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August 19, 2021

Road Trip 2021 - Dayton OH

As I mentioned in the previous post we left Denver with the intent of making good time to Dayton.  Well we did pretty good, but take a couple hours for a stop in Hannibal MO.  The home of Mark Twain and Molly Brown.  We were here before in August 2017 and did all the sightseeing then, but missed taking a river boat ride.


We can now cross that off the ToDo list :)  I’m glad we did it, but the whole time I’m thinking more of the chores ahead than the beauty of the Mississippi River.  Perhaps more references to Twain’s writings would have kept my interest better.  No mention of the ‘Cave’ nor ‘Injun Joe’ as the boat passed those sites.  But quite a bit of time was spent on ‘Lover’s Leap’.

We arrived at Fran’s childhood home a little behind schedule.

The  A/C was not working.  It's hot, it's humid, it's not at all comfortable to me.  It was a no-brainer to have that repaired quick.  Five Star did some testing and was out the next day with a new unit.  Whew!

The master bedroom with stained gray carpet and pink walls .. keep or change?

The bathroom is fair, but dated and needs a good cleanup. 

The kitchen isn’t all that bad, but needs a facelift.

The hearth is missing from the living room fireplace.

And the hallway?  The upstairs bathroom leaked!  And damaged the lath-and-plaster ceiling and walls.

If these repairs are not demanding enough on our time, nephew Joey and Kathy were married during Covid, but are having a reception in her hometown of Niagara.  It’s 450 miles one way ... just-a-day-away!  We’re there!

We’ve enjoyed Niagara Falls before and again camped at Four Mile Creek State Park.  We had a great site with Lake Ontario just across the grass. 

As before we were directed to Lot #3 on Goat Island for RV parking.  With a limited amount of time we decided to walk the island, last time we took the shuttle to the main sights off the island, on both the US and Canada side.

From Goat Island the tops of Bridalveil and American Falls are seen.  There’s a long line to ride the Maid of the Mist on the bridge.  Fran did that last time while I did a rim hike.  She says I had the better option.

Horseshoe Falls is the big draw.  It’s better viewed from the Canadian side.

The reception was held at Kin Loch Farmstead.  Am awesome informal barn and outdoor setting.

In my previous post we met Lucca while we were in the Denver area. Now Grandpa Joe is meeting her for the first time.

Meet Joey and Kathy with his parents, Joe and Marsha, and Joey's sisters, Lora and Katie.

No cake, but an ice cream truck for dessert.  Clever idea since a cake would have melted!


As I mentioned Joey and Kathy were married in August of last year.  They are expecting their first child November this year – a boy.  The car decorations reflect that … fun.

Back at the house, I’m still busy with demolition.  While Fran is removing years and layers of paint from the door jam and window sills.


Junk King came the next day to cart off all the discards.

While Junk King was collecting the discards, we were moving the remaining furniture from the two bedrooms.  Simpson Flooring arrived the next day to resurface the hardwood floors hidden under the carpeting.

It’s hard knee cracking work, but WOW!, what a difference!  Hard to believe all that hardwood flooring was under ugly gray carpet.

Now we’ll have more contractors doing their assigned tasks and I expect time for some fun.

The Dayton area has some really great history, preserved at the Carillon.

Some Fun Dayton Facts: 
1.  The Wright brothers, two Dayton sons of a preacher, taught the world how to fly.

2.  The Dayton Triangles won what is considered the first NFL game, October 3 1920 on their home field at Triangle Park, defeating the Columbus Panhandles 14-0.

3.  In 1934 Dayton was home to the world's first soapbox derby

4.  In 1909 a Dayton built Stoddard won the the first race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with an average speed of 57.4 mph.

August 04, 2021

Road Trip 2021 - Moab to Denver

With US 50 closed in Utah due to flooding, we had to backtrack to I-15 south to I-70 east.  Our ultimate destination was Devil’s Garden in Arches National Park, where we had reservations for two nights. 

But, we like to detour through Green River for watermelon. They grow some of the best.  With the melons safely stowed in the shower we were again looking forward to Arches.

I’d like to share the pictures from our stay, but alas my fat fingers hit something they should not have and those two days are now just fond memories.

We did do all the ‘roadside’ sights and short hikes between being hammered by yet another thunderstorm of Biblical proportions.

Down in Moab we picked up some grocery items at City Market, did laundry and washed the RV.  The photos begin at the RV wash, everything prior are just memories.

With everything cleaned and tucked away, an overnight in Palisade awaited.

Palisade has the absolute best peaches.  Valley Fruit is on the way into town, convenient and a good selection.


We were the only shoppers there, when a load of fresh fruit arrived from the orchard.  Easy choice!

With peaches and other fruit we stopped for lunch at Riverbend Park, which has a FREE Disc Golf course.  

I had made reservations months earlier at Palisade Base Camp, just a few days before the T@B Teardrop folks booked the entire park for their Tab Rally.


We definitely felt like an SOB (Some Other Brand) there.

The view out of our dinette window.

The reason to spend Saturday night, or arrive early on Sunday, to Palisade is their top of the line Farmer’s Market.

Yes we bought more peaches, didn’t I say they are the best?  And we also picked up Olathe Sweet Corn.

It was here we learned of that I-70 was completely closed … indefinitely!  Another Biblical thunderstorm sent 240 tons of water, rocks and debris onto the freeway.

The official detour is north and around via Steamboat Springs.  Visit www.cotrip.org for current conditions and detours.

There is major road work on Monarch Pass weekdays, but it is open on weekends.  We decided to give that a try ... and drove right thru Olathe!, but already had our corn.

Little did we know following the Gunnison River was a white knuckle experience not for the passenger but especially the driver!  But WOW what views.  Sorry no pictures, it takes both hands to hang on.

Reaching Leadville we could finally say “Whew! What a ride!”

We spent a very peaceful night with temps in the 60s in Heaton Bay Campground.  A perfect stop after a long and a bit of a scary driving day.


The Olathe corn and (San Felipe) shrimp salad tostada were all we wanted for dinner.  Yummy!

We had reservations at Chatfield State Park near Denver.

A gettogether with niece Laura, husband Andrew was arranged so we could meet their daughter Lucca.

Ain't she a cutie?

We are now heading to Dayton OH, at our best possible speed.  Not as much fun, but work needs to be done on the house there and we need to be there.