EPDM Coatings
rvupgradestore.com Composet Products PO Box Zone
Over The Network Custom Yacht Interiors

Author Topic: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"  (Read 11481 times)

SargeW

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 6293
  • Life is better on the road!
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #30 on: August 31, 2012, 11:14:03 PM »
We had a lot of fun in Clarkston. We hit several of the wineries in the area, and picked up some great local wines. After a week in Horn Rapids we were ready to move on.  We had selected a park called Hells Canyon RV resort in Clarkston, WA for a weeks stay over the Labor Day holiday.  It was on the banks of the Snake River, and had all the amenities that we like when staying for a week at a location.  We looked at the campground web site and it looked very nice. 

Then we got there. Everything about the web site was correct. It had all that it had advertised that it had.  But what was real important was what it had that was not in the brochure. The park itself was fairly small, which is not a big deal. The sites were concrete pads and concrete patios, and had a strip of well maintained grass in between.  The problem was that the park was nestled right up against an off ramp for State Highway 12 and a bridge over the Snake River.  The highway was elevated coming off of the bridge, and any vehicle, usually trucks, came rolling down the off ramp with the Jake Brakes billowing.  All day. And sporadically through the night.

And then there was the paper plant that was somewhere nearby, and the smell of putrid raw fruit seemed to permeate everywhere.  Great, we just paid for a weeks stay.  I wonder if we can get out of here early.......  Well, it was worth a shot. Diane went to the office to see what she could do to shorten our stay (immediately would be nice). 

When she came back she said that we could leave today, and it would only cost us a nights stay. That was too good to pass up. Even though it was already about 10:30 AM, we rolled everything up and were rolling in about 45 minutes.   While she was at the office, I hit Rvparkreviews.com and looked to see what was available.  We were right on the border of Washington and Idaho, so I looked in Idaho.  I found a well rated place in Caldwell Idaho called the Ambassador RV resort.   

So we drove the 250 odd miles to Caldwell to spend the remainder of the holiday weekend.  There was a few harry moments driving up Highway 95.  There was stretch of highway where they are doing bridge work on several of small spans across the many river crossings.  In those areas the outside of the bridges, 5 of them in all had been reduced to on lane in each direction.  The outside guard rails had been removed and a "K" rail placed on the outside edge of each lane.  That significantly reduced the lane width to about 10' in each direction.  Between you and the oncoming traffic was a row of 4" cones that had been bent and run over several times.  In driving the rig over the bridge spans, you literally had about 9" on each side of the rig, and the outsides were iron guard rail or concrete.  At one bridge I came to a complete stop, as a semi was coming towards me I swore that both of us wouldn't fit on the road at the same time.  But we made it unscathed, except for the NEW windshield star I picked up on the lower drivers side of the window.  Figures. 

The park here has many of the same amenities, but has 250+ spaces.  Lots of room, no noise, and fresh air.  We will hang out here for a while, then probably head back west to Sisters RV in Oregon, just west of Bend. 

There are some off road trails here, and we may drive into  Boise to check out the town.  The moral of the story?  Life is too short to stay were you are not having fun, especially if your house has wheels.   
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
Support your local Police Officer, Fire Fighter and Military!

Kim (skyking4ar2) Bertram

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 4074
  • I don't know what I don't know so I look here...
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #31 on: August 31, 2012, 11:39:47 PM »
Marty,

It's still a small world...Jay and Paula McRell who were with us at Moab are there at Ambassador now on my recommendation. It's a great stop and we enjoyed the park immensely after we left Moab and headed west earlier in the summer. They will appreciate your wine stories.

Say "hi" for Christi and I!

Have fun!

p.s. I missed the P-40 Warhawk museum just a few miles down the road, if you are of that inclination.
Kim & Christi Bertram
SKP 106183
FMCA 420913
----------------------------------
2012 Thor Damon Tuscany 42RQ
2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Diesel
Taos Monte Bello RV Park, El Prado, NM

SargeW

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 6293
  • Life is better on the road!
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #32 on: August 31, 2012, 11:47:53 PM »
Great info Kim, thanks!  I will look them up and see if I can find them.  What kind of rig do they have, do you remember?
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
Support your local Police Officer, Fire Fighter and Military!

Kim (skyking4ar2) Bertram

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 4074
  • I don't know what I don't know so I look here...
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #33 on: September 01, 2012, 11:36:13 AM »
They have a shorter. white Class A and tow a blue Honda Hybrid, South Dakota handicap tags. See if you can talk them into Alaska!  8)
Kim & Christi Bertram
SKP 106183
FMCA 420913
----------------------------------
2012 Thor Damon Tuscany 42RQ
2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Diesel
Taos Monte Bello RV Park, El Prado, NM

ArdraF

  • ---
  • Posts: 9648
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #34 on: September 01, 2012, 06:44:32 PM »
Boise is a nice town.  Lots of trees.  Boise is French for trees or similar.

ArdraF
ArdraF
:D :D

Wendy

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 12481
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #35 on: September 01, 2012, 06:51:24 PM »
The Birds of Prey Center is an interesting place. Also the only place I've seen a Condor.
 
Wendy
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
~We can't be lost because we don't care where we're going~
Here's where we are http://map.datastormusers.com/user2.cfm?user=2276
2015 Allegro Ooen Road
1973 Sunshine Yellow VW Bug

SargeW

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 6293
  • Life is better on the road!
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #36 on: September 19, 2012, 12:53:09 AM »
I am a little behind on the entries for the journal due to the issues with the server maintenance lately.  I'll catch up quick though.

Well we arrived at the Bend/Sisters Garden RV resort, which is really in Bend, about two miles from Sisters, OR.  This park used to be a KOA, but you would never know it by looking at it.  All of the roads are paved; the sites are concrete and concrete patios.  The sites are wide with nice grass areas between the sites. The landscaping is beautiful and well maintained. We paid $44 per night for a weekly rate.
 
Sisters were so named for the three mountains that surround the city, and are named North Sister, Middle Sister, and South Sister.  Also next to the Sisters was “Broken Top” mountain. Because you guessed it, the top of it looks like it has been broken off leaving a distinctive jagged top.  Mount Washington and Mount Jefferson are also nearby.

What we found to do in the area was plentiful. On one day we drove up McKinzie Pass  to the Dee Wright observatory.  It is actually a rock and Lava observation tower that was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC).  Inside the round observatory built into the walls are small “portals” or windows in the stone. Peering through each one you see one of the many geologic wonders framed in the distance. A small brass plaque next to each window describes the vista that you are looking at.  The feats of the CCC are amazing, as most of the projects accomplished by them were largely done with lots of manual labor.

Then there was the “Bend Ale Trail”.  Yep, one of my favorites! A stop at the visitor center provided the map and directions for the tour.  It is a self guided tour that visits 9 of the micro breweries around Bend.  Some are newer, and some have been around for quite a while. But all make their own brand of beers in all different configurations. A few are just small tasting rooms while others have full blown restaurants attached.  I think we visited 7 of the 9 over a 5 day period before we got distracted by other stuff (shopping, cleaning ect).  I guess we will just have to go back some day to finish off the other 2, or just start over again.
 
The RV Park also had an unexpected perk. Right next to the RV Park is the permanent grounds for the annual Sister Rodeo.  I think the Rodeo is in June each year (which we may be going back for if we can get a spot at the RV Park.)  But when it is not going on guests are allowed to walk through a gate into the rodeo parking area and rodeo rink to walk pets (or kids).  Pets can be off leash and can run freely without danger of traffic or unseen hazards in the forested areas.
 
Then the town of Sisters itself is a quaint little town with lots of shops of various descriptions and an easy town walking area.  When we were there the annual “Sisters Bluegrass Festival” was going on as well.  While I don’t mind Bluegrass music, it’s not a favorite so we didn’t hang out in town for the event.
 
Two days before we were due to leave Sisters, a lightning strike started a forest fire on the lower slopes of one of the Sisters mountains. The local forestry service jumped on it right away and were containing it pretty quickly with water dropping helicopters. The day we were leaving the rodeo grounds next door was being transformed into a command post for the fire fighters.  Our timing was perfect. 
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
Support your local Police Officer, Fire Fighter and Military!

Billy Bob

  • ---
  • Posts: 226
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #37 on: September 19, 2012, 09:29:32 AM »
Sarge that is a pretty part of Oregon Keep up the info and pictures of your trip just love Oregon & Washington

Wendy

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 12481
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #38 on: September 19, 2012, 10:19:13 AM »
Sarge, You forgot 3-Finger Jack in your mountain list, it's an interesting one. Also, if you're still in the area, the High Desert Museum is well worth a visit. So is Newberry National Volcanic Monument. And the High Cascades Loop is a spectacular drive.
 
Wendy
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
~We can't be lost because we don't care where we're going~
Here's where we are http://map.datastormusers.com/user2.cfm?user=2276
2015 Allegro Ooen Road
1973 Sunshine Yellow VW Bug

SargeW

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 6293
  • Life is better on the road!
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #39 on: September 19, 2012, 10:47:28 AM »
You are right about 3-Finger Jack in the list Wendy!  The fire did discourage a bit of the exploration in the area, but we do have plans to go back. We have to finish the Ale Trail after all........

Thanks Billy! There is a lot to see in this part of the country!
« Last Edit: September 19, 2012, 10:50:04 AM by SargeW »
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
Support your local Police Officer, Fire Fighter and Military!

SargeW

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 6293
  • Life is better on the road!
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #40 on: September 24, 2012, 12:44:55 AM »
After leaving Sisters we traveled to the coast for a week stay at Sea Perch RV Park in Yachats, OR.  It was pricier than most of the places that we have stayed at lately, but typical for a park that you can walk out of the park and onto the sand of the beach and the crashing waves.

The park itself is fairly small, but the owners have done a good job setting it up. Even though we didn’t get a beach front site, the sites in back are terraced up the hill and fan out in a “V” shape so that your view is not directly blocked by the RV down the hill from you.  They have an amazing club house with a workout room, showers, an upstairs lounge with large windows that looks out on the ocean, and a billiard room downstairs.
 
The non beach front sites were $60 and night, and the beach front sites were $70.  Diane thought that the sites were over priced for the non beach front sites. I just think that it’s typical for that kind of place now days.
 
The weather was fickle while we were there though. Even though it was mid September, we still had our share of fog and gloomy weather. But when it was nice, it was really nice.
Other than the beach we found a few items of interest a short distance from the RV park. One day we drove to the Cape Perpetua Visitors center and took a 2 mile hike called the Sitka Spruce trail. It winds through an old growth forest to a 600 year old Giant Sitka Spruce tree that the state of Oregon named the “Heritage Tree” due to its age and tremendous size.
 
We also learned that there are over 50 covered bridges in Oregon, and another day we spent traveling around and visited 3 of them.  On that drive we disregarded the map and let “Shelia” (the name I have given to the voice on my GPS) take us the scenic route back to the RV park through miles of fire roads, hunting trails, and old forest roads.   We wound up driving 70 miles through some spectacular back country on the meandering trip back to the RV.
 
We are cutting the Western States trip a little short, as an event has come up in Southern California that I wanted to attend. So we will be working our way south instead of zigzagging back and forth.  We are still loving being back in the West for a while though.
 
We are currently at Seven Feathers RV resort (and Casino) in Canyonville.  A really nice Indian RV park off of Interstate 5 freeway a ways. We have been here before, and it’s a great stop over while going between Oregon and Ca.  And at $32 a night, it’s a good deal to boot. The next destination is back towards California wine country for a few days.  Time to restock!
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
Support your local Police Officer, Fire Fighter and Military!

Billy Bob

  • ---
  • Posts: 226
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #41 on: September 24, 2012, 09:43:16 AM »
Thanks for the info and the pictures they are great

BernieD

  • ---
  • Posts: 5813
    • PressurePro
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #42 on: September 24, 2012, 10:35:17 AM »
Sarge

On your way south on I-5, stop in Lodi for 2 nites at Flag City RV. $27/nite (Passport America-2 nite limit) with full hookups and nice pull-thru's. Then check out Cycles Gladiator winery. We picked up a case of delicious zinfandel at a very nice price. Many other wineries in the area to tour but Flag City gets pricey after 2 nites.
Bernie & Marlene Dobrin
Home is Goodyear, AZ
Missing our Travel Supreme

SargeW

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 6293
  • Life is better on the road!
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #43 on: September 24, 2012, 07:17:12 PM »
Thanks Bernie but I am past that point already. Due to the forum having some ups and downs I am a bit behind on the posting to the blog.  We are currently in Paso Robles for a few days.  That will be the next entry!
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
Support your local Police Officer, Fire Fighter and Military!

Tom

  • Administrator
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 44374
    • RV Forum web site
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #44 on: September 24, 2012, 07:42:45 PM »
Oops Marty, we missed you! Bernie's suggestion of Flag City in Lodi is approx an hour NE of us.
Tom.  Need help? Click the Help button in the toolbar above.

SargeW

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 6293
  • Life is better on the road!
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #45 on: September 24, 2012, 10:09:46 PM »
No worries Tom! I will be back in that area again before long. 
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
Support your local Police Officer, Fire Fighter and Military!

SargeW

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 6293
  • Life is better on the road!
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #46 on: October 24, 2012, 11:29:25 PM »
Well, it’s been a while since the last entry on the journal, but lots has happened. Most importantly our wanderings on this West Coast wanderings trip was cut short. We are still dealing with “issues” from our Canada/Alaska trip, and they were starting to bunch up on us.  When they started happening all at once it was time to retreat for a while.
 
But first more on the part of the trip that we did finish.  After leaving Sisters, Oregon, we headed to wine country in the Paso Robles, Ca area.  We wanted  to addend an event at our favorite winery, Dry Creek winery.  We picked a little 38 space RV park because it was close to the winery.  It was in Cloverdale, and was named Dutcher Creek RV park.  Not a big place, and kind of built on the side of a hill. Some of the sites have awesome views though. We got their one pull through space that pulls you in parallel to the side of a wall with a stunning view of the valley below.
 
The next day we went to the winery for the event. We are club members so the event was free.  They were pouring about 6 different wines that they had just bottled. It had been in barrels for about 2-3 years.  And they served or devours to boot.  At one point we were allowed to go into the back where they were just bringing in trucks out of the vineyards full of grapes. They are immediately taken to a crusher for processing.  Pretty cool to watch.  Boy, talk about not wasting time, from the time the grape was picked until it was being crushed was a few hours.
 
After the wine event we left Dutcher Creek and headed to Wine Country RV Resort in Paso Robles.  We have been there many times and it is one of our favorite places to stay when we are in the area.
 
I had also ordered and received while I was there a new surge suppressor for the RV electrical system.  My “Surge Guard” brand that I had been using for about 6 years was starting to give me fits.  At the ocean front place in Oregon we had stayed at, I couldn’t get the 50 amp pedestal plug to work.  The surge guard kept popping whenever the time delay would try to connect.  The 30 amp side would work though.  We tested the power at the pedestal but it seemed to be OK.
 
The warranty had long since expired, so there would be no love there.  After doing some research I decided to go with the Progressive Dynamics 50 amp hard wire surge protector.  I was impressed with the features that it had, on board digital display that read out both the line voltage and amps being used on each leg of the 50 amp line, fault codes, other info scrolled continuously across the built in LED display.  It came with a LIFETIME warranty, and was cheaper than Camping Worlds “Surge Guard” model to boot.  The install was easy, and took about an hour (as I like to go slow and do things methodically.)
 
After thinking that our problems were all over now, I found out how wrong I was.  The electrical issue was fixed, but now the hydraulic leveling jacks had started “dropping” a fraction of an inch at a time, usually while we were sleeping. This made it tough to get to sleep, tougher to stay asleep, and now the dog was upset to boot.
 
Then the sewer smell started.  It was coming from somewhere, and I wasn’t sure where.  I chased it for a while, but at night it was pretty awful.
 
And the Direct TV started dropping out for no apparent reason.  It started sporadic and got worse. To the point where we couldn’t watch any of the TV’s in the front of the coach.  Again, no luck chasing down a cause.
 
Then on the way back to Ca from Oregon I noted that the rig was running hotter than usual.  Even though we were running is some hot temps in the 90’s, I was seeing coolant temps in the 215 to 218 range on big grades.  Usually this rig never got over 205 on the biggest grades.  I had suspicions that the radiator was suffering the effects of 2 months of driving on Canadian dirt and gravel roads, sometimes for hours in the rain.
   
So with all that stuff happening at once, we opted to go jacks up and head back to Fallbrook early than we had planned.  Trying to fix one issue at a campground can be dicey depending on the scope of the repair needed, but a whole bunch at once was just too much.

So we headed back to Fallbrook and traveled mostly down Interstate 5.  The trip wasn't too bad, but I did have a few tense moments pulling the Grapevine grade on the 5.  Hot weather and slow going is tough on a rig when it’s healthy, and really tough when it’s not.  It was the first time I ever saw 225 degrees on the coolant temps, and I even got a warning light on the Freightliner display warning me that bad thing may happen if it went much higher.  I backed off the throttle but kept the RPM’s up until I could get the temps to come down a bit.  I finally made the top of the grade with no other issues.  This is a definite priority when I get home.
 
We pulled into Fallbrook on Sept 26th.  This had been a long, long trip, one that felt unusually more difficult than any other in our last 4 years of nearly full time travel. 
In the next segment I will document what some of the fixes were on the rig, and a few surprises.     
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
Support your local Police Officer, Fire Fighter and Military!

Dean & Linda Stock

  • ---
  • Posts: 1195
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #47 on: October 25, 2012, 08:13:39 AM »

    After doing some research I decided to go with the Progressive Dynamics 50 amp hard wire surge protector.  I was impressed with the features that it had, on board digital display that read out both the line voltage and amps being used on each leg of the 50 amp line, fault codes, other info scrolled continuously across the built in LED display.  It came with a LIFETIME warranty, and was cheaper than Camping Worlds “Surge Guard” model to boot.  The install was easy, and took about an hour (as I like to go slow and do things methodically.)
  The electrical issue was fixed, but now the hydraulic leveling jacks had started “dropping” a fraction of an inch at a time, usually while we were sleeping. This made it tough to get to sleep, tougher to stay asleep, and now the dog was upset to boot.     

Sarge, our hearts go out to you.  Dealing with one issue is hard enough, but you had so many it had to be overwhelming.  I bet you breathed a sigh of relief when you arrived home.

Dean also has the Progressive surge protector, and he loves it.  He feels that it does an excellent job of protecting our coach.  We have changed sites when it reads bad news.

No one is happy when our pets are unhappy.  We recently had to spend time in a motel because of a repair issue.  We thought we were going to a repair facility and moved out, only to find out we had to wait a few days for the fix.  Therefore,  I needed to return to the motel (health issues).   Our cat hates riding in the car (because of vet trips???), so Dean braved cool weather and no heat to keep him happy by staying in the coach.

Looking forward to reading your "surprises."
Dean and Linda Stock
and Sherlock (the cat)
Cypress, CA
2006 Airstream Motor Home
2006 Jeep Liberty (Towed)

SargeW

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 6293
  • Life is better on the road!
Re: WEST COAST STATES - "Just the facts Ma'am"
« Reply #48 on: October 26, 2012, 12:44:14 AM »
Thanks Linda, and you are so right.  I may have even been able to work through the problems on the road, but when the dog started freaking out, I knew the trip was coming to a fast end.  When the dog is is not happy all night, the DW is not happy either.  And since "stuff" runs down hill, you know my position in line!!
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
Cummins ISL 450 HP/Powerglide chassis
Visit our new travel blog! http://www.mytripjournal.com/rvnchickTNG
Support your local Police Officer, Fire Fighter and Military!

 

Hosted by Over The Network