Year One Recap
One year ago today, September 5th, 2013, we pulled out of our friend's house in East Wenatchee, WA, to begin our life as nomads on the road.
We were house sitting for Bruce & Carol and taking care of their apricot orchard while they were away on their RV vacation. I had retired in June earlier that year and we had been planning this lifestyle change for years.
When we drove off that day, I had plans and even made reservations all along the route I created for the rest of the year. We would visit family as we passed through Washington, Oregon, California and Arizona. We would hit the Albuquerque Hot Air Balloon Fiesta and winter in southern Texas. We found out that ridged and strict plans need to be more flexible .... cuz 'life' happens. And you lose all the freedoms that this lifestyle has to offer.
We did visit family in Vancouver, WA, Coos Bay, OR, and Oroville, CA as we headed south.
We met our RV Dreamer friends Sherry and Jesse in Elma, WA. Our first stop.
And some of our highlights as we headed south were: Biking in Redding, CA, and Sequoia National Park.
While we were passing through Bakersfield, CA, 'life happened'. Our truck, old Red, broke.
Plans became flexible at that point. I cancelled all the Texas reservations, and we would not make the Balloon Fiesta either.
But I did get a new truck.
Lemons to Lemonade!
And off we head into Arizona. We visited more family in Ft Mohave and in Blythe, CA too.
And really enjoyed the desert area, the casinos in Laughlin, NV, and the burros in Oatman, AZ.
We strolled along the Riverwalk along the Colorado River, and we started Geocaching
Until ... 'life happened' again. Donna slipped and skidded, and broke her foot.
The docs put her back together again and that meant we were staying put here for a while.
It was a blessing in disguise. We were just a mile from Donna's brother's house, and we were able to spend some good times together. We even had Thanksgiving and Christmas with them.
After Donna got her cast off and could get around a little more, we made it to Quartzite, AZ to boondock and meet up with the Escapees Christian Fellowship RV Group. We had a great time in the desert.
We met up some of our RV Dream friends, Steve & Diane in the desert too.
On January 30th, we started our journey back toward Washington State. Donna had volunteered to make 50 new vests for the staff of the Good Sam club of WA that we were part of.
We took our time, visited family on our way in Oroville, CA.
We also toured San Francisco on the way up. We chose to drive Highway 101 up the CA and OR coast. Along the ocean and through the Redwoods. Visited more family in Coos Bay, OR. in Coos Bay, OR.
We arrived in Washington in April. Donna did finish all the vests and we attended 3 Good Sam events where everyone got to wear their new vest. in Coos Bay, OR. We spent 4 months in the state and visited with family and friends as much as we could.
We even met up with more RV Dreams friends while in Washington. Bill Joyce and Diane. We originally met them in Harrisburg, OR at a RV Dreams rally in September 0f 2012. And later, more RV Dream friends, Ruth & Dale and Debbie & Steve.
It is a small world, especially for RVers. While in WA, we made trips to all 3 National Parks. Mount Rainier, North Cascades, and the Olympic.
But eventually it was time to go. On July 28th, We pulled out of the Tulalip Casino along I-5 and headed East. We have an RV Dreams rally in September to attend and a date at Niagara Falls planned.
We passed through the northern part of Idaho. The plan was to stop in each state for the night so we could claim it on our 'states visited' map.
We hit Glacier National Park as we went through Montana. Visited North Dakota for the first time and toured Theodore Roosevelt National Park.
We stopped for a night in Wyoming, and then spent 6 nights in South Dakota. While there, Donna got her South Dakota drivers license and we met up with fellow RV Dreamers, Nathalie and Brock.
Then we spent nights in Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. We saw lots of thunder storms and beautiful country too.
Through Illinois. Then we stopped at the Elkhart County Fairgrounds in Goshen, IN to see where the RV Dreams rally will be held later in September.
Then on into Ohio. While there, we took a day trip through Pennsylvania, into New York state and visited Niagara Falls, have our date at a café in Canada, and visited 2 of the 5 great lakes.
And now for some statistics.
In this last year, I have towed our Bighorn 9,252 miles.
We have set up camp in 17 states. Visited 19.
We have stopped and set up camp 69 times during this year.
And spent $2,612.17 on camping fees.
That averages $7.16 per night.
With 69 stops during the year, that averages out to 5.29 days at each location.
Our average per night camping fees for a month ranged from $0.25 for June, to $14.55 for September.
A very good year.
The lowlights were when Donna broke her foot, and when our truck died.
The highlights were Niagara Falls, the National Parks, new and exciting places, new friends, and a new truck.
Well, that's year one. Year two starts now...