My trip to visit family in California at the end of May was very enjoyable.  Special memories were made as we celebrated the accomplishments of our niece earning her master’s degree, honored my mom by scattering her ashes in Monterey Bay, and simply enjoyed one another’s company. I did my walking among the vineyards and made time to sit by the spectacular pool, of course.


Although it was a special opportunity, the time away was longer than usual and I was VERY happy to get home to my three boys! Jim had found the very best camping spot to be had along Grimes Creek (about 20 miles northeast of Boise). It was beautiful and we could hear the creek bubbling merrily from inside.


Before we put the boat to rest, we took her out a few times to nearby Robie Creek.

20160603_143802 20160603_144204 20160603_16414220160606_161343This little family liked our slow-moving quiet boat…and our string cheese. 20160608_145618-1There is a Blue Heron standing on a rock near the right side of this photo. It was there almost every time we ventured by.

We even snuck in a hike. We headed up from our perfect camping spot, across the road and up the draw. It wasn’t the most picturesque setting we’ve encountered due to fires in the recent past, but I think it was the steepest climb we’ve attempted to date. You may not be able to fully appreciate the steepness from the photos, but I will admit I was *very* grateful for the walking sticks we foraged. Without them, I may have just rolled back down the mountainside.20160611_153816

20160611_151610If you look closely, you can see our LCC beyond the road.20160611_15075620160611_15211620160611_155031

We also had a great time showing our grandkids our home in the mountains. But, after only a couple of weeks, it was time to go. We made sure everything was in order at the rental house and made a hasty departure to Washington just in time for a family get-together on Father’s Day.

We are both very excited to be on the road again. Let the summer adventure begin!


7 thoughts on “A Photo Diary (of sorts) – Spring 2017”

  1. beautiful photos! I so enjoy your blog! Will soon be moving into and traveling cross country in our 5-wheel with two cats and two dogs. I am worrying about how the kitties will adjust, they have lived in one country home all their lives (both old ladies now) and one of them is an outdoor adventurer. I’m so scared she will get out and I’ll never find her again. I know my fears are not productive or helpful for this situation….maybe need to sedate myself and let things happen as they happen.

  2. Thanks Leslie for your comment. It will be an adjustment for your girls but pets are quick to adapt to new circumstances given half a chance. And, fortunately, they live so in the moment and rarely hold a grudge 🙂 I guess everyone works it out their own way but our boys live in a portion of the basement we call the kittie kondo. It runs the full width of our fifth wheel so I feed and water them on one side *but* I’ve trained them to never jump out from that side (which could be dangerous with traffic around). Their cat box is on the other side which restricts their movement somewhat and I let them jump down to the ground — one at a time — on that side. Unless we’re in the middle of nowhere, I put their collar and leash on immediately and secure first one and then the other.
    I’m grateful that neither of our brothers have ever felt the need to bolt. I can just slowly follow them around for a bit and wait for my chance to put the collar and leash on if I need to. If we are remote, each of us will pair up with one of the cats — basically let them go wherever they want to go and only put the collar and leash on when it’s time to come home 🙂 I’m sure the moving down the road is not their favorite part but we can’t see or hear them so we just pretend they’re having a great time 🙂 We have learned to not open either of their doors when we first stop because they’re usually a little fired up from the road and less predictable for a while. I did add a vent through their panel on the driver’s side (away from the truck exhaust) so I can interact with them and make sure they’re okay without opening the door. Often they meow at me when I’m getting fuel 🙂
    Because we go to so many new places and are never anywhere long enough for the boys to get too familiar with any one area, they have developed almost a pack mentality. We can walk away from them but once we get 30 to 50 feet away, they’ll usually scramble to catch up with us. If it’s a “mini-hike” — say 1/2 mile each way — they will often venture out and return with us without collars or leashes (though we keep those in our pockets just in case) — great fun to see them be FREE for a short while but we would never let either of them just do their own thing without close and constant supervision 🙂
    More here about our boys and their catio:

  3. Those are some seriously awesome pics!! Whoa!!!! Telephone Cove looks like an amazing find. Was your entire rig caught in the sand or just BBT? How did you get out? What’s the story behind the BBT fuel line mishap? You two ought to write a book and put it on Amazon, I’d buy it.

    “Four more years wasn’t worth my freedom.” Those words play over and over in my mind whenever I watch your videos from Bob.

    How many gallons of water is your tank on the bed of BBT? Do you use your macerator a lot in the field with a portable tank or do you mainly pull you rig into a dump station. Just trying to weigh the pros and cons of putting two tanks on my bed versus no tanks and using dump stations and taking on water right before hitting the campsite.

    1. Hi Laurie,

      Sorry if it seems like we’re tag teaming but I just wanted to say I’m glad you enjoy the pictures. There aren’t too many, I hope…I get a little carried away sometimes and have a hard time narrowing them down. 🙂

      Yes, Telephone Cove is a lovely spot! t is about 4 miles off the highway and the dirt road is a bit bumpy and hilly with a few tight curves (for two-way traffic) but there were rigs of all sizes there. It was crazy busy on the weekends but during the week it was delightful.

      Thanks for your interest.

  4. It was our entire rig = BBT *and* our 13,000 pound fifth wheel — scary stuff. I dug like a mad man (fortunately had a regular spade shovel with us) for an hour and sometimes we’d roll a foot or two — sometimes six inches. Seriously scary stuff and there’s no room in our shoestring budget for professional assistance. We finally were able to keep moving (barely) with BBT hopping up and down in 4WD low range like we were gonna’ tear something up any second but I didn’t *dare* let up on the throttle or we would have been crazy stuck for sure. Against all odds, we somehow managed to keep moving and break out onto the paved road again — such a profound relief — like being snatched from the jaws of certain death!
    I’m quite certain these extreme antics were the straw which broke the camel’s back per the fuel line. These 7.3 diesel engines use engine oil at extremely high pressure to do many things — among them vaporize the fuel into the combustion chambers . . . and they have a crazy OEM clamp which chafes against the metal line and eventually wears a hole in it. Ours was leaking so bad it was truly embarrassing — we were leaking far more fuel than we were burning. We filled our tank at Mecca, CA and barely made it the 14 miles to the Ford dealership in Indio, CA — folks were waving their arms and flashing their lights — doing everything they could to get us to pull over — but we kept jamming on. There was some crazy stop and go road construction the last two miles and we lost half the fuel we started with in those last two miles. I didn’t think I dared shut the engine off — fearing it wouldn’t start back up again. For the most part, our life is nearly zero stress. This was NOT a typical kick-back day for us 🙂
    Our house tank holds about 50 gallons of fresh water and the barrel in the truck is about the same. We’ve used our macerator pump a few times in a pinch — to run a hose down a gopher hole (hand dug or otherwise) but mostly we use the FREE dump stations (or don’t mind paying up to $5 to dump our tanks). Having the barrel in the truck for fresh water has been a major upgrade for us. It’s with us in the truck 24/7 so easy enough to top off whenever we go to town for any reason . . . and we schedule our showers around how easy it is to get water and fill the barrel. Many places we’re able to discharge our graywater into the nearby landscape with no complaints which *really* extends how long we can stay in one place. I go #1 outside as much as I can so the blackwater tank can take nearly a month for the two of us to fill up — especially if we both use the public toilets when we do go to town as much as possible 🙂 This lifestyle has its own unique set of challenges but it’s all so worth it IMHO. An ancient philosopher once said that life is a book and those who don’t travel never see more than one page. 🙂

  5. Totally awesome… Photography, a viewpoint that takes your breath away and creates an emotion that just simply, Rocks your World!!!!!!

    You guys Rock. Keep making it Happen.


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