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Author Topic: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area  (Read 8256 times)

campn4kids

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"Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« on: July 29, 2006, 07:14:37 AM »
Greetings! We are in the early stages of planning a cross-country trip from southeast VA to the Grand Canyon region. We hope to find a route that is easy to traverse and fairly kind to the rig. We will have plenty of time and the only place we have to see enroute is GRACELAND (Actually, we have good friends in Memphis--the King's homeplace is just a bonus). If anyone has travelled this route, or can recommend a basic route, let us know! THANKS and have a toasty summer!
Campn4kids :)

Jim Dick

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2006, 07:48:55 AM »
Hi Campin4kids,

I just ran a profile on SA Topo from I81 to Williams, AZ on I40. Around 250 miles out from the start you will have climbed about 2000' or so. By the time you get to Williams you will be around 7400'. I have taken this route before we had a motor home and don't remember anything really steep. Albequrque, NM does have a long run downhill into town and then a fairly long climb out but I don't think it's much more than about 6%. Hopefully others will have more knowledge of the route. You will pass the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest in NM and AZ. Be sure to stop and take a look.

Jim

Titusville, Florida
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JohnSandyWhite

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2006, 09:01:15 AM »
 :)Hi campn4kidsWe travelled from Nashville down to Memphis and then on to the Grand Canyon via the I40 last November. Great journey. Shame about the Snow storm on the way.  ;D
Been there, done that. But I never stop learning

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2006, 12:31:35 PM »
I''ll add my vote for I40 as well. You don't have to take the interstate itself all the way - there are excellent national highways (US routes) that run near by in many areas.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

Carl L

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2006, 12:38:33 PM »
I-40 is your target route as Jim said.  Beyond the Grand Canyon, accessible either from Williams or Flagstaff, there are a number of side trips worth while.

1.  Santa Fe -- uber quaint but fun, great for Indian crafts.  There are accessible pueblos in the area.

2.  Petrified Forest -- just off the freeway, interesting but only for a few hours.

3.  Meteor Crater -- same as 2 but intrinsically more impressive, that was one heckofa bang that dug that hole.

4.  Canyon De Chelly -- the memories of a life time.  North of I-40 on US 191.   A vertical walled sandstone canyon with ancient cliff dwelling ruins and current Navajo ranchs.  A 4WD trip either your own with a hired Navajo guide or a 4WD tour run by the local resort.  Half your driving is on a hardbottomed river about 6 inches to a foot deep  Allow a day's layover for this.  Nice RV CG run by the Navajos.   

5.   Scenic tour of the Navajo and Hopi reservations on state 264 from Ganado to Tuba City and then into Flagstaff.   Couple this with the Canyon de Chelly trip.  You will gain the impression that you are in a foreign country.  You are. 

6.   Flagstaff.   Worth at least another layover.   Neat and tidy city grown up around a little old western downtown.   (Hollbrook and Winslow are a bit grotty.)   I like it better than Williams for a Grand Canyon base of operations.

And, of course, the Grand Canyon itself.   Do get your reservations in if you want to camp in or near the park.
Carl L/LA   [Forum Staff]  KI6SEZ

Prowler 23LV TT pulled by a '95 Ford Bronco

John From Detroit

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2006, 06:14:04 PM »
I took the I-40 route myself last winter and had no problems with it save for a couple of wrong turns (My fault) which, as it turned out, were better than the pre-programmed route (More senic) (Sometimes a wrong turn is the best turn) Actually, going west I did not make any wrong turns.

While in the Grand Canyon area, how about a visit to Page Az  Antelope Slot Canyon is something to see

Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
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GypsySooners

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2006, 03:35:14 AM »
I agree with Carl about the stops on the way.  And I completely agree with taking I-40.

One place I'd like to mention though is Amarillo, Texas.  If you're planning on spending a night, or two, in that area then consider Palo Duro Canyon State Park just south of Amarillo.

You'll think I lied as you approach it but then you suddenly drive down into a pretty cool canyon with some great campsites.  Nice place to unwind and walk around.  And, if you've never seen Roadrunners except being chased by Willy Coyote, then you'll really be glad you stopped there.

Also, when you get to the Grand Canyon be sure to go to both the South and the North rims.  Very different and worth the day trip.
Love the Florida State Park campgrounds.  If you see us, say hi and have a beer or glass of wine with us.  We don't bite.

martinday

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2006, 10:33:39 PM »
I did the I40 route in 1998 in a Class A and it was a great drive. You will get to
see the good parts of TN, Arkansas, Nort Oklahoma,  NorthTexas, New Mexico and Arizona. I would not however
suggest I10 I used it on the way home and it is a lot of Texas which is ok but not as scenic. My favorite
part however was New Mexico it is a very beautiful state.

Smoky

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2006, 03:26:40 AM »
The only problem I have with I-40 is the enormous number of 18 wheelers.  Going through Knoxville is the very worst.  But it is a good choice for a flat route.  Just don't get flattened in the process.   ;D

Smoky S  Ham radio - W3PY

The magic of a campfire
where the fish get bigger
the mountains get higher
the hike was uphill both ways
and new friends become old friends

2005 KSDP3910 Newmar Kountry Star
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On our way to the Poudre River in Colorado for the summer!

martinday

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2006, 06:53:22 AM »
I live in Knoxville and Smoky is right also there is a lot of construction but once you get thru it
is a beautiful ride from Knoxville to Nashville. Once you get to Nashville it will be flat until
you get to New Mexico for the most part. It was on this trip which was my first in an Rv by the
way that I learned the importance of how much weight you carry and how fast you can actually go in a
Class A. It was January and on the I-40 route it was cold until you got thru Texas so we had no problems. On the way
back we went I-10 and it was warm, we blew 8 tires in Texas ,2 of which we had put
on during the trip. We found out the hard way that the Class A with its 454 was capable
of much greater speed than it was rated to drive at with that amount of Load. Some lessons
I guess you have to learn the hard way. 8)

Smoky

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2006, 09:17:23 AM »
Martinday, nice to meet you.  Nashville is one of our favorite places in the country.  We found a campground almost within walking distance of the new Grand Ole Oprey and we love it there.  Also like going down town to see the Country Hall of Fame and also walk the main street at night and see all the lights.  But it is the Smoky Mountains that really grabs our hearts.  They gave those peaks a good name, of course.   :D
Smoky S  Ham radio - W3PY

The magic of a campfire
where the fish get bigger
the mountains get higher
the hike was uphill both ways
and new friends become old friends

2005 KSDP3910 Newmar Kountry Star
Toad - Taurus wagon w/ axle lock
On our way to the Poudre River in Colorado for the summer!

Wendy

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2006, 11:06:11 AM »
Monument Valley is about 3 hours north east of Grand Canyon and is worth a side trip, preferably overnight.

North rim of Grand Canyon offers a completely different perspective of the canyon but it is not a day trip from south rim, it's an overnighter. Absolutely have reservations for the NPS campground at north rim if you decide to go there. Don't know what time of year your trip will be but north rim closes down with the first snow.

If you go north to Canyon de Chelly, stop in Ganado at Hubbell Trading Post.

Smoky, what's the name of the campground in Nashville? We'll be there next July for a convention at Opryland Hotel and will need a campground before and after. Also a kennel for Mr Sam as the hotel is NOT pet friendly.
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
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martinday

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #12 on: August 04, 2006, 11:17:58 AM »
Smoky,

Nice to meet you as well. We will be camping in Townsend this weekend and hopefully have better weather than last week's monsoon. I am hoping to take the camper to some Titan's games this year so I will remember the campground you suggested.

Smoky

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #13 on: August 07, 2006, 07:06:18 PM »
Wendy:

We stayed at the Holiday Nashville Travel Park.  Takes 5 minutes to drive to the Grand Ole Opry from there.
Smoky S  Ham radio - W3PY

The magic of a campfire
where the fish get bigger
the mountains get higher
the hike was uphill both ways
and new friends become old friends

2005 KSDP3910 Newmar Kountry Star
Toad - Taurus wagon w/ axle lock
On our way to the Poudre River in Colorado for the summer!

Jim Dick

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #14 on: August 08, 2006, 06:18:55 AM »
Wendy,

There are at least three campgrounds on Music Valley road. We have stayed at the KOA but didn't like their prices. We now stay at Two Rivers. Very friendly staff but there is a tour bus operation next door and sometimes they work late on the buses so you hear a lot of backup alarms. It's a very short drive to the Opryland hotel and theater. If you want to go to the theater or mall you take a right at the end of Music Valley road and then a left two lights down. That brings you right into the huge parking area. You can also access the rear entrance of the hotel that way. Be sure to remember what entrance you use to enter the hotel. If you don't it will take days to find your car!!!! :)
Jim

Titusville, Florida
U.S. Navy Veteran
2000 American Dream 40' DP
2012 GMC Terrain
2006 Suzuki Boulevard C50T Motorcycle
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Smoky

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #15 on: August 08, 2006, 08:08:54 AM »
Jim:

Sounds like the Holiday we stayed at must be one of those three campgrounds you mentioned. 

I think Wendy carries bicycles with her motorhome.  If so, the mall (which is gorgeous and even has a boat ride inside it) and the Opry House are an easy, flat, bike ride from any of those campgrounds.
Smoky S  Ham radio - W3PY

The magic of a campfire
where the fish get bigger
the mountains get higher
the hike was uphill both ways
and new friends become old friends

2005 KSDP3910 Newmar Kountry Star
Toad - Taurus wagon w/ axle lock
On our way to the Poudre River in Colorado for the summer!

Wendy

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #16 on: August 08, 2006, 09:14:49 AM »
We still only have the bicycles as our 'toads' but maybe by next July the VW will be finished and towable.

I sure know about getting lost in the Opryland Hotel. Fortunately, our convention will all be in the Magnolia section of the hotel so I only need to remember that one entrance.

Will be there in October for a meeting and will check the campgrounds.

Thanks guys.
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

Alaskansnowbirds

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #17 on: August 09, 2006, 01:29:17 AM »
Wendy,

When Peg and I were in Nashville we also stayed at the Two Rivers Campground. We were in the middle of the campground so didn't hear the back-up alarms that much. Only after it got real quite at night.

Nice campground.

Not sure what route you're taking but if you're on I-40 I can recommend Tom Sawyer's Mississippi River RV Park in West Mempis AR..
Don & Peg
Alaska/Arizona
Currently located here.
Weather at Camp Verde, AZ.

Jim Dick

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #18 on: August 10, 2006, 08:53:00 AM »
Jim:

Sounds like the Holiday we stayed at must be one of those three campgrounds you mentioned. 

I think Wendy carries bicycles with her motorhome.  If so, the mall (which is gorgeous and even has a boat ride inside it) and the Opry House are an easy, flat, bike ride from any of those campgrounds.

That's the other one. We've never stayed there. It is very close to the mall and the Opry House but traffic is quite heavy. One would just have to be careful. I think there is transportation from the campgrounds to the mall. There are several tour companies that seem to run shuttles but I don't know the cost.
Jim

Titusville, Florida
U.S. Navy Veteran
2000 American Dream 40' DP
2012 GMC Terrain
2006 Suzuki Boulevard C50T Motorcycle
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Jim Dick

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #19 on: August 10, 2006, 08:55:41 AM »
Wendy,

When Peg and I were in Nashville we also stayed at the Two Rivers Campground. We were in the middle of the campground so didn't hear the back-up alarms that much. Only after it got real quite at night.

Nice campground.


Don,

But you're used to those alarms. Probably even miss them!! ;D ;D

Yes, it is a nice campground and we always stay there when in Nashville. Very friendly staff. Even let me move my coach so I could access Directv to activate my new receiver. Parked right next to the pool. I did have to move back to my site and didn't get reception there. :)
Jim

Titusville, Florida
U.S. Navy Veteran
2000 American Dream 40' DP
2012 GMC Terrain
2006 Suzuki Boulevard C50T Motorcycle
http://photo.net/photos/jimdick

Jim Dick

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #20 on: August 10, 2006, 08:57:42 AM »
Wendy,

You should be able to ride your bike to the mall but be careful of the traffic. You know how it is with a bunch of tourists!!!! ;D
Jim

Titusville, Florida
U.S. Navy Veteran
2000 American Dream 40' DP
2012 GMC Terrain
2006 Suzuki Boulevard C50T Motorcycle
http://photo.net/photos/jimdick

Tom

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #21 on: August 10, 2006, 09:38:55 AM »
There are several tour companies that seem to run shuttles but I don't know the cost.

That's what we used when we were there Jim. I don't recall the price, but I think it was very reasonable.
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Wendy

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #22 on: August 10, 2006, 01:12:38 PM »
Wendy,

You should be able to ride your bike to the mall but be careful of the traffic. You know how it is with a bunch of tourists!!!! ;D

Don't I know what tourists are like driving ... I live in a tourist town !! Fortunately, here I know the back routes to miss them. Maybe the shuttle bus/tour in Nashville is a good choide :)
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

Jim Dick

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #23 on: August 10, 2006, 04:04:20 PM »
Wendy,

The shuttle, if there is one in the campground you choose, would be better than the bike. Only problem is you have to follow their schedule.

Just checked our Trailer Life guide. Two Rivers has transportation to Opry Land and Opry Mills Mall. Holiday has transportation to Opry Land. KOA doesn't mention any shuttle but they did have one when we stayed during a rally. Perhaps it was only for the rally. It doesn't give any schedule but I'm sure if you call the campground they will tell you when they run the shuttle.

Opry Land and Opry Mills are in the same area as you may already know. I'm guessing Holiday only runs the shuttle during the shows.
Jim

Titusville, Florida
U.S. Navy Veteran
2000 American Dream 40' DP
2012 GMC Terrain
2006 Suzuki Boulevard C50T Motorcycle
http://photo.net/photos/jimdick

Tom

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #24 on: August 10, 2006, 04:42:00 PM »
Jim,

The shuttle stopped at KOA when we stayed there two years ago (not a rally).
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Jim Dick

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #25 on: August 10, 2006, 04:50:25 PM »
Jim,

The shuttle stopped at KOA when we stayed there two years ago (not a rally).

Good to know, Tom. I'm sure there are ways to get to the important "things" from any one of the campgrounds. Sure do like stopping there. It's nice it's on the way to or from our service center and Florida. :)
Jim

Titusville, Florida
U.S. Navy Veteran
2000 American Dream 40' DP
2012 GMC Terrain
2006 Suzuki Boulevard C50T Motorcycle
http://photo.net/photos/jimdick

Wendy

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #26 on: August 10, 2006, 07:05:42 PM »
We avoid KOAs when at all possible. Sorry, everyone has a few prejudices.

We'll be at the Opryland Hotel for 9 nights during our Coca-Cola convention but want someplace before or after to stay in the motorhome and do 'touristy' things so will check out the suggestions here. We're also not opposed to taking public transportation when available. We enjoy riding the bikes but prefer places that are flat and low in traffic ... back roads of Quartzsite were just about right. Will be towing a trailer full of Coke stuff to sell so no toad other than the bicycles.

Also need a nice kennel for Mr Sam while we're at the hotel....Opryland Hotel is definitely not pet friendly and I can understand why. If the weather was nice, he could stay in the motorhome and we'd walk him and visit with him a bunch of times during the day but Nashville in July?? Probably not nice weather. He'll be happier somewhere where he has A/C and a swimming hole and gets a nighty-night treat.



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

Alaskansnowbirds

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #27 on: August 10, 2006, 07:37:23 PM »
Don,

But you're used to those alarms. Probably even miss them!! ;D ;D

No I DON'T miss them. Always hated them. Every once in a while I'd get a driver that for some reason would leave the shift lever in reverse and sit there with the ignition on doing their paper work.

Quote
Yes, it is a nice campground and we always stay there when in Nashville. Very friendly staff. Even let me move my coach so I could access Directv to activate my new receiver. Parked right next to the pool. I did have to move back to my site and didn't get reception there. :)

Yes, the staff is really nice. When we were getting ready to leave I discovered a low tire. By the time we got that fixed (that's another story) and were ready to leave it was about 3 hours past checkout time. No sweat they said. Stuff happens.
Don & Peg
Alaska/Arizona
Currently located here.
Weather at Camp Verde, AZ.

Tom

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #28 on: August 10, 2006, 08:34:17 PM »
We avoid KOAs when at all possible.

We do too Wendy. That day we had little choice when other CGs had long lines up the street (they knew something I didn't!)
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Jim Dick

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #29 on: August 11, 2006, 02:26:52 PM »
Wendy,

We have avoided KOA for several years. Only in an emergency will we stop there. We really like Passport America. Not all top shelf campgrounds but most are just fine for overnighting. Some are even great for extended stays. Get our yearly dues back in about 3 stays.
Jim

Titusville, Florida
U.S. Navy Veteran
2000 American Dream 40' DP
2012 GMC Terrain
2006 Suzuki Boulevard C50T Motorcycle
http://photo.net/photos/jimdick

Jim Dick

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Re: "Flattest" route from Mid-Atlantic to Grand Canyon area
« Reply #30 on: August 11, 2006, 02:46:22 PM »
Don,

I'm sure you realize that was said with tongue in cheek! ;D ;D I think some of those drivers are in Nashville. Sometimes those alarms are on for a long time. I've learned to ignore them and will continue to stay at Two Rivers. A couple of times while we were there we saw Mel McDaniel's coach. His significant other was always walking the dog. She was funny. She became friendly with a couple across the way and one night before the show she showed up in tight jeans, boots, etc. I heard her say "see, I told you I cleaned up pretty good". ;D  We did see him at a show as well. He sang his hit "Stand Up" to a standing ovation. The lyrics were updated to honor our troops.
Jim

Titusville, Florida
U.S. Navy Veteran
2000 American Dream 40' DP
2012 GMC Terrain
2006 Suzuki Boulevard C50T Motorcycle
http://photo.net/photos/jimdick

 

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