June 23

Summer on the Island

Over the last weekend, I spent three nights near Truro. It rained one of those days. One day I wandered Truro and found Dalhousie University.

I can’t say much about this town. It is just a town. I did find a dog park on Sunday and took the Geordie over and he had a blast with the other dogs. I attempted to keep him out of the pond, but alas he’s a water dog.

On Monday I headed northeast and found myself on the island. Cape Breton to be more accurate. I found I went through one of the sides of the Bermuda Triangle. The weather changed to a sweltering 75% humidity and 85º! What the heck? It’s supposed to be cool up this far north. Well, I guess I’ll work on my Cape Breton tan!

Spooked this Ruffed Grouse

I found a campsite at Glenview Campground in Whycocomagh. This was an “ok” place  to stay, for doing a couple of day trips.

I did find a “must-go-to” shop in Whycocomagh. If you’re coming this way, stop at the “Farmer’s Daughter.” You’ll be able to pick up on a whole lot of dinner items. I found tubs of soups and I picked up a fish chowder. They also had shepherds pie, and lasagnes in the frozen foods case. Most would serve three to four. There were fresh baked breads and pies. Cookies! Oh the cookies! Great place to fill the freezer, for suppers to come as you venture further into Cape Breton.

On Tuesday I went to Baddeck and my all-time-favorite museum. (I was here in 1992) The Alexander Graham Bell Museum is one of those museums where you learn things, even as an adult. Pa Bell was more than the inventor of the telephone.  After the telephone was created all sorts of items came out of his mind. Bell bought property across the bay from Baddeck, because it reminded him of Scotland. It is still owned by the family. He came up here to invent in peace. He was part of a team that made the Silver Dart the first airplane to fly in Canada. He designed ailerons for that plane. He took what he knew from flight and saw a use of those wings for boats to fly on water with a hydrofoil design and often tested them in the bay. He set a world speed record with hydrofoil boat, HD-4.

Replica of HD-4 hydrofoil boat.

Bell made a metal detector. It was something he’d learned from the electricity from his telephone. He tested it by finding the bullets still in Civil War Vets, but when he used it on President Garfield after he was shot, he failed.

Bell was one of the founders of the National Geographic Society.

Sculpture of the Silver Dart, the first plane to fly in Canada

One thing I’ll note. I was extremely impressed with the museum back in 1992, this time, not so much. I think they’ve shrunk the exhibits down. Still, no matter what the museum left out, this was a brilliant man.

Cape Breton is also home to The Gaelic College near St Ann’s. The college started with the premise of saving of Celtic culture. Some of the courses you can take are in music, gaelic language, dance, and the arts, such as weaving.

Classes are for kids, adults, and families. For more information https://gaeliccollege.edu/study-with-us/

Since this is “New Scotland”, you’ll also notice that some of the signs are in gaelic.

If you know some Celtic music, you may have heard of fiddler Natalie McMaster. She is a Cape Breton born and bred and comes from musical family. She has taught fiddle classes at Gaelic College in the past.

I left Whycocomagh and now I’m near the end of the island. I’m near the town of Dingwall in a great campground. Hideaway Campground and Oyster Market is near the end of Shore Road. The views are spectacular. As in their name, they sell oysters in the campground along with lobsters. You can eat in or take them back to camp. I had lobster last night for dinner.

Besides campsites there are cabins and this lighthouse to stay in at Hideaway.
With this view, I wouldn’t mind a stay in the lighthouse too.
Down on the beach.

Driving further down Shore Road get’s choked off but you can find parking on the grass sides. Walk a little further down the road finds you at a picturesque beach. No hoards of people down there. I took Geordie down last evening and we had the place to ourselves. The water dog knew what we came for, no directions needed.

Crazy, happy dog prints

Long post so I’ll sign off.

Rob

 

June 16

No Beatles but Hank Snow

Last Friday, I rolled into Hunt’s Point in the rain.

Saturday, I woke to brilliant sunshine, and after coffee and a bowl of cereal, I was on the road. I went down to the town of Shelburne. In the past history, the town filled during the Revolution with England’s Loyalists from the colonies.

Harbourside Shelburne

Further back in time, an English Captain sailed with his family to the new world escaping the religious tyrany. He died on the  voyage and the ship stopped in Nova Scotia. He was buried in Shelburne County. That Captain and his family were the first of my family in this new land. The rough estimated date of death are 1632-34. The rest of the family continued the voyage to Ipswich, Massachusetts, and so the branches of the family stems from there.

No one has yet found the grave marker that a surveyor found and noted. Yet still we look, but it may be a mystery for years to come. Just one faded, weather worn headstone.

As we headed back, I took Geordie for a walk in the Kejimkujik National Park seaside adjunct. The trail lead to the sea and had a nice beach at the end and I let him swim.

Water Dog

The main park is inland and has lakes, campgrounds, and plenty of trees. It’s also a dark sky preserve, so the night skies must be spectacular. More info here.

On Monday, I went up to Lunenburg and Mahone Bay and a little beyond.

Lunenburg is a Unesco heritage site for the preserved example of a British colonial grid streets. I found many beautiful old homes and shops being refurbished all in bright colors.

Fisheries Museum Lunenburg

Lunenburg is also a well know film set for many TV shows and movies.

Run Stranger Run

Dolores Claiborne

Simon Birch

Jesse Stone TV movie series

Haven TV series

Lunenburg I found is a lot like a mini San Francisco, with it’s hills down to the docks. On the other side is a back bay.

Further east, is Mahone Bay. The harbor side skyline is well known for the three churches seen from the bay. I found this a more tourist friendly town. The main street has nice shops and restaurants. I found two unique shops here. A potter that creates custom plates, and a pewter shop with everything from Christmas ornaments, jewelry, and tankards.

Mahone Bay Skyline

While these towns are photogenic, I wandered further onto the backroads and found an amazing discovery. I found little bays in the in the rocky shore and it seemed an idyllic place. I’ve found it on the map as Stonehurst East. The bays could easily be swum across. There are great little houses on either side. Docks and boathouses with lobster traps ready for sea wait in the cove.

On Tuesday the temperatures rocketed, like in the states, to a high of 87º. Not wanting to submit Geordie to hot rides playing tourist, we went to the beach. I was very surprised to find an amazing beach just down the road. In fact there are two. I went to Carter Beach near Port Moulton and nearer to the campsite is Summerville Provincial Beach Park. I wasn’t the only one with the idea of basking in the sun. Geordie got a lot of swim time with me throwing sticks out into the water. He was a happy, tired pup when we got back.

Surprisingly nice beaches in Nova Scotia

Wednesday I took a short trip, with the cooler temps to Liverpool. Yes, the river in town is the Mersey River. I don’t think the Beatles have been here. It is near the little town of Brooklyn where a young man was born and grew into a country music legend. Hank Snow was soon a Grand Ole Opry regular. There is a small museum in Liverpool with lots of memorabilia and two of his Cadillacs.

I leave Fisherman’s Cove RV Park today. This is a nice little park. Nice hosts and a good spot in-between the towns I visited.

I’m off to Truro today for a couple of nights then heading to Cape Breton a few days later.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll leave you with Canadian Hank Snow singing one of his famous songs.

June 9

Spring in the Atlantic Maritimes

Lupine

Back in Digby, I took a walk with Geordie out of the campground. I found Lupines everywhere along the path. Purple was the most dominate color, but various pinks and white Lupines showed up as well.

I wanted to take the drive to Digby Necks but it’s an all-day trek. The day I had planned turned out to be foggy. It’s a long peninsula jutting out into the Bay of Fundy and the Bay of Maine. The drive is nearly two hours one way. There is a ferry to the first island, Long Island. Drive a bit further and another ferry takes you to Brier Island.

I ate a few scallops while I was here. Oh, they were good. I also found a fish monger and bought some and some haddock bits. I think some stir-fries are in the future, along with a soup or two.

Digby isn’t the typical tourist town. There are about six seafood restaurants, and a couple of tourist shops, but for the most part it’s a normal town. There is a boat works that right on Water Street, a bank, the tourist information building, but none of the t-shirt, candy, or kitsch of other tourist towns.

I drove up to the town of Annapolis Royal. It was a colonial capital before the founding of Halifax. There is a walking tour showing the houses, post office, and bank many dating back to the 1700 and 1800’s.

I took a trip to the ferry dock where you can hop on in Digby and cross to St. Johns, New Brunswick. It eliminates the drive up and over like I did, but it’ll cost you. On the web page, Campers, motorhomes, and vehicles with tow cost $9.00 a foot. It takes just over two hours to make the crossing. You can also catch a ferry in Portland, Maine. A vehicle towed like mine cost from $338- 450 depending on season. In just five and a half hours you can be in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. All kinds of amenities are on board, restaurant, coffee shop, kennel, movie theater, and gift shop. See their website https://www.ferries.ca for more information.

The Fundy Rose

Its also possible to take a ferry to Newfoundland from Sidney, up on Cape Breton.

Digby Bay in fog

I also took a drive over to Point Prim Lighthouse. It sits at the head of the Digby Gut, the opening to the harbor. One of the first lighthouse keepers there developed the foghorn. No Leghorn needed! The last keeper left in 1987, when they automated the lighthouse.

Seen: On a signboard at a community hall “Hawaiian Dance Party.” I wonder how that got to Nova Scotia. Do you imagine its hula dancing?

I stayed three nights near Yarmouth, NS and did little touring. I was feeling a bit stuff and so I stuck around camp.

Digby scallop fleet
Old Digby Lighthouse

Today I woke to rain. I debated whether to leave. I had reservations at a campground near Liverpool, NS and went back and forth and ended up just packing up and hitting the road. Blasts of rain and wind hit me from all sides. The roads had more than a few puddles and I could feel the slip. I finally made it to Fisherman’s Cove CG in Hunt’s Point south of Liverpool. I’ll be here for a week to tour both north and south of camp. Today though, is and indoor day to dry off!

Thanks for reading.

Rob

June 2

Foreign Country

I left Calais, Me. on Saturday last, and crossed the border. It took a little while as the agents did a sweep of my trailer. One thing I forgot, when the gate agent asked, was the small pepper spray I had to ward dogs away from Geordie. I’d always forgotten it when we went for walks and I forgot it in the questioning. The other officers found it and didn’t think I was trying to hide it, but they confiscated it. After that, I was on my way.

I kept thinking as I drove off, Geordie was in a foreign country, his first.

Saint Martins, New Brunswick

I wondered about my Garmin GPS. I wasn’t sure it would work in Canada, but was pleased when I was able to command it to find the town I was headed to for a few nights. I’m always with maps but to have a navigation system gives a sense of comfort when navigating on the fly. Something else I discovered on the Garmin is the speed limit converts the kilometers per hour to MPH on the screen so I can keep a watch for the MPH of the road.

Low tide and local boat awaiting high tide to enter the small harbor

It was a wee bit cold in Saint Martins, N.B. when I got in. It was just 48º. I was camped right on the Fundy Bay at Century Farm Family Campground. I could see the famous caves to the north of camp when the tide water subsided. The caves can only be accessed in low tide.

High tide

St. Martins is a tiny little village with about five restaurants, two gas station, one harbor, one covered bridge, and a few B & B’s.

Sunday was a beautiful sunny day and I could see to Nova Scotia. Geordie and I walked at low tide and later took the road north on the Fundy Trail Parkway. It’s a car tour with overlook stops, hiking trails, and a small interpretive center/gift shop at the Big Salmon River. That’s the spot where a logging mill company sat at the side of the river. Eventually the plan is to build the parkway road all the way to Fundy National Park to the North.

Small harbor
Caves at high tide
And at low tide

If you aren’t familiar with the Bay of Fundy, it has the worlds largest tides. Depending on the area, it can rise 11 feet to over 50 feet, twice a day. Some areas have arches that can be walked under in low tide. In high tide its possible to kayak through just the tops of the arches.

Fundy Trail Parkway shots

From St. Martins, I made a stop over in Amherst, Nova Scotia for the night then a couple of nights in Windsor. Windsor is the birthplace of hockey.

I also went over to a UNESCO World Heritage Site of Grand Pré near Wolfville. It was here that the Acadians built a life for themselves in the late 1600’s by creating dykes to drain farmlands. It was also here that the English drove them out of Grand Pré called the Expulsion. Wadsworth Longfellow wrote a poem about the Expulsion in his work of “Evangeline: A tail of Acadie.” She was a fictional character but is a remembrance to the Acadians of that terrible time.

Covered bridge in St. Martin, NB

Rain is due for the next few days, unfortunately. I’m near Digby, NS which is well known for the Digby scallops. At the harbor is the world’s largest scallop fleet. The scallops are supposed to be the best there is and I hope over the weekend, despite the rain, to eat more than a few and hit a local fish market to take a few with me for future dinners.

Thanks for following,

Rob

May 26

Acadia National Park

I drove onto Mount Desert Island on Sunday and to the campground I’d seen on Campendium, but found it closed. I remembered seeing a KOA while looking for camps and used voice commands on the GPS to find it. It was closed as well. I found a worker who told me that the other KOA was open and she gave me directions.

Nice spot for a house
This house ‘ll do too!

I spent four nights at the KOA Oceanside and it was perfect. Right on the bay with full-on salty sea air. I have to admit its was a bit steeper in price than I’d planned, but I was here to see Acadia N.P. and I had little choice.

After setting up, I loaded Geordie into the truck and we headed to the national park visitors center to get a park pass. I drove the Park Loop Road (map) on the east side, and stopped for some hiking. One of the best things about this national park is that they allow dogs on the trails. Most national parks prohibit dogs on trails. Geordie and I wandered the trail along the ocean front. We were stopped and heard comments about his Rex Specs, as usual. One Japanese woman took photos of us.

Rounded Rocks

Monday we toured further into the park and took more hikes on one of the many trails they have. I discovered there are carriage ways for a bit of turn-of-the-century (1900) feel to the old way of visiting the park.

Monday night storms were predicted and came true overnight. Tuesday morning I woke to mist and fog. That was the day I drove up Cadillac Mountain, the tallest mountain on the east coast. At 1,530 feet is was a long drive up in the fog. At times, I could only see about 50 feet in front of me. Once at the top… it was still foggy. Go figure! I had hoped I’d find sunshine and all the fog below with great views for photos. After about 45 minutes and a wander through the gift shop, I headed back down to wander the west side on the island.

Old technology and new

There are many tiny villages on the island and some with little “downtowns” with restaurants, gas stations, and gift shops.

Wandering the other roads gave me chances to see the harbors with a few lobster boats moored.

Ready to go to sea
Heading out on a misty, foggy morning.

On the park map, there are four lighthouses around the island. Bass, Bear Island, Egg Rock, and Baker Island lighthouses. Bass Harbor Lighthouse is on the main island. I found that it is the scene on the National Park quarter series. Only one other one was available to photograph. Egg Rock is to the east on the way out of Bar Harbor.

Egg Rock Lighthouse
Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse

I did take a wander around Bar Harbor. I took Geordie on the path along the waterfront. Signs along the path and on the streets tell you the history of some houses, buildings, or streets. I learned that on the walk I passed the house built for John Jacob Astor’s grandson. Tall hedges screened the house from view.

Many shops along the main streets carry the t-shirts you need, or the ship in bottles for your mantle, and the many restaurants. There are a lot of big hotels on that side of the island too.

Bird in the mist on Cadillac Mountain

For general reference to visitors, most restaurants and campgrounds don’t open until a day or two before the Memorial Day Weekend. With that in mind, it’s a great time to visit with the lack of crowds to come this weekend.

This is a really nice park with lots of activities, including ferries to other islands and parts of the park.

Hope you enjoyed this round up of Acadia.

On Thursday I drove up to Calais, Me right on the border with New Brunswick. I’m camped for a couple nights while it rains all day today. Looks like a reading and sleeping day with the patter of rain.

Thanks for reading.

Rob

May 20

First Time Ever

I really enjoyed the three day stop over in Littleton, Ma. Just down the road was one of those lifetime goals I had to see. I finally made it to Walden Pond where Henry David Thoreau lived for two years. It was back in high school when I read “Walden” and I wanted to see the area where it all took place for years.

I remembered reading, back in 1990, this area was under the gun for development, and with the help of musicians and locals saved it from disappearing. Don Henley of the Eagles, Jimmy Buffet, and Bonnie Raitt held concerts to raise money.

There is a very nice new visitor building and down the path a replica of the house Thoreau built. I happened to be there when an reenactor was there as Henry David. He was there for a school group. We talked about the building and the missing parts such as the closet/wardrobe.

Cabin replica with a statue of Henry David Thoreau. He was a bit taller than the statue at 5’7″

When I looked at it, I compared the size to the Nash. It’s obviously smaller, having no stove, sink, bathroom, or dinette. Thoreau’s house was probably the first “tiny house” at 150 square feet.

Across the street is Walden Pond and I took a walk around the lake. I was very surprised to find the water crystal clear. Locals fish the lake and many walkers take to the trails. I walked in reverence to this influential man. It’s a bigger lake than I assumed. I thought it would be about a five to ten acre pond, but it measures to 61 acres, and to me that’s lake size.

Walden Pond. I’d be fine living near this pond/lake!

Leaving Littleton on Thursday, I crossed the border into Maine for the first time ever. I haven’t really seen the ocean yet, but plan to next week. I’m just east of Brunswick, Me on a long arm of land. I can’t say I picked the prettiest campground, but it was handy. The bonus is they have tanks of lobster and will cook them up for your dinner. I’ve been tempted, but I’m using my will power and waiting for Nova Scotia lobster and scallops.

I did take a trip over to Freeport and to L.L. Bean since I was in the area. I exchanged a shirt I bought a month back. I again held my hand at bay from those little plastic bits in my wallet.

A high school friend of mine went to college in Waterville and I remember her telling stories of late celebratory nights ending up on a drive over to L.L. Bean to play around, since it is open 24 hours.

What do I think about Maine so far? My first day was in the 90’s and broke a record high. There sure are a lot of trees around here!

Tomorrow I’m off to the Bar Harbor area near Acadia National Park. I found a campground on Campendium that doesn’t take reservations and I’m hopeful it has a spot for me. They also don’t take credit cards. I figure being a Sunday and the week before Memorial Day weekend, I have a good chance of a site.

I called my bank and credit card companies this week to inform them of my trip to Canada. Next to set up my Verizon Jetpack and let them know as well.

One glitch for being in Canada next week is my vehicle registration. I received my renewal from Americas Mailbox while in Littleton, Ma and sent a money order the next day. I hope to learn it’s in my box next Tuesday and have it overnighted by Thursday. Fingers crossed.

Thanks for reading.

Rob

May 12

Tours and Tires

I had a great time visiting my niece and her husband.

They took me to old town Alexandria and showed me around. I saw George Washington’s place and the pub he drank at. We ate outside at great restaurant, Virtue Feed and Grain. I had Barbacoa Tacos, they were so good I could have eaten three more. I highly recommend it, if you’re in the area.

My niece is a complete soccer nut, and we went to see the Washington Spirit women’s soccer team on Saturday night. I was fun to sit on the hillside and watch a good game. Spirit beat the New Jersey Skyblue 4-3.

A very nice series of outdoor rooms

On Sunday, we took the little one, my great niece, to lunch at a fantastic pizza place called Two Amys. It’s been awarded it a D.O.C. as authentic Neapolitan pizza. I had a classic Margherita with mozzarella di bufala.

Afterwards, we met up with her husband and toured some of the monuments around D.C. It was a perfect day, sunny and in the 60’s.

Each of the gold stars represent 100 servicemen killed in WWII

On Monday I finally got my trailer tires replaced. Tires are one of those much debated items with RVers. When I had the Casita they also came with Goodyear Marathons on them. I learned about the Maxxis tire line back then. Marathons are the tire on many RVs. I think manufacturers give little thought to there actual quality.

I found this couple at the WWII Memorial and it seemed like they were ghosts.

The Maxxis tires have had a good reputation for quite a few years. When I searched for tires I found that Goodyear has a new tire that is made in the US and is supposed to be good, but they’re more expensive than the Maxxis.

Korean War Memorial
I found these etchings in marble at the Korean Memorial a bit spooky

I took off after the new Maxxis tires were put on feeling confident, and headed towards Harrisburg, Pa.

On Wednesday, I decided to put in some miles only to get stuck in construction zones twice. I was supposed to have a travel time of three hours twenty minutes, it turned into five and a half hours long. I, unfortunately, had made a reservation at Promised Land State Park in northeastern Penn. so I had to get there, rather than stop along the way.

Coming full circle with Thomas Jefferson

Well, that’s the last time I attempt a three to four hour day. I’m fine with only two to three hours on the road, which is what I did today. I’m now in Copake, N.Y. near the Massachusetts and Connecticut border.

I’m here through the weekend with rain coming tomorrow.

On a bad note, I can’t make a reservation at Acadia National Park. It looks to be full already.

Thanks for following my vagabond life.

Rob

May 5

Oh Baby

Met up with my niece and met my first great niece. This is one cute baby!

Caedyn

I got to spend some time with her and play musical toys. One of her toys plays classical music, so we banged on cups, shook a rattle, and made the popcorn machine pop.

Interested in Geordie at dinner time
Oh those eyes!

Of course she’s in a “clingy mama” stage, but she was fine with just me for about 45 mins.

My niece told me that when I visit Mount Vernon, Geordie could go. On Wednesday I took him over and wandered the grounds. With his new Rex Specs goggles we were mobbed by a lot of high school girls wanting to pet him, and also lots of questions about the goggles. While it was fun, it did get old fast. Geordie was on his best behavior.

Geordie at George’s place

On the plus side, one woman asked about them and told me her dog has Pannus. I told her and her friend that Geordie has it and that was the reason for the goggles. Her friend looked up Rex Specs on her phone, and the woman thanked me for the information. In the end, the distraction with all the girls was worth it to help another dog with Pannus.

Wednesday night Caedyn stayed home with dad, while my niece and I went off to the ballgame. I’ve now seen a new baseball park. It was a good game too, close score, Nationals 2, Diamondbacks 1.

Tonight I’m taking them out to dinner and I have more time with Caedyn today.

It rained like nobody’s business last night and this morning. I saw flood warnings online.

I’m here through the weekend then off to the North.

That’s about all I’ve got this week.

Until next week,

Rob

April 29

History

Around here in Virginia, you can throw a feather and it lands on history.

Last week, back in Charlottesville, I took the trip to Monticello. Beforehand, I took Geordie to a dog daycare kennel then off to Jefferson’s house. It was a day filled with rain. I drove to the visitor center a bit early and bump my tour time up. I got to watch the end of the movie in the theater and the beginning.

The shuttle dropped us off and we waited outside. Once inside we were in Jefferson’s two story entryway. The walls were filled with replicas of the treasures brought back from Lewis and Clark’s exploration across the country. A bison hide draped over a balcony and was painted by the Native Americans they met. Peace pipes and spears, and metals given to the chiefs of the tribes.

It’s hard to describe the parts of the house we toured, but it had many elements of a new house. Jefferson built dumbwaiters into the sides of his fireplace for wine to be brought up from the cellar. Pocket doors in one area he learned from the french. He designed french doors where, if you close one door the other side closes behind it.

No pictures are allowed inside the house, but I managed to take a couple outside in the pouring rain.

Spring at Monticello

There are many additional tours you can take after the house tour. You can be guided to the slave quarters and learn of their lives. Also a tour of the gardens with tastings is available. The garden tasting tour would be my choice!

Vineyards and fruit trees below the vegetable plots

I wandered the garden and was able to name more than a few of the plantings with my knowledge from my own gardening days. Lots of peas were growing tall.

If you find yourself close to the area, touring the house is well worth it.

Now you find me south of Fredericksburg. Yesterday I took a tour of the Civil War battles of Fredericksburg and the Chancellorsville. The tour of Fredericksburg is right in town and has a walking tour of the Confederate frontline. Also in the tour is a drive to the other lines of the battle. One was General Robert E. Lee’s headquarters. I didn’t know this, but some cannons could fire with a range of up to three miles away. Lee watched the battle from that vantage point and could direct cannons to fire on the Union troops.

At the gift shop you can buy CD audio tours of the Chancellorsville and Wilderness battles. It was well worth the nearly three hours for the Chancellorsville tour. It takes you down gravel roads where the Confederate Army marched, lead by Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson.

This is the house of the Chancellors they named it Chancellorsville. The battle raged all around the house. They finally left.
Confederate canon behind the Chancellors house, aimed at the blue line of the Union lines

Just to the southeast of the KOA campground is the place a wounded Stonewall Jackson died of complications from his wounds suffered from his own troops, in the Chancellorsville Battle. A shrine sits at the spot.

I think you could spend a month in Virginia just touring Civil War battle sites. Then another week visiting Jefferson’s, Madison’s, and Washington’s, houses and Williamsburg, which I’ll have to leave for a later visit.

I didn’t take many photos of the battlegrounds as it was really many battle fronts and a bit confusing to try and tell the story in the blog. It is better to look up the battles and find the maps of troop movements and stations.

That’s about it this week, thanks for joining my exploration of this amazing country.

Rob

April 21

The Love Tunnel

Appalachia

That title is a mash-up of the Natural Tunnels State Park in Virginia. It’s a nice little state park with numerous trails, with most interconnected. From the campground you can take Lovers Leap Trail down to an overlook (Lovers Leap) into the canyon. Unfortunately you can’t see the tunnels from there, you must head down the trail to the chair lift area and then go down that trail. The chair lift wasn’t in service when I was there but the trail down was a well needed stretch of the legs. The return trip was a good thigh building exercise.

Easter Flowers

I really liked the campground. There were two loops and the newer was Lovers Leap. It had a nice bath house and it also had a laundry area with two washers and dryers. Having the laundry was very helpful, as the town of Duffield didn’t look very tourist oriented.

From Natural Tunnels SP I drove over to Claytor Lake State Park. It also had an extensive trail system. While it rained most days, Geordie and I had no trouble adding steps to my Fitbit in-between showers.

Water carved wall
The railroad took advantage of the natural tunnel

Today I’m at the KOA in Charlottesville, Va. More rain is due this weekend, and I thought there would be a break on Monday when I have my ticket in will-call for Monticello. That’s also the day Geordie goes into doggie daycare. It turns out that it’s supposed to be a 100% day of rain.

I’ve always wanted to visit Thomas Jefferson’s home. He was an experimentalist in many areas. Mostly my interests are in his gardens. Jefferson brought back many fruit trees and other specimens from his travels to Europe to test on his property. Some made it some didn’t.

Geordie looks have changed as he is now wearing Rex Specs goggles. The vet in Springfield, Mo. suggested Rex Specs to me. I tried the other goggles on Geordie way back when he was first diagnosed with Pannus in Calif. He hated them and at every opportunity tried to paw or rub them off. These goggles are so much better with a larger viewing area for him. Still, on day one he tried rubbing them off on my leg, but by day three he was fine with them and even while sitting outside without my supervision. Still, every once in a while he tries to rub them off on my leg.

Hollywood Geordie

Had a rough morning getting ready to leave Claytor Lake SP. I found a screw in one of my trailer tires. Luckily I found a repair shop on the road out, before the interstate, and he swapped tires and fixed the flat one. I guess it’s not allowed to plug a trailer tire, but he did for safety.

I’ve been thinking of swapping out these tires anyway. The standard tire used on many RVs are Goodyear Marathons. These tires have a well know track record of blow-outs and tread delamination. My tires are two years old this May. Most trailer tires should be changed every three to four years. Unfortunately, there isn’t a Big-O Tire in Charlottesville, so I’ll have to pray I can get to one soon. I obviously want a national company for warrantee repairs if something goes wrong. The other reason for getting new tires now is, I’d rather have them in Canada this summer than buying them up there.

That’s about it this week. Sometimes repairs are just a bump in the road to ones plans.

Thanks for following.

Rob