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November 19, 2006 - Vital Stats:

   Miles Driven:  4,228.7
   Fuel Consumed:  654.63 gallons
   Days:  60 (exactly)
   Stops:  31 points of interest, almost all were overnight stays.
   Wine Purchased:  113 bottles
   Repairs:  Two drawer latches and an exterior latch, no mechanical problems.
   Damage:  Rear tail light... backed into a tree in Hayward, CA
   Preventative Maintenance:  Filled tanks with RV antifreeze in Sun Valley
   Most butt clenching drive:  Between Hearst Castle and Big Sur
   Scariest Drive:  Crossing double deck bridge into San Fran.  (might have 
      screamed a bit!)

img006.jpg (68406 bytes)New image since Vegas baby...!

November 18, 2006 - 11:00 sharp and we're off!!!  Not exactly and early start, but hey, we did a lot of walking.  After a brief security search of the RV to make sure we wouldn't explode, we decided to tour the dam since its something I've never done before.  I think they've cut out a lot since 9-11, but it was still interesting.  As we left, we watched a diesel pusher nail a concrete divider along the road.  It finished driving up the hill and then parked next to my RV.  Once we got there we found out that they bent the rim and were losing air quite rapidly... that sucks, I believe those rims start at $600.  I filled the tire back up to 90 lbs and wished them good luck getting back to town before it went flat.  I hope they made it.  We pushed on and made it home by 9:30.  A little late for my liking, but it didn't make sense to stop anywhere... home at last!!!!!  That was a long trip.

November 17, 2006 - Some how we're running out of time to see everything we want to see... looks like we're staying another day to jamb it all in.  First thing we ran over the the Hilton Hotel to catch the train to the other end of the strip... but guess what's there... the Star Trek Museum.. :)  I'm not exactly a Trekkie, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.  The rides were pretty cool too, with the shuttle one being the most fun.  Okay, finally on to the other end of the strip.  Some quality time at Gameworks was first... I think the one here has more games... and then to the M&M store.  Unreal... four floors of crap with the M&M logo on it.  They didn't even have the coolest one I've ever seen... a hip dispenser.  Oh well.  Then on the the Titanic exhibit, which was somber but interesting, a quick tour of the last remaining casinos and back to the motor home.

November 16, 2006 - This will prove to be a very jamb packed Thursday.  First we hit the Astrodome at the Circus Circus and then mosied up the street to Indoor Skydiving.  Now that was some adrenaline rushing fun!!!  I highly recommend it and would consider it safer than a roller coaster even though you have to sign all those releases... fun fun!  We managed to spend all day with just those two adventures and had to hustle to change and get to the Phantom production.  Wow, it was the most extravagant theatre production I have ever seen... and I've seen quite a few.  It more closely resembled the movie rather than the play, but still quite enjoyable.  My only criticism is for the lead Phantom, while he was quite talented, I would have liked to see someone with a deeper range... though I realize that is extremely hard to find.  Finally, we ended the day with the show out in front of Treasure Island... very vegas!

November 15, 2006 - Today we successfully wandered the strip just to see the sites.  10 hours of walking elicited some very tired legs.  Fortunately, we stumbled across the new Phantom Theatre and were able to get some really good tickets for Thursday night... I'm actually pretty excited to see the show.  After we got the tickets, we decided to give an oxygen bar a crack... not really sure if it did any good, but it was fun.

November 14, 2006 - Vegas Baby!!!  Today I'm finally heading down to warmer country and a little fun.  Krysta and Tyler are joining me for this leg of the trip so it should be quite fun.  The RV Park is actually the back parking lot of Circus Circus... not very luxuries and the jerks charged me extra to be waaayyy in the back... but hey, its Vegas.

November 9, 2006 - Jay decided to spend last night in the old motor home... so we actually got to camp... in weather that was about 20 degrees warmer than Sun Valley!!!  Jay got up at 6 am to head back up north... guess the brand new Rav4 ran out great... and I went back to bed.

November 8, 2006 - And we're off to Salt Lake City.  My Buddy Jay has sold his Chevy 2500 HD and purchased a new Toyota Rav4 and we're off to get it today.  Surprisingly, we were able to make it to SLC in 5 1/2 hours... which I think is pretty darned good in a motorhome.  It was a lot easier with someone to talk to, that's for sure.

November 7, 2006 - Steamed clothes today... whoo hoo....

November 3, 2006 - Happy Birthday Krysta! Welcome to 29 with 30 looming... :0).

November 1, 2006 - Happy November.  Things are pretty mellow here in Sun Valley, didn't feel like doing anything for Halloween... who wants to go out on a Tuesday anyway.  What I got to do that was really fun was figure out how to winterize a motor home!  It's getting down into the single digits at night, so I had to find all of the drain valves and empty them and put antifreeze in the holding tanks.  Talk about some serious fun.  It's supposed to rain/snow this weekend, then I'm pretty sure it'll be time to head south!!!

October 29, 2006 - Made it to Sun Valley, Idaho safe and sound.  Very little ice on the roads and the weather seems to be warm enough to keep my RV from freezing up... lets hope so.  So here I'll sit for either a couple weeks or until I get tired of being cold... we'll see.  Either way, I'll keep you posted as there are things to tell.

October 28, 2006 - Well, since my motorcycle doesn't seem to want to run very well and I have no desire to go on another hike, I guess I'll hit the road.  The next stop is Challis Hot Springs, which I thought would be quite nice and relaxing, but it really wasn't very appealing to me, so I decided to press on to Sun Valley, at least there I would have some cell service.  Well, I learned an important safety tip.... if there's a big sign that says Sun Valley this way and your GPS tells you there's another route that looks much shorter... FOLLOW THE DAMN SIGN.  That lovely GPS (brought to you by Microsoft Streets and Trips) brought me down a dirt road... which would have lasted for 20 miles, and according to a local, would have been a bad movie... I'm not even sure if the motorhome could have navigated that road.  Fortunately, I'm halfway sane and turned around and went back to where I saw the sign... unfortunately, that was 50 miles back... which would be a 100 mile detour!  Aaaarrrrrgh.  So I managed to turn what I planned to be a 4 hour drive into a 6 hour drive that actually only got me 2 hours down the road... oops.

October 27, 2006 - Another beautiful day today, so I decided to go on a nice long hike.  Everyone suggested that I carry a firearm due to coyotes and such, okay... yipe, but I've got one so what the heck.  I went on a 4 hour hike and saw some absolutely beautiful countryside, it was great but I was one tired pup afterwards. 

October 26, 2006 - Okay, still cold.  There are plenty of stores in Missoula, but I think I'll just hit the road today.  Which led me to North Fork, Idaho.  This is an absolutely beautiful place!  Wagonhammer RV & Campground, apparently, this is there busy time of year with all of the hunters and fishermen, I was lucky to get a spot.  And what a spot it is, I thought I was close to the river in Idaho... this is great!  I might actually stay here and go hiking tomorrow.  No cell service but I've got WIFI... 

October 25, 2006 - Today I'm in Missoula, Montana today... exciting place.  Actually, its not so bad, but damn its starting to get cold.  I'm not liking this one bit.

October 24, 2006 - Off on the motorcycle today.  It's a bit cold out, but yesterday was so nice, I'm hoping today will get that way too.  Had a fantastic motorcycle ride, although the fuel valve started leaking like a siv half way through the trip... I got pretty nervous about getting home, but I made it on reserve with the spare tank still full.  Whew, fun, but a walk I wouldn't have enjoyed.  Tonight, dinner and drinks in the resort again... ahhh tough life.

October 23, 2006 - Today I explored Spokane a little bit but once I realized most of the good stops were closed, I decided to move on.  I was hoping to find the Silverwood Theme Park but also discovered that it was closed for the season.  So I found this lovely RV Park on the Coeur D'Alene River, found it... closed for the season.  Ugh, finally called this little place in Kingston and they said they were open... yeah!  Wow, nice little place, it's actually a bed & breakfast with an RV Resort.  She has a little restaurant and bar... pretty nice.  Hung out in the bar in the evening, watched the game, ate dinner, very nice.  If you're ever in Northern Idaho, I strongly recommend Country Lane RV Resort!

October 22, 2006 - Finally made it to Spokane today.  After an extended delay sampling wine and once again purchasing waaayyy too much, I have moved on.  Sadly, I have absolutely no desire to actually drink any of the wine that I have recently procured... but that will change.  I might have over indulged on the sampling process just a tad.

October 21, 2006 - I hate to say it, but so tired of wine...  I am leaving wine country to day and staying in Pasco... tomorrow I will head to Spokane.

October 20, 2006 - Okay, so TJ from Kiona has convinced me to stay a couple extra days so I can get the full experience of the Tri-Cities wine country.  Apparently, my job is to report back my findings since apparently no one at Kiona gets out to try other wines.  It's probably for the best... Kiona has the best wine.

October 19, 2006 - Now today was an interesting day.  The first part is great... I found Kiona Vineyards which is a wine that Marten bought me a case of one Christmas so that I could lay it down and enjoy throughout the years.  Great place and I bought two cases of wine... ugh.  I killed so much time here that I decided I better not head up to Spokane today so I found a park up the street for the night.  I then hopped on the little motorbike and scouted my route for tomorrow so I wouldn't get trapped in any small parking lots.  Well, I discovered B lackCanyon Vineyards.  This guy was the strangest man I think I've ever met and the wine was just nasty.  I tasted his Rieslings to Chardonnays all the way down to his Cabs and they all had this same nasty taste to them.  I think it was that he used the same barrels for everything and they were old and potent.  He just wasn't right and held me captive for quite some time... ewh.

October 18, 2006 - I am once again on the road today, while Portland was extremely relaxing and a nice break from traveling, my departure was midth a steady ran that I believe lasted all day.  I arrived in Pasco, Washington to some sunshine... though still kind of cold.

October 17, 2006 - After quite a bit of hemming and hawing, I've finally plotted my route to Sun Valley.  I think I'm going to head up to Spokane, over to Montana and then down to Sun Valley.  It should be the most scenic route, I can hit a couple vineyards and it should be quite scenic.  I just really hope that I don't hit any snow, that's an experience I would very much like to skip.

October 16, 2006 - Last night Rob's parents took us out to eat at Jakes Crawfish restaurant.  Excellent food!  So today I made it into downtown Portland on the MAX train and ate lunch at Jake's Grill... pretty good little chain or whatever you might call it.  No real great stories to tell about being downtown

October 15, 2006 - Today we decided to tackle the rear brakes on the motor home.  They've been squealing pretty well since Pismo Beach, but they seemed to working fine so I pressed on.  After pulling off the rear tires, I determined that the brakes were in fine shape and perhaps just cleaning up the rotors would suffice.  We'll see once I get back on the road.  I definitely appreciated Rob's fathers help, it was kind of a big job.

October 14, 2006 - So the title of the beer festival "Freshop Beer Tastival 2006".  By the title you might guess that the beer was a tad bit "hoppy", but you'd be wrong, it was EXTREMELY hoppy.  Nastiest stuff I've ever tasted.  Would not have guessed that there was a beer continuum out there that liked the dominant flavor of hops... go fig.  It was still fun, just not really good beer.

October 13, 2006 - I should be heading straight to Portland today, but I discovered that there are a ton of wineries just north of Myrtle Creek.  I have now found my favorite winery, Hillcrest Vineyards!  What an amazing place.  Very small family owned vineyard and I liked every bottle I tasted.  They also had a  crushing today where they invited a bunch of kids over to start the process... that was pretty fun.  Anyway, bought two cases of wine....  then on to Portland... and traffic.

October 12, 2006 - Well, didn't quite make it to Redding like I planned, so I stopped in Orland, California from just plain exhaustion.  Reasonable little park, nothing too spectacular, so I got an early start and headed on up to Myrtle Creek, Oregon.  Now that was a long hard drive, but I made it.  Time to veg.

October 11, 2006 - Napa was definitely quite the experience.  I do not recommend it from a Motor Home by yourself.  The speed limit is waaayyyy too high to find where you need to stop... plus I really had no idea where I wanted to stop.  I thought about using the little motorcycle I brought, but not only would I not be able to carry much wine, actually drinking wine and driving it didn't seem like a great idea.  Plus the speed limit was higher than that poor little thing could actually go.  Still spent plenty on wine though... no worries there.  Now I'm on to Portland.

October 10, 2006 - Okay, so getting online has not been so easy lately.  Today I'm sitting in the forest at a national park in Napa Valley.  This just couldn't be more beautiful.  It's getting cold though... I've had the old furnace running for the last couple nights and I think it's catching up with me.  Hopefully, it won't interfere with my wine tasting today!

October 9, 2006 - Today wasn't so easy.  A simple 45 minute drive from San Francisco turned out to be a 3 hour drive looking for some place to park this beast.  Everyone is filled up??? who'd a thunk in on Monday.  Fortunately, I gambled that I could slip into the national park up north.  It said it was limited to 31 foot motor homes (I'm 34), but they let me in.  Whoo hoo, although, so much for any wine tasting today.

October 8, 2006 - Happy birthday Marten (my brother).  Other than that, pretty mellow day.  Wandered the streets of San Fran, watched the Blue Angels again... never want to walk anywhere again... especially uphill!!!

October 7, 2006 - It's Fleet Week here in San Fran, lots going on.  There's a bunch of Navy ships in the bay, the Blue Angels are performing and lots of entertainment in the streets.  Don't think I could have picked a much better time to visit, although, Alcatraz is sold out.... sucks.

October 6, 2006 - Pretty much a lazy day.  Got packed up to move the motor home, helped Robin set up Quickbooks for her business... oh wait, did this just become a business trip??

October 5, 2006 - Didn't do any site seeing today, but got my laundry done at Robin's house and did a bunch of her honeydoes.  It was better than sitting in a laundromat watching my clothes dry.

October 4, 2006 - Got a crash course in the San Francisco public transportation system.  It's actually pretty easy to get around.  I took the B.A.R.T. into town from a station close to Robin's house, hopped on to the trolley to the pier, and then walked and enjoyed the scenery.  I ate at BubbaGump Shrimp!  Okay, very touristy.. but hey, what am I.  Tried to hop the trolley to get back to the B.A.R.T. but it was broken down.  After a sizable walk, I got to the Trolley Museum and discovered how that system works.  Very interesting to say the least... doesn't seem very efficient, but who am I.  Anyway, since I had walked this far and all the trolley's were full, I walked the rest of the way back to Union Square... long ass walk... let me tell ya.

October 3, 2006 - Made it back to San Jose without and problem and the motorhome was still on one piece.  I was a little concerned about leaving it in an airport parking lot, but no one touched it.  I am now sitting on a very steep mountain in Hayward, California near my friend Robin's house.  She lives on 5 acres, but none of them flat enough for a motorhome.  I actually think I burned half a tank of gas just getting up the hill to be close to her house.  Seriously though, it's a gorgeous area and I'm grateful to be spending time with Robin and Glen.  Today I wandered throughout San Fran and had a great time.  I'll post some pictures shortly.

October 1, 2006 - Grandmother's 90th birthday was a smashing success.  My mother did a great job coordinating everything and Uncle Jerry's food was superb as usually.  Grandma really appreciated everything too!!  Good job to all.  If anyone is interested, I created a quick slideshow of the photo's we took during the party.  It's just a PDF file... enjoy:  Grandma's Birthday Pictures

September 29, 2006 - HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRANDMA!  Today is my Grandmother's 90th birthday and I'm flying back to Phoenix for the party.  Should be fun!  I found a park and ride for the motor home in San Jose... they tagged me for two spots... guess that's about right though.  Anyway, I'll be back in San Jose on October 2.

September 28, 2006 - Well, so far today I'm just sitting at this computer getting all these pictures loaded... the speed is impressive considering I'm hooked to my cell phone.  Not sure what today holds or where I will spend the night.  I'm on battery power here (no hookups), so I'll need to run the generator here shortly to recharge the old batteries.  It's kinda cold and wet at the moment... we'll see how my motivation does.

September 27, 2006 - The drive from Big Sur to Carmel was no big deal... thank god.  Oh, forgot to mention that I paid $3.99 per gallon for gas in Big Sur!  Note to self, fill up often when you know you're not going to be on an Interstate.  Anyway, I walked the beach of Monterey and then drove up to New Brighton Beach... I can hear the waves crashing below... pretty cool.

September 26, 2006 - Now this was a full day!  The drive from Pismo Beach to Hearst Castle was magnificent!  Hearst Castle was also quite impressive.  I took the beginners tour, but there are 5 more you can take.  From here I went to Big Sur.  Now that was one hell of a drive.  While I'm pretty sure it was beautiful, my white knuckles and tight sphincter kept me from truly enjoying the scenery.  That's one narrow road!!!  I only tagged the mountain once though.  It was worth it...  beautiful, peaceful, just amazing.  I'd still be there if I had cell service... I'm still trying to rent my apartment in Phoenix.

September 25, 2006 - So here I sit in Pismo Beach at an RV park right up against the beach... pretty cool.  I think I'm about 50 feet from a sandy hill that once you crest the top you can see the ocean.  The drive up here was absolutely astounding... I stopped in Santa Barbara and then cruised on up to here.  I highly recommend this trip!

September 24, 2006 - Saw the play "Fences" last night at Amanda's theatre... Awesome show!  Today I actually got to see a good chunk of LA.  Amanda was kind enough to chauffer me around to enjoy the highlights.  I'm pretty sure I would have crushed some things if I would have driven.  Thanks Amanda!

September 23, 2006 - Last night my brother and I went to the great Lobsterfest in Redondo Beach.  You would think it would be huge deal with tons of people... not so much.  I believe we referred to it as underwhelming.  We still had lobster... good stuff.  Today I've been playing on the computer figuring out the next leg of the trip.  I think I'll head up to Santa Barbara, stop by Hearst Castle, up to Big Sur and then to San Fran.  Oh, and finally figured out why my pictures won't load like I thought they should... I originally uploaded them from my desktop, which has a newer version of FrontPage... doh!  Oh well, I downloaded some other software today, it should do the trick once I have a little more time.

September 22, 2006 - Well, now I'm in LA... boy, that was some fun driving!  Actually, it wasn't so bad, but I don't think this thing is going to be wandering around town much.  I'm having a little trouble figuring out how to upload my pictures, but I'm sure I'll figure it out soon.  San Diego was great and Steve and Kim were great hosts.  Thanks guys!!

September 20, 2006 - Looks like I made it to San Diego unscathed.  It was quite an adventure... only took me 7.5 hours to drive.  Granted, that includes stopping for lunch and then a nap.  Think I'm going to hop on the Motorbike and take a look at San Diego.  I added a Travel Map page if you would like to see my route.

September 18, 2006 - Well, I'm about a week late, but things are looking good for tomorrow.  The journey begins!!!!

Hmmm, but where to first???

September 12, 2006 is the current goal date for my long awaited departure.  Please check back to this site to see where I've been and read about any interesting things that have happened.

Photo Album


The journey is about to begin.  I will be posting new photo's here, but for now you can check out the new motorhome.  It's old, but I like it.  The interior is fantastic.

Phoenix, AZ - Sunny and hot

High: Damned if its not cooling down already.




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This site was last updated 11/21/06