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 > TwoMaineiacs excellent adventure

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TwoMaineiacs

Near Freeport, Maine

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Joined: 04/08/2006

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Posted: 06/01/07 10:43am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

May 30, 2007 We've left VA headed for MO. The time spend with family was more than worth the 850 mile drive down from ME to VA. We even celebrated a 50th birthday party for my SIL and had ages from 8 to 87 in attendance. Took off early this morning having no idea where we would land for the night but with three firm destinations in mind. First was the D-Day Memorial in Bedford, VA. This is a stunning tribute to those who died on D-Day and seeing the water with soldiers headed for shore and then climbing the cliffs is probably more than a lot of veterans who were there could handle. The bronze sculptures are larger than life as is the entire experience. If ever in the area, it is a must see and a reminder to all of us that our freedom is not free. [IMG]http://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h288/TwoMaineiacs2/VA%20to%20StLouis/DDay.jpg[/IMG] [IMG]http://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h288/TwoMaineiacs2/VA%20to%20StLouis/DDay2.jpg[/IMG] Second we headed for the Blue Ridge Parkway, following Peaks Road out of Bedford. This road led to the Peaks of Otter where we got on the Parkway. We had the entire road to ourselves, only seeing two motorcycles in the entire time we were on it. Mostly hazy but, as we stopped in many of the turnouts and shut the diesel off, the sounds of birds, running streams, an no motor noise what so ever, was very soothing. These mountain/hills are really truly blue. I cannot imagine the early settlers finding their way through these mountains and settling there. They are a "bit" hardier than we are today. Really hit home how spoiled we are as we ate cold salads taken out of the refrigerator in the camper. [IMG]http://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h288/TwoMaineiacs2/VA%20to%20StLouis/BlueRidgeisblue.jpg[/IMG] Third we wanted to go see Natural Bridge. We had planned on taking Petites Gap Road up and over the ridges to Natural Bridge but somehow even with Delorme Mapping missed the turn. By the time we figured we had missed, just kept going the somewhat longer way to the Bridge. The arch is quite the amazing formation and worth the walk in. However the pure commercialism and junk around the entrance was almost enough that we thought about not taking the walk. Once past the junk, the walk along a small stream to the arch was refreshing. Continued on to a replica of an Indian Village and to a small water fall. Lesson learned - take TWO bottles of water when walking in southern heat. [IMG]http://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h288/TwoMaineiacs2/VA%20to%20StLouis/JoeatNaturalBridge.jpg[/IMG] At this point we hit I-64 thinking it would be like I-95 with a lot of traffic. It was almost a ghost road and went through some of the most beautiful mountain passes and valleys I've ever seen. The scenery there was better than Blue Ridge Parkway by a great degree. All the way from Covington, VA to Beckley WV and almost up to Charleston, WV is eastern mountains at their best. The F-350 diesel performed admirably, just chugging along in the slow truck lane like the big boys. We didn't push it since we have no time table and 50 mph going up some of those long, long, steep grades was about as much as we wanted to do. Tonight we are in the Kanawha State Forest just south of Charleston, WV. N38 15.0989, W81 39.6778 No way could anything but TCs get up the rear entry road into the campground. Ranger was surprised we had come in that way Tomorrow we have to find a Ford dealer and see if we can get the motor for the passenger side window repaired. Window is down and won't go up and no, it isn't a fuse. We'll head to Lexington, KY tomorrow and plan on staying at the Kentucky Horse Park Campground right beside a horse farm with horse racing history museum and lots of horses to watch. We're not into baseball but Louisville has a steamboat museum and then on to Paducah, KY to the American Quilt Museum. Next St. Louis? ========== May 31 Really odd travel day today, starting with the search in Charleston, WV for a Ford dealer. Joe says he doesn't have enough hair left to have the wind blow through it all day. Delorme Phone Directory was off and led us to a part of Charleston we didn't really want to be in. Got better directions and found the dealer. Service manager said it would be late in the afternoon before he could even look at the window that wouldn't close. Apologetic but really backlogged. He called a smaller dealer west on I-64 who said he could work a repair in. If you are ever near Medway Ford in Hurricane, WV they give incredible service. That dealer worked us in quickly, confirmed the window motor was shot but was able to get the window back up. New motor wouldn't be available until next day so we will get it fixed on returning home. We did have them disconnect the motor controller so we couldn't put it back down again Just as we were pulling off, an elderly gentleman and his wife flagged us down to see the camper. He'd just bought an Apache and wanted to talk truck campers. While showing him the Airlift Bags, Joe found one bolt missing and one sheared off. Not good and we sure didn't drive easily the rest of the day. Ford dealer wouldn't touch the bolts as it is after market equipment but also said they wouldn't fall off or be destroyed driven as they were. He suggested airing them down a bit and using the truck springs as needed. We stopped in Beckley, WV to see the Exhibition Coal Mine but it was closed and being totally rebuilt. Headed on to the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY, planning to stop in their campground overnight and walk over to see the horses, museum, etc. This is a VERY high end RV park with most of the campers being enormous A size with associated tender cars and trailers. It was probably fine but just didn't feel very welcoming. We decided to go back into Frankfort, KY and go to the Buffalo Trace Distillery for the tour. Never seen whiskey barrels in use or the bottling procedure. Very interesting and worth the time. Even more so was the Kentucky Military History Museum. Tonight we are in the Elkhorn Campgrounds in Frankfort, KY. Walked around to see if others had Airlift Air Bags and met a fellow who had just had a new 5th wheel hitch installed He called his dealer who handles Airlift air bags and we have an appointment for tomorrow AM about 40 miles away. This means (gasp) taking the Lance off the truck. Campers sure are helpful souls aren't they? [IMG]http://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h288/TwoMaineiacs2/VA%20to%20StLouis/SaucerSeparationsmall.jpg[/IMG][/img] So.... after the air bag fix, back to load the camper, we'll be off to Jefforsonville, IN just across the river from Louisville, KY to see the Howard Steamboat Museum. Then down to Paducah KY to see the American Quilt Museum. Bribing Joe with a cafe known for their pies. Might do another night in a state park there and then finally off to St. Louis. Weather so far has been in the upper 80s and lower 90s and hazy but not too humid. At least it isn't snowing. =========== Friday, June 1 Air Bags all fixed, checked out, all bolts replaced with much larger and hardened bolts. We went to Line-X of Kentucky in Nicholasville, KY and worked with a man named Rick Satterwhite. If you are ever in the area and need help with airbags or hitches, go there. [url=http://www.line-xofky.com/]Line-X for airbag repair[/url] TC loaded on first try with Ted's DUH system. We are headed to Paducah. Photos later. Anne and Joe http://otrafrommaine.blogspot.com

Note: Due to invalid formatting, all formatting has been ignored.

* This post was last edited 06/01/07 04:57pm by TwoMaineiacs *   View edit history


2011 Chalet Double Slide on a 2013 F-450 Diesel DRW
On the Road Again from Rural Maine
Our travel blog with photos


needsomefun

Horse Creek, CA

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Posted: 06/01/07 11:03am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Great account, thanks. The Blue Ridge Parkway further south through NC and Tennessee is spectacular. I hear there are some fires in and around the Smokies, might be shaping up to be a bad fire year.

WayneAndPaulette

NW Ohio

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Posted: 06/01/07 11:51am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Anne,
Your map is starting to get colorful. Your travel log is great. Looking forward to pics.

Paulette


Our travels


BobTowne

Fairfield, CA, USA

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Posted: 06/01/07 03:10pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Great travel thread. Thanks for sharing. It'll be good to see the pictures, too.


GreatWhite
2004 Dodge Ram 3500 Quadcab Dually
2004 Alpenlite Santa Fe 1150



TwoMaineiacs

Near Freeport, Maine

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Posted: 06/01/07 04:48pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Photos interspersed through the original account. Long haul today from Lexington to Paducah over a lot of concrete roads being repaired. Sure am glad the airbags were repaired or they probably would have come off the truck. Tomorrow we play tourist again and hit the American Quilt Museum, Paducah Railroad Museum and the River Heritage Museum. Can you tell we like museums? Then maybe on to St. Louis. So far we have been on many roads that only a truck or a TC could get on comfortably. We've also only seen two TCs between VA and Paducah. Shown off our rig to a lot of fellow campers.

Anne and Joe
http://otrafrommaine.blogspot.com

Mike Tassinari

Peabody Mass..

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Posted: 06/01/07 06:55pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi Anne & Joe...

Very articulate and like your descriptions....Makes me want to get in my Rig and hook up with the 2 of you....

But tomorrow(Saturday)I get to crawl under my rig and start the process of removing my Generac Gen/set...It literally blew up today after about 10 seconds of running...Its got a "Death Rattle' in it when I turn it over....Oh well

Enjoy yourself and Cathie says she's got a fresh batch of magaritas fixens just waiting to be consumed...

Mike Tassinari


2002 Ford-4x4-Extended Cab-Dually-Lariet-Powerstroke Diesel--4.10 gears--Ranchero Adjustable Shocks-55 Gallon Extended Fuel Tank--4 Extra Main Leaf Springs-1 Extra Helper Spring..Independant Second Altinator(100AMP)to Charge MY Twin 275 AH. Deep Cycle Battery Bank tucked under the truck bed....

2001 Lance-11&1/2 Ft.-Model 1121/slide/out with all the Toys&2000 Watt Inverter

TwoMaineiacs

Near Freeport, Maine

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Posted: 06/02/07 06:56pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hey Mike - call and we'll meet up with you . Hope you got your generator repaired or replaced. Tell Cathie I got more of the natural margarita fixings at a Williams Sonoma store in Short Pump, VA.

Saturday, June 2 Paducah, KY

After an overnight camp just outside of Paducah near the Kentucky Dam, we got up early to go into town. I've lived in the north too long and forgot that most places down south don't open until at least 10AM. Oh poor us got to wander around about a thousand antique and street rod cars at a club meet right in downtown Paducah's riverfront park. Beautiful small town that has kept its charm and so many of the old buildings. Chatted at length with Big Daddy who was cooking up his daily portion of ribs, briskets, BBQ, etc. in this enormous metal BBQ rig. He had won the BBQ championship for Paducah five of the last ten years. He treated us to a sandwich and we promptly bought two more to go in the camper. Said in late September there is a three day BBQ cook off. http://www.bbqontheriver.org/index2.htm usually attended by 40,000 people. Hmmmm... return southern trip?

Photo is of the flood gates by the Ohio River. They can be locked tight. Local artists have painted the entire wall in the downtown park area with murals depicting life in early Paducah.

[image] border="0" alt="[image]">

Photo is of bronze statues of Lewis and Clark, Sacagawea who helped lead them west and Lewis's faithful Newfoundland dog. Interesting story if even part of it is historically correct.


By then the American Quilt Museum was open. You have to understand that this is the "have to go" place for any quilter as the past year's contest winner's and visiting artist's quilts are hung there. http://www.quiltmuseum.org/ Stunning pieces of art in fabric and thread. Going to this museum had been on my list of places to go before I die and now I've been but I'm not ready to die. We both then went to the River Heritage Museum and learned a lot about dams, locks and the value of a river in mid-America for commerce. http://www.riverheritagemuseum.org/ Small museum with a second floor almost as interesting as the first. A couple had owned the building and used it as their home. Second floor still had their furnishings with 20' ceilings and a great men's card room with leather chairs and a table with lions for the legs. Joe walked over to the Paducah Railroad Museum while I managed to stumble upon a home made ice cream parlor on the way to move the TC to the Railroad Museum. Somehow a pint of home made peach ice cream just fell into the TC freezer.

We could have spent a lot more time in Paducah but St. Louis was calling. Long, very flat drive to St. Louis after all the mountains we have been in. We're now camped at a KOA (I know, I know) in northeast St. Louis in a town called Granite City, IL. Too hot for this northern thick blood to boondock in a state park without electricity for AC. This is called "camping" isn't it? We'd planned on using the RV park at Casino Queen right across the river from the Arch but did not like the looks of it. Barren hot top, not a safe feeling though the lot has security. http://www.casinoqueen.com/rvpark/index.php . TCs and pop ups were relegated to a small section of the north lot which was not appealing at all. So we did the KOA thing and are in a wooded site with full hookups plus Internet for the same price as the casino. Tomorrow we will detach the Lance and take a few days to explore. On the wish list are 1) St. Louis Zoo 2) Arch with IMAX film and a ride to the top of the arch 3) River boat cruise on a paddle wheel steamship 4) Missouri Botanical Garden. Lots more to go see and play tourist but not sure these aging bodies and feet will take much more then four big walks. Supposed to be in the high 80s. We'll be out of here by Thursday when it is supposed to be 99 degrees. House sitter said it was cool and rainy at home.

Couple next to us tonight are from Denver, CO and are giving us a great list of places not to miss in CO. We are trading New England sites.

* This post was edited 06/02/07 07:14pm by TwoMaineiacs *

AidenJ

Adirondacks, NY ,USA

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Posted: 06/02/07 09:28pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So glad to hear of your adventures and that things are going well. Enjoy and keep us posted.
Dick and Elizabeth


2014 Dodge Ram 3500 CC, CTD, SRW
2010 NORTHERN-LITE 10-2 SPECIAL EDITION)
Libby, 2 yr Boxer/Hound mix learning to travel


FarcticOx

NH or somewhere else

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Posted: 06/03/07 08:04am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi Anne & Joe
Sounds like a great trip, that Natural Bridge looks like a must see as well as the D-Day museum. WOW. Just a note, I had the same thing happen to my airbags (bolt sheared off), I pressured down a bit (40 PSI) and used it several times while I waited for a new bracket (Mine was bent), My mechanic replaced it and added a third bolt, been great for a year now. Happened on the Slideout side. Hmmm?

Stay safe hope to catch up at Freeport sometime this summer

Ted & Cheryl


FarcticOx

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trapperdick

Bridgton,Me.

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Posted: 06/03/07 09:49am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi Anne and Joe,,,,,
Keep those great pictures comming for those of us who can't get there. Sounds like you're having a great time.
TD


OLDER AND BOLDER,,,,,N1ATF
Ford F-350 Dually Diesel, Lance 9SC, Harley Davidson Heritage Softail, 12 ft Hallmark trailer and Skeeter the camping beagle ">.........

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