Posts for October, 2016


Photo hickup (Lake Winnipegosis, Manitoba)

Journal entry for Saturday 1st Oct, 2016 (day 68, miles 7463)

The weather improved today with sun and a mostly clear sky, which was good because our route is now taking us beside Lake Winnipeg and Lake Winnipegosis. We found a nice roadside camping for the night beside one of the rivers feeding the lakes. Unfortunately no photos as we had a bit of a hick-up today and accidentally deleted most of the days imagesspan>. Nina miraculously resurrected the days photos.

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Old Russian/Ukrainian (?) church (Winnipegosis, Manitoba)

Journal entry for Sunday 2nd Oct, 2016 (day 69, miles 7620)

Still heading towards Winnipeg through the "lakes district". The weather was generally dreary today with lots of rain and often very heavy.

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Winnipeg, Churchill and no polar bears (we thought!) (Churchill, Manatoba)

Journal entry for Sunday 9th Oct, 2016 (day 76, miles 6158)

So what has been happening since Sept 30th, the date of the last entry. A couple of days after leaving Thompson the weather turned bad with really heavy rain. That prompted us to short circuit the plans we had for traveling some of the minor roads near Lake Manitoba and instead we headed pretty much directly to Winnipeg arriving there the afternoon of Tuesday 4th Oct. We took a place at a KOA camping ground on the Western side of the city and spent the remainder of the week on chores (oil change, hair do for Nina), visited some of Nina's relatives in Winnipeg and in nearby Steinbach, and preparing for our excursion to Churchill.

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Cemetery (Hwy 5 West of Cavalier, ND)

Journal entry for Tuesday 11th Oct, 2016 (day 78, miles 8272)

It was still raining this morning when we woke in the parking lot at Winnipeg airport so we were quite keen to get going in the hope that the weather would be better farther south. That was not to be however. Once across the border into the US we left the interstate highway and followed a series of rural roads with intermittent heavy rain. It seemed to be harvesting season for some kind of root crop in this part of North Dakota and the harvesting process covered the rural roads with a nice layer of slippery mud.

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Country North Dakota (New Rockford, ND)

Journal entry for Wednesday 12th Oct, 2016 (day 79, miles 8434)

Better weather today as we continued south through ND along rural roads and flat farming country. The crops have changed a bit, more grain, and no sign of the root crops I thought we saw yesterday.

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Sunflowers (Tschedia Lake, ND)

Journal entry for Thursday 13th Oct, 2016 (day 80, miles 8647)

Nina started the day with a longish walk around the campground and local area (and has included a bunch of photos of last nights camping spot in todays entry). Another sunny day and again we are traveling south through ND. Today we passed many fields of sunflower that seem completely dried out and are a dark brown color. Initially when we saw the first of these fields from a distance we thought it was freshly plowed ground.

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Wall drug, the badlands (Badlands National Park, SD)

Journal entry for Friday 14th Oct, 2016 (day 81, miles 8912)

We transitioned into South Dakota today and towards the end of the day we pulled into the little town of Wall SD, which if you probably know is famous for Wall Drug, a unique style of business that started life as a real (and unsuccessful) drug store back in the 1930s. Unsuccessful that is until the owners decided to offer passing travelers free ice water. Today it is a massive complex of mismatched buildings selling all kinds of stuff from junky souvenirs to high end leather goods, ice cream and fast food. Since its first founding two nearby tourist attractions (Mount Rushmore and The Badlands National Park) have come into existence and one assumes they contribute significantly to the evident success of Wall Drug.

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One last look at the Badlands (Oliver Reservoir, NB)

Journal entry for Saturday 15th Oct, 2016 (day 82, miles 9236)

We spent sometime this morning exploring the badlands hoping for some good light and then it was "hit the road"

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A day in Boulder (St Vrain SP, CO)

Journal entry for Sunday 16th Oct, 2016 (day 83, miles 9493)

We made an early start this morning in order to cover the distance to Boulder by lunch time. We had arranged to meet up with some friends of ours (John and Ursula) who are now living in Bolder. We last met up with these guys in Munich in early 2014. We had a nice visit and were particularly interested to hear why they chose Boulder as there retirement location.

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A visit with the Earthroamer guys (Limon, CO)

Journal entry for Monday 17th Oct, 2016 (day 84, miles 9749)

We spent most of the morning at the Earthroamer factory in Dacono CO. After the usual greetings I spent an hour or so with Spenser (ER's head of all things technical) and got a some good insight into some maintenance things I have to do on the camper (like adjust the door, and replace the town water valve). We met a few of the customers that were dropping off or picking up vehicles and at the last we had a good catch-up chat with Bill Swails including a look at the (in progress) build of an Earthroamer on a Ford 750 chassis - sorry no photos allowed - not surprisingly.

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A visit with Rob (Rio Grande, CO)

Journal entry for Tuesday 18th Oct, 2016 (day 85, miles 9902)

We got an early start this morning from Limon in order to make our way to La Junta CO where we had arranged to spend a few hours and have lunch with our friend Rob Pickering of Terry Lee Enterprises and renowned Unimog fixer and finder. We had a great visit catching up with developments in Rob's life and business.

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A walk in the hoodoos (Bisti Badland, CO)

Journal entry for Wednesday 19th Oct, 2016 (day 86, miles 9150)

Today was another longer day of driving than we prefer but there was a goal and it was the Bisti Badlands also known as De-Na-Zin. Nina heard about this area of hoodoos and weird rock structures at this years Overland Expo West and was determined to visit and take photos. So mid afternoon we found ourselves heading south on 371, south of Farmington NM looking for the turn east that would take us to the first of the access areas. Once in the parking lot we set off on a hike of a couple of hours east into the heart of the "badlands".

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Los Alamos, Bradbury Museum (Roadside stop near Santa Fe, CO)

Journal entry for Thursday 20th Oct, 2016 (day 87, miles 10340)

This morning brought another hike to explore the badlands, however this time we went rugged up as the morning temperature was 32°F. We spent another couple of hours this time walking across the plateau of the badlands to a couple of lookouts. After our walk, and over breakfast, we decided to devote the remainder of the day to visiting Los Alamos and its Science Museum.

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El Morro (El Morro Nat Mon, AZ)

Journal entry for Friday 21st Oct, 2016 (day 88, miles 10504)

After a restful night in our roadside stop we made our way south to I40 and followed it for a while to the town of Grants where Nina took the opportunity to take a walk around the little town and captured some photos of the town's decorative water feature. From Grants we turned south along NM53 looking for a place to spend the night. As we traveled 53 we started seeing signs for The Ice Caves and since there was no way there could be ice in this hot climate started discussing what they could really be. Thus intrigued, when we finally got to the gates of Ice Caves (a privately owned and run tourist attraction) we went in to investigate and discovered that there really was ice, but more of that in tomorrows entry as for now we needed to find a camping spot for the night.

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Ice Caves ! (Concho Valley, AZ)

Journal entry for Saturday 22nd Oct, 2016 (day 89, miles 10643)

Today was a real sight-seeing day. We started by returning to those Ice Caves and discovered that there really is a cave with natural ice in it. Indeed we eventually discovered that back in the early part of the 20th century before this area had electricity and refrigerators the ice was mined to supply the iceboxes of local inhabitants. Apparently the mining ceased in the late 1940s and since that time the ice has recovered and there is more of it today then there was in those days. Is seems I may have confused some readers. Despite the heading to this entry (Concho AZ) the Ice caves are actually in New Mexico. The apparent mistake is a conflict between where we were traveling during the day and where we stayed the night. The heading to the entry gives the name of the place we spent the night.

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A few days in Phoenix (Apache Junction, AZ)

Journal entry for Sunday 23rd Oct, 2016 (day 92, miles 10814)

Today we were headed towards Phoenix and a couple of days of business. From Cocho Valley (on AZ61) we made our way to Show Low and picked up AZ 60 to Globe and then into the KOA at Apache Junction. We have traveled this route a number of times but even so the spectacular Snake River valley is worth a stop and a few photos.

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Night in the desert (Quartzite, AZ)

Journal entry for Wednesday 26th Oct, 2016 (day 93, miles 11004)

With our business in Phoenix complete we are on our way again on what will be the final leg of this particular adventure as we are now destined for our home in WA via the Saltan Sea. The complication for this next leg is that we are now in two vehicles as one of the reasons for passing through Phoenix was to collect my pickup-truck that was stored down here (don't ask). The goal today was simply to get under way, we made it to the desert just near Quartzite.

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Salton Sea (Yucca Valley, CA)

Journal entry for Thursday 27th Oct, 2016 (day 94, miles 11243)

This afternoon we made a stop at the Salton Sea in Southern California. Our plan was this would be our only sight-seeing stop on this leg of the trip. After all we are on our way home and driving two vehicles so it is really two solo trips. The nature of this leg also means that there will be little or no blog updates. I will include an entry for each day, with Nina' photos (when there are some) to make sure the map tracks our route. But since we are driving-to-get-there I expect nothing of note to say. Hence, for a while this blog will be dormant.

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Nothing to say - just motoring (Independence, CA)

Journal entry for Friday 28th Oct, 2016 (day 95, miles 11499)

A beautiful cold morning (Beckworth Pass, CA)

Journal entry for Saturday 29th Oct, 2016 (day 96, miles 11763)

Travelin (Hwy 395, OR)

Journal entry for Sunday 30th Oct, 2016 (day 97, miles 11987)

Really nothing to say or see

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Home today, mushrooms in our garden (Government Camp, OR)

Journal entry for Monday 31st Oct, 2016 (day 98, miles 12255)

Just to remind anyone who is still reading this site. We are going to be off the air for a while as we have a couple of non adventure trips planned and will not be reporting those on the blog. So don't look for any updates until the new year.

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