serious problem.

In Northern Alabama, we put up bat boxes to encourage them. Around there, mosquitos are known to carry a lot of disease, and are referred to as “bloodsucking helicopters”. Tons of bug repellent just seems to make them more voracious...

Humans in caves tend to leave a lot of trash and germs behind, as well as bring diseases in.

When we lived in Alabama, we did a lot of spelunking with our scout troops. There are a few caves that are still open that do not have bats in them. One very famous one in the middle of the city has been blocked off from humans to protect one of the last colonies of blind cave shrimp in the Huntsville area, rightfully so.
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Old 02-14-2020, 01:50 PM   #140
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Carlsbad Caverns: BATmobiles

Rmkrum is correct.

I lived a year or more at 9/10 years old in the Canal Zone. The bats must have lived in these hanging nests in the tall trees with clearings. They were the size of crows in the USA. Sometimes they would roost in the school entryway. They were Fruit Bats. DDT was what was used for insects.

Carlsbad Caverns... the BAT Capital. Not only a fantastic Cavern to tour... I guess called Mexican Bats come out at dusk and returned at dawn. There is a sitting area to watch both events. Worth it. When we sat to watch, my wife's mother was with us. The bats were silent and only a slight whisper of wind could be heard.

When the bats were leaving or returning... I would lightly touch their hair. The reaction was worth the trip. Evil is where you find mischief. Rewarding, I say.

If you plan to go to Carlsbad Caverns... two days. There is a RV campground just outside the Park. It was a disaster all three times we came. Pay for the cheapest spot and park where you like. No one was there. The Cavern sidewalks were drier than the Shower Floors at the campground.

North of Carlsbad, I was told, a better RV Park. The one we stayed had picnic tables and at worst a OTG Campground. Just minutes from the Park Entrance.
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