Sunday, August 3, 2008
RVing the Oregon "Trail"/Upcoming Changes
As mentioned in Friday's post, when I first started to deliver RVs in the summer of 2002, I went often and as far as I could travel....I purchased the Jeep Wrangler in late November of that year, but before then I would drive the RV to the dealers and return via air to Dayton...except for the first trip, when I Greyhounded from Charlotte, North Carolina, to Elkhart, then a cab to Nappanee....I only took the bus once after that.....if you've ever taken the Greyhound bus for any long period of time, you wouldn't have to ask why I don't bus anymore.
November 2002-Nappanee, Indiana to Coburg, Oregon.
I had never been to Oregon, or for that matter, Wyoming, Utah, or Idaho, when I took a small BT Cruiser from Nappanee to Coburg. The weather was warm as I headed out over the great plains across Iowa and Nebraska on I-80... however, once I hit the Wyoming state line, the winds started to pick up and were whipping from the west at 40-50 MPH, snow flurries were in the air....my 24 foot BT which had been getting 11 MPG quickly dropped down to 6.....I headed through the night to Utah.
You have to realize that Iowa, Nebraska, and to a lesser extent Wyoming, really aren't "sight seeing" friendly.....the former are flat farm land with vast stretches of desolate prairie...the latter is mountainous, but not your Colorado, Montana, or California, type mountains....things, viewing wise, picked up in Utah, Idaho, and of course the Columbia River stretch that separates Oregon and Washington State.
The weather improved until I hit Portland 4 days into my trip, where the winds once again howled, and the rains kicked in.....If I had that trip to do over again(which I never made a second time even though I had several chances)...I would have took the Columbia River Gouge part during the day light hours....I took it at night, and some of the people I met along the way told me I was crazy...one, for driving the river area at night, when it was my first time going that route, the other for missing the great view, and photo ops. As luck would have it, while preparing for this post, I tried to upload some photos, but 2 of the 3 disks would not cooperate...so you'll get some lesser(in my eyes) ones.
After having the awing ripped off the unit by wind, while sitting at a Flying J Truck Stop in Portland, I headed south on I-5 towards Eugene....actually a small berg just north of Eugene, called Coburg....Rain and wind the rest of the way. I dropped off the RV, grabbed a ride to the Eugene Airport and flew out towards Ohio.
The flight took almost as many turns as the drive out....my return had me flying from Oregon to Phoenix, back-tracked to Las Vegas....then a Red Eye to Chicago(Midway), then a morning flight to Dayton....I had been doing the RV thing since August, and my trips had included 2 to North Carolina, 1 to California, 1 to Oklahoma, Clearwater, Florida, and this one to western Oregon....not bad, I was beginning to see parts of the country I had never seen, even in my Air Force days. Coming up on the next RV Run story....I head for Las Vegas...this time towing a Jeep Wrangler some 2000 miles, then driving it back across the great Southwest.
Photo-The mountains of Utah and Idaho...and a birds eye view from the final leg of the flight home from Midway-Chicago to Dayton....the photo is looking down on Grand Lake where I live....but the city is St. Marys across the Lake from Celina....I was on the wrong side of the aircraft to get my home, so the sister city and east side of the Lake would have to do....we were 50 miles out from Dayton.
Changes in the works
Taking a couple of weeks off to rest my legs and back between baseball and football seasons. My first scrimmage is slated for August 14th...so I am taking the opportunity to get my physical on Tuesday and rest up for the 40 to 45 games I plan on working. Will go to the doc in Minster Tuesday afternoon...get the driver's check-up(even though I don't drive the RVs as often), and my 6 month physical since I began the BP treatment after last fall and winter's back issues(spinal stenosis). I will see if the Blood Pressure is staying down, and if I need to stay on the mild medication for high BP. I don't have a problem with the meds, especially since I've survived the baseball season(81 games) intact.
I will also make the effort to drop 15 or so pounds before the end of the football campaign, the last of October...I've stayed pretty steady at 205 on my 5'11" frame this spring and summer, but could stand to lose...190 is my goal by the end of the season, and I would like to hit 180 or so by next spring when baseball begins and I hit 60 years old.
I graduated from High School in 1967 at 135 pounds and 5 foot 9...by the time I joined the Air Force a year later I was 140...and I grew to my current 5' 11" and was 185 lbs by the time I headed for Vietnam....I stayed pretty steady at that weight for the next 25 years or so, until I started lifting weights on a regular basis.... the heavy stuff..I quickly gained 30 then 40 pounds. The problem since I stopped lifting the heavy weights is losing the weight (which I've done several times) and keeping it off. So, back I go, cut back the beer consumption(not an easy thing in the summer) from 1-2 cases a week to a 12 pack or 18 a week....no diet is called for, just a drop in carb and beer intake...this should do the trick until cold weather sets in....Come November, beer drinking, like cigars goes away....who wants to sit outside and freeze their ass off? I will also go back to lifting weights, although more reps and less heavy weight to save the back, and I will begin my 3 mile a day walks along the West Bank of Grand Lake.
Will let you know how I progress.
at 7:44 PM