Saturday, September 16, 2017

Heading South – The End

We knew the departure date. We also knew the route (we thought) but we didn’t expect to be detoured due to fires along the Oregon Gorge which closed down eastbound travel on I-84.  We started scrambling for aday1 Plan B looking at coastal options, California and Nevada as well. 

 < --------  This was the beginning of our  intended route until the freeway was shut down. 

The detour off I-84 is Washington’s SR14 for all the eastbound traffic to pack onto.  Can’t you just picture hundreds of cars from the freeway packed on a two lane highway?  It may be just a 65 mile detour but the speed of the traffic would no doubt remind you Los Angeles rush hour traffic.  We could take that route or  we could settle on another route.   Since we aren’t leaving until Sunday morning there is  still have a little time to finalize that decision .  Why rush?  We have a tentative Plan B but we’ll know just how tentative it is when we pull out tomorrow morning.

We are prepared to leave though.  Preparing for it meant loading up our little “gadabout” trailer and moving it from the storage lot into the Kelso Elks RV park.  The Elks have parks just all over and most are very convenient.  Some offer no hookups, others offer partial hookups and still more have full hookups.  The one we are currently at in Kelso has partial hookups, a lot of dust due to gravel and an on-site dump.  At $20 a night it’s quite the deal. 


While in departure mode we went for breakfast at the center of town in Chelatchie Prairie.  The general store is the whole town and it’s on the way to Mt. St. Helens via Cougar.  Breakfast was amazing with large portions (way too much for one person) and low prices.  We were also lucky enough to share some meals and barbecues with family, stock up with groceries and work on our final departure plans.  With the “endless shrimp” promotion at Red Lobster, we all celebrated September birthdays (Terry, Robert and Sabrina) there.  


My new Buck clock  ----->  
Buck even had a chance to visit the very large dog park in Kelso.  However, that turned into a disaster and required a trip to the Banfield Pet Hospital in Vancouver for x-rays after he yelled out in pain and limped back to the gate.  Banfield works great for us because his records are accessible no matter what town we are in.  The leg wasn’t broken but vet “guessed'” he had a torn knee ligament and we were supplied with pain pills.  Why do these things happen right at departure time? Or, why do these things happen at all?  It’s been quite challenging to lift this short big dog 13sep2-in and out of the truck and the trailer.  The ramp we have helps but we still have to lift the back end as he goes up.  Now we have a follow-up appointment to schedule someplace down the road. 

We love fruit pizzas so I experimented with our pizza maker13sep3-.  This was the yummy result and the result meant we’d be taking the pizza maker south with us!

15sep31-In addition to Buck’s lameness, we also had an issue with our Jeep.  The window fell down into the door.  No way could we leave it through the winter without fixing that so in the shop it went hoping it’d be fixed before we left.  Hopefully, that’s the end of the “issues” and nothing else will complicate our travel plans.


The Kelso Elks is just a  short distance from the Tam-O-Shanter park.  Each year a Highlander’s Festival is hosted at that park.  We’ve been to the festivities in the past and we didn’t miss it this time either.  The weather was beautiful and the park was packed.  Tents were everywhere representing the different highland clans.



What fun and it was free!


We were looking forward to two events over our final weekend in Washington.  The first one was a peek at the Tiny Houses Festival at the Clark County Fairgrounds in Vancouver.  We’ve seen the Tiny Houses on TV but never had a chance to walk inside.  This was our opportunity to do just that.  In addition there were several bus conversions.  We loved looking at all the tiny living quarters, getting ideas and talking to the owners.


In addition to the Tiny House Festival in Vancouver, the Portland Expo Center was hosting their annual RV show.  So, it was first to the Tiny Houses and from there to the RV show.  However, there weren’t a lot of vendors and we obviously weren’t looking to buy a new RV.

Tomorrow morning we will be heading down the road again and making our way south for the winter.   It is The End of our summer time in the Pacific Northwest.   As normal for us, we have no rv site reservations until we get to Albuquerque in about 3 weeks. 

‘Tis life on the road


  1. I would have enjoyed the Highlander games and the tiny house tour. I thinkI've seen enough RVs, though. :)

  2. Nice that you are now getting things together and are soon on you way to the southwest again, travel safe.

  3. Yep, we had to keep changing our plans too. We bypassed much of Oregon and will head down into CA.
    We love highland games and have been to quite a few.

  4. The smoke has certainly had it's impact on many of us this summer. I hope the fires are all out soon with the rain and snow we're seeing. Poor Buck :-((( I'd love to get inside some Tiny Homes. No desire to take one on the road, but we could see ourselves landing in one some day.

  5. Oh poor Buck. Hope he is doing much better now and the pain medicine helps. I love the clock. So dang cute.
    I have never had a fruit pizza. Looks delicious.
    I think seeing those tiny houses would be so neat.
    Safe travels. Enjoy the adventure.

  6. Sorry about Buck. Lifting him must be tricky, he's big guy. We used to make fruit pizzas, cream cheese and fruit.

  7. We were avoiding fires in that are just last month, hope it stops soon.


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